This branch of the Austrian Hesch family is descended from Johann Hesch and his wife Marya (Schlinz) Hesch, who came to America from Oberschlagles, Bohemia with three sons: Paul, Mathias, and Anton. +++Johann & Marya settled in Buffalo County, Wisconsin but moved to Pierz, Mn in about 1885. .+++Mathias settled in Waumandee, Wisconsin and moved to Pierz in 1911. +++Anton never married but farmed with his dad in Agram Township, where he died in 1911.+++And Paul, my great grandfather, settled five miles away, in Buckman, Minnesota. He died there in 1900.

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Monday, December 27, 2010

The John Hesch Store in Buckman

 Grandpa's brother John Hesch died 23 years before I was born.  I didn't know he existed before we started doing Hesch History, and I certainly wasn't aware that a Hesch ever owned a store in Buckman.  BUT, he did X2.

Larry and I have looked at these pictures often.  They're so full of detail, beyond the family...I'm especially fascinated by the stock on the shelves, but the labels are mostly too small to read.  Still, we could figure out a few things, like the date, and who their wholesaler was.
(This kind of investigation is exactly what Larry and I were born to do, by the way).
In this second store pic, there are wooden crates being used for display, see?  The label on the side is enlarged and rotated, below.  


"STONE-something-Wells Co
Wholesale Grocers
 Hooray!  Ancestry has a few of Duluth's directories, so I tried 1901--there:
Stone-Ordean-Wells Co
 Cool, huh?  But then, looking at the cans and jars on the shelves behind Ket, the labels are almost within memory; they might have been brands that were still around when we were kids, or are still around.  But damn, WHERE would you look for foods that were available in Minnesota before 1920?

I went looking on Internet Archives for possible catalogs from wholesale grocers.  Nope.  There are fascinating order books for five-and-dime type stores there, but not grocery catalogs.

Of course, the Amazing Mind of Larry tried other things: how about people who COLLECT VINTAGE LABELS?
Oh, and did I know there was such a thing as
( Click to go to The American Food Journal )

...?  And that they published a chart of the retail prices of some standard food items every month?  (See why he's such a gift?? ☺)

  I've boxed the prices from St Paul Minnesota, and Vermillion, South Dakota and  
Des Moines, Iowa.
  All this, and we haven't identified any of the labels on those cans and jars behind Ket, but damn, look at all we HAVE learned.

1 comment:

  1. Marlys, I am always astounded by these photos. Until this summer I had never seen a photo of my grandfather, let alone my great-grandparents. It is all so much to take in! I have a baby photo and my face is the spitting image of my grandfather! We have the same mouth and face shape! My sister also resembles him! When I visit mom this next month I'll pass some on to you for the blog.