Section BI. Lot 144
Nick Kovalchick was a leading figure and innovator in the iron and steel industry. The son of immigrants Nicholas and Anna P. Kovalchick, he was born in Frostburg, Jefferson County, Pennsylvania on June 6, 1906. The family lived in Sagamore, Armstrong County before moving to Indiana in 1939. Recognized as the founder of the Kovalchick Salvage Company of Indiana, he developed a corporation that operated throughout the eastern half of the United States. During World War II, Franklin D. Roosevelt honored the Kovalchick company for its major contribution to the war effort. Kovalchick was personally cited for helping to supply and transport scrap and usable steel essential to the Allied effort.
In 1947, Nick Kovalchick formed the Kovalchick Real Estate division with the purchase of Rochester and Pittsburgh Coal Company mining towns in Indiana, Armstrong, and Jefferson Counties.
During his 50 years in business, Nick Kovalchick, along with his wife, Fannie, expanded the firm’s enterprises to include railroad and coal-mining operations. He became the owner and operator of the Buffalo and Susquehanna Coal and Coke Corporation and established the Keystone Stores Company, with main offices in Central, PA. In 1956, Kovalchick purchased the East Broad Top Railroad and Coal Company in Orbisonia, PA, which was later designated a National Landmark. Kovalchick was an active member of many civic and religious organizations throughout the state. Locally, he was a member of the Beth Israel Synagogue. The Kovalchick Salvage Company continues to operate in Indiana, PA, under the leadership of Nick’s son Joe and his grandson Nathan.