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History of Terre Haute, Vigo Co., IN - 1880 - businesses


Prominent among the names of business men of Terre Haute stands that of JOSEPH STRONG, proprietor of the Terre Haute Coffee and Spice Mills. He is a native of Chillicothe, Ohio, and came to this city in 1865, having for the previous five years filled a position as bookkeeper in a prominent mercantile house of Cincinnati. On coming here Mr. STRONG began business in a small way, and by his indomitable energy and enterprise he has increased it to its present large dimensions, making his business second to none in the country, and with a reputation for first-class grades of goods unexcelled anywhere. He was the first to commence business in this line in Terre Haute, and, notwithstanding there are other firms now engaged in the trade, he still maintains the first position, his business now being four times greater than when he began. He now gives employment to fifteen hands, four of whom are traveling men, and occupies the premises Nos. 19 and 21 North Sixth street, 40x125 feet, with three floors and basement, all stored with grocers' sundries, and fitted up with the latest improved machinery. On the premises are three elevators, one large steam and two hand-power, one of the latter arranged expressly for lowering goods from the packing department on the third floor. A fine thirty horse-power engine drives all the machinery, and greatly facilitates business. The sterling baking power, of which Mr. STONG is the inventor and sole manufacturer, has received the indorsement (sic) of the whole country. His spices, of which he manufactures but one brand of each kind, are also widely known. Mr. STRONG has devoted much time and study to the perfect roasting of coffee, and has met with complete success. He roasts by a fixed rule, and by so doing leaves the caffeine in its highest perfection, and to this, no doubt, must be ascribed the origin of the high reputation his brands of goods have obtained.

THEODORE HUDNOT, miller, senior partner of Hudnot & Co., hominy mills, Terre Haute, was born in Washington, Mason county, Kentucky in July, 1820. He is essentially a self-made man, trained in active and careful business habits. In 1850 he bought a mill in Edinburg, Indiana, and commenced the same business. He afterward went to Indianapolis, where he built a mill. He remained here until 1862, when he removed to Mattoon, Illinois. Leaving Mattoon he came to Terre Haute, where, in 1866, he established the business which has since, under his direction, grown to such vast proportions. The mills, corner of Chestnut and Third streets, have a grinding capacity of 3,600 bushels of corn per day. The firm has a storage capacity of 175,000 bushels. They manufacture hominy, grits, corn-flour and pearl-meal. These products are shipped to all parts of the world, great quantities being sent to Europe. These mills are the largest of the kind in this country, if not in the world. The firm employs in these mills about eighty men, besides a large number indirectly employed in the manufacture of barrels, etc. The only grade of corn used is the pure white. The proprietors are Theodore HUDNOT and Ray G. JENCKES. The firm have a large mill at Mt. Vernon, Indiana, which is managed by Mr. JENCKES. This mill was built in 1875, and has a capacity of 2,000 bushels per day. They also have a branch mill at Clinton Locks, in Parke county, consuming 1,000 bushels per day. This business is one of the great manufacturing enterprises of Terre Haute. Mr. HUDNOT was for a short time a member of Col. MEREDITH's regiment, 19th Ind. Vol. Inf. His eldest son, John H., was killed at Russelville, Kentucky. He was in Co. A, 70th Ind. Vol., Col. Ben HARRISON. In this action he was the only man of his regiment injured. Another son, Benjamin, is general manager of the business in Terre Haute.

Among the dentists of Terre Haute who have established a good reputation by their work, Mr. L.H. BARTHOLOMEW is probably as well and favorably known as any. His office is located at No. 523 Main street, where he has fitted up an elegant suite of rooms, nicely furnished and supplied with all the new and latest improved dental instruments. He has also lately added an elegant new dental chair to his already well furnished apartments. This new chair is known as the Wilkinson chair, and is manufactured in Baltimore, Maryland. It is so thoroughly complete and perfectly adjustable that the weariness of both operator and patient is greatly lessened. In February, 1879, Mr. W. II. HALL became associated with him. They are now doing business under the firm name of Bartholomew & Hall. The doctor is a native of Fredonia, Chatanqua county, New York. He first came west in 1862, and located at Freeport, Illinois. It was there he began the study of dentistry. In 1866 he became a resident of Terre Haute, where he at once opened an office and has since devoted his time to the study and practice of his profession. He has not rested content with sufficient knowledge to carry on his trade, but continues to be an active student. He has kept up with the progress of the science of dentistry, and is now thoroughly established in Terre Haute, with an extensive and lucrative practice.

