Notes


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   Notes   Linked to 
1  BAER, Leopold (Loew) (I25)
 
2  WEIL, Lea (I68)
 
3  NEWMAN, Jacob Jack (I70)
 
4  KIRCHHEIMER, Sarah (I392)
 
5  VOEGEL(IN), Sarah (Sarle) (I415)
 
6  WOLFF, Jakob (I543)
 
7

Commerce, January 23, 1956
This is the story of the Grossmans and the City of Quincy, and of how they helped one another to grow and prosper. It is the Great American Success Story told one again with the familiar ingredients of courage, foresight, faith, and hard work, in the presence of the powerful catalyst---Freedom.

This is more than simply a record of the growth and development of a company---it is a testimonial to the men who guided that growth, and to the fertile soil of free enterprise that nourished it.

On the occasion of the sixtieth anniversary of the Grossman Company, the Quincy Chamber of commerce is happy to tender this token of esteem to the Grossmans -- a distinguished family whom we are proud to call our friends and neighbors.

Here comes Grossman...

To most of us in New England, these three words, as familiar as our own name, bring to mind the vision of an orange and black truck, loaded with building materials, passing us on any highway in the six-state area. But perhaps the mean more than that...perhaps they refer to the family itself, starting with one man, and growing, in only three generations into a large, close-knit, capable, energetic family group whose influence extends over the entire northeastern region of the United States, and beyond.

Although the Grossmans have, in one sense, "arrived", they are, in another sense, still "coming."

The story of the family that was to have such a far-reaching influence on the growth of Quincy began in 1890, in a small town in Tsarist Russia. There, with a seventeen dollar steerage ticket in his pocket, young Louis Grossman embarked for a new life in a new and unknown land. From Podeski, Russia, to Ellis Island, to Boston, to Quincy. Awed by the vast new land, the crowding, hurrying strangers, the alien, unknown tongue, Louis put a heavy pack on his back and entered American economic life as a peddler. Trudging the twisted streets of Boston and Quincy, weighed down by his burden, handicapped by the barrier of language, he was laying the foundation for an organization of many enterprises, an organization that was to become the largest distributor of building materials in all New England--one of the largest, in fact, in the entire nation. Success did not come easily. At the beginning, a budget of a dollar-and-a-half per week for room and board sustained him.

With the purchase of a horse and wagon, the peddler became a businessman. Louis was now a traveling junk dealer, collecting and selling his wares on trips to Walpole. To put the return trip to Quincy on a firm financial footing, he arranged with a roofing firm to buy seconds of roofing materials, which he sold en route or on his return to Quincy. Lasting often from dawn to midnight, these days were long and lonely. The beginning of the twentieth century found the United States emerging as a front-rank world power. Triumphant in a short-lived and profitable war with Spain, enriched by the annexation of Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Philippine Islands, the vigorous young nation was beginning to feel its strength.

In the year 1900 Louis was joined in his business ventures by his two oldest sons, Reuben and Jacob, age 14 and 12, had left school days behind and were busily helping their father to found a business. Although Louis was busy building a business, he never forgot that he was also building a family. The strong family ties that exist today among the Grossmans are a direct result of his teachings.

Junk and second-hand furniture formed the backbone of the Grossman business until 1907. Then, as a result of plans for broader operations, new property was acquired. This was a site at 10 Jackson Street, formerly occupied by a monument manufacturing plant. The Grossmans held an auction sale on the premises for the materials in the plant, a sale from which they realized their first significant profit. The property was retained.

Meanwhile Russia stifled under the Tsarist yoke, Germany dreamed of Empire, and America was digging a ditch to join the oceans. In 1914, a third son, Joseph B. Grossman, joined the steadily growing organization. At the age of 22, J. B. assumed the jobs of office manager, building materials salesman, purchasing agent, and general utility man. While the Jackson Street property expanded steadily, building materials gradually began to supplement the junk business. With more and more lumber and building materials being handled by the company, a new yard was purchased in 1915, at 37 Federal Avenue. For several years thereafter the junk business continued at Jackson Street, while the Federal Avenue yard occupied itself with the growing demand for building materials.

