O’Brien Paint and Varnish Company

Location: 2001 W Washington St, South Bend

The O’Brien Corporation was founded in South Bend in 1875 in a small shop on what now is Lincoln Way West.  The founder was Patrick O’Brien, who had developed a revolutionary new quick-drying primer for the carriages and wagons of that era.  Patrick had once worked for the Studebaker Brother’s wagon company.


O’Brien selected the site of the company’s facilities on West Washington Avenue after fire destroyed the original O’Brien Electric Priming Company’s plant.  Between 1882-85, several buildings were constructed on South Bend’s west side and in 1893, the corporate name was changed to the O’Brien Varnish Company, which remained until 1948 when the company assumed the name of Fuller-O’Brien.  Uniroyal Adhesives and Sealants bought out part of the Fuller-O’Brien company and still operates on West Washington Avenue in South Bend.


O'Brien Paint and Varnish-Fuller O'Brien

Please Note

Users may download material displayed on this site for noncommercial, educational purposes only, provided all copyright and other proprietary notices contained on the materials are retained. Unauthorized use of the Northern Indiana Historical Society d/b/a The History Museum’s logo and Web site logo is not permitted. The contents of this site may not be used for commercial purposes, without written permission of the Northern Indiana Historical Society d/b/a The History Museum. To obtain permission to reproduce information on this site, submit the specifics of your request in writing to Director of Marketing & Community Relations, The History Museum, 808 West Washington Street, South Bend, Indiana 46601 or If permission is granted, the wording “provided with permission from the The History Museum” and the date must be noted. However, permission is not required to create a link to the The History Museum’s Web site or any pages contained therein.

Previous Next
Test Caption
Test Description goes like this