Historic Pelham

Presenting the rich history of Pelham, NY in Westchester County: current historical research, descriptions of how to research Pelham history online and genealogy discussions of Pelham families.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

A Pelham Mystery Solved: The Pelham Trading Company Incorporated in 1901


On Monday, April 10, 2006, I posted to the Historic Pelham Blog an item entitled "A Mystery Yet To Be Solved: The Pelham Trading Company Incorporated in 1901". It has taken nearly a year, but that mystery is now solved.

As I noted in the April 10, 2006 posting, buried in the collections of The Office of The Historian of The Town of Pelham is stock certificate "No. 1" issued by The Pelham Trading Company. An image of the stock certificate appears immediately below.



In closing the summary of the meager evidence regarding the company, the posting noted: "Beyond these few basic facts, nothing else is known about the history or the activities of this company. Only time will tell whether more can be uncovered. . . . . . "

More has been uncovered. The Pelham Trading Company was incorporated on May 6, 1901. At about the same time, a large group of residents of the Village of Pelham Manor created The Village Improvement Association of Pelham Manor.

With one exception (Alfred L. Hammett), every individual who served as an officer of The Pelham Trading Company or who was involved with The Pelham Trading Company was also an active member of The Village Improvement Association of Pelham Manor.

Research suggests that as part of an intense drive by Pelham Manor residents in 1901 to improve their lovely village, various residents created The Pelham Trading Company to ensure a local "high quality" supply of various necessities such as coal, wood for burning in stoves and fireplaces, livestock feed, hay, straw, oats and livery services. William K. Gillett served as President of the company. Edward M. Fowler acted as Vice-President. Alfred L. Hammett served as treasurer. R. Clifford Black, Jr. served as secretary. The board of directors included Robert C. Black, Edward M. Fowler, William K. Gillett, Alfred L. Hammett and Henry B. B. Stapler.

In October 1901 the Publication Committee of The Village Improvement Association of Pelham Manor issued a publication entitled The Pelham Manor Review. The extensive journal included a host of articles on local and national issues. On page 28 of that publication there appeared an advertisement for The Pelham Trading Company. The text of the advertisement sheds light on the activities of the company. An image of the advertisement appears immediately below, with a citation to its source. To facilitate searching I have transcribed the text of the advertisement beneath its image.


Source: The Pelham Trading Company [Advertisement], The Pelham Manor Review, Oct. 1901, p. 28 (original in the collections of The Office of The Historian of The Town of Pelham).

"WILLIAM K. GILLETT, President. ALFRED L. HAMMETT, Treasurer
EDWARD M. FOWLER, Vice President. R. CLIFFORD BLACK, JR., Secretary

DIRECTORS:

ROBERT C. BLACK, EDWARD M. FOWLER, WILLIAM K. GILLETT, ALFRED L. HAMMETT, HENRY B. B. STAPLER.

-----

The Pelham Trading Company

PELHAM MANOR, N. Y.

Coal, Wood, Feed, Hay, Straw, Oats.

We keep only the VERY BEST of everything we offer to the Public. This may be relied upon.

LIVERY: Carriages to let, and horses boarded by the day, week or month.

Distance Telephone: 33 Pelham Manor

CHARLES F. ROPER, Manager."

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