During the five years 1914-1920, a world died, and the shape of a new world began to form. Throughout history's first total war, and the brief but intense depression that followed, the Grossman firm moved forward in restrained, well-planned expansion. The success of the old, direct methods, however, was not forgotten.

By 1920 the growth of the company called for more space. In that year the site of the present store and yard at 130 Granite Street was acquired. Since that date, this location has been the headquarters of the firm.

At the close of the First World War, Grossmans entered a field that was to contribute tremendously to its growth . . . war surplus. Army camps and war plants, offered for sale by the government, were brought by Grossmans. Buildings were carefully dismantled, and salvaged lumber, plumbing supplies, and other materials were either sold on the premises or taken to Quincy for later sale. The first purchase, in 1922, was the Hingham Naval Ammunition Depot. With the profits from the Hingham project, the company purchased the Coddington Point section of the Naval Training Station at Newport, Rhode Island. People came by the thousands, to haul away salvaged material by the truckload. During these salvage operations, the Grossmans had become increasingly averse to wrecking and dismantling buildings. They determined that in future ventures of this sort, wherever practicable, buildings would remain intact. When, in 1922, the company purchased the Simon Lake Torpedo Station at Bridgeport, Connecticut, maintenance crews instead of salvage crews took over until the property was sold a year later. This process of rejuvenating instead of wrecking was to set the pattern for many future Grossman enterprises.

One of the more interesting of the Grossman ventures was the salvage of the Nancy. Run up on the sandy beach at Nantasket during a northeast gale in 1927, this huge, five-masted schooner was a great sightseers' attraction for man years. In one of their early salvage efforts, the Grossmans bought the ship and dismantled her on the spot. The five tremendous masts from the ill-fated vessel found a useful place in the local granite industry.

By 1923, all four of Louis Grossman's sons were in the firm. It was in this year that Sidney, the youngest, joined the company. By that time the Jackson Street yard was being used only for storage purposes, and the Federal Avenue yard was handling what remained of the dwindling junk business. The main stream had shifted to the Granite Street Headquarters, already one of the largest retail outlets for lumber and building materials in the area. Three Model T Ford trucks, a small GMC truck, and two two-cylinder Autocar coal trucks presaged the vast fleet of modern trucks that dot New England highways today.

In 1928, after the retirement of Louis, the firm became L. Grossman Sons, Incorporated. The sons assumed offices in accordance with their seniority, with Reuben as president, Jacob vice-president, Joseph B. treasurer, and Sidney secretary. The company was in good hands for the storm that was soon to follow.

In 1929 the nation was rudely awakened from dreams of perpetual prosperity. The Big Depression hit New England especially hard. In many one-or-two industry areas, the collapse of a mill meant a completely destitute town. These enterprises had somehow to be returned to useful life, or the towns would die.

Thus it was that, time after time, Grossmans was asked to bid on factory or mill properties up for sale because their managers could no longer afford even maintenance. In the decade following the crash, Grossmans bid successfully on more than a dozen such properties including textile mills, foundries, furniture factories, chemical plants, and shoe factories. In each instance, Grossmans kept the property intact, often investing large sums in upkeep and advertising for replacement industry, until it could be restored to useful operation in the community. The major industrial plants bought during this period included:
Chase Mills, Webster, Mass.
Hecla Mills, Uxbridge, Mass.
Readville Chemical Co., Readville, Mass.
Mason Machine Works, Taunton, Mass.
Beoli Mills, Fitchburg, Mass.
Emerson Shoe Company, Rockland, Mass.
Dunn Chair Manufacturing Co., Gardner, Mass.
Somerset Foundry Company, Somerset, Mass.
West Sand Lake Mills, West Sand Lake, N.Y.
Multibestos Company, Walpole, Mass.
Clapp Rubber Company, Hanover, Mass.
Sumner Thread Company, Manchester, Conn.
Bernon Mills, Georgiaville, R. I.
Harmony Mills, Cohoes, N. Y.

