Wauleco property timeline

Because the relevant history of the Wauleco property stretches back to the 1940s, we’ve created the following timeline to clarify key moments in time. As you’ll see, since the 1980s, we’ve worked closely with the WDNR to actively facilitate cleanup and remediation efforts.

The early years

  • 1943

    George Silbernagle & Sons starts the initial window manufacturing operations on the Cleveland Avenue property now owned by Wauleco. Previously, the property was home to Wausau Novelty Company, a manufacturer of furniture novelties.
  • 1944

    The window manufacturing process at the plant starts using Pentachlorophenol (PCP) as a wood preservative.  At the time, PCP was one of the most widely used pesticides in the United States,  registered with the federal government and sold to the public. At George Silbernagle & Sons, the PCP was applied as a surface coating to the windows in a variety of processes, mostly by dipping and spraying. The wood was never “pressure treated.”
  • 1961

    George Silbernagle & Sons is purchased by Harris Brothers.
  • 1975

    Harris Brothers changes its name to Harris-Crestline Corporation.
  • 1981

    The Sentry Corporation purchases Harris-Crestline Corporation. Harris-Crestline Corporation is merged into another entity and the surviving corporation is re-named SNE Corporation, which continues to operate as a window manufacturing company at the site.

New ownership

  • 1984

    The Environmental Protection Agency starts to increase regulation of the purchase and sale of PCP.  Upon learning of EPA’s efforts to reclassify PCP and potentially ban the use of its application indoors, SNE Corporation began to investigate its usage of PCP.  It also altered its processes in an effort to eliminate the potential release of PCP while it evaluated potential alternatives.
  • 1984–1985

    SNE Corporation works with the WDNR on an investigation and remediation plan.
  • 1986

    SNE Corporation discontinues the use of PCP in its window manufacturing operations.
  • 1987

    SNE Corporation sells some of its assets to another entity interested in continuing the window manufacturing business on site. The purchaser leases the property, which is retained by SNE Corporation.  Following the sale, SNE Corporation changes its name to Wauleco (a derivation of Wausau Leasing Company).  The purchaser continues window manufacturing operations on the site under the name SNE Enterprises.
  • 1990

    SNE Enterprises discontinues window manufacturing operations at the site.
  • 1992

    Wauleco commences demolition of all buildings on site, except those remaining today, which are in existence to house remediation equipment.  Wauleco installs and operates a groundwater treatment plant.
  • 1992–present

    Wauleco continues remediation of the property.
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