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A Brief History

After World War II, Clarence and Bob Katzke came from Illinois to Denver and opened the 14th Avenue Auto Hospital, an auto repair shop. With business not exactly booming, they made ends meet by selling shipping supplies from their modest Denver garage. Over time, it became apparent that the brothers were much better at selling boxes than fixing cars. It was in February of 1948, with $3,600 borrowed from Clarence's girlfriend, the Katzke Bros. Paper Co. officially opened for business. As "Katzke" was a difficult name to pronounce, Clarence created the logo of two cats playing with a key - "cat’s key". The company soon adopted the slogan "Your Shipping Room Supply House".

In the early years, the hours were long as the brothers worked hard. Drawing out just enough money to live on, and enjoy an occasional nickel beer on Friday nights, the company grew. The business moved several times before they bought land and built a facility on south Delaware Street in 1955.

On February 1, 1957, the partnership ended and Clarence bought out Bob's interest in the company. In 1961, Katzke Bros. Paper Co. incorporated, and officially became Katzke Paper Co.

The company did well under Clarence's conservative guidance. Having spent time in an orphanage and living his teenage years during the Depression, it was his nature to pay cash for things or he didn't buy them. As a result, his company was not the biggest, but was financially strong. In November 1978, his son, Greg, joined the company full time, having worked part time while in high school and college. Greg set about to modernize what Clarence good-naturedly referred to as "our antiquated ways of doing business".

On April 1, 1984, a two-alarm fire destroyed the office and part of the warehouse. Clarence, who was out of town, returned to find his life's work literally up in smoke. Through the efforts of hard working employees and loyal suppliers, the company survived and was closed for only one day. Clarence saw this time as an opportunity to turn over the company to Greg, who as vice president, was willing to devote himself to rebuilding the family business. In August 1984, Clarence retired and Greg took over as president. The company recovered from the fire, and, embracing Clarence's conservative philosophy grew to where it is today.

Katzke Paper Co. continues to grow in our local Colorado market and nationally. The company currently serves customers in 40 states as well as northern Mexico. A family-owned business, Katzke Paper Co. is blessed with dedicated employees, loyal customers, quality lines of products and a great reputation. In an ever-changing industry marked with consolidations and technological advances, our company eagerly anticipates a bright future of growth as a strong, independent company. We are dedicated to continuing to provide unequaled service to our valued customers through the superb efforts of our hard working employees.