Buffalo East Side Businesses (Genealogy)

Buffalo East Side Neighborhood

Buffalo East Side Businesses

This page attempts to document businesses from the Old East Side from the period of 1835 through World War II.

Most of the information was taken from early city directories or from people's family files or memories.

If you have information about any of these businesses that you'd like to add, or other businesses not listed here, please contact me. Photos are espectially welcome. (Must be copyright-free.) Email addresses have been modified to reduce spam.

Last updated: 11 December 2006

  • Bakeries & Candy Stores
  • Butchers, Meat Cutters
  • Funeral Homes
  • Hotels
  • Manufacturing
  • Photographers
  • Retail
  • Saloons
  • Theaters
  • Tin
  • Transportation (including horse-drawn, rail, auto)
  • Utilities
  • Memories
  • Other East Side Buffalo Businesses

  • Bakeries & Candy Stores
    Butchers & Meat Cutters
    Funeral Homes & Undertakers

    Hotel Lafayette (1941)
    Postcard reads: "In the heart of the city, at Lafayette Square, convenient to all stores, theatres, banks, office buildings, car and bus lines. Famous for its food. Finest dining room, cocktail lounge, coffee shop, grille, and home of the Automobile Club. Garage in connection. Single rooms with bath from $2.50. Kenneth A. Kelley, Manager. Source: Darcy McCabe.

    La Paris Inn & Supper Club located at Main and Michigan across from Metro Bus garage. Source: Rich Schwegler

    Iriquois Hotel
    Source: Karen Kolb

    Genesee Hotel
    530 Main Street
    As we researched residents along Genesee Street, we kept bumping into "The Genesee" but didn't know what it was. Member Karen Kolb found out for us: "Today I bought a used book, titled Pharmacy on the Niagara Frontier. In it I found a photo of the Genesee Hotel, which stood on the corner of Main and Genesee from 1882 to 1922." It also housed Gregory's "Genesee" Pharmacy.
    Source: Karen Kolb

    Tifft House
    Source: Karen Kolb

    NY Central Depot
    Source: Karen Kolb



    Saloons, Breweries & Other Eateries Paul Reiser wrote in to let us know about two other saloons that appear in his family records; unfortunately, with no names. Can anyone help to identify the names of these saloons, or anything about the individuals associated with them?
    • "under 20 Seneca Street." (William C. Reiser, Paul's great uncle, was listed as barkeeper in the 1882 city directory.)
    • "40 Ohio Street" (John Henry Kranichfeld, a great-somethingorother of Paul's, was saloon owner according to the same 1882 city directory.)
      SALOONS from the 1885 directory:
    • Charles L. Abel, 16 Ohio
    • Joseph Abele, 171 Genesee
    • Joseph Armbruster, 314 Broadway
    • August Bach, 194 Sycamore
    • Frank Bach, 28 Ellicot
    • Joseph Baeumler, 302 Walnut
      UPDATE: Joseph Baeumler was probably the son of John Baeumler and Louisa Zimmerman Baeumler.  He would be the brother of Kathy Johnson's great grandfather, Jacob Baeumler.  John, his father had a tailor business at 288 Walnut, Jacob manufactured cigars at 298 Walnut, so most likely Joseph's saloon at 302 Walnut was in the same family.  Joseph was born 24 March 1861 in Buffalo and died in Buffalo on 25 Sep 1894.  If anyone else is searching this family, contact Kathy Johnson at kthyjhnsn AT yahoo.com
    • Philip Biesinger, 331 Ellicott
    • Leonard Bihl, 372 Genesee
    • Frank Brunner, 279 Genesee
    • Thomas Broadbent, 602 Viriginia
    • Hank Herman, 18 Sycamore
    • Nicholas Hiemenz, 258 Broadway

    Colonial Theater
    Located at Genesee and Grey, it stopped showing movies in 1958 after vandals destroyed the marquee and tore down the movie screen; was demolished about 1999 shortly after the photo was taken. Does anyone have an earlier photo? Photo courtesy of Rich Schwegler.
    Genesee Theatre
    Photo courtesy of Rich Schweiger
    Lafayette Theater
    Photo courtesy of Rich Schweiger
    Unknown East Side theater
    Photo courtesy of Rich Schweiger

    Sue Kulp tells us that this was the Roosevelt Theater on Broadway out from Fillmore Ave.


    prepared by Sharon Troy Centanne
    22 January 2001


    At a recent visit to a Civil War re-enactment, Sharon Troy Centanne got to talk with the sutlers and artisans selling their wares.  One of the most interesting she found was was the tinsmith. After a summary of this dying art, Sharon lists the names and addresses of tinsmiths found in the 1890 Buffalo City Directory.

    I have seen tinsmith listed as occupation many times in the Buffalo City Directory for 1890, especially as working for the Wagner Palace Car Co. at 1770 Broadway. Perhaps they made the lanterns.

    The tinsmith I talked to told me a bit about the trade.  Tinsmiths would have a storefront or a studio where they could manufacture their wares. They would sometimes get others to peddle on the street for them, but they needed a place to use their tools.

    The types of objects they made were often kitchen tools, pots and pans, cups, cookie cutters, pitchers, pie pans, etc.  The tin was actually sheet metal, and the most popular kind in the 19th century was a steel sheet with tin plating, probably electroplated. The tinsmith would cut the pieces according to his patterns, and then rivet and solder them together to make useful items.  They had some kind of tool or machine for curling down the edges to make them smooth.

    Today, when making potable items, lead free solder was used. I am not so sure if that was the case back in the 1800s.  Tin was the poor man's iron, and if you couldn't afford an iron pan or cup you got a tin one. Lead solder is still used today in non-potable items like lanterns.  Solder is an alloy of 60 percent tin and 40 percent lead according to my husband who works with it in the electronics industry. He is not sure what the components of lead free solder would be.

