Thursday, January 27, 2011

Sharing a Slice of Life: The Family Business

I am late posting this because I had to wait until I arrived back at home to get the brochures that went with the business.  This is not just for a prompt, it is also for Texasblu who hosts the Sharing a Slice of Life.  She shared a slice of this post. 
The Ellsworth men were always entrepreneurial.  It started with Edward Ellsworth who came to Chicago from Prince Edward Island to work as a carpenter, and became a builder.  His Edward N Ellsworth Sr. was to develop several businesses, but the one I found the most information on that carried through to the Hero was his 'Fireplace' business.
Edward Ellsworth upper right..Texasblu in green fireplace mantel on left in lower picture
In 1924, Meany and Ellsworth filed for a patent on an Electric Fireplace.  It was a boon to the apartment dwellers as an alternative to wood fireplaces.  It was referenced in new patents as recent as 2000.  I wish this information had been available when the Hero was alive he would have loved it.  When his father sold their Construction Material's business, he asked to be allowed to keep the information and Name of his grandfather's business 'Builder's Fireplace'.  This was granted. 
The Hero in the doorway
The office that Texasblu worked at with her father, The Hero, was across the street from the original warehouse of Builder's Fireplace. 




This invention was the forerunner of the electric fireplaces we have today.  I was excited to find the patent to underline the story the Hero had always told of his grandfather being an inventor and an entrepreneur.  Below you will see the brochures, from the business he had in Houston, Texas.
A brochure designed by Edward Sr.  The hero designed brochures for himself and others. 
 Edward N Ellsworth Sr. was working for Rogers Oil while trying to revive this business after the depression in the late 20's.
I have just learned some new stories around their move from Chicago to survive during that time. 
I love family stories!