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Pioneer Iron Works, Williams Street|
Between Conover and Van Brunt and William and King.
On the 1880 map a building at William and Imlay streets is shown and labeled "Machine Shop". It is listed on the 1886 map as "Pioneer Iron Works". There was a building at this location on the 1869 map but it was not labeled. Parts of this complex are still standing.
The Pioneer Iron works were located at 149-163 Williams Street (between Conover and Van Brunt and William and King - end of Imlay Street.). Williams street is now Pioneer Street.
The American engineer, Volume 8, 1884
New Steam Road Roller and Traction Engine constructed mainly of wrought iron and steel, manufactured by Pioneer Iron Brooklyn and exhibited at the American Institute Fair in New York City in 1884.
A sugar evaporating machine produced by Pioneer Iron, Brooklyn.
Pioneer Iron Works was build in the American Round Arch style. Also known as Romanesque revival it was an outgrowth of the German Rundbogenstil introduced to American with the German diaspora to America in the early 1800s. See The German Rundbogenstil and Reflections of the American Round-Arches Style by Kathleen Curran
Features of this type of architecture were: the basilica form construction, central large doorway, side windows, a bulls eye window, clerestory widows, skylights, corbeled brickwork near the roof line and pilasters. Other Red Hook buildings in this style were: Lidgerwood, Worthington Pump, The Brooklyn Clay Retort
Part of the Pioneer Iron Works facing King Street??? Is this image reversed??
Pioneer Iron Works was rebuilt after a fire in 1881. The largest building in the complex had a format similar to several other buildings in the neighborhood. Lidgerwood, Worthington, and Brooklyn Clay Retort all had buildings in the basilica style that featured an oculus on the front facade.
Pioneer Iron Works - Intersection of Imlay and Pioneer (formerly William Street)
Side view facing west - image take from Pioneer street.
Side view facing west showing pilasters - image taken from King street.
Pioneer Iron Works 1866
Pioneer Iron Works 1882
The tiles dated 1866 and 1882 are on either side of a reworked doorway. The company was incorporated in 1866. The building burned in in 1881 so it is likely that the 1882 tile commemorates the rebuilding of the building.
The doorway leads into a courtyard.
Pioneer Iron Works is now the home of The Pioneer Works
The facade of Pioneer Iron Works facing King street with corbeled brickwork, oculus and arched windows.
The corbel brickwork near the roof line on this part of the building facing King Street could indicate a part of the original building.
|The growth of Pioneer Iron Works as Seen in the Maps|
|1886 map NY Public Library|
The red buildings are constructed of brick. The yellow of wood. Clear indicated an open yard.
This map shows a 50 feet by 200 feet building between William (Pioneer) and King with extensions of about 100 feet on both William and King streets. In addition there is an extension of 50 by about 75 feet on the King street side and an 25 by 50ish brick building on William separated from the other buildings by a yard. On the east side i the middle is a wooden structure of about 30 feet by 50 feet. The yard is irregular in shape.
It is not clear what the buildings facing Conover street represent - houses? shops connected with Pioneer?
The buildings on Van Brunt street are most likely houses - possible with store fronts.
|1898 map NY Public Library|
The red buildings are constructed of brick. The yellow of wood. Clear indicated an open yard. The foot print of Pioneer is virtually the same. The wooden structure seen on the 1886 map has been rebuilt in brick.
|1903 map NY Public Library|
The red buildings are constructed of brick. The yellow of wood. Clear indicated an open yard. The Roman Numerals indicate the number of stories.
|1916 map NY Public Library|
The red buildings are constructed of brick. The yellow of wood. Clear indicated an open yard.
| Circa 2013 Google map|
|Photo Maggie Land Blanck, October 2013|
Interior of the main building of Pioneer, 2013
|Photo Maggie Land Blanck, October 2013 |
Interior of the main building of Pioneer, 2013
Management at Pioneer Iron Works
1903: Hartley v Pioneer Iron works.
In 1896, William L. Bass, Samuel H Millikin and James Hartley were the directors of Pioneer Iron works - 480 shares being owned as follows: Alexander Bass, 122 shares; William L. Bass, 101 shares; Mrs William L. Bass 51 shares; Samuel H. Milliken, 92 shares; James Hartley, the plaintiff, 39 shares; Alfred Mecke, 5 shares, and the Pioneer Iron Works in its corporate capacity, 70 shares.The 70 shares had been purchased from the estate of Henry Franke at $257.17 per share. Henry Franke died in 1895.
