Tag Archives: Business

Losing Even More History

Image from Kitchener Public Library

Image from Kitchener Public Library

The city of Kitchener, is ordering the demolition of the historic Mayfair Hotel because the 110-year-old building poses a public safety risk. Now is it is rumored that the owners of 156-158 [the adjoining buildings] are going to ask Council to withdraw its intention to designate that building too. Whether they want to demolish it, along with 11 Young Street, the Mayfair Hotel, we won’t know till they speak at council.

It seems appropriate to pass on a little history of the people associated with these buildings.

Henry Lippert of the Mayfair Hotel building

http://generations.regionofwaterloo.ca/getperson.php?personID=I179615&tree=generations

EDWARD LIPPERT PASSES AT HOME

Had Active Career As Manufacturer, Merchant, Hotelman, and City Builder

Edward Lippert, 62, former alderman, senior member of the undertaking firm of Lippert and Hunter, and prominent Kitchener businessman, died at his home, 42 College Street, at 8:30 o’clock last evening following an illness that set in early in the year.

Mr. Lippert had been confined to his bed for about two months. Recently and up until yesterday there was a slight improvement in his condition but pneumonia set in. He was communicative and conscious until about 15 minutes before he passed away.

The deceased was elected to the Kitchener City Council at the last municipal election, but owing to his illness he was able to attend only a few meetings. He resigned about two months ago, and was succeeded by C. C. Hahn, former mayor.

Successful in Business

Mr. Lippert’s death means termination of a long and successful business career. The deceased was son of the late George Lippert Sr., founder and head of the former Lippert Furniture Company Ltd. and for many years, chairman of the Kitchener Public Utilities Commission. He was born in Preston but the family subsequently moved to Kitchener where he attended St Mary’s school.

Leaving school at 12 years, he learned the upholstering trade, working in various local shops. Subsequently he was employed in Grand Rapids, Salt Lake City, Utah, and Central City, Colorado. It was while he was working in a Central City furniture and undertaking establishment that he entered his first business venture.

He wanted to quit his job, but the employer induced him to stay by taking him into partnership. This was successful. The second milestone of his business career was becoming financially interested in 1902 in the furniture factory started by his father, the late George Lippert, located on Louisa street.

Mr. Lippert quit the Central City partnership in 1905 when he returned to Kitchener. In that year, he also undertook his first real estate enterprise. He built the first three stories of the block on the northeast corner of King and Young streets at that time and started a retail furniture and undertaking business. He conducted this business at this stand for many years.

His faith in Kitchener and his aggressiveness resulted in him becoming interested in other real estate properties, which he owned or of which he was part owner, up until his death. Mr. Lippert’s real estate purchases were always followed by improvements. It was his policy not to allow his buildings to become dilapidated.

The deceased sold the furniture end of the business in 1920. In the same year he bought the Brunswick House, at the northwest corner of King and Young streets, then an apartment house. He changed the name to the Windsor House and again turned the place into an hotel. after completing refurnishing it.

He operated this hotel until 1924, when he sold it to Charles Bruder, the present owner.

Builds New Block

Following his sale of the Windsor property, he built the block of stores on the north side of King street west between Water and Francis streets, in which he subsequently started up a new retail furniture business and which he later turned over to his sons, Harold and Edward Jr. and to Alexander Reinhart. the present owners. The modern funeral home, Lippert and Hunter, is located in this block He opened the Mayfair Hotel, King and Young streets, where the furniture and undertaking business was formerly located, on Sept. 11, 1929. By coincidence, his death occurred exactly on the sixth anniversary of the day on which he received his first hotel guests.

Before opening this hotel, he put on three more storeys over the three old ones, and had the distinction of being the first owner of a six-storey building in Kitchener.

Active in Texas

Mr. Lippert’s enterprise, however, was not confined to Kitchener, but extended far beyond the city and even out of Canada. In addition to owning Toronto and Calgary properties, he opened an entirely new business section in a Texas town. He built the first row of business buildings in the district, had the street widened and other improvements made.

