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Woodstock Percussion, a wind chime and musical product company in Shokan, has acquired the business rights of Original American Kazoo Co. in Eden.

Shield Manufacturing of Tonawanda recently agreed to sell the business to focus on its core line of floor hockey equipment. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Woodstock has been the official distributor of KazooCo's traditional "submarine style" kazoo since 1997. Woodstock has now bought the Original American Kazoo Co. name, customer list and goodwill.

The Hudson Valley company owns the kazoo product line, but the factory and kazoo museum will remain in Eden. Shield is negotiating with two local non-profit organizations interested in taking over the museum operations.

"This enables us to do something unique with the Kazoo museum, gift store and original factory. We are in negotiations to donate these assets to two not-for-profit organizations, Claddagh Commission Inc. and Suburban Adult Services Inc.," said David Berghash, CEO of Shield Mfg.

Woodstock may ultimately move the commercial production of the kazoos to one of its own factories, Berghash said. But the Eden factory would continue to produce a limited number of kazoos for museum purposes, he said.

The museum and gift store in Eden attract thousands of visitors each year.

The factory is located in a 1906 frame house on Route 62. Kazoos have been made there since 1916, when Emil Sorg and tool and die maker Michael McIntyre recruited Harry Richardson, the owner of a small metal working business, to make metal kazoos. Brimms Inc., which the Berghash family owned until selling it to Combe Inc., in March 2001, bought the American Kazoo Co. in 1985 and refurbished the factory and museum.


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