Monthly Archives: September 2019

William Fetzer & Co.

William Fetzer & Co. was a farm equipment manufacturer in Springfield from 1908 to 1918. The firm’s move to Springfield from Ohio was a major boost for development of the Harvard Park subdivision. See Harvard Park.

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Harvard Park

The person who named Harvard Park, one of Springfield’s largest early subdivisions, won $100 in a contest sponsored by the Springfield Improvement Association. He or she – the winner, one of 570 entrants, asked to remain anonymous – promptly donated … Continue reading

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Fred R. Coats Co.

This entry has been updated and expanded. Fred R. Coats deserves to be ranked with Robert Lanphier, John W. Hobbs and the Weaver brothers among Springfield’s top industrialists and innovators. Coats (1865-1951), born in Bennington, N.Y., came to Springfield with … Continue reading

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Edna White (heroic elevator operator)

Edna White was an elevator operator in the DeWitt Smith Building, Fourth and Monroe streets, when it caught fire March 12, 1918. She stayed at her post to ferry people from the top floors of the building to safety at … Continue reading

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DeWitt Smith Building fire, 1918

When the DeWitt Smith Building caught fire in 1918, modern firefighting equipment saved the building, and a heroic elevator operator rescued many of its tenants. Even so, the top floors of the building, on the southeast corner of Fourth and … Continue reading

Posted in African Americans, Architecture, Auto dealers, Buildings, Disasters, Local government | 2 Comments