The disastrous hurricane of 1938 left many areas of New England woodland a tangled waste. To assist the distressed owners, the Federal Government purchased the damaged timber --- and was then faced with problem of disposing of it. Grossmans organized the Eastern Pine Sales Corporation, bought the timber from the government, and resold it in record time at a profit to the government as well as to Grossmans. The entire transaction involved more than three million dollars and 800 million feet of lumber. This gigantic task --- the largest lumber salvage job ever undertaken --- was the first to be carried out under the complete supervision of a third generation Grossman.

With a profound interest in the civic, social and economic welfare of their community, the Grossmans have contributed often and generously of both time and money to such projects as Community Chest campaigns, Chamber of Commerce activities, Red Cross and Red Feather drives, founding of the Quincy Rotary Club, Quincy Council of Boy Scouts of America, fund raising for religious institutions of all denominations, and the family gifts, in 1944, of the building houses the Quincy Jewish Community Center. To make sure that such enterprises would be perpetuated, the Grossman Family Charitable Trust was established. This fund serves as a memorial to Louis and Hia Pearl Grossman for the charitable thinking they instilled in their children. All earning derived from the investments of the Trust are devoted entirely to charitable purposes.

New methods introduced by the Grossman revolutionize the building materials industry.
New methods for marketing building materials, introduced by the Grossmans, completely changed the building industry and put the goal of home ownership within the reach of nearly everyone in New England. Grossmans established the first "one-stop" service where a home owner could buy everything needed for home construction or repair. For the first time, the consumer could go directly to a store and buy his building materials just as he buys food in a supermarket. Families were encouraged to enjoy personalized credit arrangements which would give them their own home. Large amounts invested in advertising this service eventually benefited the company, the consumer, and the community.

In 1929 the company opened its first branch yard in Billerica, Mass. In 1955, it opened its twenty-first branch in Woonsocket, Rhode Island. It now has at least one branch in every New England state but Connecticut.

A Chamber of Commerce helps to recognize a changing era in shopping trends.
Conceived by the Grossmans, and developed by a far-sighted Chamber of Commerce, the nationally-famous Quincy parking area was once a dismal swamp known as "Edwards Meadows." Early in the1920's this land, to most observers, seemed a complete waste. But the Grossmans thought otherwise and bought it.

Many buildings went up in Quincy during the twenties, including the granite rust, Patriot Ledger, City Hospital, and High School. It wasn't long before these excavations provided enough fill to pack the swamp land. The area soon became popular as a parking lot. Now a model of municipal planning, the first city-owned parking lot in the nation accommodates nearly one thousand cars in metered stalls, right in the heart of downtown Quincy. These extensive, conveniently-located parking facilities are a tribute to the unusual foresight and initiative of the Quincy Chamber of commerce and of the Grossman family.

At the end of World War II, the war surplus story of the First World War was repeated on a vastly greater scale. To handle the tremendous quantity of government surplus materials, Grossmans was forced to form a separate organization in a separate location. The Grossman Surplus Company was incorporated in 1946, and nearly one hundred acres of land were purchased in Braintree to handle material of every conceivable sort from dismantled army camps, naval installations, and shipyards. To this fabulous yard come not only customers from near and far, but also sightseers by the thousands.

The acute housing shortage that followed the war was a challenge to the Grossman ingenuity. The company bought a quantity of surplus Quonset huts, as well as army barracks, and resold them, together with detailed plans for converting them into pleasant homes. These dwellings were to be had for no money down, with monthly payments less than rental for equivalent housing. Hundreds of families were grateful for this, the only chance they would have for some time to own a home.

