The button measures 1'' wide. It appears to be in near mint condition as pictured. Below here, for reference is some of the company's long History:
The Valspar Corporation
1806: Samuel Tuck opens a Boston paint dealership called Paint and Color, which is later acquired by Augustine Stimson.
1820: First commercial production of varnishes in the United States begins in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
1832: Valentine and Company, a varnish manufacturer, is incorporated in Boston by Lawson Valentine, and soon merges with Paint and Color to become Stimson & Valentine.
1866: Valentine and his brother, Henry, become sole partners in the business, renaming it Valentine & Company.
1870: Company relocates to New York City and acquires Minnesota Linseed Oil Paint Company.
1882: Henry Valentine succeeds his brother as president.
1903: Chemist L. Valentine Pulsifer, grandson of Lawson Valentine, joins company.
1906: Pulsifer develops Valspar, the first clear varnish.
1932: Valentine & Company begins operating as a subsidiary of newly formed Valspar Corporation.
1960: Valspar merges with Rockcote Paint Company, with new headquarters in Rockford, Illinois.
1970: Valspar merges with Minnesota Paints, Inc., with new headquarters in Minneapolis.
1973: C. Angus Wurtele becomes company chairman.
1984: Mobil Corporation's chemical coatings business is acquired for $100 million.
1990: Sales approach $650 million.
1994: Company acquires Cargill Inc.'s resin products division, combines it with part of existing resin business, and spins it off to shareholders as McWhorter Technologies, Inc.
1995: Richard Rompala becomes CEO, then chairman in 1998.
1996: Two stage acquisition of the Coates Coatings unit of TOTAL S.A. is begun and is completed in 1997.
1997: Sales reach $1 billion.
1999: Purchase of the packaging coatings business of Dexter Corporation vaults Valspar into the number one position worldwide in packaging coatings.
The Valspar Corporation is the fifth largest North American manufacturer of paints and coatings, a business it has engaged in for nearly two centuries. Its sterling reputation was built on the Valspar varnish, which was unveiled in 1906 as the first coating for wood that retained its clear finish when exposed to water. Nonetheless, until formative mergers with Rockcote Paint Company in 1960 and Minnesota Paints, Inc. in 1970, Valspar was a relatively small manufacturer with limited possibilities for growth. During the last three decades of the 20th century, however, it rose to Fortune 500 status and Wall Street favor through an aggressive acquisition campaign in which dozens of smaller paint and coatings companies entered the Valspar fold.
The company is divided into four large business segments: Consumer Paints, with 34 percent of sales; Packaging Coatings, 28 percent; Industrial Coatings, 24 percent; and Special Products, 14 percent, which provide balance and diversity to counteract the business cycle. Perhaps its greatest potential lies in packaging coatings for the food and beverage industry, a business it dramatically embraced in 1984 with the $100 million purchase of Mobil Corporation's coatings division and then expanded still further in 1998 with the acquisition of Dexter Corporation; Valspar currently ranks number one in this industry worldwide, with a market share of between 35 and 40 percent. The company operates 32 manufacturing plants in the United States, Canada, Mexico, France, Norway, the United Kingdom, Australia, China, and Singapore; has licensing arrangements throughout the world; and markets such consumer brands as Colony, Enterprise, Laura Ashley, Magicolor, Plasti-Kote, and Valspar. In the mid-1990s Valspar began an aggressive international expansion, which quickly increased its overseas sales from three percent to nearly 20 percent of overall sales.
