In 1972 B&H Engineering was founded, in Fort Wayne Indiana, by Bob Herr and Howard Barry. Bob and Howard met as co-workers at Bowmar LLC. Bob was the head of the engineering department and Howard was a salesman. Bob and Howard worked together for many years forming a close friendship. Bob’s brother-in-law, Keith Moody, was a surveyor and shared frequent complaints with Bob about the 2 x 2 oak stakes that were commonly used for marking. The oak stakes were not only heavy but also had an unpleasant smell when they became wet from being dragged through the fields. They were not reusable and had to be painted by hand once placed in order to stand out. Bob pondered an idea of using something that was lighter, reusable, easy to store, bright, and durable. On August 28, 1973, the very first PLASTAKE® stake was patented. Over the next 36 years, Bob continued to operate B&H Engineering selling PLASTAKE® stakes nationwide.
In 2009, Bob approached one of his part-time employees, Greg Hartwig, offering him the opportunity to purchase B&H Engineering. Greg worked full time as a machinist at Bowmar LLC, and part-time for B&H Engineering for over 20 years. Greg was not only an employee to Bob he was a neighbor and family friend. Greg, always having the dream of being an entrepreneur, was excited for the opportunity but knew he would need a business partner to split the responsibilities. In 2009, the company was sold to Greg Hartwig and his long-time friend Tim Osterhouse.
Greg and Tim continued to innovate and excel the company over the next 8 years expanding the product line introducing concrete form stakes, color fast long lasting stakes and 36’’ & 48’’ stakes. In 2017, Tim decided to sell his portion of the business to Greg making him the sole owner of B&H Engineering. Since then, the company has continued to thrive and grow and now is a family owned and operated cooperation. Greg made a promise to Bob Herr just before his passing that he would continue to keep B&H Engineering a reliable, stable and trustworthy company for years to come which he intends to accomplish by continuing to meet the needs of his customers and investing in the company’s younger generation.