Thaddeus C. Joy

Figure 1. Illustration of T.C. Joy from his obituary. (Illustration taken from The Metal Worker, V. 44., 1895).


One-pipe, steam cast iron radiator, installed circa 1895, Chase-Maxwell House, Titusville, PA. Photo used by permission of Rhonda L. Clark


One-pipe steam, cast iron radiator, installed circa 1895 in Chase-Maxell House, Titusville, PA. Photo used by permission of Rhonda L. Clark.

Welcome to the T. C. Joy Exhibit!  We are pleased to present a chapter in Titusville industrial history. Thaddeus Chase Joy and his family left a mark in Titusville with their innovation and business sense, crafting a steam and hot water radiator company that employed hundreds of Titusville citizens and exported the Joy Radiator name across the United States.  Some of these radiators, like those pictured on this page, still heat Titusville homes. 

Thaddeus Chase Joy, or T. C. Joy, could not have predicted the tremendous impact he would make on Titusville, Pennsylvania, and the world of radiators and steam heat. But his inventions, such as the Howe Ventilator Stove and the Joy Vertical Flue Radiator, would forever change the way people of his era heated their homes, making one’s existence just a little more comfortable and a lot more efficient. While the people of that era are no longer, T. C. Joy’s beautiful inventions still remain today.

T. C. was not native to Titusville, hailing from the state of New York, but he and his family embraced Titusville wholeheartedly, creating industry, jobs, and roots within its confines. His heating parts business, T. C. Joy & Co, which was later acquired by the Titusville Iron Works, made a lasting imprint on the local economy. Titusville would be the place that the Joy family would forever rest their hats. An extensive obituary published in the September 7, 1895 issue of The Metal Worker noted that, aside from his professional success, T. C. “possessed a genial nature and was beloved and respected as one of the leading men of his city. He was a member and trustee of the Presbyterian Church.” Indeed, the financial contributions, including a generous endowment bequeathed to the Titusville Presbyterian Church by his wife Emmeline upon her death over a hundred years ago, is still making an impact on the church today. It is a legacy that has crossed generations within Titusville, and gives life to T. C. and his family to this day.

Like many families, the Joy’s experienced not just happiness but terrible tragedy as well. T. C.’s story is one of risk-taking, ingenuity at a time of great change within the country, loss, and fortune. It’s a story with great depth and indelible ties to Titusville, but also universal threads to all who’ve experienced the ups and downs that present in this life. 


Side view of one-pipe, steam, cast iron radiator in Chase-Maxwell House, Titusville, PA.  Photo used by permission of Rhonda L. Clark.

Please enter the exhibit to learn more about this family’s impact on the community. Enjoy the exhibit!

This exhibit is the result of much research and work by the following individuals from Clarion University of PA MSLS program (now PennWest University):  Principal writer - Anne Walkenhorst; Creative director and writer Rhonda L. Clark; Researchers Nicole Peters and Anne Walkenhorst; Editors Caitlin Cuba and Jennifer Alas.