The deceased, in addition to being an enterprising and aggressive business man, was a citizen interested in his home city. Of late years, he was particularly interested in the improvement of municipal government. He fought for lower taxation and easing of the burden on the taxpayer, and it was largely through this activity that the Kitchener Taxpayers’ Association was organized some years ago and that as a result a public forum from which municipal issues could be discussed was provided. He also believed in the necessity of Kitchener getting new industries.

Elected to Council

During the last municipal election held in December, Mr. Lippert was induced by a number of citizens to stand as a candidate for alderman, and he was returned to office.

Mr. Lippert was a staunch Liberal, and during the 1924 provincial election, took the platform in support of the party and local candidate and the Canadian Woodmen. He was a member of St. Mary’s Roman Catholic Church, St. Boniface Society,
Kitchener Daily Record 12 Sep 1935

The Hymmen Family [Hardware business from 1850-1960]

http://generations.regionofwaterloo.ca/getperson.php?personID=I186267&tree=generations

August and Charles Boehmer in the sixties owned a hardware, stove and tinware store at 58 East King Street. In 1874, they began manufacturing paper boxes, after selling the hardware stock to C. E. Moyer and the tinware shop to Peter and Henry Hymmen. Hymmen Bros. first leased quarters in the Canadian block from J. Y. Shantz, and later on in the Germania block. Hardware and plumbing were added to their lines. In 1892, Peter Hymmen bought his brother’s share. In 1906, he opened up West King Street as a business section, erecting a large block at No. 158. Mr. Hymmen was active until shortly before his death in 1930. Prior to his departure, his sons, H. I.. Hymmen and Homer Hymmen, had been their father’s associates and now direct the enterprise. After Henry Hymmen left the firm he was for four years with H. Wolfhard & Co., and then bought C. E. Moyer’s hardware stock. He carried on in the Dunke block until 1900, when he was appointed superintendent of the waterworks. George Potter, who for many years had been with John Fennell & Son, bought Mr. Hymmen’s stock, and is still doing business at the old stand.

A History of Kitchener, W. V. (Ben) Uttley, Kitchener, Ontario 1937, pg 159

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Hymmen Bros. & Chamberlain, Hardware, Stoves, Pumps, etc., King Street – The hardware trade in Berlin is one in which a large amount of capital is invested, and in which employment is furnished to many hands. The goods handled are those in use in all building operations, houses, stores, offices, etc., and consequently the demand is large and the field of operations extensive. Among those actively and prominently engaged in this line of industry is the firm of Messrs. Hymmen Bros. & Chamberlain, whose business has been established for the past six years, Mr. Chamberlain having been admitted a partner last spring. The premises occupied are large and commodious, being 20×124 feet in dimensions, where a large and well assorted stock of hardware, stoves, pumps, tinware, hot-air furnaces, cutlery, etc., etc., is carried in profusion. The firm manufacture their own tinware both from order and for stock. They give employment to 8 competent assistants and skilled workmen, and use one team for the delivery of goods to customers, who come from the town and surrounding sections of country. The business since its inception has been constantly improving and still steadily increases, the volume of business transacted this fall being very large and in advance of former years. All members of the firm are natives to Canada, and imbued with all the business characteristics which have made the country such a successful commercial one. They are held in the highest regard by all who know them.

Industries of Canada Historical and Commercial Sketches Hamilton and Environs 1886

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Article now a Bitter pill

Former Mayfair Hotel and Hymmen Hardware in Kitchener’s Centre Block are designated by Kitchener City Council

December 15, 2008

Former Mayfair Hotel and Hymmen Hardware in Kitchener’s Centre Block are designated by Kitchener City Council.
On November 24, a representative of the North Waterloo Region Branch, made a brief presentation to Kitchener City Council in support of Heritage Kitchener’s submission to designate 11 Young Street, the former Mayfair Hotel and 156-158 King Street West (P. Hymmen Hardware). Both buildings have cultural heritage significance. Happily, City Council passed a motion to designate these buildings.

