Wednesday, June 20, 2018

1898 John Salzer Fruit Catalog La Crosse, Wisconsin

A timeline of the life of seedsman, John A. Salzer and the company he created in La Crosse, Wisconsin 

1823 - John Adam Salzer was born in Dettingen, W├╝rttemberg, Germany on December 28, 1823 to John G. Salzer, a nurseryman and fruit-raiser. 
1846 - Immigrated to the United States. 
1849 - Married Wilhelmina Joerris. 
1866 - John Salzer the pastor of the German speaking Methodist Church in La Crosse. He served in this position until 1869. It was reported that he delighted in jaunts into the country, where he could see the fields of grain and fruit trees.
1868 - The "John A. Salzer Seed Company" in La Crosse, Wisconsin is established. 
1884 - "The collection of plants owned by Mr. Salzer is estimated at $20,000 value and the transactions of the house, which reach all over the United States, will amount to over $40,000 per annum. This is the largest house of the kind in the Northwest, outside of Chicago, and Mr. Salzer also owns seed farms where he grows seeds for his large seed trade in St. Vincent, Minnesota, and Bath and Groton, Dakota, also has control of a small seed farm for growing celery, lettuce and beet seeds near Sacramento, California. Handsome and complete catalogues of plants and seeds have been prepared by Mr. Salzer, which can be obtained upon application, German or English edition as desired. Since 1881 the business has been largely increased owing to the liberal use of printer's ink. The high estimation in which this house is held has been secured by the enterprise and liberality of the proprietor and the superior excellence of the plants and seeds sold by him as well as the skill and exquisite taste displayed in the arrangement of cut flowers in various novel and unique designs." 
1884 - In this year, he purchased a family cottage in Minnesota that he named "Ferndale." He and his family may have camped at that site in Minnesota for some years before he purchased Ferndale as a summer camping ground and retreat. Many guests also came to visit and the primitive cabin was improved upon each year. 
1886 - The company is incorporated.  
1892 - On January 22, John A. Salzer dies at 68 years and 25 days and is interned at the Oak Grove Cemetery in La Crosse, Wisconsin. 
1892 - Henry Salzer, son of John, takes over the seed company and runs it until his death in 1917. 
1919 - First service of what was to become the La Crosse Municipal Airport began on November 29, on leased land that was was once a Salzer Seed Company cornfield. Service was abandoned in 1922 but resumed in 1928 at which time the city council voted to purchase the land. 
1920 - As early as 1920, they claimed they were the largest mail-order seed house in America. 
1922 - The company was printing and distributing 1,000,000 catalogs per year. 
1945 - The family sold the business. 
1958 - The company closed. 

Monday, June 18, 2018

1899 J. Steckler Seed Catalog for the Southern States

1899 J. Steckler Seed Catalog for the Southern States J. Steckler Seed Co. Catalog from New Orleans, LA.  Richard Frotscher was born in Germany in 1833, arrived in the USA by 1860 census in New Orleans, where he lived with his wife Emily Schwalm and their 6 daughters until his death in 1896. "Joseph Steckler, vice president and manager of the J. Steckler Seed Co., Ltd., of New Orleans, was born February 18, 1870, in New Iberia, LA. When quite young he went to New Orleans where he grew up and received his early business training in the seed establishment of his uncle, the late Richard Frotscher. When only 17 years of age Joseph became the business manager of the Gravier Street Seed Store, and so remained until 1896. In that year occurred his uncle's death, and at that time the J. Steckler Seed Co., Ltd., was organized with the following officers: Miss Mary T. Frotscher, president; Joseph Steckler, vice president and manager, and Richard P. Steckler, secretary-treasurer. While starting with only a part of their predecessor's business, the present company has grown to be one of the largest of its kind in the south. They have maintained a reputation of supplying only the best, being both growers and importers. Mr. Steckler is prominently associated with all that pertains to the trade. Only recently he has accepted the appointment as treasurer of the Interstate Horticultural Society. He was formerly president of the New Orleans Horticultural Society, and is a member of the Gardeners' Mutual Protective Association, American Seed Trade Association, and a commissioner of the City Park and Improvement Association." American Florist, Volume 26. Associated Floral Publishing Company, 1906.

