By the early 20th century the city of South Bend and Mishawaka were the leading industrial manufacturing centers of the Midwest. One of the main reasons factories started or were founded in South Bend was because of the East and West Races.
Although the idea of digging a mill race was put forth in 1835 it was not until 1843 that a dam and the East and West Races were construction along the St. Joseph River downtown South Bend. These races provided water power for factory machinery prior to steam, electricity, and petroleum based power sources.
Below is a listing of just a few businesses that called South Bend and Mishawaka home.