Fessenden Hall Inc.

Fessenden Hall: Our History, People, Services, and Locations

Since 1890, Fessenden Hall has been supplying cabinet components, millwork, and more to cabinet and countertop manufacturers. Our sales team works to preserve our rich heritage with quality products and top-notch service from all four locations.

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It was 1890; Edward Hall Company opened its doors for business at 218 South 2nd Street, Philadelphia, PA., in a four-story, 10,000 square-foot building that specialized in the sales of imported African mahogany lumber. The company was located in the historical center of the city, just three blocks east of Independence Hall and Carpenter’s Hall, south of Elfreth’s Alley and the Betsy Ross House. By 1892, the business was prospering and Edward’s son, William F. Hall (second generation) joined the firm. Soon after that, the company was renamed Edward Hall & Son.

In 1903, at the age of 82, Edward Hall passed away, and William took control. Known to have an aversion to nicknames, which was commonplace for men with the name William, he preferred his middle name, Fessenden. Following his father’s death, he elected to cease using his given name, dropping it altogether. He was known thereafter as Fessenden Hall. Two years later, in 1905, Fessenden modified the name of our company to match. Since that time our business has been known as Fessenden Hall.


Around 1914, plywood began to be accepted as a construction material. First developed in Europe, the product had been hampered by poor quality, the result of the lack of glue technology. Yet, plywood appeared to be a commodity with a future.

By the time World War I started, Casein glue had been developed, and its use in the manufacture of plywood resulted in major improvements in the product. The material now had stability and was effectively used for both interior and exterior applications.

As the war progressed, shortages of imported mahogany worsened until no mahogany from any world source could be found. In contrast, plywood factories were springing up all over the United States manufacturing the product from domestic woods.

Fessenden Hall moved with the tide and become a major distributor of plywood products. Fessenden Hall’s son, Edward C. Hall (third generation), had also joined the firm. Our company’s plywood sales boomed with the advent of fir plywood, which was manufactured on the West Coast. The very first railcar load of this new product shipped east was received by Fessenden Hall.

Acceptance of this fir plywood by the woodworking industry went very well. Fessenden Hall aggressively promoted and marketed the products all over the East and into the Deep South. In 1939, at the age of 71, Fessenden Hall passed away, and Edward took control.


In 1945 the Formica Insulation Company approached Edward C. Hall, suggesting that Fessenden Hall become a distributor of its new high-pressure product sold under the trade name FORMICA®. The uniqueness, quality, and durability of FORMICA® products coupled with the sales and distribution experience of our company proved to be an excellent combination.


It was around this time that a young service veteran who was selling insurance in Philadelphia and New Jersey as a Prudential Insurance agent made a sales call to Edward C. Hall with the intent of selling him a policy. Edward saw an enthusiastic salesman and suggested that he consider selling plywood for Fessenden Hall. The year was 1947, and the salesman was Bob H. Birdsall, Sr. (fourth generation).


In 1948, Fessenden Hall took on a line of Philippine mahogany lumber, sidings, and moldings manufactured by the Insular Lumber Company on the island of Negros in the Philippines. The post-war building boom was well underway, and Fessenden Hall significantly expanded its efforts promoting plywood, mahogany sidings, and FORMICA® products.


In 1952, it was apparent that the company had outgrown its South 2nd Street location and needed a larger one. The company purchased a fifty-year-old, multi-floor building, formerly a farmer’s market, ice house, and German social club, which was located at the southeast corner of 3rd and Norris Streets, Philadelphia. The 30,000-square-foot, multi-level warehouse offered expansive storage capacity, and the company was confident it would serve their needs for many years to come.


In 1955, Bob Birdsall, Sr. recognized the need for marine-grade plywoods to satisfy the needs of the boating industry. Initially, the market we serviced was along the New Jersey coast, but the scope quickly expanded internationally. The plywood sold covered a spectrum of applications from production-manufactured powerboats and sailboats to custom-designed, custom-built luxury yachts which used some of the most exotic matched veneers.


In 1964, Fessenden Hall moved into a one-floor, 45,000-square-foot building on Sherman Avenue in Pennsauken, New Jersey, uniquely situated between the Tacony Palmyra and Benjamin Franklin bridges which link Pennsylvania and New Jersey. In 1965, at the age of 73, Edward C. Hall passed away, and Bob Sr. took control.


In 1971, Fessenden Hall added another dimension to its marketing versatility with the addition of a solid surfacing material produced by E.I. du Pont called Corian®. Once again, our company was fortunate to have the opportunity to add a product that would receive major acceptance.


In 1974, Fessenden Hall expanded further, purchasing a distributorship in Laurel, Delaware, known as Laurel Distributors Ltd. Within a few years the operation was relocated to Dover, Delaware. This gave our company additional market penetration in Delaware and Maryland.


