- About Us
Kilgore's new home as of November 2015...
Founder - Mr. Charles R. Kilgore (December 9, 1910 - August 5, 1995)
Charles Kilgore attended Medical school at the University of Minnesota for a 2 year period which afforded him the basic background to begin Kilgore International.
In 1954, Charles Kilgore uncovered a source for Human Osteological products from India and after successfully marketing these items door-to-door (which was not uncommon back then) he decided to start his own company with these as the staple products. The birth of Kilgore International was in the summer of 1955 in Coldwater, MI
Coming from Chicago, Il, Charles purchased the Ritz Hotel which was a 2-story, turn of the century hotel. The family ran the hotel business while Charles continued to promote Kilgore International. He began at the Ritz Hotel by taking over 2 guest rooms on the hotel’s main floor – then one year later he was forced to move into 2 additional rooms. The hotel business was interesting for the arriving guests who had no idea of the products Kilgore International was handling.)
In the year 1962, having outgrown the Ritz Hotel Charles moved the business to a building he could dedicate totally to his business, again located in Coldwater, MI. During this year he came across another company that was manufacturing high quality, extremely accurate medical anatomical models by the name of Somso located in Coburg, Germany. It was a perfect match with the Osteological product line that Kilgore was marketing and the products line grew along with his small company.
Osteological materials and the Somso Model sales continued to grow because of drive & determination by Charles and the superior quality of the products. In 1972 Charles heard that the former Post Office Building (now known as Kilgore International, Inc.) was for sale and the bids were to be made via mail in a sealed bidding process. Charles favorite and lucky number was nine, so he formulated a combination of numbers totaling nine and sent in his bid. To his amazement his bid was the highest so he now had a downtown Coldwater location for Kilgore International. (He found later that he had won the bid for the Post Office Building by only a few hundred dollars.) By this time the name Kilgore International was well engrained into the medical and dental universities, known for high quality Osteological products. We were the main supplier in the United States of Human Bone Skulls & Skeletons and were supplying many medical and dental schools in the US & Canada. The skulls were made a part of the student kits at numerous medical and dental schools around North America which meant Kilgore international was selling 4,000-5,000 skulls per year to schools alone. By the middle of 1980 the Indian Government announced a ban on the export of any human Osteological material. When we heard this news we had an inventory of approximately 5,000-6,000 human bone skulls, 75 full-articulated skeletons and thousands of individual bones on hand.
By early 1981, nearing the end of the stock of human bone material we were contacted by the Nissin Dental Products located in Kyoto, Japan asking if we had interest in introducing their line of dental models in to the North America Territory. Of course, the answer was "yes" and this decision was the best decision Charles Kilgore could have made. Back when we first began with Nissin Dental products the products were very high quality, however, now 25 years later they have truly evolved into individual works of art. Nissin Dental Products is by far the most advanced plastic manufacturer in the world offering more than 5,000 items ranging from Dental Models, Dental Lab and Denture Teeth and they also make custom products.
In 1984, Craig W. Kilgore succeeded his father as President of Kilgore International and continued to market high quality affordable medical and dental products to the North American professional community.
In March of 1990, Mike Gregory joined the company. He started in the shipping and receiving department and after a year, he decided to give sales a try. Mike soon became the National Sales Manager and held that title for over 17 years. In 2008, Mike was promoted to Vice President. In July of 2010, Mike became President and held that position until January of 2012, when he became President and CEO of Kilgore International.