John Boos & Co. is the oldest industry in Effingham, Illinois. It has been in business continuously since 1887. Conrad Boos Sr. founded the business in 1887 and named it for his son, John. For many years he worked out of the blacksmith shop, which was located at what is now 406 West Jefferson Street in Effingham, Illinois. The wood for his blocks was cut in wooded areas surrounding Effingham and was mostly sycamore lumber. The lumber was processed in his sawmill and sent to his shop for finishing. The plant operated from a blacksmith shop until 1892 and then it moved across town, and began producing the blocks as you know them now.