In its statement of cultural heritage value, Heritage Kitchener stated that the exterior condition of both buildings is good. Concerning the former Mayfair Hotel, the report states that the building has an historic association with prominent Kitchener business man Edward Lippert,who in 1905 built a 3 storey structure for his furniture and undertaking business, as well as other buildings in the downtown. Lippert served as a city councilor in the 1930’s. This building is of a Renaissance Revival Style, a relatively common style for commercial buildings of the period; in 1929, three storeys were added in art deco style which was popular in the 1930s. The two styles blend well.

Here is a quote from the report :”contextually, the former Mayfair Hotel makes an important contribution to the downtown streetscape. Apart from the replacement of windows and minor alterations to the façade at street level, the building appears as much as it did in 1929, and adds to the visual and architectural continuity of the historic main street. It was the tallest building (at six storeys) in the downtown following the construction of the 1929 addition and continues to occupy a prominent location on King Street.”

Regarding, the former Hymmen Hardware Building the report states that it “makes an important contribution to the downtown streetscape. Apart from the replacement of windows and minor alterations to the façade at street level, the building appears much as it did in 1909, and adds to the visual and architectural continuity of the historic main street… the façade shares the same construction and architectural detailing as the original three storeys of the former Mayfair Hotel….”

Congratulation to Heritage Kitchener and the Heritage Planning Department for your success!

http://www.arconserv.ca/news_events/show.cfm?id=128 2015

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Goldie, an important early family of Waterloo Region

Goldie Family Long Prominent In West Ontario

John Goldie, Founder of the Family In this Province, Located At Ayr in 1844

http://generations.regionofwaterloo.ca/getperson.php?personID=I95846&tree=generations

By Dr. A.E. Byerly

The recent election in South Wellington, to which the Hon. Lincoln Goldie was returned to office in the Ontario Legislature by a very substantial majority, will recall to many throughout Western Ontario the pioneer history of the Goldie family.

There is likely no name better known in the history of Waterloo and Wellington counties than that of Goldie.  It is unfortunate, however, that only a few of the grandchildren of the original settler, John Goldie, are living in this part of Ontario.  In Guelph there remain but two grandchildren, both distinguished citizens for many years, namely, the Hon. Lincoln Goldie, provincial secretary, and his brother, Roswell Goldie, the well-known historian.

Goldie,John1793-WaterlooRegionHallofFameJohn Goldie, who was the founder of the family in Ontario, was born Marcy 31, 1793, in the parish of Kirkswald, Ayrshire, Scotland, and came to Ayr, Ontario, in the year 1844.  Mr. Goldie was a great lover of plants and flowers and received a thorough training in botany.  He entered university, where he turned his attention to language.  He was married on Waterloo Day, June 15, 1815, to Margaret Ballantyne Smith, daughter of James Smith, a well-known florist and botanist of that day, residing at Monkwood Grove, near Minishant, Ayrshire.

Explores In Canada

Mr. Goldie came to America in 1817 and landed at Halifax, where he did some exploring and also on the north shore of New Brunswick and collected specimens of many plants and flowers, several of them new to science.  Thence he traveled to Quebec and Montreal, meeting at the later place Frederick Pursh, the celebrated botanist, who presented him with a copy of his book The American Plants.  Mr. Goldie was the discoverer of a beautiful fern near Montreal, which was named by Dr. Hookuc after him, the Aspidium Goldianum. Goldie,John-AspidiumGoldianum  Three shipments of his collections to the old land were lost.  He had been for two years collecting in Canada, New York and New Jersey, and the fruits of those two years research were gone.

However, he was able to get together a goodly collection of plants after his first failures to get them across, and those he took with him on his return to Scotland in the fall of 1819.  He later made trips to Russia and was able to introduce into England a number of plants heretofore unknown in the country.

