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History

A legacy built on a single can of paint and a vision for the future.

What Is Worth Doing Is Worth Doing Well

Our mission to cover the earth began more than 150 years ago when in 1866 Henry Sherwin and Edward Williams founded the Company in Cleveland, Ohio. The duo went on to shape an industry and create a global legacy of creativity, collaboration and innovation. That legacy continues today as we look ahead and continue to innovate for the future. With stores, distribution centers and facilities spanning the globe, we are able to deliver the best in paints, coatings and related products to our customers all over the world.

Our History

 The defining moments of our legacy.

1860 - 1880
  1. 1866
    First store painting

    Henry A. Sherwin and Edward P. Williams first establish The Sherwin-Williams Company.

  2. 1870

    Henry A. Sherwin becomes Sherwin-Williams first Chief Executive Officer.

  3. 1873

    A high-quality oil-based paint called “Guaranteed Strictly Pure Raw Umber in Oil,” also known as the first ready-mixed paint, was first introduced to the market.

  4. 1877
    First Can Sherwin-Williams Paint

    Sherwin-Williams patents the first resealable paint can.

1881 - 1900
  1. 1884
    Percy Neyman in chemistry lab photo

    Sherwin-Williams makes history by hiring Percy Neyman, the first chemist ever employed by an American paint manufacturer.

  2. 1885

    The Company’s stockholders receive first dividend. 

  3. 1888
    Calumet Paint Company

    Sherwin-Williams purchases the Calumet Paint Company of Chicago, the Company’s first plant outside of Cleveland. 

  4. 1890
    Marine Finishes

    Sherwin-Williams introduces a line of marine finishes.

  5. 1892

    Sherwin-Williams merges with Walter H. Cottingham Co., marking Sherwin-Williams first international presence in Montreal, Canada.

1901 - 1920
  1. 1903

    Sherwin-Williams establishes an office in London which gave the Company increased access to Canada, and its first presence in Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, India and China. 

  2. 1905

    Sherwin-Williams debuts its iconic “Cover the Earth” logo, replacing the previously-used Chameleon logo.

  3. 1907

    The Company’s revenues top $10 million.

  4. 1909
    Walter H. Cottingham

    Walter H. Cottingham becomes Sherwin-Williams second Chief Executive Officer after Henry Sherwin’s retirement.

  5. 1916

    Sherwin-Williams celebrates 50 years.

1921 - 1940
  1. 1922
    George R. Martin

    George A. Martin becomes the Company’s third Chief Executive Officer.

  2. 1923

    The Company introduces its Household Painting Guide, a decoration guide promising to help readers “stop making mistakes in painting.” 

  3. 1925

    Sherwin-Williams is first traded on the American Stock Exchange.

  4. 1928

    The Company introduces the first synthetic aviation coatings, used on some of the most historic flights of the 20th century, including Charles Lindbergh’s first nonstop solo flight across the Atlantic Ocean. 

  5. 1929
    First Latin American Store

    First Latin American region store opens in Mexico City, Mexico.

  6. 1937

    Sherwin-Williams revenues reach $100 million.

  7. 1940
    Arthur W. Steudel

    Arthur W. Steudel becomes Sherwin-Williams fourth Chief Executive Officer.

1941 - 1960
  1. 1941
     Kem-Tone Roller-Koater

    Sherwin-Williams chemists create Kem-Tone, a fast-drying and washable water-based paint for household use. The Company also introduces the Roller-Koater applicator that same year.

  2. 1943
    WW II Femail Filler and Cappers

    Sherwin-Williams hires first female employees as fillers and cappers to keep the production line going during World War II.

  3. 1959
    Colormeter Mixing Machine

    Sherwin-Williams introduces the Kem Colormeter Mixing Machine, giving customers the opportunity to customize paint colors.

  4. 1960
    Earnest C. Baldwin

    Earnest C. Baldwin becomes the Company’s fifth Chief Executive Officer. 

