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Late Kitty Litter Inventor Hailed

July 11, 1998

CASSOPOLIS, Mich. (AP) _ The inventor of Kitty Litter is still the cat’s meow, particularly in his hometown.

Proud residents gathered for a two-day festival ending Saturday dedicated to the memory of Ed Lowe, who’s credited as the first to market absorbent clay to fill cat litter boxes.

Events included a cookout, a parade, exhibits of children’s cat drawings and the crowning of two cats as Mr. and Ms. Catsopolis.

``I wanted to expose my kids to something special,″ Janet Feick said Friday. ``I wanted them to see someone who made something out of nothing ... literally dirt.″

Lowe, who died three years ago at age 75, came up with the idea for Kitty Litter and Tidy Cat brand litters about 50 years ago after a neighbor asked him for sand to fill her cat’s litter box.

He had been trying to market the clay as chicken litter, but saw a golden opportunity selling the litter to pet owners. Before he sold the company in 1990, sales topped $200 million annually.

During his time, Lowe also served as village mayor, a bank director and councilman. He was known for his unpretentious ways, favoring blue jeans and suspenders over business suits.

``He was no different from anyone else,″ said Susan Dussell, who remembers ringing him up at the cash register at a local store in the town of 1,800 residents in southwestern Michigan.

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