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Daily News Editorial

By Staff | Apr 1, 2008

They sure don’t make them like they used to.

That saying could quite aptly describe Arthur J. Luscombe, founder of Art’s-Way Manufacturing, who departed from this earth Saturday at a hospital in Las Vegas.

He will be sadly missed.

Luscombe was one of those self-made entrepreneurs you seldom hear about but the impact of his hand on our region and on agriculture is legend. He was a local boy, born in Dolliver. After he and his wife, Elvina, were married, they tried their hand at farming, running grocery stores, and even operating movie theaters.

It was in 1956 when Luscombe built his first grinder-mixer. Life would never be the same for Luscombe’s every again.

Luscombe had the chance to see Art’s-Way celebrate its 50th anniversary the summer of 2006.

“Some of them think they’re going to explode right away,” Luscombe said of many companies shortly before Art’s-Way’s 50th anniversary. “It doesn’t work that way. You do it yourself. If you get big enough and can hire some help you do it. But if you can’t afford it, you don’t.”

Today, few would even dream of attempting what Luscombe did without having an advanced mechanical engineering degree. Luscombe created his company with a high-school diploma, business and engineering savvy, and a dream.

“I did everything myself, engineering and everything,” Luscombe said. “I taught them all — salesmen and everything.”

They don’t make them like they used to — except for Art’s-Way products, of course. Nothing has been compromised.

The Art’s-Way of today has grown by developing new product lines and acquiring other companies. Today, the company produces products that range from the traditional grinder-mixer to the sugarbeet harvester that is breaking into new markets as far away as Russia.

Through it all, Luscombe’s wife, Elvina, was beside him, helping him build the company. After running Art’s-Way for many year, Luscombe stepped aside to follow other pursuits. Elvina passed away in 2003.

As he approached his last years, the picture of them together remained on his wall and Elvina’s office name plate rested on Luscombe’s desk beside his own. He continued to give her credit for helping build an empire, even when she was no longer there.

And now they’re together.