Butler Gas Products is a regional manufacturer and distributor of industrial, specialty, and medical gases, and welding and safety supplies. We are a three-generation family-operated business serving packaged compressed gas and cryogenic liquid applications.
Butler Gas Products manufactures and distributes compressed cylinder gases, cryogenic liquids, and dry ice, in addition to related gas, welding, and safety supplies. With three locations in western Pennsylvania, Butler Gas Products focuses on serving the region’s construction, manufacturing, medical, research and education, oil and gas, food and beverage, and wholesale markets. We specialize in serving businesses that require deep capabilities in packaged gases- from individual cylinders to bulk installations. Differentiated by our integration back into manufacturing, specialized services such as CYLTRAK asset tracking, and customized gas solutions like microbulk and piping installations, Butler Gas Products is committed to exceeding its 100 Year Plan staying true to its Pittsburgh roots and family business culture.
From Our Family to Yours
It all began in 1938 in Reading, Pennsylvania, with the entrepreneurial efforts of two brothers who started a gas and welding supply business. The brothers, John A. (Jack) and Thomas G. (Tom) Butler, named their business Compressed Cylinder Gases. The inspiration came from their father, John T. (Dandy) Butler, who owned and operated a compressed gas company in Coraopolis, a flourishing industrial town near Pittsburgh. Dandy was doing business with a local scrap dealer who was moving east. When Dandy’s sons moved to Reading, this account became their first customer.
Through the early years, Compressed Cylinder Gases prospered. The Reading market was rural and, with the nearby steel presence, was full of aspiring welders in need of a reliable supply source. Jack and Tom changed the name to Butler Cylinder Gas. Shortly thereafter, Jack was called into the service. Tom and his wife Dorothy continued to run the business. Meanwhile, Dandy and his friend Leonard Pool bought ten American patents and production drawings for electrolytic cells and air separation plants. Leonard Pool is the entrepreneur whose vision became Air Products and Chemicals Inc. Dandy will continue to remain active in the industry, selling his business to National Cylinder Gas and staying on as their General Manager until his late 70’s.
In 1945, Jack returned to Reading, and in 1948, moved to New Brighton with his wife Millie to open what was envisioned to be a Butler Cylinder Gas branch operation. The partnership remained intact but in the early 1950’s, both companies established their autonomy. Jack and Millie named their business Butler Gas Products.
Jack was responsible for purchasing and growing sales; Millie managed the books. They hired one employee- a driver to make deliveries. The newly founded Butler Gas Products grew to $55,567 in first year revenue. Business improved steadily and by 1964, the company was incorporated. In the early 1970’s, Butler Gas Products purchased Dandy’s National Cylinder Gas and acquired its Pittsburgh business.
By 1975, Jack’s son, John T. II (Jack), began taking responsibility for running the company. His father developed cancer and relied on young Jack to earn leadership of the business. Jack Sr. died in 1977, and his son Jack purchased the company as President at age 25. In the 1980’s, Jack’s sisters, Barb and Debi, and wife Elissa joined him in the efforts of continuing the vision. With the steel industry declining in Pittsburgh, the company restructured and focused more on medical and specialty gas markets. The organization opened its official specialty gas division and began filling and analyzing pure gases and specialty mixtures.
Cylinder barcoding, palletization, additional locations, and automated fill plants improved service quality, shortened lead times, and increased safety. Barb and Debi retired and Jack’s daughter Abydee purchased the minority shares of the business. Fueled by a fierce spirit of independence, the Butler family business model remains constant through generations- a strong local presence of packaged gas capabilities paired with family inspired values for customer-centric service.
1. Safety – We believe our safety and our customers’ safety is paramount. We employ and promote associates who make our organization safer and follow a process of excellence in everything they do. No cutting corners.
2. People – Once we build this foundation of safety, we believe our people come first. We train, empower, and set loose our top talent to serve and exceed the expectations of our customers.
3. Customers – Once our organization develops and cares for our people, then our people can best serve the present and future needs of our customers. We believe in providing expert knowledge and customized solutions. We get to know our customers and succeed or die trying to wow them.
4. Profit – We have a 100 Year Plan and think long-term. Continuous improvement must be at the heart of everything. We believe that when we are safe and make our customers safe, when we have the right people in the right seats with the right resources, that we can be our customers’ best supplier, and that is the only formula for sustainable success.