Joseph Kobus

JOSEPH F. KOBUS and his brother Henry were the sons of Anthony Kobus, who founded a shoe business at 943 South 4th Street in 1858, which soon was moved to the corner of South 4th and Spruce Streets. Born in Camden in 1863, Joseph Kobus and his brother maintained the business until they both retired in the early 1930s. Anthony Kobus was a principal in the Broadway Trust Bank, and, after his death in 1920, Joseph and Henry Kobus moved the business to a nearby building at 934 Broadway in 1924.

As a young man, Joseph Kobus became interested in crosswords, cryptograms, and other similar puzzles. In in 1883 was one of the charter members of the National Puzzlers League. He held his membership throughout his life. 

Joseph Kobus' second wife Mary Walsh Kobus was one of Camden first female politicians. She was elected to the City Commission, and served as the Director of Public Safety in the late 1930s and early 1940s. She also was a nationally recognized puzzler, and was president of the afore-mentioned National Puzzlers League in 1929.

Henry Kobus passed away in April of 1939. Joseph Kobus, who was suffering with kidney problems, took a turn for the worse after his brother's passing, and died on June 9, 1939. He was survived by his wife Mary, and a son Harry Kobus, from his first marriage.

Philadelphia Inquirer
February 9, 1917

Temple Building - Augustus Reeve
Robert Patterson Finley - N.F. Thompson
Joseph Kobus - Mary Walsh Kobus 
Walter Tushingham - A.W. Atkinson
Dr. Walter H. Smith - Miss Elizabeth Reed

Camden Courier-Post - January 16, 1928

Broadway Merchants to Hold Annual Banquet at Hotel Walt Whitman, Jan. 25

 An exciting contest is expected in the annual election of officers of the Broadway Business Menís Association. The elections, preceded by a banquet, will be held Wednesday evening, January 25, at Hotel Walt Whitman.

Three merchants are candidates for the presidency, which will be vacated by Harry Pelouze. There are J.V. Moran, Walter Friant and Morris Futernick. They were nominated at the November meeting of the association.

Another battle is looked for in the naming of a vice-president. M. Fuhrman and J.W. Holmes are the two candidates while Morris Jaffe is the retiring vice president. Edwin C. Norcross, president treasurer, will be unopposed for re-election. Albert S. Dudley will be unopposed when he succeeds David Tattersdill as secretary.

Representatives from every business in every section of the city have been invited to attend the affair, while every one of the 150 members will probably be present. The principle speaker will be former Judge John B. Kates, of the Broadway Merchants Trust Company.

An address on interstate traffic and its relations to the transportation problems of Camden business will be delivered by J.J. Ruster, head of the transportation department of the Camden ≠Chamber of Commerce. Francis B. Wallen and Loyal D. Odhner, president and secretary respectively of the Chamber of Commerce will also be guests of the merchants.

A comparison of the work of other commercial organizations will be made by several well-known visitors. Benjamin Shindler, William Lipsitz and H. Zbieratski, presidents respectively of the East Camden, Kaighn Avenue and Mount Ephraim Business Menís Associations, will speak.

The new constitution and by-laws of the association will be adopted at the January meeting. Eighteen directors will be elected; six for terms of three years, six for two-year terms and a similar number for one year.

The candidates for director are Harry Pelouze, Joseph Kobus, J.W. Holmes, Albert Israel, James V. Moran, Walter Friant, Dr. I.S. Siris, Joseph Fuhrman, William E. Cross, S. Abeson, M. Futernick, Howard B. Lee, Fred W. Schorpp, Morris Jaffe, W. Mitchell, L. Markowitz, Joseph Corbett, M. Lasala, P. Thatcher, W. Falture, G. Lockerman and David Tattersdill

Camden Courier-Post - January 28, 1928

Patrons, Patronesses Announced Today for First Military Ball

Patrons and patronesses for the first military ball of the Camden Post No. 960, Veterans of Foreign Wars, to be held on Friday evening February 3 in the Elks auditorium, Seventh and Cooper Streets., are announced today.