In 1909 Albert Grossmann was vice president and general manager.
Alexander Bass (1828-1897) and his son, William Louis Bass (1865-1946)
Alexander Bass, born in New Brunswick, N. J. in 1828, was the founder of Pioneer Iron Works.In 1882 there were 21 sugar mills in the Dominican Republic. A financial crisis in 1884 reduced the number substantially.
The largest central in Santo Domingo in the nineteenth century was the Central Consuelo, in San Pedro de Macoris, founded by the Cuban partnership of Padro, Solaun y Cia. In the 1890s under management of a new partner, the American William L Bass, the central became a 'small republic', to quote the press of the day: this may be taken to mean that it had acquired the characteristics of an economic giant that socially and politically cdominated the region.(Haitian Sugar-cane Cutters in the Dominican Republic) By Maryse Fontus 1989 said the Bass family "owned ingenio Consuelo in San Pedro Macoris in the eastern part of the country and the Central Romano igenio in the eastern city of La Romana."
Birth: 17 October 1860 Basil Switzerland
Immigration: August 20 1885 on the Werra from Southampton or on the Rhein from Bremen on August 28, 1885 (different info on different passport applications.)
1898: Passport application, 451 9th street, mechanical engineer.
1900: Clinton ave. Edward E Henry 27, wholesale grocer, Adah R Henry 25 Nellie Felnetta 29 Albert Grossmann 39, Switzerland, boarder, mechanical engineer
Child: Delores March 31, 1904
Delores Grossman, age 27, born Brooklyn USA married Francois Smulders, age 25, born Holland in Zurich Switzerland August 31, 1931. Francois Smulders was also an engineer. The couple returned to Brooklyn from Greece on 6 Jun 1932 from Rotterdam on the Veendam.1903: Albert and Dolores were on the Morro Castle arriving in New York from Cuba on May 9th 1903. both listed as American citizens.
Your correspondent recently had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Samuel H. Milliken, president, and for forty years associated with tile Pioneer Iron Works of Brooklyn, N. Y., one of the oldest established concerns in this country dealing exclusively in sugar house equipment in all its branches. Mr. Milliken expressed himself as being very well pleased with the business of his concern with the sugar planters during the past season, and that the prospects for the coming year were very bright.1910: 112 Marlborough Road, Albert Grossmann 49, Switzerland, Brooklyn Ward 29, mechanical engineer, Dolores O Grossmann 35, Dolores O Grossmann 6, Augusta Zehn 36, servant, Kathrinka Winsjansen 25, servant
In 1902 112 Marlborough located in the finest section of Prospect Park South was described as an attractive 10 room house with "parque floors, cozy corners, polished woodwork, exposed nickel plumbing, artistic and well built, plot 55x100 very cheap at $12,000"
1909: GROSSMAN, Albert (1903), Ch. Engr., J. B. & J. M. Cornell Co., 26th St. and 11th Ave., New York, and for mail, 112 Marlborough Road, Brooklyn. N. Y. (Journal of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, Volume 31 By American Society of Mechanical Engineers)
1910 : Ad in Brooklyn Eagle for two girls - cook and laundress (and) chambermaid and waitress - good wages Swede or Norwegian preferred - 112 Marlborough near Church ave. They also advertised for help in 1908, 1911 and 1912.
1912: Grossmann, Albert (1903) Genl. Mgr. Krajewski-Pesant Co., 54 Beard Street, and for Mail: 112 Marlborough Road, Brooklyn (Membership List By American Society of Mechanical Engineers, 1908)
1920: Marlborough Road, Brooklyn Assembly District 21, Kings, New York, Albert Grossmann 59, Switzerland, (word) engineer mechanical, Dolores Grossmann 47 Lolita Grossmann 15 Mary Farrell 55, servant, cook
1925: GROSSMAN, Albert ('03), 112 Marlborough Rd. (ASME Yearbook)
1929: Death Dolores Grossmann age 58, May 11, 1929, #11494 Kings
Henry Franke (1840-1895)
1895: Henry Franke was treasurer and general manager of Pioneer Iron works at his death in 1895. He was born in Munster Germany circa 1841. He started as a draftsman for Pioneer.