In 1820 two businessmen in Cambridge, Massachusetts, began the first commercial production of varnishes in the United States, a business that was to become Valspar's forte for more than a century. Fourteen years earlier, on Boston's Broad Street, Samuel Tuck opened a paint dealership that led directly to the formation of Valspar. Tuck's business, Paint and Color, changed names and hands several times during the next 50 years. With Augustine Stimson's assumption of the Broad Street business and Lawson Valentine's incorporation of Boston varnish manufacturer Valentine and Company in 1832, the formation of Valspar was made possible. These two businesses soon merged to become Stimson & Valentine. In 1855 Otis Merriam joined Stimson & Valentine as the other principal owner; Merriam, interestingly, had for the previous six years been associated with the original varnish plant in Cambridge. Although popularly known as 'varnish manufacturers', these men also conducted an import and retail trade in paints, oils, glass, and beeswax. Around 1860 Valentine's brother, Henry, joined the firm. By 1866, both Stimson and Merriam had retired and left the Valentine brothers the sole partners in the business, which was then renamed Valentine & Company.
Shortly thereafter, Lawson Valentine made a singularly important decision: he hired a chemist at a time when there were fewer than 100 such specialists in the country; this was a first for the American varnish industry. More important than the creation of the position, however, was the candidate selected for the job. That person was Charles Homer, brother of famed New England artist Winslow Homer and an expert craftsman in the mixing of varnishes. According to the Valspar History, he ''made varnishes so perfect they could be poured from the can to the back or side of a carriage. ... Varnishes that flow out smoothly and evenly, dry perfectly.'' Following Lawson's relocation of the business to New York City in 1870, the same year in which the firm acquired Minnesota Linseed Oil Paint Company, Valentine & Company began to specialize in vehicle finishing varnishes that were competitive with widely prized English varnishes. At the time, the company operated a West Coast office with Whittier, Fuller & Company (later renamed W.P. Fuller & Company) as its representative. In 1878 Valentine & Company entered the Midwest market via a Chicago branch office. Four years later Henry Valentine succeeded his brother as president and the company renewed its Boston ties by reopening a plant there. By the turn of the century, Valentine & Company had established additional operations in Pennsylvania as well as Paris, and had won dozens of international medals for its high quality varnishes.
Early 20th Century: Valspar Varnish
Lawson Valentine's grandson, L. Valentine Pulsifer, joined the company in 1903 after receiving his degree in chemistry from Harvard University. Working under Homer, Pulsifer was allowed to conduct experiments to discover why varnishes always turned white when exposed to water. From Homer's standpoint, the experiments would be edifying, though not otherwise profitable; Pulsifer believed, however, that the formula for a clear varnish existed, it simply had yet to be discovered. Three years later Pulsifer produced Valspar, the first clear varnish ever; factory production began within two years, accompanied by promotional stunts designed to highlight the product's unique features. The first such exhibition involved a boiling water test at the Grand Rapids Furniture Show in 1908. The following year, at the New York Motor Boat Show, Valspar and eight of the best competing brands were applied to a submarine in alternating stripes; the vessel was then submerged and ''gradually took on the appearance of a sea going zebra, as the other varnishes whitened and Valspar remained clear.''
For the next few decades the company rode on the coattails of Valspar, supported by a strong national advertising campaign during the 1920s that made the product a household word with the tagline ''the varnish that won't turn white.'' Pulsifer's invention, by virtue of its unparalleled appearance, durability, and ease of application, became a willing participant in a number of historic events. These included Admiral Robert Peary's expedition to the North Pole in 1909, U.S. involvement in World War I, and Charles Lindbergh's nonstop solo flight from New York to Paris in 1927; in each of these cases, Valspar finishes were employed as a protective coating on exposed wood surfaces. The varnishing of airplanes, in particular, became synonymous with Valspar during this period. The unveiling of new products and the acquisition of other paint and varnish manufacturers helped Valentine & Company to successfully weather the Great Depression. Among the new products were Super Valspar, Four-Hour Valspar, Val-Oil Clear, Valenite Clear, Valenite Enamels, Three V Floor Varnish, and French Formula Enamel; and among the acquired paint and varnish manufacturers were Con-Ferro Paint and Varnish Company and Detroit-Graphite Company (both acquired in 1930) and Edward Smith & Company (acquired in 1938).