The following prominent men and women are listed: Mrs. J.W. Connor, Miss C.M. Day, Mrs. J.H. Forsyth, Mrs. H.J. Goodyear, Miss B. Graham, Mrs. R.E. Green, Mrs. E.F. Haines, Mrs. J. Hood Jr., Mrs. W. Hurley, Mrs. J. Jarrell, Mrs. T. Keefe, Mrs. J.F. Kobus, Mrs. L. Liberman, Mrs. F.L. Lloyd, Mrs. M.A. Logan, Mrs. T.P. McConaghy, Mrs. F.F. Neutze, Mrs. L.K. Marr, Mrs. J.A. Pennington, Mrs. M.E. Ramsey, Mrs. E. Truax, Mrs. S.M. Shay, Mrs. W.J. Staats, Mrs. B.G. Tarburton, Mrs. R.W. Waddell, Mrs. E. Watson, Mrs. E.P. Wescott, Mrs. C.A. Wolverton. 

David Baird Jr., William T. Boyle, Isaac Ferris, William Hurley, John Hood Jr., John Jarrell, Victor King, William J. Kraft, Thomas Keefe, Joseph F. Kobus, Hon. Edmund B. Leaming, Dr. A. Haines Lippincott, James H. Long, L.K. Marr, Dr. Thomas P. McConaghy, Hon. Frank F. Neutze, Samuel P. Orlando, Albert E. Simmons, Edwin Watson, Ethan P. Wescott.

Camden Courier-Post * October 29, 1931

Professional and Business Leaders Back Camden Man for Governor

Forty-seven more prominent professional and business men yesterday joined the Baird-for-Governor Business Men's League and pledged themselves to work actively in interest of David Baird Jr., for governor, and add special impetus to his campaign.

The league was organized this week at an enthusiastic meeting of 18 outstanding Baird supporters in professional and business life at the Camden Club, 315 Cooper Street. The league membership is open only to business, professional and industrial leaders who are not holding public office and who are not politicians.

The latest enrollments among community leaders pledging themselves to devote themselves to the Baird cause are the following:

F. Morse Archer, president of the First Camden National Bank; Clinton. L. Bardo, president of the New York Shipbuilding Company and of the New Jersey Taxpayers' Association; George C. Baker, of the Baker≠Flick Company; Watson Shallcross, president of the Camden County Chamber of Commerce; Howard J. Dudley, Broadway merchant; Thomas E. French, prominent attorney; J. David Stern, publisher of the Courier-Post newspapers and of the Philadelphia Record; Wellington K. Barto, of the West Jersey Trust Company; Dr. Joseph Roberts, Cooper Hospital; William Clement, of the Clement Coverall Paint Company; Robert Wright, of the Haddonfield National Bank; Arthur J. Podmore, of the Camden Pottery Company; Nathan Leopold, Haddonfield druggist; Dr. J. Edgar Howard, of Haddonfield.

Dr. Alfred N. Elwell, of this city; Edward Preisendanz, Clarence Peters, N. Franks, of. Franks & Sweeney; U. G. Peters, Ralph D. Baker, prominent real estate man; Archibald Dingo, George Bachman, Sr., and George Bachman, Jr., Dr. O. W. Saunders, Henry Cooperson, Leon Cooperson, Herman Z. Cutler. Charles Bauman, Harry Rose, George Austermuhl, Walter Gulick, Albert Voeglin, Howard Fearn, John A. Schlorer, Ernest L. Bartelt.

William S. Casselman, George M. Carr, J. Price Myers, Carl R. Evered, former president of the Camden County Real Estate Board; Francis B. Wallen, former president of the Camden County Chamber of Commerce; William H. Alff, Edmund J. Alff, Harry Pelouze, Walter Campbell, Dr. Thomas R. Bunting, Joseph F. Kobus and Henry E. Kobus.