Henry Franke was treasurer on Pioneer as early as 1876.
He was president of Pioneer in 1881.
Birth April 9, 1841 per passport application
Immigration: From Hamburg, 26 May 1868 per passport
Naturalized: 2 January 1874 per passport.
1871: Henry Franke of Brooklyn was awarded a patent for improvement in mixers and heaters for preparing Concrete for Pavement. No. 121,351. Patented Nov. 23,1831.
1880: Court Street, Henry Franke 38, manufacturer, iron goods, Eunice Franke 32, Nellie Franke 8, Fannie Franke 7m, Rachael Cook 46, Ida Bauman 16, servant
1890: Passport application,
1892: Franke, Henry age 51 born Germany mechanical engineer, Eunice, 44, Nellie 20, Fannie, 13, George A Cleveland age 1
Death 1895: 839 St Mark's Ave. Born Munster Germany circa 1840. He immigrated circa 1857. He left a widow, two sons and two daughters. Buried Greenwood.
Probate: Petitioner Eunice Franke, will: left all book, pictures, clothing, household goods, furniture, jewelry, watches, plate and similar personal effects and the right to occupy 839 St. Marks Ave. Everything else was left to the trustees of his estate, to pay to his wife $3,000 a year in quarterly payments, there were also previsions for his children but no dollar amount was given. His children were listed as: Eleanor Frances Franke, Fannie Aurelia Franke, George Alexander Franke, and Henry Edward Cleveland Franke. He left Eleanor a house at 442 Eight Street and seven apartment houses at 730 and 740 4th ave. He left Fannie two apartment houses at 89 and 91 Pineapple street. He left George three apartments at 275, 277 and 279 Flatbush Ave. He left Edward Cleveland two apartments at 281 and 283 Flatbush and two apartments at 96 and 98 St. Marks Ave and seven lots and the factory buildings thereon at the northwest corner of William and Imlay Street Brooklyn. The division of the properties was said to be of equal value.
Italics mine. This is the location of the Pioneer Iron Works.
1898: St Mark's av es 110.7 n St Mark's av 60x100 Eunice R. Franke and ano exrs and trustees will Henry Franky to Frank M Lupton Mort $32,000 taxes 1897. $45,000
1900: Pineapple Street n s 92.6 e Henry 50x124.9 Eunice Farnke and the Tittle Trust Co excrs and trustees will Henry Franke to Edward C Looker mort $30,000, January 18 1900.
1900: Ward 24, Eunice R Franke 46, widow, Fannie A Franke 20 George A Franke 16 Henry E C Franke 15
1901: 71st st n s 173 w av. B 75x102.2 vacant Eunice R Franke individ EXR. and TRUSTEES Henry Franke to Kodfrey K-ouch Mort $4,000 June 19, July 16 1901 R S none. $6,250.
839 St. Mark's Ave: Henry Franke was listed at 839 At Mark's Ave in 1891 and 1895. He left it to his daughter in his will.
The house was originally designed by Russell Sturgis and build for Dean Sage, a wealthy lumber merchant, around 1870. It is one of the oldest and most beautiful houses in Crown Heights. It was constructed of grey stone in the High Victorian Gothic style. The arched entrance was decorated with terra cotta ornamentation. The transom was enhanced with fine ironwork. Dean Sage was a friend of Mark Twain. In 1900 Frank Lupton, publisher age 46, and his wife, Ann Lupton, age 40, were living at 839 St. Mark's Ave. with their daughter Edna and three servants. Frank Lupton, despondent over bad health committed suicide at 839 St. Mark's in 1910. His estate was said to have been over a million dollars. A later residence was Dean Clay Osbourne chairman of the Dentists Supply Company and a pioneer of the use of artificial teeth thee who died at 839 St. Marks in 1937.
James Hartley (1850-1910) and his son Tom Hartley(1870-1920)
James Hartley was an assignee for several patents granted to Pioneer Iron Works.
James Hartley was awarded a patent for WATER TUBE FOR BOILERS - No. 335,695. Patented Feb. 9, 1886.