ESPENHAIN & ALBRECHT, dealers in dry-goods, Terre Haute, who are proprietors of the extensive dry-goods and carpet establishment of Nos. 23-5 South Fourth street, have now been connected with this branch of the industries of Terre Haute since 1867. Their establishment is 38 feet front by 65 feet deep, two floors and basement, which space is stocked with everything pertaining to the dry-goods, notion and carpet trade. They have many advantages over other houses of Terre Haute, not the least of which are their facilities for selling goods at prices ranging below their competitors, as is evidenced every day by the throng of customers to be found at their store. This advantage of low selling is brought about by low buying, Mr. ESPENHAIN, the senior member of the firm, having, in addition to his interest in their business at this city, two other large establishments of a similar nature, which are lcoated at Belleville, Illinois, and Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The enormous amount of goods required to run these three establishments can be bought much cheaper than the same goods in smaller quantities. Mr. ALBRECHT, the junior member of the firm, and the one always to be found at the Fourth street store, is a native of Belleville, Illinois, and is a man now of about thirty years of age. In the active management of the large establishment over which he presides he is thorough, and wide-awake to all questions of detail as well as to the more important questions of financiering. They employ from seventeen to twenty clerks, and are fast becoming the most popular house in the city of their line. Mr. ALBRECHT has been entirely dependent upon his own resources, and whatever he may have accomplished in financial matters is due to his own energy and enterprise.

JAMES T. MUSICK, druggist and physician, Terre Haute, whose name is familiar to the people of Terre Haute, and whose success in the drug trade is a fair example of what may be accomplished by energy, enterprise and a close attention to business, is a native of Marion county, Missouri. He began the study of medicine in early manhood, and in 1865 became a graduate of the Eclectic Medical College of Cincinnati. For about two years after he graduated he spent his time exclusively in the practice of his profession. In 1867 he engaged in the drug trade, which he has since followed. Since January, 1869, he has been a resident of Terre Haute. His storehouse was formerly located on South Fourth street. Recently, however, he has removed to the Beach Block, one door south of the post-office. In fitting up his new establishment the doctor has displayed natural as well as the practical good taste that years of experience have taught him. His premises are 20 feet frontage by 65 feet deep. The interior is fitted up with eight elegant wall cases, at a cost of nearly $1,000. In addition to these he has counter cases to correspond in point of elegance and convenience. Years of experience have taught the doctor that the "best is the cheapest," in view of which his stock is composed of Squibb's and other standard goods, a fact that to those familiar with the drug trade is ample proof that his stock is of the best. Jno. Wyeth & Bro's elixirs and syrups are his staples in that department, and a full line of brushes, combs, oils, perfumes, pocket cutlery, cigars, and a thousand and one other things in keeping with his line of drugs, are all conducive to his success, though perhaps no more so than a fine family prescription department over which the doctor presides personally. In this particular department the doctor's knowledge of medicine has proven of great value, as it has enabled him in times past to correct prescriptions which if compounded as written by some of the incompetent physicians would have brought the life of the patient to a speedy termination. Another feature not to be overlooked is the elegant counter and prescription case scales with which the doctor has supplied himself to insure accuracy. They are both of Truemner's make, and purchased at an expense of $150. As a step forward in the growth of this branch of the business industries of Terre Haute, the recently fitted up establishment of the doctor must be viewed with pride by the citizens, and one well worthy their patronage.

A.J. CRAWFORD, Terre Haute, is president of the Wabash Iron Company, No. 710 North Second street, which was incorporated in 1873 with a capital stock of $100,000. He is a native of Pennsylvania, and has now been a resident of Terre Haute about ten years. The business in which he is now engaged is one that he has been more or less familiar with since his boyhood, as his people have been engaged in it since 1842. The Wabash Iron Works is one of the large incorporated institutions of Terre Haute, as will be seen by the following facts. They occupy about four acres of ground where the works are located, and use about 11,000 tons of iron per year and about 23,000 tons of coal. They give employment to about 200 men and have a weekly pay roll of $2,500. Mr. CRAWFORD is also secretary and treasurer of the Vigo Iron Company, which is another of Terre Haute's great enterprises, incorporated in 1869 with a capital stock of $125,000. These two large institutions are conducted and owned entirely by the CRAWFORDS, who are among the most wealthy, enterprising and prominent of Terre Haute's business men.

