As I prepare for next month’s walk down Montcalm Street my review of publications in our library spotted a souvenir pamphlet that spoke much about the military history of the town beginning with Samuel de Champlain’s engagement with the Iroquois here in 1609. However, this early 20th century publication also was informative in regards to the business sponsors of the pamphlet. The following are some excerpts from that publication that I thought would be of interest to our readers as it relates to services needed and to the people and businesses that provided for those needs in the old “downtown” section of the town for that era.
Our collection of newspapers is large, and one of the newspapers in the collection is the Ticonderoga Sentinel. Although out of business for many years it is still a valuable resource for many purposes. So we begin with this old favorite.
Ticonderoga Sentinel: “As the advertising and news medium of Ticonderoga and the surrounding territory, the Ticonderog Sentinel, under the management of W. C. Tefft, is a fine example of modern newspaper methods and workmanship. The Sentinel, issued every Thursday, is republican in politics … As the purveyor of local news, its columns are bright and chatty and big stories are handled competently and without resource to sensationalism. Each of the surrounding towns is thoroughly covered by correspondents and the make-up and press work are high-class, making this weekly attractive and desirable as a home paper. Particular enterprise is shown by Mr. Tefft in the use of half-tone engravings, every project or event being emphasized by a liberal use of illustrations; an expensive feature very rarely incorporated in weekly newspapers. That this and other up-to-date features are appreciated, is demonstrated by the fact, that under Mr. Tefft’s proprietorship, the circulation has been doubled and the advantage to advertisers is obvious. In conncectin with the plant is a job printing office and the most improved equipment is utilized for high-grade work. Machine or hand set type is used; stock of every description kept at hand; fancy borders and rules; book or commercial work being done and the most artistic results produced through every process. Mr. Tefft, who has been proprietor for six years, has introduced many progressive and productive methods, so that the Sentinel, known as the oldest paper in Essex County, has a further reputation of being the most alert, up-to-date and widely read of any publication in this section.
Adkins & Scott: “The acme of modern enterprise, merchandising facilities and up-to-date inventions, combined with extensive and high-class stock, has been reached by Adkins & Scott in their new grocery and meat store on Exchange (Montcalm) Street and Lake George Avenue. This store, opened November (1908) is not only the finest in this section, but in Albany or north of it there is no retail grocery that is as finely appointed or more attractively stocked. Beautiful solid golden oak is the prevailing wood work, in counters, cases and bins with glass covers and doors that are brilliant in cleanliness and transparency. Pivoted bins are so closely fitted as to be dust or bug proof, and a general feature of the arrangements is the sanitary and hygienic conditions that are realized. All meats are brought into the store on a overhead tackle; flour and other bulk commodities are handled in the same way; while oils are also received into the store from the outside, and are not touched by any hands, either in receiving or delivering them. The ice is lifted into the immense refrigerator from outside; a veranda shades the waiting delivery teams and one side door on a private driveway, is used for loading, so that no congestion impedes the patron in the store or in driving up to two other entrances. The refrigerator contains 3,120 cubic feet, all utilized, as heavy meat is hung from trolleys and 10 tons of ice is packed into it. The meat department in front of it, is so modern as to have an electric machine for grinding, and all cutting is done expertly and upon clean hard wood and slabs. Even in the accounting, the most recent improved system is utilized and the up-to-date facilities of the concern, make it a show place of the town. Withal, the important foundation of the business is by no means, secondary, not only staple groceries of selected makes being dealt in extensively, but imported goods, sauces, fish and fowl, oils and delicacies that jaded and epicurean appetites demand. Crosse & Blackwell’s and Heinz’s highly recommended bottled and canned goods are carried, and the cottage trade along Lake George, as well as permanent patrons, find nothing lacking here, that might be found in the largest metropolitan establishments. An electric coffee grinder is operated and surplus stock is always kept at hand, so that shelves may be immediately replenished and the finished appearance of the store never found lacking. Barrels and tubs are keep free from dust under the counters and are on swinging supports that revolve outward when needed. Unusual conveniences are offered in a restful leather circular settee, and a ladies toilet room is another exclusive privilege. An auto delivery this summer, is a pioneer enterprise for this section, two delivery teams also being used and seven people employed. The firm of Adkins & Scott has been organized for 18 years, the new building 110×40 feet being erected last year. The partnership is composed of A.G., G.H. and A. B. Adkins and Thomas Scott, all well known residents of this village. A. G. Adkins has the practical management, and it was he who designed this wonderful store; planned the utilities and arranged for its convenience and improved facilities. Also, Mr. Adkins is a thorough and most competent grocer, and his foresight in building and his integrity in merchandising, mark him as not only particularly advanced in the grocery trade, but a merchant whose methods and transactions are as high class, straightforward and progressive as the metropolitan building in which they take place. (Note: This building still exist and is know today as “Sunshine Laundry” with apartments above.)
F.E. Heustis & Sons Co: Established in Crown Point for 35 years and in Ticonderoga for 10 years, the extensive concern of F. E. Heustis & Sons Co., Exchange (Montcalm) Street, has given ample demonstration of its experience and capacity, in the important contracts it has fulfilled. As plumbers and heaters, this concern installed the plumbing and hot water systems in the new Moses Hospital (first hospital); also the plumbing of the Pavillion at the old Fort (Ticonderoga), while many of the finest residents in this section for summer or permanent residents, have been equipped by this house, which furnishes expert and scientific workmanship and also the most modern equipment in sanitary plumbing, drainage and ventilation, hot water and steam heating plants. The commodious building occupied since it was erected in January 1907, contains 3,400 square feet and basement of similar proportions, and every department is kept up-to-date in stock and facilities; the Peninsular and Summit heaters and ranges being carried in various patterns, cutlery, hardware, nickel, enamel and tinware; no store in the large cities showing more desirable and seasonable lines that this house handles. The B.P.S paints, a guaranteed mixture, suitable for exterior or interior decorations, is a special brand largely dealt in, other paints, oils and varnishes being handled. An average of five people are employed and the firm’s constant transactions are assurance that the lowest possible prices are quoted. The business, founded in Crown Point by F. E. Heustis, is still a foremost industry in that town, the present company, comprising Mrs. Heustis, W. H. and Geo. M. Heustis. George M. Heustis has been the promoter of the Ticonderoga store, assisted by John Hyde, who has been with the concern since its organization in Ticonderoga and their enterprise and integrity have been so successfully devoted to the advancement of its affairs, that the Heustis Co., is unanimously regarded as the leader in is trade, in this section of the state. (Note: This building still exist with major renovations completed in the recent past. Libby’s Café and Bakery on lower floor and the upper floor is modern in designed for student living for the local branch of North Country Community College.)
To be continued —–
This year we are observing the 90th anniversary of the dedication of the Hancock House here in Ticonderoga, NY