Mr. Goldie had been so well impressed with the land across the seas that his two sons William and James preceded him to the United States.  Mr. Goldie and the remaining children emigrated from Scotland in 1844 to an area near  Ayr, which they named Greenfield after a place near their home in Scotland.  With Mr. and Mrs. Goldie were their children, John, David, Elizabeth, Jane, Margaret and Mary.  William, who had been in New York, now joined the family in Ayr, but James remained in New York until 1860, when he came to Canada and settled in Guelph.

The Ayr Farm

At the farm near Ayr, Mr. Goldie imported fruit trees, shrubs and plants from England, and in a letter to his son in New York we obtain a picture of the varied activities of the Ontario pioneer.  Quoting from that letter, “We sowed our wheat on the 9th of April.  It looks very well except a bit that has been much hurt by the wine-worm.  David is plowing the high field for our grass crop.  William and I have been very busy rooting out the pine stumps and have made a considerable clearance.  I would strongly advise against buying a wagon, as John can make what we want in that way and money is wanted to pay for our land.  We have wood seasoning for a common wagon.  John has his machinery in operation and it answers well.  He has made several beds and other things and is likely to get plenty of work, but the evil is that the cash is not easily gotten,”

Ayr-GoldieMillingCo-Envelope1904-ebayThe first industry established by the Goldie family along with their farm work was a sawmill, but this was given up in 1849 and the sons, William, John and David worked hard in 1850 to finish building their flour mill, which had been planned along with an oatmeal mill.  In November it was complete, but for several years it was a struggle to keep going.  From 1854 the business began to be a paying one, and at last success came to the young men who had planned, built and struggled along against severe odds and hardships.

Galt-Goldie&McCulluochFoundry-0001-drawingfrom1897The mill at Ayr continued to be run for many years by John Goldie and his son David.  John, Jr., along with his brother-in-law, started a sawmill in the Township of Esquesing, near Acton, which they operated for several years.  However, in 1859, John, Jr., returned to Galt and with Hugh McCulloch bought the Dumfries Foundry.  This establishment is now the largest in Galt and is owned by the sons of John Goldie, Jr., and Hugh McCulloch.

William Goldie, the eldest son, was never married and died in the United States in the early sixties.  John, Jr., died in 1896, David died in 1894, and James in November, 1912.

Elizabeth, the oldest daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Goldie, Sr., was married to Sydney Smith, of Galt, later of Acton, and she died in 1854, having been born November 9, 1820.  Jane, the second daughter, was married to Andrew McEwan in 1847.  She died in 1862 and left seven children.  Margaret was married to the Rev. Dr. Caven, of Knox College, Toronto, and died May 22, 1913.  Mary married Andrew McIlwraith, of Galt, in 1862 and died in Galt in April, 1911, a family of five surviving her.

John Goldie, Sr., gave up active business in his later life and devoted his time to his beloved flowers and plants.  He died in July 1886, in his 94th year.  His wife died February 21, 1878, in her 87th year.  They were indeed honored pioneers of western Ontario.  The milling business so successfully started by John Goldie and his sons continued to be run by David Goldie, and as it was one of the first mills in Ontario to adopt the roller process of making flour, enjoyed a large measure of success in consequence.  The mill was sold some years ago and passed entirely out of the hands of the Goldie family.  The old homestead at Ayr is still in the possession of the family.

Free Press London Ontario – November 23, 1929 – retyped by Jane Gillard

Christopher Kress – Hotel Kress – Preston, Ontario

Christopher Kress

http://generations.regionofwaterloo.ca/getperson.php?personID=I40567&tree=generations

One who will soon be classed among the old settlers of Preston is Christopher Kress, who by his energy and pluck has accumulated considerable property and who has greatly aided in giving Preston a good name as a desirable place of resort for the cure of rheumatism and kindred diseases, through its mineral baths.

