The Foster Piano Company was established in 1890 in New York City. Before the turn-of-the-century, Foster & Co. merged with the Armstrong Piano Company to form the Foster-Armstrong Piano Company. Foster-Armstrong was a major force in piano manufacturing in the early 20th Century, and they built pianos under the names of Foster, Armstrong, and Foster-Armstrong. During the late 19th and early 20th Centuries, the firm built a number of higher quality pianos for a dealer by the name of James F. Cook of Lawrenceburg, Indiana, under the brand name of "J. F. Cook". By the 1920's era, Foster-Armstrong merged with the giant Aeolian-American Corporation, and they began building pianos for several popular piano manufacturers including Haines, Fischer, Marshall & Wendell, Franklin, Holmes & Sons, Brewster, and Stratford. Aeolian continued to build pianos under many of these names throughout the 20th Century before going out of business in the 1980's.