When building materials again became available, the Grossmans conceived the "Build-It-Yourself" homes program. Anticipating the nationwide "do-it-yourself" trend, this plan provided all materials, complete working drawings, and easy-to-follow instructions to anyone owning a lot, with no down payment required. The Homes Division has evolved into one of the company's largest units, employing a large sales and service staff, with representatives in every major community in New England. Thousands of these homes have been sold in the six-state area. Because of their attractive appearance and ingenious design, their popularity continues to grow.

In August 1954, the town of Sanford --- a neat, slumless community of some 15,000 in southern Maine --- was abruptly sentenced to death. Its one main industry, the textile mills of the 87-year old Goodall-Sanford Corporation, was bought by Burlington Mills. The looms and vats of the plant were moved south. A few townspeople pulled up roots and sought work elsewhere, but the vast majority stood fast and announced that "We refuse to die." In response to an appeal from the Sanford Chamber of Commerce, Grossmans bought the entire plant in November. In little more than a year from the time Grossmans took over the mill properties, Sanford was well on the road to recovery. In an operation whose speed and effectiveness were without precedent, seven new industries had been attracted to the town, and the goal of full re-employment was being realized. With the new diversification of industry, Sanford was in a stronger position economically than ever before. This dramatic story of the town that refused to die has appeared in the nation's press, and on the program of a national television network. It is a story of which Grossmans can be especially proud.

Following the successful revitalization of the town of Sanford, Grossmans was asked by the Industrial Committee of Amsterdam, New York to bid on the Bigelow-Sanford Carpet Company when that organization announced plans to move most of its operation. One of the largest rug and carpet manufacturers in the country, Bigelow-Sanford was giving up its mammoth Amsterdam plants to concentrate its activities in Connecticut.
In October, 1955, the Grossman firm bought the real estate holdings of this company, consisting of more than 40 buildings in the heart of Amsterdam. Although the ultimate disposition of the property is still in questions, the citizens of Amsterdam, knowing the Grossman record of successful reactivation of industrial property, fully expect that the plant will soon be humming, alive, and productive once again.

Far up the Atlantic coastline of Maine, near the Canadian border, is a town of some two hundred forty buildings named Passamaquoddy. Built in 1934 to house construction workers on the controversial Tidal Power Project, 'Quoddy was deserted in 1936 when, after an expenditure of more than two million dollars, Congress lost faith in the project and cut off appropriations for its completion. During World War II, 'Quoddy was converted to a Seabee Camp, and for a time housed over four thousand men. After the war's end, the village was again left to the wind and the gulls. When, in 1950, Grossmans purchased the property at auction, at a substantial price, from the War Assets Administration, it stood cold and empty. Since 1950, Grossmans has kept the village intact, maintained its buildings, and has gradually induced industry and workers to settle there. Life has returned to Pasmaquoddy, this time, it appears, to stay.

Possible nowhere is the dynamic imagination of the Grossman organization more strikingly demonstrated than in the field of small home building and maintenance. The "Do-It-Yourself" movement that has recently swept the nation was anticipated by Grossmans more than twenty years ago. Since the early days of the Depression, Grossmans has been nurturing the growth of the Home Handyman in its advertising, and by all other means at its disposal, pointing out the obvious economies that can be effected by doing it yourself.

That is the story, to date, of the family that grew in Quincy, and of the city that grew with the family. But that is not the end of the story.

L. Grossman Company History
1890 - Louis Grossman and his family move to a home on Bunker Hill Lane in Quincy with his two sons Reuben and Jacob and daughter Bessie. He begins selling salvage items door to door at low prices. Family and business soon move to 337 Water Street.
1901 - Grossman buys his first horse for the business.
1907 - In his first big expansion, he builds a three story warehouse on Jackson Street. The property includes a four-horse stable and a small building for business rental.
1920 - Grossman and his four sons move to their longtime Granite Street site, and acquire their first truck. Painted with the firm's trademark orange and black colors, the truck has "Here Comes Grossman" written on the panels.
1925 - Louis Grossman retires, Reuben, Jacob, Joseph and Sidney Grossman take over the company, now called L. Grossman Sons Inc.
1946 - The company starts two post-war ventures: Grossman's Surplus Co., to sell military salvage, and a construction firm to convert military bases into affordable housing.
1950 - Anticipating the home-supply trend of the '80s and '90s, Grossman's introduces the "Build It Yourself" product line.
1959 - Despite the Cold war, the U.S. government invites the company to join international trade fairs in Communist-ruled Poland.
1963 - The Granite Street site becomes a retail shopping center.
1969 - Family accepts a buyout offer from Evans Products of Oregon. Louis Grossman's grandson Maurice Grossman, becomes company president. 
GROSSMAN, Louis (I2136)
 