Birth: Burnley Lancashire, England circa 1850
John Thomas Hartley Gender: Male Birth Date: 17 May 1870 Christening Date: 26 Jul 1871 Christening Place: Burnley, Lancashire, England Age at Christening: 1 Father's Name: James Hartley Mother's Name: Anne
Marriage: 29 Sep 1897, Lawrence Massachusetts, Thomas Hartley, Brooklyn NY age 27, machinist born Burnley England, father James mother Anne, to Evelyn Smith of Lawrence, age 23, father Samuel, mother Nancy
Died: 1920 Tom Hartley age 50, proprietor of Hartley Machine Works at the Bush Terminal. Maker of printing presses. October 13, 19020 of heart trouble. Born Burnley, Lancashire, England, civil engineer. He was an engineer for a sugar plantation in the West Indies in his early career. "His father, the Late James Hartley was a ship builder." (American Machinist, Volume 53)
1910: Hotel St. George, age 39, Thomas Hartley
1912: Thomas Hartley Residence Year: 1912 Street Address: Hotel St George Residence Place: Brooklyn, New York Publication Title: Brooklyn, New York, City Directory, 1912
Death of Anna/Hannah:
Marriage to Mary Jane: Mary Jane
1900: 5th ave Ward 8 Brooklyn, Hames Hartley machinist James Hartly 48, born England, Mary Hartly 44, England, John Hartly 26, draftsman, William Hartly 22, machinist, Alexander Hartly 20, machinist, Sarah Hartly 18 James Hartly 16, day laborer, Mary Hartly 12 Lillian Hartly 9 Joseph Hartly 8 Albert Hartly 7 Samuel Hartly 5 Edna J Hartly 2, all children born New York,
1910: 6th ave., James Hartley M 60 England, machinist, Wife Mary Hartley F 54 England Daughter Sarah Hartley F 28 New York, dressmaker, Son James Hartley M 25 New York, machinist, Daughter Mary Hartley F 22 New York, teacher, Daughter Lillian Hartley F 19 New York, typewriter insurance, Son Joseph Hartley M 18 New York, helper machinist, Son Albert Hartley M 17 New York, helper machinist, Son Samuel Hartley M 15 New York Daughter Edna Hartley F 12 New York
1907: James Hartley sued the Pioneer Iron works. No opinion was judged.
1910: According to his obit James Hartley "long a prominent resident of South Brooklyn" was born in Burnley, Lanchashire, England and had lived in Brooklyn since 1872. He was a founding member of Pioneer Iron Works. He had recently been senior partner of James Hartley and sons, Delevan Street. He had lived for 25 years in the 8th ward. He was a member of numerous organizations. He left a widow, Mary Jane, seven sons, four daughters, and three grandchildren.
1911: Died December 23, 1910, Probate, petitioner Tom Hartley son of the deceased, address Hotel St. George.. Listed May wife, children: Tom, John Alexander, Elizabeth, James Mary Agnes, Lillian Frances, Joseph, Albert Henry, Samuel, Josephine. Eleven Thousand dollars and nine thousand in real estate. No will. 1918: Patriotic Bush Terminal Businesses - Hartley Machine Co.
1920: 4417 6th ave. Mary Hartley 32, head, teacher, public school, Edna Hartley 22, sister, stenographer, paper house, Samuel Hartley 24, brother, married, boiler maker, ship yard, Mabel Hartley 22 sister in law, telephone operator
Alfred G. Mecke
Birth C 1852
Children: Fritz and Antonia
Death of Pauline: Pauline wife of Alfred Mecke died at her home 371 Warren street June 11, 1891.
1891: Alfred Mecke 1891 271 Warren Brooklyn, New York Occupation: Bookkeeper Publication Title: Brooklyn, New York, City Directory, 1891
Marriage 2: Caroline Hammelberg
Children: George, Margaret
1900: August Hammelberg 48, mechanical engineer, Margaret Hammelberg 79 Caroline Merke 25, daughter, Alfred Merke 47, son in law, New York, bookkeeper, Fritz Merke 17, step grandson, Antonia Merke 16, step granddaughter, George Merke 4, grandson, Margaret Merke 1, granddaughter, Nellie Ohles 18, servant.
