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Mason County Memories

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1905 Businessmen History Column 110 Dave Petersen In today's column we will take a look at some of our businessmen from the early 1900's. as they were showcased in the January 2nd 1905 Edition of the Ludington Daily Sun. We will be starting with Godfrey Arnold who was a manufacturer of Baked Goods and a dealer in canned goods and confectionary at 209 W Ludington Avenue. He was a native of Bavaria and immigrated about 1853 and he began his business in Ludington about 1881. The article states that "The children of the district patronize his store as they know where to get fine sweetmeats at reasonable prices." Pic#1 Godfrey Arnold The Hotel Gladsone was built about 1886 by Mrs F McGary and managed by her until her death in 1904, the Hotel passed in ownership to her Daughter Mrs Elizabeth Mitchell who continued on in the operation of the Hotel. It was said of Elizabeth Mitchell " Having grown up in the house Mrs Mitchell is able to take up the work where Mrs. McGary left off . She knows all the wants of the old patrons of the house and is fully competent to cater to the wishes of new ones." Pic #2 Hotel Gladstone Robert Arnott came to America about 1855 from Scotland working as an agent for the Pere Marquette Railway for about ten years before going to work for Butters and Peters Lumber Company. In 1876 he started in the insurance business, in 1905 he was listed as having the oldest representative insurance business in the county. His office was located at 127 South James St. in Ludington. " Mr. Arnott is one of the most useful among the solid substantial businessmen of the city." Pic#3 Robert Arnott W.G. Adams Meat Market was located at 116 W. Ludington Ave, it was established about 1884 and by 1905 had become one of the largest dealers in meat poultry and game in the city. Mr. Adams was born in England and had come to America as a child. He came to Ludington in 1871 during the boom years of the lumber trade and stayed after the end of the reign of king pine. "He occupies a well equipped store with a commodius refrigerator." Pic#4 Interior Adams Meat market The Ludington Milling Company was established about 1890 by a Mr Hatch, he sold out to D.W. Goodenough and Olney, both very familiar names in the history of Ludington. The Mill had a capacity of 75 barrels of flour per day, the flours were named "Home Rule" and "Up to date" The advertisement goes on to say that "Their special brands of flour are unrivalled for their superior excellence and uniform reliability and housekeepers have come to know that when they set bread with either "Home Rule" or "Up to Date" flour they are sure of light and wholesome bread." Pic#5 Ludington Milling Co. Can you imagine in the days past of getting ready for your holiday feast, going store to store to pick up fresh ground flour to bake your bread at the Milling Company, some canned goods over at Arnolds and some "sweetmeats" for the kids. Making the stop over at Adams Meat Market for a turkey or a ham? The smells of fresh baked goods, smoked meats, candies lined up in jars. It seems to me as I look over these old stores and the goods that they carried that the under 30 crowd has really missed out on something that was quite special that the small owner run businesses had that the big box stores can't ever have to offer. Maybe when our new downtown grocery store is open that it can recapture that sense of family, fun, great food and aromas that our grandparents and some of us older "kids" remember. If you have any stories or photos you would like to share with our readers please feel free to contact me at 757-3240 or davep@blackcreekpress.com

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