A HORSE OF A DIFFERENT COLOR
June 1933, Churchill Downs,
Riding the #4 horse, “Brass Monkey” in the race against time, Robert Wendling, an accomplished jockey, became involved in a horse racing accident that would affect not only his life, but lives of his immediate family and families unfamiliar to him for many years to come.
Because of the limited medical resources that were available in 1933, Robert, then 24 years of age suffered enduring nerve damage to his spine leaving his right side permanently paralyzed. As a result of the accident his family knew he would require resources beyond anything they had in order for Robert to lead a normal life with his handicap. Two determined parents, four brothers, and two sisters began the search for a business idea or profession that could potentially support him.
And they were off…
Neal and Ralph Wendling, the oldest brothers, worked for StanleyManufacturing in Dayton, Ohio. Stanley Manufacturing designed, printed, and distributed greeting cards. Years after the accident, Ralph brought home an old outdated printing press the size of today’s desktop laser printers. Perhaps with this area’s graphic arts heritage, and his brothers’ experience to draw upon, my father, the youngest sibling, became interested enough to experiment with the old press and offset printing.
In 1941, Wendling Printing was born in the dining room of the family home, producing matchbook covers, personalized cigarette wrappers, labels, business cards, and stationery. The parents’ vision of Robert working in a family business became reality in the ensuing years.
Now, over seventy-five years since the accident, we are still a family-owned business with the same determination, hard work and dedication that my father and his family fostered. Wendling Printing Company has become a leading regional provider of both sheetfed and web offset printing, graphic design, mail shop and digital printing services. We produce elaborate corporate identity pieces, striking annual reports, consumer goods packaging, catalogs, unique direct mail campaigns, and more for many divergent businesses—a world apart from the days of printing matchbook covers, cigarette wrappers, labels and business cards.
Since the 1941 founding of Wendling Printing Company by Howard Wendling and his family in the dining room of their home in Fort Thomas, Kentucky, there have been many changes but one consistent theme of hard work, dedicated craftsmanship and customer appreciation. Wendling Printing Company moved to our current location at 111 Beech Street, Newport, Kentucky in 1957. In the ensuing years we have added and removed equipment to best enhance our facilities and services. Such advancements include:
installation of one of the region’s first five‑color presses in 1979, allowing us to offer the capability to print five colors in-line and also showcasing the advantages of “bump” color;
installation of the first 7-color sheet-fed press in the area in 1990, further enhancing the benefits of in-line spot colors and varnishes;
installation of our seven unit half web in 1993 which enables us to print 14 colors in one pass (seven colors over seven colors) with the additional flexibility to fold the printed sheets inline;
replacing older presses in the early 2000's with more efficient 40-inch 5- and 6-color presses that offer in-line coating capability;
advances in pre-press with computer-to-plate systems and CIP3 technology for faster make-readys and press approvals;
in 2002 we enhanced our “one-stop shopping” approach with the installation of a state-of-the-art mailing facility;
and since 2006 we have included digital printing to compliment our traditional offset capability—allowing for high-quality, high-speed color output with static and/or variable data versioning and customizable “storefront” options to make one-to-one marketing a reality.