    Most of these lanterns and other period pieces are now made for re-enactors, and for collectors of old metal items.  This tinsmith also made a few things from copper and silver.

    Many items that used to be made with tin are now manufactured with plastic, so  tinsmithing is a dying art. But it is interesting to see craftspeople who will keep the old trades and crafts alive for us all to learn from.

    Tin in mined from the ground, probably in the mountains. I remember from grade school that Bolivia in South America, was a major exporter of tin.



    John Beckler, Jr.
    1770 Broadway
    314 Sherman

    Gottlieb Boettner
    1368 Broadway

    Friedrich Dittmar
    rear 405 Jefferson

    William Ernst
    1770 Broadway
    b. 576 Eagle

    Jacob Faber
    365 Broadway

    Frank Fischer
    1770 Broadway
    715 Carroll

    Godfried Fischer
    rear 686 Jefferson

    George D. Fox
    1770 Broadway

    Christ Geber
    1770 Broadway
    74 Grosvenor

    Christian Gerber
    1770 Broadway
    74 Grosvenor

    Joseph Goetz
    191 Clinton
    401 Broadway

    Charles A. Gratz
    1770 Broadway
    314 Pratt

    Charles Gravius
    720 Jefferson

    William Guenther
    610 Broadway
    392 Madison

    Nicholas Hanley
    1770 Broadway
    over 11 Monroe

    John Happ
    354 Broadway

    Charles Happ, Sr.
    354 Broadway

    Charles Happ, Jr.
    354 Broadway

    John Happ
    354 Broadway

    Charles Harbert
    357 Broadway

    Charles Hartman
    1770 Broadway
    323 Sherman

    Peter W. Henkel
    1770 Broadway
    386 Sherman

    George Hoenfelder
    357 Broadway

    Walter Jameson
    1770 Broadway
    144 Emslie

    Walter Jemison
    1770 Broadway
    144 Emslie

    Albert Lipp
    371 Broadway

    Edward A. Lorenz
    1770 Broadway
    128 E. Utica

    Henry Marx
    Mississippl corner Perry
    455 Jefferson

    Jacob Mesmer
    810 Broadway

    Nicholas Murphy
    1770 Broadway
    80 Elk

    Edward Parker
    736 Jefferson

    Edward Purucker
    736 Jefferson

    George Purucker
    736 Jefferson

    William Purucker
    Purucker & Son
    (this business hired tinsmiths)
    736 Jefferson

    William Schamber, Jr.

    John Schuster
    710 Jefferson

    Julius Stapf
    over 435 Broadway
    over 137 Peckham

    Peter Stapf
    over 436 Broadway

    Emil Sturm
    1770 Broadway
    441 Woepple

    Benjamin Tepas
    267 Broadway
    over 71 Mortimer

    George H. Urban
    294 Broadway

    Jacob Wick
    586 Broadway

    Joseph Wolbert
    191 Clinton
    444 Jefferson

    John Yaeger
    754 Broadway

    Transportation (including horse-drawn, rail, auto)
      LIVERY & BOARDING (1885 directory)
    • Elmer Allen, 268 Michigan
    • Burris & Hall, 270 Ellicot
    • John F. Eberhardt, 78 Clinton
    • L.A. Daniels & Son, 252 Michigan
    • Dinley & Son, 116 Michigan
    • Ernest & Hosley 108 Eagle
    • Love & Daniels, 250 Michigan
    • Metcafe, A.C. & G.H., 323 Ellicott


    This photo is of the employees of the Socony Company of Buffalo NY. Nancy Hane's husband's grandfather, Cornelius Dewey Hanes, worked there supposedly in 1941 (per the Buffalo City directory). He may have started work there as early as 1934. The photo seems to be from a period much earlier than 1941. Perhaps others will have some info about this company and its location? NOTE: The photo has been "reduced" to fit this page; right-click to download it and see it in its full-sized glory.

    On the left is the leather works, on the right is the Iroquois gas company. At the far background is the Sol Lenzer bottling works. They made Queeno soft drinks. Photo courtesy of Rich Schwegler.

    • Elijah Ambrose, 5 S. Division
    • John A. Bell 30 Eagle
    • Fred Domedion, 128 Genesee
    • Thomas D. Demond, 14 S. Division
    • Frederick Nagel, 17 Genesee
    • Warren Granger, 265 Washington
    • Leo M. Ritt, 41 Genesee
    • Theodore H. Schorr, 41 Genesee
      SAL SODA ( Manfs.)
    • R.W. Bell Manf Co., 77 to 89 Washington

    [From an East Side member; if anyone can identify or add information to these memories, please contact me:] Here is a little East Side trivia to pass along if you think it worthwhile. The information is undocumented, and unverified, just things my mom remembered when I told her about your website. The names are spelled phonetically.
    • In the 1920s a deli on Sycamore sold orange sherbet for $.02
    The following are c.1920-30 street vendors in the area bet. Sycamore and Broadway, including Grey, Johnson and Sherman Streets:
    • The "bakery man" was Mr. Oetinger.
    • The "vegetable man" was Mr. Degan.
    • The "milkman" was Mr. Haid.
    • There was also an "iceman" and a scissors sharpener who rang a hand-bell to announce his presence.
    • The "ragman" was called "singing John."

    Other East Side Buffalo Businesses
    • PSJablon102_AT_cs.com's family page about East Buffalo includes photos -- mostly of businesses -- from 1846-1976, links to historical information, and opportunities to hear and schedule lectures with Fred Jablonski who speaks about the area's history. Emphasis is on the Polish population of East Buffalo.

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