1961 - 1980
  1. 1961

    The Company develops the paint can shaker, which was used to help mix five-gallon containers, giving customers the ability to buy paint in larger quantities.

  2. 1962

    Sales of Kem-Tone pass the 100-million-gallon mark, a record unrivaled by any paint product on the market.

  3. 1963
    Acrylyd

    Sherwin-Williams introduces Acrylyd®, an automotive finish resistant to chips and scratches.

  4. 1964
    New York Stock Exchange

    Sherwin-Williams (SHW) is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

  5. 1966

    Sherwin-Williams celebrates 100 years.

  6. 1969
    Walter O. Spencer

    Walter O. Spencer becomes Sherwin-Williams sixth Chief Executive Officer. 

  7. 1977

    Sales top $1 billion.

  8. 1979
    John G. “Jack” Breen

    John G. “Jack” Breen becomes the Company’s seventh Chief Executive Officer.

1981 - 2000
  1. 1982
    Management Training Program (MTP)

    Sherwin-Williams develops the Management Training Program (MTP), a leadership development program designed to bolster the Company’s talent pipeline.

  2. 1991
    2,000th Store

    Sherwin-Williams opens its 2,000th store.

  3. 1994

    Sherwin-Williams becomes an official sponsor of Major League Baseball and is the designated coatings supplier for several new ballparks including Jacobs Field in Cleveland and The Ballpark in Arlington, Texas.

  4. 1995
    Room by Room

    Sherwin-Williams sponsors its own nationally broadcast television show, Room by Room, on the new Home and Garden Network.

  5. 1999
    Christopher M. Connor

    Christopher M. Connor becomes Sherwin-Williams eighth Chief Executive Officer.

2001 - 2020
  1. 2001
    9-11 Pentagon

    Sherwin-Williams donates 10,000 gallons to help repaint the Pentagon after 9/11.

  2. 2006
    3,000th store

    Sherwin-Williams opens its 3,000th store.

  3. 2009
    Billionth Gallon

    Sherwin-Williams produces its billionth gallon of architectural paint in Garland, Texas.

  4. 2011
    Harmony® Interior Latex paint

    Sherwin-Williams introduces Harmony® Interior Latex paint, an environmentally sustainable, zero-VOC formula that helps promote better indoor air quality.

  5. 2013

    Sales top $10 billion.

  6. 2014
    HGTV Home by Sherwin-Williams

    Partnership with HGTV is announced, and paint line HGTV Home by Sherwin-Williams is launched for exclusive sale in Lowe’s stores.

  7. 2014
    4,000th store

    Sherwin-Williams opens 4,000th store.

  8. 2015
    Paint Shield

    Sherwin-Williams launches Paint Shield™, the first EPA-registered paint with the power to kill bacteria.

  9. 2016
    John G. Morikis

    John G. Morikis becomes the Company’s ninth Chief Executive Officer. 

  10. 2016
    Celebrate 150

    Sherwin-Williams celebrates 150 years. 

  11. 2017
    Valspar

    Sherwin-Williams acquires Valspar, the largest acquisition in the Company’s history.

  12. 2018
    ColorSnap App

    Sherwin-Williams introduces ColorSnap® Visualizer App, instantly lets you “try on” paint colors on your own walls, match colors to a photo and identify coordinating colors for your space. 

  13. 2020
    Emerald Rain Refresh

    Sherwin-Williams develops Emerald® Rain Refresh™, a self-cleaning exterior coating.

  14. 2020
    Building our Future

    Sherwin-Williams announces intent to build its new global headquarters in downtown Cleveland, Ohio and new Research and Development Center in a nearby suburb of Brecksville, Ohio.

2021 - Present
  1. 2021
    Living Well

    Sherwin-Williams announces Living Well™ Collection with expanded SuperPaint® line that possesses air purifying and sanitizing technologies.