Saturday, June 16, 2018

1898 Cole's Seed Catalog from Pella, Iowa

1898 Cole's Seed Catalog from Pella, Iowa.  

Aart Kool (1814-1892) married Heiltje-Hendrika "Henrietta" de Booy (1824-1901) in Pella, Iowa in 1848. Kool arrived in Pella, Iowa in 1847, with a group of Dutch emmigrants who moved to North America because of discontent over religious and economic matters. Aart KOOL, who farmed near Pella, anglicized the family name to Cole. The couple had a son Charles Nicholas Cole (1848-1947) who gained a reputation as a seedsman in Chicago working for the Vaughn Seed Company & then to New York & to Memphis to work for 2 more seed compamies. In 1870, he returned to Pella to establish Cole's Seeds with his wife Etta Kruger Cole (1856-1953). He was joined by his brothers & the business was called Cole Bros Seed Company for several years.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

1898 John Bauscher's II Vegetable Seed & Plant Guide from Freeport, Illinois

1898 John Bauscher's II Vegetable Seed & Plant Guide from Freeport, Illinois. Bauschers Floral Shop & GreenhouseThe Florist Business in Freeport was pioneered by John Bauscher Sr. in the year of 1868. Mr. Bauscher came to the United States from France. He started out with a couple small greenhouses in which he raised and sold plants and cut flowers. In the late 1870's his son John Bauscher Jr. entered the flower business with his father, and they in turn kept on expanding the green houses until they had over 100,000 square feet of glass and a total of 15 greenhouses. Some of the greenhouses were 320 feet long. By this time, the Bauschers were in the wholesale as well as the retail flower business. The retail store being located at 20 South Chicago Ave. John Bauscher Sr. passed away in the early 1900's, and the business was then owned and operated by his son John Bauscher Jr., who in turn had 5 sons of his own who all joined with their father in the Florist Business. Their names being Arthur, George, Lester, Clarence C. & John J. In 1920, John Bauscher Jr. passed away and the business was then owned & operated by his five sons and was known as Bauscher Bros. Flower Market Inc. until 1939. By this time Arthur, George & Lester Bauscher had passed away and the business was being carried on by Clarence C. & John J. Bauscher, the remaining brothers. So they decided to dissolve the corporation, & this is when Robert J. Bauscher, the son of Clarence C., joined into the florist business with his father. They continued to operate the downtown retail business known as the C. C. Bauscher Floral Shop. Clarence C. Bauscher passed away in 1950, & the business was then taken over by his son Robert J. Bauscher as sole owner at 18 South Chicago Ave. in downtown Freeport. Robert J. Bauscher being the great-grandson of the founder John Bauscher Sr. The 100th Anniversary of the business was celebrated in 1968 with a total of 4 generations of florists in the same family. Written by Robert J. Bauscher - June 15, 1970

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Louisiana Vegetable, Flower, & Field Seed Catalog

Richard Frotscher, seedsman, horticulturist, was born in Leipzig, Saxony, March 15, 1833. He died February 2, 1896. He was trained specially in botany by his grandfather. In 1850, after one of the numerous democratic uprisings among the youth of Germany, he was fled to America. He spent some time in Pennsylvania, & shortly after the Civil War, went to New Orleans, where he became a seedsman & horticulturalist & did much to improve agriculture in the American South. Under his care, certain varieties of southern vegetables were improved. Among his many introductions are the New Orleans Market Cucumber, New Orleans Market Melon, New Orleans Market Eggplant, Frotscher's Superior Large Late Flat Dutch Cabbage, Best-of-all Beans, Southern Willow-Leaved Sewee or Butter Pole Beans, Frotscher's Three-quarter Red Blood Turnip Beet, Frotscher's New Orleans Improved Large Passion Lettuce, Frotscher's Lone Star Watermelon, & Louisiana or Creole Onion. His introductions were numerous in fruit & shade trees & in flower & grass seeds. Systematic pecan-culture was begun by Richard Frotscher. The 3 varieties that he started to propagate & named, & which are recognized standards, are the Frotscher's Egg Shell, Rome & Centennial. 

