Recycling metal became popular during World War II. William established one of southwestern Ohio’s first recycling operations in 1941. Rumpke trucks dumped waste into a pit, and it was loaded onto a conveyor belt. Workers sorted rags, tin and aluminum.
By 1945, the growing Rumpke business needed a new home. William moved his hog farm, recycling and junk yard business to an 80-acre property in Colerain Township, where the company also started its first landfill at the site. The Township was only 10 miles north of Cincinnati but was rural at the time.
Growth On the Horizon
In 1947, William brought his youngest brother, Bernard, on board as partner. Together, they worked to grow the trash collection business by finding new customers and markets.
From Farm to Landfill
The Rumpke family business flourished in the 1950s. Many evenings were spent at municipal council meetings securing trash contracts for communities in the Cincinnati area. In 1955, a new law was passed introducing new farming requirements and changing the course of the Rumpke family business. Since locals depended on the Rumpke Family for weekly trash collection, Rumpke refocused its business away from farming and toward trash collection and disposal.