(SEE ALSO: VALLEY GEM, BALDWIN)
The Ohio Valley Piano Company began building pianos in Ripley, Ohio in 1869, but the firm was officially organized in 1871. In 1874 Milo J. Chase became President of the firm and D. H. Baldwin (founder of the Baldwin Piano Company) managed operations. Chase was able to secure much needed capital, and the firm thrived under the supervision of Chase and Baldwin. During the first decades, the firm built mostly square grand pianos and a small number of uprights under the "Valley Gem" and "Ohio Valley Piano Company" brand names. In about 1879, the firm changed their name to "The Valley Gem Piano Company". By the turn-of-the-century all square grand piano had ceased, and the Valley Gem name was absorbed and controlled by the famous Baldwin Piano Company of Cincinnati. The Valley Gem name continued to be successful during the first part of the 20th Century, but Baldwin discontinued the Valley Gem brand name in about 1925.