8

Does not show in Berlin directory in 1905, 1910, 1915 nor do his brothers. 
KRISTELLER, Walter (I382)
 
9

lived in 2909 Post Oak Blvd. #305, Houston TX 77056 in 2005 
KIRCHHEIMER, Gretel Auguste (I975)
 
10

Moved to Mannheim between 1870-75

Lost home in Neckarbischofsheim due to fire on 11/2/1859

In 1858 listed as Schutzbuerger 
WOLF, Baruch (I538)
 
11

Was arrested as "enemy of the state"; sentenced to death on 10/7/1938; and executed (probably by firing squad) on 10/14/1938. Based on a decree of athe supreme Soviet of the USSR he was "rehabilitated" on 5.17/1989.

Information provided by Gerald Graham, Nov. 2002. 
GREIFFENHAGEN, Klaus Wolfgang (I226)
 
12 At least one living or private individual is linked to this note - Details withheld. KIRCHHEIMER, Meredith Baer (I3431)
 
13
According to cemetery documents he was buried by the United Hebrew Community #1 of New York Death certificte and cemetery papers say he was 66 years, 3 months and 12 days old, which would make his birth date Nov. 8, 1841 
GROSSMAN, David (I129)
 
14
After Sarha's death moved with 2nd wife and kids to Hilbronn;in 1884 with remaining family to Wuezburg.

5 siblings 
STRAUSS, Laemmle (Leopold) (I504)
 
15
Certificate notes that the is "from among th Slonim Hassidim. Immigrated to the Holy Land only two weeks ago. Became ill and died."


Death: Running No. (?) 803397 
BITENSKY (BITTENSOHN), Maisha(Morris) Velvel (Wm.) (I20)
 
16
Death Certificate show place of burial as: Beck M. R. Ocean View Cemetery 
KAPLAN, Esther (I136)
 
17
Does not appear to have married Newman.
According to Harlow Franklin (9/13/97) she told him she was born in St.Petersburg
According to ship manifest she was 20 in 1906 ie born 1886; according to other info (?) she was born in 1880., Since Celia was probably born 1896 and was not the oldest, maybe even earlier.
According to Robert Newman her Jahrzeit in 1990 was Oct 23-24 which =5 Heshvan 5751. 5 Heshvan comes on Oct 23-24 in1952 (not 1947, 50, or 51 dates which had been speculated). 
SHEINMAN, Anna (Nechama) (I4)
 
18
family lives in Hannover (Jaegerweg 21, Burgwedel 30938) 
KIRCHHEIMER, Franz (I1990)
 
19
family lived in Chicago at 1930 census, with 4 boys
died in San Diego, but was livig in Chicago at the time
1910 census lived Chicago Wad 6 with Helen and Harold
At his death belonged to Chicago Sina Congregation 
KIRCHHEIMER, Solomon (Sol) (I824)
 
20
first Name may be Sarah
Last name may be Wolf or Wolff

Parents seem to be same as those of Franchel Wolf born June 15, 1830. Check. 
WOLFF, Serche (Sophie) (I178)
 
21
in 1911 went with parents to Chacatawa?travelled with Bertha and Alice in 1923, returning on SS belgenland on 9/2/1923
living with widowed mother
naturalized on father's papers 283148,
SS# 318-03-1810 issued IL 
KIRCHHEIMER, Carmen (I3848)
 
