The first ever arm balance scales date back to ancient Egyptian times. These would have been used to weigh commodities.
Brothers Richard and William Salter established businesses manufacturing springs and pocket steelyards (spring balances) in a cottage in Bilston, West Midlands.
The Salter company was first established, and moved to 144 High Street, West Bromwich, where it continued to manufacture springs for a variety of items, as well as bayonets.
Following Richard Salter’s death, the business was taken over by nephews John and George Salter, both bayonet makers.
The company took the name ‘George Salter & Company’.
George Salter took out the first of many weighing equipment patents, which related to various ways of indicating weight on a spring balance that are still used today.
George Salter died, but Salter remained a family business, under the stewardship of George’s nephew John. It now made a wide variety of spring balances, vertical roasting jacks, musket bayonets, domestic weighing apparatus and steam pressure gauges.
John Salter died and his young sons George and Thomas took an active role in the company. Businessman John Silvester joined the firm and sad irons were added to the company’s portfolio. These were manufactured with the Salter’s world famous logo, the Staffordshire Knot.
Thomas Salter took the helm, a local philanthropist who introduced recreational facilities and sickness benefits for his employees, an enormous boon to his workers at a time when insurance to cover absence from work simply didn’t exist. Thomas and his sons were avid devotees of cricket establising the Salter Cricket Club.
The Salter Cricket Club formed a football team called WB Strollers, which later became West Bromwich Albion FC. The team which won the English FA Cup in 1886 included seven Salter employees.
The product portfolio now including the first coin-operated public weighing machines as well as various food processing equipment, clothes washers, letter-clips, hat hooks and dynamometers.
The Salter trademark, showing a Staffordshire knot pierced by an arrow, was registered and used on all the balances. It was also adopted by West Bromwich Albion Football Club, becoming the first commercial advertising on football shirts.
Salter spring balances officially approved for trade use.
Now under the leadership of Thomas’ son George, Salter announced the production of England’s first commercially produced typewriter, the Salter Standard No.5, designed by James Samuel Foley and John Henry Birch.
Salter presented the compact weighing machine to the British House of Commons for use by members of parliament - considered to be the first ever ‘bathroom’ scale.
Salter built a new 5-storey factory - in its time the tallest building in West Bromwich. By this time, bathroom scales had started to become popular.
World War Two saw Salter’s involvement in the production of munitions, manufacturing more than 750 million springs and provided parts for some of the world’s most iconic companies such as De Havilland and its Mosquito Aircraft.
Salter exhibit a spring balance, the Belleville, that could weigh anything up to 200 tons, at the time the largest in the world. Salter springs were widely used in the motor, aviation and railway industries. They also found their way into many household items including prams, beds, bicycles, gramophones and clocks.
Digital scales are invented, with weight displayed as a number usually on a LCD display.
Salter launch their first electronic Salt & Pepper mill delivering seasoning at the touch of a button.
Salter becomes part of HoMedics Group Ltd.
Salter launch the first ‘smart’ scale, MiBody, which transfers data via a USB stick to a PC allowing the user to store and view their results over time.
Salter begin a successful partnership with chef Heston Blumenthal. Salter’s design team work alongside Heston’s team from the Fat Duck kitchens to develop a range of precision weighing instruments.
Salter extends its expertise in measurement into medical diagnostic products launching it’s first Blood Pressure monitor.
Salter launch a kitchen scale and thermometer which connect to an app via Bluetooth. The Salter Cook app allows you to save a variety of online recipes on your smartphone or tablet to create your own interactive cookbook.
Salter partners with Ultimate Products Global Sourcing to bring an extended range of Bakeware, Cookware, Food Prep & Small Domestic Appliances to the market under the Salter brand.
Salter celebrate their 260th anniversary