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Locksmith Ledger: Seventy Years And Going Strong
Little Falls Locksmith Service | Locksmith Little Falls, NJ | 973

Locksmith Ledger celebrates its 70th anniversary this month. It is impossible to mention our anniversary without considering the man who started it all, Leonard Singer. Organized locksmithing began a century ago as a secretive trade with servicing procedures handed down from father to son or daughter. Leonard Singer’s father was a locksmith.

Leonard saw firsthand how difficult it was to make a profitable living as a locksmith and dedicated his life towards raising the craft of locksmithing to the profession it is today. Towards this end, Leonard started Locksmith Ledger in 1939 as a small newspaper-sized information source for locksmiths. Locksmith Ledger articles from that era centered primarily on new product announcements with little coverage of technical matters. With the exception of the war years, Locksmith Ledger has been continually published since 1939.
When Leonard Singer restarted publishing in 1945, Locksmith Ledger appeared as a full-fledged magazine in a size similar to Readers Digest magazine. Articles of a more technical nature were published monthly. Locksmiths could easily fit Locksmith Ledger into their pocket and take it as a servicing reference on their daily jobs.
During the 25 years between 1945 and 1970, locksmithing grew larger and stronger, both as an organized profession and as a business depended on by the general public. Organizations were formed within locksmithing during these years to further our business. Groups such as the National Locksmith Suppliers Association (NLSA) and the Associated Locksmiths of America (ALOA) were both formed during these years. NLSA continues today under a new name (SHDA, Security Hardware Distributors Association) but with the same dedication to locksmithing developed years ago. As a continuously published magazine during these years, Locksmith Ledger stood at the forefront of strengthening the ties between all people involved in the security profession.
After founding and leading Locksmith Ledger since 1939, Leonard Singer sold Locksmith Ledger magazine in 1971 to Mr. J. S. Robinson, a Midwest magazine publisher. One of the first moves that Mr. Robinson made was to purchase the Reed Code book system from Texan J.D. Reed. Some readers might remember the old leather-bound Reed codes books, a black book for utility codes and a brown book for padlock code information.
Soon after the code book purchase, Mr. Reed died and Mr. Robinson hired Mr. Reeds’ son, Bill Reed, to administer the Reed code book program. During his tenure with the company, Mr. Reed served in several positions including codes editor, magazine editor and finally publisher.
Readers may remember the Frank & Bill shows. Frank Agius and Bill Reed traveled the country presenting free technical seminars for locksmith groups.
Great instructors such as Len White, Hank Spicer, Steve Young and Jerry Levine also contributed to the Frank & Bill shows. A Frank & Bill show highlight was an overseas visit to teach Irish locksmiths in 1989.
Another event in 1989 was that Locksmith Ledger increased to an 8 1/2” X 11” size to better present pictures and articles.
Locksmith Ledger became part of the Ilco Unican Company in 1988. Bill Reed left Locksmith Ledger in 1991 and Steve Lasky became the publisher. Frank & Bill shows were supplanted by Ledger Worlds and Reno shows. The bigger and better free Locksmith Ledger shows of the 1990s drew huge crowds wherever they went.
Cygnus Business Media purchased Locksmith Ledger in 2000. Soon after, Nancy Brokamp assumed the position of publisher. Cygnus has many other magazines covering a diverse group of topics. With the background Nancy Brokamp has had in the security field, and the expertise we can count on from within the Cygnus Business Media magazine family, Locksmith Ledger will be in good hands for years to come.
Locksmith Ledger magazine has reported on the locksmith industry from the fledgling beginnings in the 1930s, to the growing years of the ‘60s, ‘70s and ‘80s and on to the current electronic security age. If the last 70 years is any indication, the coming decades signal a new and exciting adventure for both the locksmith industry and Locksmith Ledger. We will be there to tell the story.

Source: www.locksmithledger.com

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