A.P. CONANT, Terre Haute, is a gentleman to whom the citizens of Terre Haute are indebted for the Terre Haute Magnetic Artesian Bath Institute, located at the head of Walnut street. The advantages of these mineral baths cannot be overestimated. The well was bored in 1870, and until 1879 the only improvement made toward erecting a bath house was a little building of seven rooms. In 1876 Mr. CONANT became a resident of Terre Haute, and a short time thereafter he became interested in the artesian well, to which, in 1879, he erected a fine bath institute of thirty-six rooms for bathing purposes, a neat office, and a ladies' waiting-room. The institute is divided into separate departments for gentlemen and ladies, a lady being in constant attendance in the ladies' department to see that no accident occurs to the lady customer while in the bath. Though the water flows from the ground at a heat of about 82� Fahr., Mr. CONANT has erected the necessary apparatus for supplying water at any desired temperature. It is useless to attempt to enumerate the cures that have been wrought at these baths. Some of them, however, are cases that found no relief at the celebrated hot springs of Arkansas. To Mr. CONANT's energy and enterprise the people owe their right to claim one of the finest magnetic bath institutes in the United States. Mr. CONANT is a genuine Yankee, his native place being the state of New Hampshire, but he became a resident of Massachussetts with his people when a boy. In Massachussetts he learned the trade of a miller, a business which he followed for about twenty-five years, twelve years of which time he spent in Smithland and Kuttawa, Kentucky, from whence he came to Terre Haute in the year above stated.

WILLIAM M. COCHRAN, Terre Haute, manager of the large establishment of Owen, Pixley & Co., was until the last three years engaged at designing and building. How he could, without years of experience, conduct the extensive business over which he presides so successfully, is a question asked by many of his friends. The house of Owen, Pixley & Co. was established in Terre Haute in March, 1878, and is one of the largest establishments of its kind in the city. It is only one of a number of such houses owned by that firm, and when their names are given it is easy to be seen that their coming to Terre Haute was a grand addition to that branch of the industries to the city, not only adding a large assortment of goods to the trade, but in being able to retail them at almost wholesale rates. Their manufacturing establishment is at Utica, New York, and the branch houses as follows: at Indianapolis, Ind., Terre Haute, Ind., Greencastle, Ind., Fort Wayne, Ind., Des Moines, Ia., Bloomington, Ill., Dayton, O., Lockport, N.Y., Oil City, Pa., and Springfield, O. With so extensive and wealthy an organization as the above, it must readily be seen that one of these house (sic) located at Terre Haute must prove an advantage to the citizens. Mr. COCHRAN, who as before stated has charge of their Terre Haute house, is a native of Brook county, West Virginia. He was brought up on a farm, and during his early life never had the advantage of more than three months of schooling. This, however would never be guessed, as he is now well read and possessed of a thoroughly practical education. In 1861, at the breaking out of the war of the rebellion, he was a resident of Hendricks county, Indiana. He at once gave up farming and enlisted in Co. A, 51st Ind. Vol. Inf., under Col. STREIGHT. In less than one year he was made sergeant major. At the organization of the 102d Ind. Vol. Inf. he again entered the service, as first lieutenant of Co. A, and in 1865, at the close of the war, he left the service a lieutenant-colonel. After his service in the army he returned to Indiana and for two years was a resident of Lebanon. In 1866 he was married to Miss Eliza J. McVEY, who is a native of Marion county, Indiana. After his marriage he resided in Marion county and in Indianapolis until 1878, when he became a resident of Terre Haute. From 1870 until a short time before he came to Terre Haute he followed the business of designing and building in Indianapolis. It was while engaged in this business that having a piece of work to do for the firm of Owen, Pixley & Co. he became acquainted with that firm. Making the remark one day that he did not design continuing his business, they at once offered him a position in their store. This he accepted, and some months after, when they concluded to establish a house at Terre Haute, they chose him from the army of their employees as its manager. Their large establishment at Nos. 508-10 Main street is a store-room of 35 feet front by 140 feet deep, three floors and basement, all of which is crowded with clothing. Mr. COCHRAN, while a resident of Indianapolis, allowed himself to become the republican candidate from the second ward of that city, for the office of city councilman. He was elected to that office by a majority of 500 votes, which fact is proof of his having had the confidence and respect of the community in which he dwelt. He was elected for a one year term and was obliged to resign when leaving that city for Terre Haute. He is a member of Mystic Tie Lodge, No. 830, of Indianapolis, of the order of A.F. and A.M. Though raised a Presbyterian he is now a member of the Christian church of Terre Haute, and is a gentleman who in the few years that he has resided in Terre Haute has won the respect and esteem of the refined people of the city, among whom his best friends and associates are to be found.

Mr. E.P. KING, represents the city of Terre Haute in the manufacture of stoves. He is a native of Dayton, Ohio, and for seven years previous to his beginning the manufacture of stoves in Terre Haute he had been located at Richmond, Indiana, where he was engaged in his present line. In 1872 he began the manufacture of stoves in Terre Haute, in company with Mr. R.L. BALL, the firm name being Ball & King. They continued together until 1875, when he bought Mr. BALL�s interest in the business, which he has since conducted alone. He has gradually increased the business, until now he gives employment to about twelve or fifteen men, and has a capacity of manufacturing from fifteen to twenty stoves per day, the number varying according to the different styles. He is now making about twenty-five different styles and sizes of stoves, prominent among them, and his specialty, is the "Prairie City" wood cook stove and the "Belle," which is a coal burner. He has recently begun the manufacture of what he calls the "New Prairie City" wood cook stove. There is but little doubt that this stove, like his other specialties, will meet with a ready sale, as it has been constructed by him after careful study and the advantage of many years� experience in the business. Mr. KING became a resident of Terre Haute in 1872, and, as above stated, engaged in his present line the same year. He is a quiet, unassuming man, but is well known in business circles as an honorable and reliable business man and manufacturer.