Preston-HotelKress-1910s

Preston-HotelKress-charcoal-delivery-postcard

The demolition of Hotel Kress. Photo facebook 2015. Submitted by Tom Stanley

The demolition of Hotel Kress. Photo facebook 2015. Submitted by Tom Stanley

The mineral springs were struck by one Peter Erb while boring for salt in 1838, which he never obtained. He placed no value in the sulphur water he had so struck. After abandoning boring, the water of the spring was employed for driving an overshot wheel of a wagon making shop, occupied by one Daniel Hagey, until Mr. Samuel Cornell obtained from Mr. Joseph Erb sufficient land near the spring to erect an hotel. Mr. Cornell with great energy built suitable premises and a bath house with boiler to enable him to furnish hot and cold baths.. His undertaking proved successful but death terminated his career. The property was sold and Christopher Kress became its owner. He greatly enlarged, improved and ornamented it and the invalids who have sought and obtained relief at the Preston mineral baths count by the hundreds.Preston-HotelKress-1910s-001

Fifth Annual Report Of The Waterloo Historical Society, 1917 pg 32

James Thornton Huber – more than one business

http://generations.regionofwaterloo.ca/getperson.php?personID=I10491&tree=generations

J.T. Huber & Co., manufacturers of Patent Compressed Insoles, Upholsterers’ Wool Batting and Flock – The manufacturing industries of Berlin are varied in character and important in extent, and aid materially in developing the commercial prosperity of the town. Among the number of prominent specialties may be mentioned that conducted by J.T. Huber & Co., manufacturers of patent compressed insoles, upholsterers’ wool batting and flock. The present firm succeeded Mr. George H. Nelson two years ago, and putting fresh life and vigor into the enterprise, are increasing the business weekly. The premises occupied, which are located near the Grand Trunk Railway station, are 50×100 feet in dimensions and two stories in height, where employment is furnished to 20 skillful workmen. The machinery used is all of the latest and most improved designs, consisting of carding and batting machines, pickers, etc., which are operated by a 30-horse power steam engine with boiler of 40-horse power. The product of the works is sold throughout the entire of Canada to shoe manufacturers, upholsterers and cabinet makers, amongst whom it is in active demand. Mr. Huber is always on the lookout for improvements, and is constantly adding to his reputation for the excellent quality of material manufactured by him, which is the cause of his constantly growing trade.

Industries of Canada Historical and Commercial Sketches Hamilton and Environs 1886

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Berlin-Huber,JamesThornton-tradeinshapeofcup-WRM

image from Waterloo Region Museum An advertisement or trade card cut in the shape of a cup and saucer with coloured decoration. Printing on the cup and on the back of the card: J.T. HUBER / Largest stock of / CROCKERY, / IN THE COUNTY. / Berlin, Ont. Possibly ca. 1880. 11.3 x 7 cm

J. T. Huber, Groceries and Crockery, King St. – Among the many industries in Berlin that call for special notice in a work of this kind is that which deals in the necessaries of life, principal among which is that of groceries. Berlin contains several first-class stores in this line of business, principal among the number being that of Mr. J.T. Huber, whose establishment is located on King Street in the American block. This business has been established for the past eight years, and since its inception has improved steadily and rapidly. The premises occupied are 23×75 feet in dimensions, and tastefully and appropriately fitted up for the requirements of the trade. A very large and well-selected stock of staple and fancy groceries is carried, consisting of the choicest brands of teas and coffees, pure spices, table delicacies, hermetically sealed goods, flour, etc. Mr. Huber makes a specialty of crockery and glassware, of which he carries a large fine stock, and sells at prices that defy competition. His trade extends throughout the town and country; he gives employment to four painstaking and competent assistants, and uses one team in the delivery of goods. Mr. Huber is a native of Canada, and a gentleman who understands most thoroughly every department of the business he now so successfully conducts. He is a man of indomitable energy and enterprise, and is held in high esteem in the community.

Industries of Canada Historical and Commercial Sketches Hamilton and Environs 1886