22
lived in Denver during the first marriage
Gretel reports that family was wealthy grain trader in Grombach
One brother came over with Jacob (or close in time) and immediately returned to Germany Could that be the Jacob Kirchner shown as emigrating in 1896 at age 17 but never shows up after that?The age would be right.
1930 census says aged 31 at first marriage, and Regina 21,.
In 1920 lived in ED 193, precinct 129, address possibly 230 E. John; in 1930 in ED 17-150 address possibly 941 Spring between 28th and 29th Ave oron 29 Ave. 
KIRCHHEIMER (KIRCHNER), Jacob Isidor (Jack) (I3437)
 
23 At least one living or private individual is linked to this note - Details withheld. HOFMANN, Ralph Joe (I1391)
 
24
made another trip in 1906, arriving 12/30/1906 as US citizen on SS St. Paul from Cherbourg.

lived in Chicago in 1920 censuslived in Chicago 1900 census 
KIRCHHEIMER, Sigmund (I820)
 
25
page of Testimony submitted by 1st cousin Lore Kirchheimer Haller (daughter of Sali's brother Max) who lives in Queens, NY 
KIRCHHEIMER, Hans (I1399)
 
26
parents had a daughter named Friederike in 1856 who died at 18 days as well as a boy who died immediately in 1866. 
BAER, Frederike (I153)
 
27
Prsumably named Martha for uncle Joseph Kristeller's daughter who died young; and Betty for ggm Betty Lowenstein.
In1939 Hilde lived at Av. Alain Cartier, Paris (15 arr?) according to my arrival list. In 1938 and 1940 her last Paris address on hr arrival list) was 5 Av. Jacques. 
ROSENFELD, Hilde Martha Betty (I187)
 
28
relative at home: grandmother Agatha Fischbein Gonewald
information from arrival list 
KRISTELLER, Dorothea (I891)
 
29
SS# 577-48-7764 issued DC 
KIRCHHEIMER, Otto (I214)
 
30 At least one living or private individual is linked to this note - Details withheld. ALSCHULER, David Michael (I860)
 
31 "Leaping Louis" from his ball-playing days.

SS# 028-05-2743 
LUBARSKY, Louis (I2491)
 
32 "nothing of Feisel has been known since times immemorial. He was chased away by a nobleman" LOEW, Feisel (I3131)
 
33 #31 Family F1520
 
34 #4080 Family F847
 
35 (617)236-1619 WOLF, Lea (I1231)
 
36 At least one living or private individual is linked to this note - Details withheld. MURATORE, Angelica (I211)
 
37 , 63 Glendale Rd. GROSSMAN, Louis (I2136)
 
38 , mother died in birth KIRCHHEIMER, No name (I4119)
 
39 At least one living or private individual is linked to this note - Details withheld. KIRCHHEIMER, Chantal (I38)
 
40 1 daughter WIMPFHEIMER, Mathilde (I3027)
 
41 10 children of whom 5 are known to have had offspring HANAUER, Jakob (I3576)
 
42 10 childrenby first wife, only last one known to have died in infancy
1 boy and 1 girl by 2nd wife 
HANAUER, Moses Herz (I767)
 
43 10 childrenof whom 5 are known to have had offspring HANAUER, Samuel (I765)
 
44 10 Jackson St GROSSMAN, Nissie (I2130)
 
45 10 Jackson St. GROSSMAN, Anna Robina (I298)
 
46 10 Jackson St. GROSSMAN, Etta Rose (Edythe "Edie" Ruth) (I2129)
 
47 At least one living or private individual is linked to this note - Details withheld. GROSSMAN, Martha (I2132)
 
48 10 kids, 6 survived infancy HANAUER, Gerson (I739)
 
49 10/23/1894 Barmitzwah not sure that this is the right Erich KAUFMAN, Erich (I2062)
 
50 10/24/1885 Bar Mitzwah BROH, Julius (I2052)
 

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