KansasGenWeb Logousgenweb.gif

Sylvan Grove
Business and Industry,
Part 1

Excerpts from chapter: "Business and Industry Through The Years" from "Honoring Our Heritage" by Marge Lawson, pg. 52. Used with permission of the author.

Part 1

The first businesses in Sylvan Grove were the mill, the general store, a drug store and a blacksmith shop. After the town moved near the railroad tracks, Sylvan Grove experienced a momentous burst of building and expanding. The activity began even before the railroad arrived in anticipation of its coming.
Some of the businesses in the year 1895 were:
Raffety & Nesmith, Merchants
Kruse and Buehring Implements and Real Estate
S.R. Lawson, Implements
Sylvan State Bank; Berger Bros; Merchants
Rein Wohler, Druggist
W.H. McAdams, Barber
Wm. Osterfund, Meat Market
John Gallagher, Harness
Schermerhorn & Co. Merchants
Latto & Robinson, Implements, Wheat & Coal
Kansas Lumber Co.
Bowen - Brumbaugh, Livery
Knapp & Norris Hardware
J.P. Grim, Millinery, Sewing Machines and Organs
Ira C. Buzick, Lawyer
I. Lamphier, Hotel
Charles Sigley, Shoes
E.P. Goff, Jewelry

In 1897 a fire on the west side of main street wiped out several of the businesses. From the "Alert" comes the following: "The buildings burned and total losses sustained were as follows: Seirer's blacksmith shop, $500.; Barber Shop, $75; Raffety & Nesmith's store, $20,000; Goff's stock, $150; Gallagher's Harness Shop, $1,200; Knapp & Co's Store, $3,600; Bank $700."

In 1905, Bert Blythe moved to town. He has tried to remember the businesses that were located in town that year. The following lists and descriptions are in no way intended to be complete.
Located on the west side of main street near the tracks was the P.V. Elevator which later was Shellabarger's, the Lawson Grain Co., Norris Grain Co., and is now owned by the Farmer's Elevator. An elevator farther west was the Robinson Grain Co. Beside it was Latto and Robinson's Lumberyard, which also handled coal.
Mrs. VanWie owned the hotel which later was run by Dad Boyle, Christinie Reinert, R.W. Wohler, Fred Meyer, Sam Oller, Gene Naegele, and Bonnie Meitler.
Next to the hotel was a Barber shop during the years it was run by Pudge Hurlbut, Mr. Montgomery, and Bill Johnson. Osterfunds Meat Market was next. it was later run by Herbert Blythe and then it became a cafe run by Ben and Edith Wright. Later Milt Shaffer had a harness shop here. The building burned in 1932 or 1933.
Raffety's large new store built after the fire of '97 was next. The Raffety store had a grocery store on the south, Dry Goods store in the middle and a Mens' Wear store on the north. During the year of 1905, a tragic fire occurred in the store. Susie S. Mahoney and Honobe J. Mahoney were in the store when fireworks accidentally caught on fire. Running for the entrance they lost their way and became trapped in the windows. Honobe Mahoney, age eleven, died on June 28, 1905 and Susie age nine died on June 29, 1905. At this time a city ordinance was made prohibiting the sale of fireworks in the city limits.
In 1936, the Raffety store was sold to Roderick who became partners with Stuive. Tiny Minear was undertaker for them. They also sold John Deere implements, hardware and furniture. Johnny Koch was the last business in the building. It was torn down in the spring of 1976.
The Yellow Front was a pool hall with a barber chair. At one time it was run by Fox, a gambler and Ziegler, a bartender. The building is currently owned by the city and is slated to be torn down. Next was Jess Knapp's Hardware. It was later Saenger hardware and then Harwi hardware. Stuive had a hardware store and then George Corbett had a pool hall in the building. After that it was Hopfer Grocery. The Legion obtained the building for their hall.
In 1905, Calene and Berger owned the next store. It was then owned by Joe Krysl and following that Thaemert's. The last building on the block was the Sylvan State Bank building which replaced the wooden building that had burned in 1897. This building was used for the post office. John and Myrtle Lang had a Ladies' Wear here. Benchmark Antiques owned by Lon and Phyllis Buzick are currently in the building.
Crossing the street and moving on to the north in the year 1905 was found Reinhold Wohler's Drugstore, later run by Blaine Pinney, then Stoy Ware. In later years it was used as a Doctor's office for Dr. Dlabal. Dan Metz currently owns the building and operates a part time Lawyer's office.
Behrhorst Brothers Hardware was the next store. In 1925, S.M. Lawson and Co. bought the store and have operated it ever since. The Butcher Shop was the third of the three stone buildings. It was run by Fred Meyer, Ray Peck, Raymond Skaggs, Robert Cross, Henry Kiers and the Joy Krysl. Before 1905 the Heller Cafe and Hotel was located on this site. It burned down.
Next to the butcher shop was W.W. Dehler's One Price Groceries and Dry Goods. Later it was a Pool Hall and Recreation. It was torn down. The next building was Hans Peterson's Furniture and Undertaking. It was later run by Kirk Gladden. At one time Shorty Addington had a Pool Hall and Cold Drinks. It was also torn down.
North was Fred Thaemert's Music Store. Minnie Johnson had a millinery store and later Mr. and Mrs. Bosch operated a dime store in the building. It was eventually torn down.

Part 2, Business and Industry in Sylvan Grove
Part 3, Business and Industry in Sylvan Grove
Part 4, Business and Industry in Sylvan Grove

Return to:[Lincoln County Kansas Genealogy][Lincoln County Kansas Queries]


Bill and Diana Sowers, Lincoln County Coordinators
Tracee Hamilton, Lincoln County Coordinator

Home Page for Kansas Search all of Blue Skyways

Copyright 1997, 1998 by Bill and Diana Sowers