Last Updated: 09 July 1997

Mark Charles Honeywell
founder, Minneapolis-Honeywell Regulator Company


If your last name is Honeywell, you have been asked several thousand times in jest if you are connected with the company, Honeywell, Inc. You are in a way if you are related to Roger Hunnewell, the immigrant. That includes most of the Honeywells living in North America. Mark Charles Honeywell founded the company which grew from a plumbing and heating company in Wabash, Indiana to one of the world's largest corporations. His lineage is:

Roger > Israel > Richard > David > Mattias > Israel > Sanford > Mark

Mark C. Honeywell was born on 29 Dec 1874. The book, Mark C. Honeywell, Citizen, Builder, Philanthropist, of Wabash, Indiana, by Mildred E. Hipskind, 1970, states that Mark "inherited his father's rare combination of inventive genius and ability to do many things well." In 1902 he founded the Honeywell Heating Specialty Company. In 1905 the name was changed to Honeywell Heating and Specialties Company with a capitalization of $25,000. Three other prominent men of Wabash joined Mark Honeywell as stockholders, Harry McNamee, Joseph Teague, and Marshal Tilman. In 1916, Don Rodibaugh and Willard Huff were added as associates.

The great contribution of this early company was the development of a furnace temperature regulator. This device made possible even heat for home temperature control and it helped prevent out-of-control fires which were common in unregulated furnaces.

In 1927, the Honeywell Specialties Company merged with a Minneapolis firm to form the Minneapolis-Honeywell Regulator Company, with Mark Honeywell serving as president. In 1935, he relinquished that post and became Chairman of the Board of Directors.

Mark Honeywell acquired Boca Chita Island in Biscayne Bay for use as a summer retreat. He had a majestic lighthouse built on the island and frequented this tropical paradise on several of his yachts. This island is now part of Biscayne Bay National Monument.

Mark Honeywell died in Indianapolis, IN, on 13 Sep 1960, after a prolonged illness.

Mark Honeywell was a major benefactor to the City of Wabash, where he spent most of his life. My wife, Lois, and I visited there in Spring, 1994 and were given the red carpet treatment by Honeywell House manager Mrs. Janet D. Speicher, (219) 563- 2326. We also enjoyed visiting the Honeywell Memorial Center and Honeywell Golf Course, where Mark Honeywell had his summer lodge and studio.

Mark's father, Sanford, was a millwright in Wabash. One of his millstones is on display outside the family-owned newspaper, The Wabash Plain Dealer. Mark's great grandfather, Mathias, was a Revolutionary War soldier as were Mathias' brothers, Isaiah, John, Rice, and Zadoc Honeywell. We left a Family lineage at the Honeywell House and the Wabash Carnegie Library which described Mark's connection to the rest of the Family. Both receive a complimentary subscription to the Honeywell Heritage as does the Director of the Honeywell Foundation. Mark was the most famous citizen of Wabash, but neither he nor the city knew his family history beyond his grandparents.

I am sure that any Family member visiting Wabash will get the same warm welcome we did.

For more information on Mark Charles Honeywell and the Honeywell Foundation, go to the Honeywell Foundation in Wabash, Indiana.

A. Parks Honeywell, Editor, Honeywell Family Association

This page, and all contents, are copyright © 1996 Honeywell Family Association.

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