William Bradbury was part of the Lighte, Newton & Bradbury Piano Company before he formed the Bradbury Piano Company in 1860s. The gentlemen that formed the Lighte, Newton & Bradbury Piano Company had quite a colorful history in the 19th Century piano manufacturing industry. The firm was originally established in 1848 as Lighte & Newton, but in 1851 William Bradbury came into partnership and the firm's name was changed to Lighte, Newton & Bradbury. Only two years later in 1853, Newton withdrew and the firm became known as Lighte & Bradbury until the company was dissolved in 1861. In 1861, William Bradbury independently formed the Bradbury Piano Company. William Bradbury died in 1867, and the Bradbury Piano Company was taken over by F. G. Smith. Under the guidance of F. G. Smith, the Bradbury Piano Company continued building excellent pianos for almost another 100 years, going out of business in about 1950.
In 1865, F.C. Lighte, previously of the Lighte, Newton & Bradbury Piano Company, went into partnership with Louis Ernest and they formed the Lighte & Ernest Piano Company, building very well made pianos until about 1890.