1910: Burbank California, Alfred G Mecke 57, born New York, bookkeeper, Caroline Mecke 35 George H Mecke 14 Margaret Mecke 11 Josephine Frahm 49
Death 1915: Alfred G Mecke Birth Year: abt 1852 Death Date: 8 Aug 1915 Age at Death: 63 Death Place: Los Angeles, California, USA
Samuel Hunter Milliken
Birth: circa 1842
Marriage: Amelia Quibley
1880: Hamilton Ave., Samuel Milliken 37, book keeper, Amelia Milliken 29, Antionette Milliken 10, George Milliken 7, Alfred Milliken 3, Herbert Milliken 2m, George Sibley 34, brother in law, pattern maker, Sarah Sibley 38, sister in law, both born England
1892: Samuel, age 47 US, Iron worker, Emilia 39 born England, "Antinet" 22, George E. 19, pattern maker, Alfred E 14, Samuel C 10
1900: Ward 22, 117 Prospect Park West, Samuel H Milliken 57, iron mfg., Amelia Milliken 49, 5 children 4 living, born England, imm 1860, Samuel Chas Milliken 18, clerk law co, Josuah C Purdy 3, son in law, born Maine, real estate, Antoinette Purdy 30, daughter, George Surgeon 30, cousin, engineer mech., Dorathy M Purdy 5, granddaughter, Mary Fitzgerald 30, servant. They lived very near William Bass and family.
Your correspondent recently had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Samuel H. Milliken, president, and for forty years associated with tile Pioneer Iron Works of Brooklyn, N. Y., one of the oldest established concerns in this country dealing exclusively in sugar house equipment in all its branches. Mr. Milliken expressed himself as being very well pleased with the business of his concern with the sugar planters during the past season, and that the prospects for the coming year were very bright.1910: Ward 22, 117 Prospect Park West, Samuel H Milliken 67, merchant iron, Amelia S Milliken 57 Antoinette M Purdy 39, daughter Dorothy M Purdy 14 Nany Sandberg 23, servant
1915: Milliken, Samuel H 149 Pioneer at Brooklyn Pioneer Iron Works The. Pres. Treas. Manager and Dir. (Directory of Directors in the City of New York)
1915: Death - Samuel Hunter Milliken age 73 president of Pioneer Iron Works on Pioneer street for 15 years died in 1915. He was a Civil War Vet and had worked at Pioneer in various capacities for 45 years. He was survived by his wife, Amelia a a daughter Mrs. J. C. Purdy and three sons, George Edward, Alfred Ellis and Samuel Charles.
1915: Probate without a will. Index the record did not come up November 2013.
1920: 117 Prospect Park West, Amelia Milliken 65, widow, Antoinette Purdy 43, married, Alfred E Milliken 41, widower, actor, movie pictures, Alfred M Milliken 22, grandson, bookkeeper, broker, Gladys M Milliken 19, grand daughter, stenographer, coal company
1930: 117 Prospect Park West, Amelia Milliken 75, $25,000, Alfred E Milliken 45, acto film company, Alfred M Milliken 34, grandson, clerk stock broker, Antoinette Purdy 55, daughter, widowed, Ralph W Bowman 60, roomer, John D T Mccubbin 35
1941: Amelia age 88 1848 #12692
Mrs. Amelia Milliken a widow of Samuel H Milliken died early Monday at her home 117 Prospect Park West. Her husband a veteran of the Civil War and president of the old Pioneer Iron Works on Pioneer street died May -- 1915. She is survived by a daughter, Mrs. Antoinette Purdy, and a son, Alfred E Milliken.GREENWOOD:
MILLIKEN ALFRED E. 1948-02-18 27031 143
Employees at Pioneer Iron Works
Luke Lenehan, Machinist, (c 1842-1911)
Luke Lenehan age 69 died in 1911. He was a native of Ireland and had worked as a machinist at the Pioneer Iron Works for many years. He left a widow and two sons. He was buried Holy Cross Cemetery.