Enrollments, it was announced, may be made through the following committee of the league:

Ludwig A. Kind, Thomas Gordon Coulter, Charles H. Laird, Walter J. Staats, Frank C. Middleton, Jr., Frank J. Hineline, William T. Read, Charles S. Boyer, W. W. Robinson, George R. Pelouze, Paul A. Kind, Dr. Paul A. Mecray, Jerome Hurley, Harry A. Moran, James V. Moran, William J. Strandwitz, former Judge Lewis Starr and Frank C. Norcross.

Camden Courier-Post - June 16, 1933

Merchant Leaders Promoting Camden's 'Co-operation Days' Sale

The above business leaders welcomed State Senator Emerson L. Richards to Camden yesterday when he sounded the keynote for the opening of the biggest merchandise sale in Camden in 20 years. 

Left to right, back row: Cutler A. McGrew, manager of the J. C. Penney Company; Frank J. Kinsella, advertising director, 
Courier-Post Newspapers, Edward Callow, district manager Stanley-Warner Theatres; Joseph Murdock, manager Stanley Theatre.

Middle row: W. L. Tushingham, business manager, Courier-Post Newspapers; Samuel Auerbach; Russell Gibbons, Baker-Flick Company; William Rothman, Barrett's Tire Shops; Joseph Kobus

Front row: M. Futernick; Harry A. Moran, chairman Merchants Committee; S. Lester; J. Price Myers, and S. Abrahamson. 

At right, Senator Richards is shown addressing merchants at the court house plaza. 

Camden Courier-Post * February 20, 1936

National Puzzlers to Hold Semi-Annual Session Here
Amateur Creators of Brain Twisters Open Three-Day Conclave Tomorrow;
Mrs. Kobus To Greet Delegates on Arrival

 Puzzledom, that world of crypto-grams, psychology and pseudonyms, will have its capital in Camden beginning and continuing through Sunday. It will be the 105th semi-annual convention of the National Puzzlers' League, Inc.

Back in 1926, sesquicentennial year of American Independence, the puzzlers held their 86th semi-annual convention here. The fact Joseph Kobus, retired Broadway merchant, is a charter member of the organization, founded in 1883, and that his wife, City Commissioner Mary W. Kobus, is now first vice president, may have had something to do with the selection of Camden for both gatherings. Mrs. Kobus was president in 1929.

Close to 100 members, from all sections of the country east of the Mississippi, are expected. Convention headquarters are to be in the Walt Whitman Hotel. The member-ship includes, besides amateur puzzle creators, affiliated with regional puzzlers' clubs, many of the best known contributors of puzzle ideas to magazines and newspapers.

Have Pseudo Names in puzzledom each is known by a pseudonmy, self-chosen. Mrs. Kobus, for instance, is H. S. Law, which is a reverse spelling of her name before marriage, Walsh. Commissioner Kobus- beg pardon, H. S. Law- is chairman of the reception committee which will welcome members as they arrive tomorrow afternoon and night. Many attractive entertainment features will be crowded into the two-day session.

On the convention program for Saturday morning is a meeting of the organization's board of trustees. Then, following a scenic automobile trip, the opening session of the convention will be held from 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM. A theatre party and a banquet will conclude the day's activities.

Features of Sunday's program, after breakfast and church services, will be a puzzle broadcast from Station WCAM at 11:00 AM, the closing session of the convention in the afternoon, to be followed by award of a cup to the winner of a puzzle contest.

WPA Band to Play

Sunday evening there will be a meeting of the MMM, Minute Men of Mystery, an organization within the league, followed by a dinner and "surprises". The  WPA leisure time band, directed by Joseph Fuhrman, will give a musical program at the hotel for the benefit of the visitors Saturday night.

"It has been generally agreed by discerning critics that Puzzledom, as we know it, received a big upward life toward a higher and better organized plane by reason of a historic meeting here in 1926," Mrs. Kobus said, "and we hope the coming session win prove just as brilliant." Other officers of the league are: Charles Jacobsen (Oedipus), of Whitestone NY, president; Paul E. Thompson (Blackstone), Cleveland Heights OH, second vice president; Lewis Trent (C. Saw), New York NY, secretary; John Q. Boyer (Primrose), Baltimore MD, treasurer; Rufus T. Strohm (Arty Ess), Scranton PA, official editor, and J. H. Wickham (Wick  O'Cincy), Cincinnati OH, Ohio trustee.

