Woodbine, Iowa is at the heart of Woodbine Manufacturing Company. Since Delbert “Bus” Brown created the original Tommy Gate Hydraulic Lift in 1965, Woodbine Manufacturing Company has honored a tradition of building high-quality liftgates.
Working alone, Bus designed and constructed the first Tommy Gate in a small, brick machine shop, naming the lift after his son. More than 50 years later, Woodbine Manufacturing has grown into an industry leader with dozens of liftgate models, and a state-of-the art manufacturing facility. Woodbine Manufacturing’s reach now extends far beyond Iowa. Tommy Gate liftgates are sold by more than 1000 distributors in every corner of the world, and with the 2018 addition of Italian-made Anteo liftgates, Woodbine Manufacturing has gone truly global.
Throughout this growth, Woodbine Manufacturing has maintained its roots. Every Tommy Gate lift has been manufactured and assembled on the same piece of land since the company’s founding. The company continues to be family owned and operated. Bus Brown's daughter Lila Blandford led the company for many years, and now Bus's grandson and Lila's son TJ Blandford leads Woodbine Manufacturing as CEO.
Woodbine Manufacturing Co. has come a long way since Bus would load up his pickup trailer with liftgates, delivering and installing them on farmers’ trucks in neighboring counties. Still, the company takes great pride in the same values Bus held since the beginning: a strong work ethic, meaningful ties to the community, a passion for invention, and a commitment to quality, from the jobs provided to the liftgates made to the service given.
It is a testament to the spirit of American manufacturing and innovation that Woodbine Manufacturing began with a single man, in a small, brick machine shop in rural Iowa and has become the industry standard that it is today.
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