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RoseJohnson, Inc.

1980 - 1993

Grand Rapids, Michigan

SEE ALSO Johnson Furniture Co.; Rose Manufacturing Co.; TimberLine, Inc. (Listed below)


1980: Johnson Furniture Co. and Rose Manufacturing Co. merge to form RoseJohnson, Inc., while maintaining separate product line and manufacturing facilities.

1983: Individual operations fully merge into one.

1986: RoseJohnson is acquired by La-Z-Boy Chair Co. of Monroe, Michigan.

1993: RoseJohnson name is dropped; company becomes part of “La-Z-Boy Contract Furniture Group”.


James Van Oosten, chairman of the board for predecessor company Johnson Furniture Co., became the chair of RoseJohnson after the merger. Though Van Oosten sold the company in 1986, he stayed on as company president.


One of the first large contracts awarded to the new company in 1980 was for wooden office systems for the Playboy Enterprises executive offices in New York. By 1986 the now fully merged RoseJohnson dropped the “Timberline” hotel/motel line of predecessor company Johnson, to concentrate on production of its wooden “RJ Office Systems” for executives, “Progressions” panels for use with free-standing office furniture, “Progressions+” work stations for all office levels, “RJ Chairs,” and contracts for other manufacturers including cabinets for Rowe International jukeboxes.


The Grand Rapids Public Museum owns archival collections relating to Rose-Johnson and its various successor companies.


A red rose, the old trademark of predecessor company Rose Manufacturing, was used as a trademark on Progressions and Progressions+ furniture between 1980 and 1983. The RJ Office System line was represented by an upper case “R” minus its upright portion, and stylized “J”. The Timber Line was represented by an overlapping “TL” in script, with a large red circle. During this same period the company trademark consisted of the name “ROSE. JOHNSON/INCORPORATED” on a decorative plaque. After 1983 the trademark became the name “RoseJohnson” in a serif font. The RoseJohnson name is dropped in favor of          “La-Z-Boy Business Furniture”.


Rose Manufacturing Company

1917 – 1980

Grand Rapids, Michigan

Manufacturer of “traditional,” Early American, and French Provincial upholstering frames.

Predecessor to RoseJohnson, Inc.


1917: Rose Carving Co. is established to carve arms and legs for upholstered furniture manufacturers.

1946 – 1964: Rose manufactures traditional upholstery frames as Grand Rapids Craftsman Co. division; office chair frames are manufactured by contract division.

1969: Begins manufacture of acoustical screens for office landscapes.

1970s: Screens evolve into connecting panels know as “Progressions”.

1980: Rose merges with Johnson Furniture Co. to form RoseJohnson, Inc.


Timberline, Inc.

1959 – ca. 1985

Grand Rapids, Michigan

Contract furniture manufacturer for the hospitality (hotel and motel) industry.

Timberline purchased Harding Parlor Frame Co. in 1960. Timberline merged with Johnson Furniture Co. in 1963. Timberline name continued as line of hotel-motel furniture manufactured by Johnson and RoseJohnson until circa 1985.


The source, with permission of the author, is Grand Rapids Furniture: The Story of America’s Furniture City by Christian G. Carron, published by the Grand Rapids Public Museum. 1998. 


Full Details

TitleRoseJohnson, Inc.
AddressGrand Rapids, MI
Year Opened1980
Year Closed1993
Also Known AsRose Carving Co.

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