Birth: Ireland circa 1842
Immigration: C 1869, per 1910 census
Marriage: Elizabeth Dalthon
1878: Luke Lenehan 1878 233 Conover Brooklyn, New York Machinist Publication Title: Brooklyn, New York, City Directory, 1878
1880: Dikeman street, Lenahan, Like, 38, machinist, born Ireland, Elizabeth age 36 wife, Rheumatism born England, Winnifred daughter 15, Robert J 11, Luke Jr. 8, John 3, James 1
1881: Luke Lenehan 1881 125 Dikeman Brooklyn, New York Machinist Publication Title: Brooklyn, New York, City Directory, 1881
1887: Luke Lenehan 1887 107 King Brooklyn, New York Machinist Publication Title: Brooklyn, New York, City Directory, 1887
1892: Luke Lenehan age 54 born Ireland machinist was liste in Ward 12 amidst a bunch of other men who were machinists, engineers, blacksmiths, molders, pattern makers, and boiler makers. He was not listed with family.
1889: Luke Lenahan machinist of 34 Wolcott street was arraigned for striking his wife and blackening her eye. He payed a ten dollar fine rather than going to jail for 10 days.
1902: Kings County almshouse, December 19, 1902 Luke Lenahan age 61 born Ireland last residence 217 Van Brunt, in US 33 years, in NY 30 years, machinist, Catholic, Habits "moderate", physical condition "good", cause of dependence "destitute" father shoemaker, both parents born Ireland, both dead, able to perform labor, never been on public relief before, address of relative or friend, Robert Lenahan 141 23rd street Brooklyn.
1910: Ward 22, 2nd ave.,
Elizabeth Lenahan 65, 4 children 4 living, born England, Robert Lenahan 40, machinist, born England, Luke Lenahan 37, machinist, born Philadelphia, Henry Lenahan 29, laborer lumber yard, New York,
1910: Home for the Aged, Luke Lenahan, 67 ""widow"
Death 1916: Elizabeth Lenahan a member of Our Lady Star of the Sea, court street, born England, died suddenly at her home at 566 Court street. She had lived in Brooklyn for 50 years - survived by three sons, Robert, Edward, and Harry and a daughter Mrs. Winifred Fairhurst. Widow of the late luke Lenahan.
Julius Kastner (c 1873-)
1900 West 9th street, Kastner, Julius, 27, Germany, imm 1886, day laborer, Theresa 1875, Ireland, John age 5, New York Fredrick age 3, New York
Birth: C 1873 Germany
Immigration October 17, 1884, Marg 17 ?, Carol 16, Julius 11, Helena 9, Willme 7, Doris 5, Carl 11 months, Donau from Bremen to New York
1897 Naturalization, Brooklyn laborer, immigrated October 1884, 194 W. 9th street Brooklyn
Marriage: Theresa Ryan, 1893 St. Mary Star of the Sea
1910: Clinton street, Julius Kastner M 37 Germany, immigrated 1890, pipe fitter, Wife Theresa Kastner F 34, Ireland, 5 children 3 living, immigrated 1884, Son John J Kastner M 15 New York Son Fredrick H Kastner M 11 New York Daughter Johana Kastner F 8 New York
1915: Liquer street, Teresa Kastner 37 John Kastner 20, machinist, Fredrick Kastner 16, machine apprentice, Johanna Kastner 13
1889: May 22, Michael Farrell was wounded in the head when he received an accidental blow with a heavy hammer by a a fellow workman while driving rivets in a boiler at the Pioneer Iron Works. (BE)
April 30, 1892: Charles Klein had his right leg broken when a fly wheel fell on him while he was working at the Pioneer Iron works corner of William and Imlay.
James McDowell (c 1878-)
1895: James McDowell age 17 of Carroll Street was caught in the machinery at Pioneer Iron Works and had both arms badly crushed.
Birth: circa 1878 New York son of William McDowell born Ireland, and Agnes born Scotland.
1870: Ward 12 William Mcdowell 48, sailor, Ireland, Agnes Mcdowell 36, Scotland, Catherine Mcdowell 14 Mary Mcdowell 8 Margaret Mcdowell 5 Lucy Mcdowell 1, children born NY
1890: William McDowell of 209 Conover street voted for the Republican candidate for mayor.
1892: Ward 12, Brooklyn, William McDowell, 65, Ireland mariner, Agnes 55 Scotland, James 14, US messenger
1910: 209 Conover Street McDowell, James age 32, born New York, machinist, machine shop, Agnes M, mother, age 78, widow, Scot English, 8 children 3 living.
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