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July 9, 1981


PIX #1 - Photo No. 1 is of Lease & Linhart Shoe Store. Rube Linhart is on the left. He was also fire chief. Mervin Lease is on the right.

PIX #2 - Newton Mohler, tailor of long ago.

PIX #3 - Wise & Green Grocery, room next to corner on Main Street, where Preis store was located.

PIX #4 - Signs indicating places of business for Peter Clothing Co., Haydens, and Linhart and Hess Shoe Store.

The storeroom next to the Interurban Station was a restaurant, with an arch- way that opened into the station.

During the interurban days it was called the Annex and was operated by N.E. George. Older Fostorians will remember him since he was prominent in business and involved in many other enterprises other than the restaurant. In later years, Pete Tsantles had a restaurant in that location called The Grill.

Today, Bill's Men's and Boys' wear occupies the rooms where the Interurban Statin and the Annex were. They have been in business in Fostoria for 55 years.


The next storeroom has always been a popular place for jewelry stores. Even before 1915, Fitzsimmons and Fisher-Jewelers had one-half of that room, with the rest used by Clara B. Genrich & Co., Millinery and The Book Store, oper- ated by Zada Van Horn and Margaret H. Thomas, two prominent businesswomen in town. The latter had many other locations during its lifetime.

In later years, T.A. Lowery, jeweler, took over that room, followed by Turner and Lowery, George Chapman Jewelry, Stevens Jewelry Co. and then Kaminisky Bros. Jewelers, who have been at that location for 25 years before moving there, Kaminisky Bros. occupied 111 N. Main St.

The photo No. 3 used with last weeks article, shows a curbsite store clock which probably dates back to the time of Fitzsimmons and Fisher. Large out- door clocks were an important advertising medium, and there were several on Main.

The second floor rooms above these locations housed various businesses in pre- vious years. A.J. Vogel, and Joseph Gabriel, both tailors, were two of those businessmen, both fine tailors from an era when most business and professional men had suits custom-made of the finest fabrics available.

Another upstairs tenant was J.E. Atha Printshop and A.W. Aylesworth, Realtor. Aylesworth was deaf and always carried a horn-shaped hearing aid, which people spoke into to magnify the sound.


The next location has been a shoestore ever since I can remember, and even earlier. Today it is occupied by Ralph's Shoes, located there since 1955, now managed by Richard Miller.

Going back to earlier days it was the Lease & Linhart Shoe Store. Photo No. 1 shows it then, with the two owners. Notice the gas lights used for illumina- tion in that era.

After Lease & Linhart, it became Linhart and Hess, Linhart's Boot Shop, then Linhart and Peter, Foster Shoes and finally Ralph's Shoes.

Incidentally, sometime ago, when Richard Miller was investigating the upstairs rooms of that building, he discovered dust-covered memorabilia of that long ago era. One piece was a sign used by A.J. Vogel in one of his places of business (he had several), and correspondence and records of Vogel's business transactions.

Although we near the end of the trip into the past and present of the Center- to-Tiffin block, there is still much to write about.


The Preis Store has occupied its location for so many years that readers have forgotten other stores that were located there. In fact, initially the Preis Store occupied the room at 121 N. Main st. where the Chamber of Commerce is now.

Later it moved to East Tiffin Street where Odenweller Furniture had been, dir- ectly back of the present store.

When Peter Clothing vacated the corner of Main and Tiffin, Preis took over that location and later expanded into the room next door where Art Clothes shop, managed by Art Wernick, was located.

Jacob Preis started the store and was assisted by Bernard Preis, a relative. It is now owned by Mr. and Mrs. Stanford Gilberg. She is the daughter of Jacob Preis. The store is now in its 52nd year.

Going back to 1884, when photo No. 2 was taken, the room next to the corner was occupied by Wise & Green Grovery. It was a typical grocery of the 1800s or early 1900s, vastly different from today's modern supermarket.

Products displayed, which may not be identifiable when the photo appears in print, are: potatoes, and other produce in baskets, coal oil lamps, dishes, spitoons, canned goods and other food products.

On the wall in the right of the photo is a circular sign which reads, "Stan- dard Oil Co. Stove Gasoline."

A hand-operated coffee grinder is also there. Coffee users either bought freshly ground coffee at the store, or brought home the beans and ground them in small grinders.


What business occupied the room where Wise & Green Grocery was in later years, this author does not know, at least until George and Ida Hayden took over in the early 1900s. That I know, since they were my aunt and uncle. That is where they dispensed ice cream, candy, confections and light lunches. The Haydens had lunch rooms in other locations in town earlier.

Hayden, assisted by "Skeet" Earl Green, made all of the ice cream, candies, and roasted nuts. They made delectable candies, which no longer are avail- able, and a wide variety of ice creams whith no artificial fillers, only pure milk and cream.

I am reminded that their store, like others then, was cooled with the overhead rotating fans which are again popular.

Photo No. 3 shows the area described, with the signs indicating places of business for Peter Clothing Co., Haydens and Linhart and Hess Shoe Store.

Later, the Hayden location became The Candyland, operated by A.J. Pavlakos, J.G. Pappas and N.J. Lekas. It was the "ancestor" of the present-day Candy- land Restaurant at 224 N. Main, operated by George Pappas, son of one of the original founders.

Prior to the Preis Store, the corner location was Peter Clothing Co. for many years. It was included in an article March 30, 1980, but a resume of it is included herewith.


Peter Clothing Co. was originally Peter and Fruth, prior to 1900. It was at one time called The Red Star Clothing Store, and that name was painted on the Tiffin Street wall of the building. Later, Fruth became disassociated with the store. Still later, Mr. Peter sold the store to his two sons, John and Phillip, who conducted the business under the name of Peter Bros. Clothing Co. They also had a store in North Baltimore.

After the death of Phillip and John, the store was operated by Carl Peter Sr. and son Carl Jr. In later years, the store was moved from its long-time loca- tion, diagonally to the southwest corner of Tiffin and Main in the original Foster Block. It remained there until it closed in 1967.

In the rooms above what is now The Preis Store, there were once offices, oc- cupied at various times by A.J. Stackhouse, attorney; Ora Wade, attorney; Dr. F.H. Pennel; George Jenney, attorney; Robert Kabel; and tailors A.J. Vogel and Newton Mohler, who also had been in other locations.

There may be other business names I have missed in this research, so I will be glad to hear from readers who recall them.

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