Monday, June 11, 2018

J. Bolgiano & Son Seed & Plant Catalog from Baltimore, MD reflects the Patriotic Liberty Gardens of WWI

In the 19C, Joseph Ault Bolgiano (1836-1913), F W Bolgiano, & J Bolgiano Jr operated the J Bolgiano & Son Seed Store at 28 S Calvert Street in Baltimore, Maryland. Joseph Ault was the son of John (Johnnes) H Bolgiano (1812-1892) who had Joseph Ault Bolgiano with with Charlotte Hannah Ault in Baltimore, Maryland. 

John's (Johnnes) father was Francis William Bolgiano, Sr (c 1769-1832) who immigrated to Baltimore, Maryland from Italy or Germany. He married Elizabeth Weller on 25 May 1799 in Baltimore, Maryland, daughter of Johan Georg Weller. Francis W. is listed in the Baltimore City Directory as a 'bread and biscuit baker' from 1799-1827. It is possible, that he also sold seed.

1919 J Bolgiano & Son Seed Company
According to Baltimore newspapers, in 1895, John Bolgiano sued Joseph A. Bolgiano, who was managing the seed company, after their partnership was dissolved. By 1897, Joseph A. Bolgiano's sons Charles J. Bolgiano (1868-1920) & Roland Bolgiano (1870-1924) succeeded their father in running the business. 
1903 J Bolgiano & Son Seed Company
The 1904 Wharf Fire from the blog The Promise of Seeds: Magic in a Packet by Emma Craib
American Poultry Advocate, 1904
It is more than probable that every reader of this paper has heard of the wonderfully disastrous fire which so recently burned the heart out of the city of Baltimore. Unless you just happened to know some one who was living or doing business in Baltimore, it is likely that you gave the fire hardly more than a passing thought. But what do you think it means to the people of Baltimore? What do you thing it means for instance, to J. Bolgiano & Sons,
the seedsmen who have for eighty-seven years been doing business In the fated city? In all that long period they have never before suffered from fire. Indeed, they felt perfectly safe this time, for when the fire first started it was more than ten city squares away from them. Later, and when they thought they were endangered — though the fire was still six squares from them — they employed two hundred hands and fifty drays and began the removal of their large retail seed stock to one of their warehouses a long distance from the fire, and where they felt everything would be safe. It transpired, however, that by a shifting of the winds the fire ate relentlessly away until both retail stores, offices, packing rooms and warehouses were destroyed. Bolgianos made a brave fight to save the orders and seeds for their thousands of customers, but fate was against them. The orders already booked and the lists of names of multiplied thousands of customers all over the world were lost in the twinkle of an eye.
With absolutely nothing to work with, nothing to aid them except their fair name and excellent reputation, the Bolgianos have set to work with firm hands and brave hearts to rebuild their business. They have already laid in a large stock of the very best farm and garden seeds, notwithstanding the short seed crop of the past season, and will be able to fill orders as usual. Since all their advance orders and names of customers are burned, they have very little to begin on. Will those of our readers who ordered from Bolgiano & Sons write a postal card at once, simply giving your name and post office address? Do this whether you are an old or new customer of theirs. Send them your name anyhow, so that they may send you their catalogue another season. Simply address the card to J. Bolgiano & Sons, Baltimore, Md.In 1904, their business, including all poultry & seeds & related merchandise, warehouses, & business records were destroyed by fire on the Inner Harbor.  In 1913, Roland Bolgiano retired from the Seed Store, located at Pratt & Light Streets. 
J Bolgiano & Son Seed Company
In 1917, 97 feet of brick wall, in fact, the whole west side of the Bolgiano Seed building on their wharf on the Inner Harbor was about to be acquired under eminent domain by the City of Baltimore to clear the way for the new Key Highway project. It was claimed that the highway was needed to serve the increased movement of goods due to the Panama Canal, when it opened, increasing the shipping to the port of Baltimore. Charles Bolgiano had to challenge Baltimore City. It was exhausting, but he eventually won. 
1915 Bogiano's Pier on the Inner Harbor in Baltimore, MD
On October 28, 1920, receivers were appointed for the business, after Charles J. Bolgiano was adjudicated a "bankrupt by consent in the US district court." On November 19, 1920, 42 year-old Charles J. Bolgiano ended his life.