1225 Huger Street
Former Site of Kline Iron and Steel
In the decades following World War II, Columbia produced more fabricated structural steel per capita than anywhere else in the country. The foundation for this impressive feat lay in modest scrap metal businesses established by first-generation Jewish immigrants during the 1910s through the 1940s. Entrepreneurs in the Tenenbaum, Seidenberg, Dickman, Addlestone and Katz families grew to become sophisticated manufacturers who passed ownership to later generations. Members of the Kline family embodied this progression of moving from salvaging second-hand metal to producing first-class building materials. Begun in 1923 as a partnership between Lithuanian immigrant brothers Philip (1888 - 1968) and Myer (1890 - 1965), the family-run business operated until 2000. During its nearly 80-year run, the company supplied steel for projects that helped win World War II and change skylines throughout Columbia and the Southeast.