M. & O. Company Completes Reorganization

Fort Frances Times and Rainy Lake Herald

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn.— R. H. M. Robinson of Minneapolis, was elected president of the Minnesota and Ontario Paper Company, March 1, at the initial meeting of the board of directors of the reorganized company appointed on January 10 by Judge Gunner H. Dordbye, U. S. District Court of the District of Minnesota, Fourth Division.

Mr. Robinson announced that there would be no change in policy in the operations of the new company, and that the following employees of the old company had been named to key positions in the new firm:

  • R. W. Andrews, senior vice-president.
  • C. T. McMurray, vice-president in charge of sales.
  • R. J. Henderson, vice-president in charge of traffic.
  • F. D. Main, secretary treasurer.
  • Frank H. Hickling, comptroller.
  • J. H. Davidson, chief engineer and manager of mill operations.
  • J. B. Norman, purchasing agent.
  • L. A. Furlong, director of publishers’ sales.
  • E. W. Morril, sales manager, insulite division.
  • Cutris H. Nance, manager of foreign sales and operations, insulite division.
  • G. F. McDonald, sales manager, international division.
  • R. O. Warner, manager of merchant sales, paper division.
  • D. McLeod, vice-president, Kenora, Ontario.
  • Clarence Larson, resident manager, Kenora Division.

The election of officers and subsequent announcement of the appointment of men to key positions in the new company followed consummation on February 28 of the trustees’ amended plan of reorganization confirmed by Judge Nordbye on January 10 last.

The court on January 10 also appointed a board of nine directors. The members of this board, in accordance with the amended plan of reorganization, just consummated, will remain in office for two years. The final order of the court vested the properties of the old company in the new company and terminated a receivership which began 10 years before to the day.

It was on February 28, 1931, that the court appointed relievers in equity of the old company upon bill of complaint of an unsecured creditor.

On March, 13, 1934, the trustee for the first mortgage bonds of the debtor filed an independent action to foreclose the mortgage.

Four months later, on July 11, the court, pursuant to the provisions of Section 77B of the Bankruptcy Act, as amended, appointed Mr. Robinson and C. T. Jaffray, of Minneapolis, as temporary trustees, upon receipt of a petition filed by the unsecured creditors.

On September 29, of the same year, appointment of Mr. Robinson and Mr. Jaffray, and of S. M. Archer, of St. Paul, as trustees, was made permanent by the court.

A little over a year later, on October 31, 1935, the court stayed foreclosure proceedings pending reorganization of the debtor company, and further court order.

On May 22, 1939, the court entered and order making certain sections of the Chandler Act applicable to the pending proceedings.This order directed the trustees to submit a statement of their investigation of the properties, liabilities and financial condition of the debtor to the creditors and stockholders, and of desirability of its continuance, on or before July 1, 1939.

On August 1, of the same year, suggestions for the formulation of a plan of reorganization was submitted to the trustees filed an amended plan of reorganization which, with other plans, was referred by the court to the Securities and Exchange Commission at Washington, D.C., for an advisory report.

On June 24, 1940, the Securities and Exchange Commission filed its advisory report, finding the trustees’ amended plan of reorganization submitted to it on December 4, of the previous year, fair and feasible if amended in certain respects.

Less than a month later, on July 16, a plan amended to conform to the advisory report of the Securities and Exchange Commission was filed by trustees with the court.

On January 10, of this year, the court confirmed the amended plan of reorganization, and set February 28, as the date on which it was to be consummated, and the new company was to be formally launched.

As outlined in the amended plan of reorganization just consummated, distribution of the securities of the new company to the creditor and security holders of the old company will begin at once.

Since the old company was found to be insolvent, no provision was made by the court for the insurance of any securities of the old company, or the payment of any cash; to the preferred and common stockholders of the old company.

Of the 1,500,000 authorized shares of the new stock, 976,000 shares will be distributable to the bondholders, 348,393 shares will be distributable to the unsecured creditors, 20,151 shares will be reserved for insurance in acquiring claims of certain generally creditors of wholly owned Canadian subsidiaries of the old company, and 155,456 shares will be reserved for other appropriate corporate purposes.

The new company is organized under the laws of the state of Minnesota, and has its principal office in Minneapolis, as before.

R. H. M. Robinson, president of the new Minnesota and Ontario Paper Company, is known nationally in the field of business, engineering and naval architecture.

His first connection with the company came in December, 1931, when he was appointed receiver, with C. T. Jaffray, of Minneapolis, and at the same time was designated as manager receiver.

Mr. Robinson, born in Ravenna, Ohio, was graduated with first honors from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1896. He later graduated in navel architecture and engineering from the University of Glasgow, Scotland, in 1898.He was commissioned as officer in the construction corps of the U.S. Navy in 1898 and served as a commissioned officer of the navy in the construction corps, through the ranks of junior lieutenant, lieutenant and lieutenant-commander. He resigned from the services in 1913 to enter private business.

During his stay with the navy, he served as assistant superintendent constructor and superintendent constructor and superintendent constructor for the U.S. Navy, at Cramp’s Shipyard, Philadelphia; was in charge of construction of the battleship Connecticut, Navy Yard, New York and was assistant to the chief constructor of the Navy, in charge of design and new construction.

He also served for a time on the staffs of Admiral Robely D. Evans, Admiral William H. Bronson, Admiral Charles J. Badger and Admiral William S. Cowles. During the World War, he was a reserve officer in the navy.
From 1913 to 1917 he was general manager, and subsequently managing director, of the Lake Topedo Boat Company, at Bridgeport, Connecticut.

In 1917, he became president of the Merchant Shipbuilding Corporation, and the Chester Shipbuilding Corporation, Ltd., which were later merged. He remained as president of this company until it became an investment trust under the name of the Merchant-Sterling Corporation.

In 1919, he became vice-president, and subsequently president of the American Ship and Commerce Corporation, and the United American Lines, and continued as president of the latter until 1926, when it was sold to Hamburg-American Line. He remained president of the American Ship and Commerce Corporation until 1931.

In 1926, he became chairman of the board of directors or the Russian Finance and Construction Corporation, and of the Georgian Manganese Company, Ltd., which operated a manganese concession in Russia. He later became president of the two companies and continued as such until 1931.

In December, 1931, he became managing receiver of the M. & O., and president of its subsidiary companies. In 1934, when the receivership was converted into a trusteeship, he became managing trustee of the M. & O., and continued as such until this year.

Mr. Robinson is a director of the American-Hawaiian Steamship Co., Merchant-Sterling Corp., and Russian Finance and Construction Corp.

He is honorary vice-president of the Society of Naval Architect and Marine Engineers; a past commander of the Connecticut Compandery, military order of Foreign Wars, member of the U.S. Naval Institute, and a member of the Loyal Legion.

He was decorated by the President of the Republic of Finland as Commander of the White Rose of Finland in 1938.