1828 Michael Nairn began manufacturing heavy canvas sailcloth in Kirkaldy, Scotland. The canvas was sold to manufacturers of floorcloth, the precursor to linoleum.
1847 Michael Nairn begins manufacturing painted linoleum floorcloth, licensing a patent from the inventor, Frederick Walton. Local skeptics called the new enterprise “Nairn’s Folly,” but after Nairn adds the use of ovens to the manufacturing process to reduce production time, the factory is able produce faster than its competition.
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