Camden Courier-Post * February 24, 1936

'Nedmac' (Spell It Backwards) Elected; Wife Retires as Vice President


Joseph F. Kobus, retired Camden merchant, was elected president of the National Puzzlers League, Inc. at the closing session yesterday of its 105th semi-annual convention.

The convention opened Saturday in the Hotel Walt Whitman.

The new president, husband of City Commissioner Mary W. Kobus, was, one of the earliest members of the organization, founded in 1883. His nom-de-plume in puzzledom is Nedmac.

Mrs. Kobus, retiring first vice president, is H. S. Law in the world of cryptograms, "flats" and "posers."

Others elected were: R. P. Woodman (Macropod) of North Quicy, Mass., to succeed Mrs. Kobus; Mrs. G. H. Ropes (Evero), of Detroit, Mich., second vice president; Lewis Trent (C. Saw), of New York, secretary for his 26th consecutive term; John Q. Boyer (Primrose), of Baltimore, treasurer; Rufus T. Strohm (Arty Ess), of Scranton, Pa., official editor, and J. H. Wickham (Wick O'Cincy), of Cincinnati, 0., trustee.

Following the business session about 50 members participated in a prize puzzle contest in the junior ball room of the hotel and the M.M.M. (Minute Men of Mystery), a social organization within the league, held a dinner meeting.

C. Saw Gets Bowl.

A silver bowl was presented to C. Saw as a testimonial to his 25 years' service as secretary of the league. He was lauded in a presentation speech by the retiring president, Charles Jacobson (Oedipus) of Whitestone, L. 1. ).

In, the puzzle contest a special prize for solution of a cryptogram in 1. was won by "Live Devil," who is William Lutwiniak, of Jersey City, a youthful member of the league. 

The cryptogram was submitted by a New York detective fiction magazine.

Mrs. Kobus, who was chairman of the convention reception committee, introduced several members as speakers on a broadcast program from Station WCAM in the morning.

They were Robert Anderson (Fort Sumter), of Jersey City, a charter member, Jacobson, Boyer, who spoke on cryptograms, and Louis C. Macaran, (Zoroaster) of Stonehurst, Pa.

Organization Recalled

Anderson recalled the organization of the league by a group of young men who met in Pythagoras Hall, on Canal Street, New York City, July 4, 1883. The hall has since been razed to make way for the Williamsburg Bridge over the East River. He said that of the 36 present about 10 survive. After the meeting, he said, the members celebrated by walking across Brooklyn Bridge, which had been opened only a few weeks before.

At yesterday's business session David Shulman, (Ab Struse), of New York City, proposed that the league t officially endorse as proper words for use in puzzledom "ismer" and "poorich."

"lsmer" was suggested by George H. Pryor (Miss Fitts) of Baltimore and "poorich" by Boyer (Primorse), the former to indicate one who is given to an "ism" as, for instance, a "braintruster," the latter to indicate that both poor and rich are not always to be sharply differentiated but may have interests in common.

The suggestion was referred to the educational committee, of which Boyer is chairman. He revealed later he had been instrumental in having the word "carefree" placed in Standard and other dictionaries when he discovered several years ago that the word, though in common usage, had never been listed by lexicographers.

It is the rule in puzzledom that in building up word forms no word can be used that is not in a recognized dictionary or is not officially endorsed by the league if newly coined.

Boston was selected for the 106th convention which will be held September 5, 6 and 7. .

Camden Courier-Post * June 9, 1939
Click on Images to Enlarge

Mary and Joseph Kobus lived at 429 Haddon Avenue
(the right-hand part of the twin home pictured below)
Photo of 431 & 429 Haddon Avenue taken June 15, 2003

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