100 Years of Groceries – means many dedicated employees over the years.
Two employees at L.R. Brass Red & White in the 1950s were Faxon Dean and Bob Flogaus. Faxon wrote an employees’ magazine, called “Check Out,” featuring inside jokes and sometimes local history. This article was written for fellow employee Bob Flogaus’ 50th wedding anniversary and was in the February 24, 1954 issue. Spelling and punctuation are all Faxon’s.
Our Myrtle & Bob
Take a nice sunny Sunday ride, out route 39, going west, some time. Continue past Spencer’s Barn; Springville; Spooner’s Gulf; on thru Norton’s Corners; Collins Center; Collins; and to the T in the road. Here take a turn to the right, down the road a jog, and turn left. Over the hill, and drop down into good old Taylor’s Hollow.
That’s where Bob first became aware that he was on a strange planet, full of odd characters.
September 17, 1878.
He was one of seven boys and three girls, born to Mr. and Mrs. Jacob Flogaus. Of the ten children, three boys are still living; Bob, John, and Herman.
Jacob, of Stuttgart, Germany, had migrated to this country in 1863, just in time to be hired as a ‘substitute’, in the Civil War. He fought at Harrisburg and points south.
Having been an expert in the sausage business in the Old Country, it might only be expected that he would bring his skill and recipes with him and, after the War, go into the business with none other than Jacob Dold, in Buffalo. Some of those recipes are still in use.
Several years later, he migrated to Taylor’s Hollow. There he set up in the general merchandise business, (with Beer license of course). At that time the ‘Hollow’ also contained a water-powered saw-mill, with Mulley saw; grist-mill; and shingle manufactory. At the age of twelve, Bob was quite the expert at sharpening millstones (chipping grooves in them).
By the time he was twenty, Bob had finished Grade School, worked around a bit, and wound up in Gowanda, at the State Hospital, running the Pumping Station. It was there that a fellow worker, George Moore, inveigled him into a double date with a girl from Sandusky by the name of Myrtle Jones, who was visiting George’s girlfriend.
They attended the Quaker Church service that nite in Collins, (on the left, just before you get to the Erie R.R. tracks). From then on, Bob was a ‘goner.’ In fact he was coming and going considerable!
He says it was nothing in 1899-1900, for a young fire-brand with a spark in his heart and an itch to be hitched, to hop on his bike, made by Wyman Denison’s dad, Al, for $35), and head over the hills, 35 miles, to Sandusky. (Hell or high water that is).
In fact, in 1902, the year of the great flood in Arcade, Bob rode his bike out Liberty Street to Sandusky, with the water over his boot-tops, in spite of his high perch. They sat up all that nite watching the barns, privys, cows, pigs, etc. floating down in the swollen stream.
The bridges were all washed out, (35 miles of them), and on his way home the next day, he had to wade the creeks with his bike on his back.
A couple years before that, he took Myrtle and her sister to the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, the day McKinley was shot.
In the meantime, Bob had gone to work for the Standard Oil Company, building a gas pipe line across the Welland Canal, thru Buffalo, down to Bradford. Bob furnished a horse for the job. BOY, those were th’ good ol’ days!
Well, you guessed it, - Love found a way.
On a ‘Buckboard’ in a blizzard; bike in a flood; ‘hell or high water.’
Bob and Myrtle were married at her parents’ home in Sandusky, on February 24, 1904, later taking the train to Buffalo and other points on their honeymoon.
They returned about March 20th and Bob worked about two years as a carpenter. He helped build the Merril-Soule (now Borden) plant in Arcade. When it was completed, he started a forty-year career as an engineer, installing and maintaining boilers and machinery at various milk plants in this division of the company.
Bob says he worked around the clock, many a day, and retired in 1946.
Congratulations, Myrtle and Bob, on this your 50th anniversary, from the R&W gang