In 1981, again expanding our value and versatility for our customers, Fessenden Hall was given the opportunity to participate in the functional hardware arena, and the Blum Hardware line was added.


In 1983, Bob’s son Edward Birdsall (fifth generation) joined the firm.


In 1986, Fessenden Hall of PA., Inc., was established in Lancaster, PA, to serve the needs of a large number of kitchen-cabinet manufacturers, fabricators, and custom-wood shops in the southeastern Pennsylvania area. Two years later, responding to business growth, the company moved the operation to a newly purchased, 65,000-square-foot building.


In 1990, after 45 years and much dissection and disappointment, it became very apparent that the relationship between FORMICA® and Fessenden Hall was no longer in the best interest of either party—but most importantly, our customers. It was decided that Wilsonart® brand laminate would be the best fit for our customers and our company going forward.

In 2000, Edward’s nephew, Roeby Birdsall III (sixth generation), joined the firm.


In 2003 Fessenden Hall established a location to serve the needs of the northern New Jersey market. Fessenden Hall North operated from a rented facility in Fairfield, NJ, for five years before moving to its newest facility in West Caldwell. This branch has grown consistently by offering our full product line to the woodworking and countertop industry in North Jersey.


Throughout our 34 years working with E.I. Du Pont and Corian®, we developed differences in opinion about market needs and customers’ expectations in both our organizations. In 2005, Fessenden Hall found the Meganite® brand surfacing material and began to market and sell it—to hopefully begin building a brand for the product.

Also in 2005, at the age of 81, Bob Birdsall Sr. passed away, and Edward gained control.


In 2019, after 36 hardworking and dedicated years, Edward Birdsall stepped down and retired from Fessenden Hall.  Roeby Birdsall III (sixth generation) gained control. 


“Give the customers quality products that are competitively priced, and above all, give them the best and most dependable service humanly possible —and then some!”

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The Fessenden Hall Sales Team

More than a dozen Customer Service Representatives are available from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday. They are thoroughly trained to handle any questions or concerns you may have.

Orders may be placed via phone, email, or fax—and an order confirmation can be sent if requested. Delivery tickets are sent to the shipping department to be delivered on the next scheduled delivery day or set aside for pick-up at the warehouse.

Fessenden Hall Services

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Fessenden Hall operates and maintains a fleet of 30+ trucks to support our full line of products offered at our four locations. It is not uncommon for a driver to complete 25 to 30 customer service calls in a day. In all, these vehicles log over a million miles per year.

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Fessenden Hall has over 300,000 square feet of warehouse space offering a full line of products for the industry including but not limited to many species of plywood, veneers, melamine, high-pressure laminates, adhesives, caulks, abrasives, hardware, and solid-surface materials.

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Value-Added Process

  • Cut-to-size panel products
  • Laid-up panels (This would include specialty veneers as well as high-pressure laminates)
  • Edgebanding
  • Fire-Treatment Capabilities

Our Four Locations—NJ, DE, and PA

We have four locations to serve you.

Delaware Location:


1037 Fowler Court
Tudor Industrial Park
Dover, DE 19901

Toll Free: (800) 220-6681
Phone: (302) 674-4505
Fax: (302) 674-4507

In 1974, Fessenden Hall expanded further, purchasing an existing distributorship in Laurel, Delaware. The operation was later relocated to Dover, Delaware and renamed Fessenden Hall of Delaware, Inc. This gave the company additional market penetration in the states of Delaware and the Eastern Shore of Maryland, also known as the Delmarva Penninsula.

New Jersey (North) Location:


(North Jersey) 1 Fairfield Place
West Caldwell, NJ 07006

Toll-Free: (973) 808-7133
Fax: (800) 210-4248

In 2003, Fessenden Hall opened a branch in Fairfield, NJ. In December 2008, the operation was moved to its current location in West Caldwell, NJ.

New Jersey (South) Location:


1050 Sherman Avenue
Pennsauken, NJ 08110

Toll Free: (800) 220-2233
Phone: (856) 665-2210
Fax: (800) 210-4248

At the present time, Fessenden Hall’s Pennsauken headquarters and two branches encompass over 167,000 square feet. The facilities serve the administrative, marketing, product display and warehouse needs of the firm. With vastly improved office, warehouse, and materials handling facilities, the location also provides excellent railway and highway access.

Pennsylvania Location:


3021 Industry Drive
Lancaster, PA 17603

Toll-Free: (800) 220-3157
Phone: (717) 394-1047
Fax: (717) 295-1725

In 1986, Fessenden Hall of PA, Inc., located in Lancaster, was established to serve the needs of a large number of kitchen cabinet manufacturers, fabricators, and custom wood shops in southeastern Pennsylvania. A 16,000-square-foot warehouse was opened. Two years later, responding to business growth, the company moved the operation to a newly purchased building of 65,000 square feet. In 2009, the company acquired a second warehouse, increasing its Pennsylvania capacity to 130,000 square feet.