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Our History


Herman Schwabe, an American pioneer in the manufacture of die cutting machinery, began his career in 1935 as an enterprising young man in the footwear service field. Realizing the need for high-speed, efficient, and accurate die cutting machinery, he founded Herman Schwabe Inc. in a small loft in New York City.

new york city skyline in 1970's


The firm had grown to be one of the largest die cutting machine manufacturers in the world. As Herman Schwabe grew, it needed a larger manufacturing plant, so the decision was made to move the manufacturing plant to Hazelton, Pennsylvania while keeping the office which was now located in Brooklyn, New York.

Photo of downtown Cincinnati Ohio with large sky scraper buildings and a bridge


Herman Schwabe’s sales agent for the Midwest was the Louis G. Freeman Company located in Cincinnati, Ohio. Herman Schwabe and Louis G. Freeman were long-time personal friends as well as business colleagues and that relationship continued with Herman’s two sons, Jerry and Ronny Schwabe and Louis G. Freeman III until 2001.

In 2001, Herman Schwabe Inc. was purchased by the Louis G. Freeman Company and moved its’ assets, several key employees, intellectual property and manufacturing to Cincinnati, Ohio. Jerry Schwabe remained part of the Louis G. Freeman Company until his retirement in 2006.

Photo of Mr. Greg Defisher smiling while wearing a light blue dress shirt while standing in front of a grey background


The Louis G. Freeman company, now known as Freeman Company, also manufactured thin gage thermoform tooling primarily for the food and beverage industry which had little in common with the manufacture of die cutting presses. Greg DeFisher was CEO of the Freeman Company and saw the benefit of focusing on the manufacturing of die cutting presses and formed Freeman Schwabe® Machinery as Owner/CEO in August 2006.