GEORGE LIKERT, yardmaster for the Vandalia Railroad, Terre Haute, whose home is at No. 395 South Delaware street, Indianapolis, has now had charge of the Vandalia yards, of Terre Haute, since 1875. He was born in Saxony, Germany, from which place his people emigrated to the United States about 1854, when he was about ten years old. They went directly to Indianapolis, where he resided, attending school most of the time until 1861, when his father died, leaving in his care a sister and mother to be supported, which he has done from that time until the present. When seventeen years of age he began railroading. He first began as train boy, in which capacity he worked for about three years. At that time there were but three passenger trains, two locals and two through freight trains run over the road. It was then known as the Terre Haute railroad, and finally changed to its present name. His first promotion was to the position of brakeman on a passenger train, at which he continued to work for about three years. He then took the position of baggageman for a short time, when his next change was to become a conductor of a through freight, which he ran for four years and one month, and then took a local freight and ran it for about two years, and then changed again, and for about one year ran an extra passenger train. He then took a through passenger train to St. Louis, ran it for about eight months, and then returned to the eastern division and ran a train for about six months. This finished his work as conductor. In March, 1875, he took the position of yardmaster at Terre Haute, where he has since been employed. Under his management are twenty-eight miles of siding. He has about thirty-six trains daily, making an average of about 1,300 cars. There are also subject to his orders about sixteen men. Though this work is very complicated, Mr. LIKERT is thoroughly master of the situation, and executes his work with credit to himself and to the satisfaction of the company.

N.S. WHEAT, coal dealer, Terre Haute, of the firm of Wheat & Kelley, though a resident of Terre Haute but about seven years, has already established a good trade, and has become well and favorably known among the business men of the city. He had been engaged in the coal trade some five years previous to forming the existing partnership between himself and Mr. KELLEY, which was consummated October 1878. Their establishment is on Main between Seventh and Eighth streets, where they are doing the most extensive business in their line of any firm in the city, their average trade being about 110 cars per month. In April, 1879, Mr. WHEAT became the successor of Mr. EASTER, who for some years had owned and operated the brewery located on Ohio between First and Water streets. This brewery is one of the oldest establishments of the kind in the county, it having been built about the year of 1859, by Geo. GLICK, and after having passed through the hands of several owners it is now owned and operated by Mr. WHEAT. The manufacturing capacity of the establishment is about 3,000 barrels per year. Mr. WHEAT designs increasing the capacity and remodeling it to compete more successfully with larger establishments of the kind now doing business in the city. Although actively engaged in the coal trade, he is still capable of pushing the business of brewing to a successful issue. Mr. WHEAT is a native of Baltimore, Maryland, which probably accounts for his Yankeefied way of pushing business with energy and success.

The retail grocery trade of Terre Haute is conducted and carried on by over one hundred dealers. The firm of Patton Bros. is one of the few leading firms of this number. The firm is composed of T.J. & W.O. PATTON. Their place of business is No. 216 South Fourth street, and is a building 25 X 70 feet, two floors and basement. In addition to the grocery business they do an extensive business in fresh meats. This branch of the business comes directly under the charge of Mr. T.J. PATTON, who has now spent about fifteen years in that line of business. The grocery department is conducted [by] Mr. W.O. PATTON. They have been very successful in both departments, and are now doing a business of about $75,000 per year, whereas in 1871 they began business in Terre Haute on a capital of $1,500. Recently they have added a new feature to their business in the shape of a refrigerator car for the shipment of meats between Terre Haute and Indianapolis. This car makes three round trips per week, and is the method they have adopted of supplying all varieties of meats demanded by their Terre Haute trade. They already do some business in the jobbing line, and should they continue to increase their trade as rapidly in the future as they have in the past, it will only be a question of time till they will be beyond all competitors in the retail grocery trade, if not ranking among the large wholesale firms of the city.

This section to be continued

HISTORY OF VIGO AND PARKE COUNTIES, Together With Historic Notes on the Wabash Valley
H.W. Beckwith - 1880
Terre Haute, pp. 303; 311-313; 316-317; 325-326; 330; 338; 343-344; 351-352; 356-357; 363-364

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Terre Haute & Harrison Twp. biographies.

Submitted by Charles Lewis
Data entry by Kim Holly, Cathy Slater & Elsie Simpson

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