CAMDEN, NEW JERSEY

SITLEY & SON

SITLEY & SON was founded by Arthur M. Sitley and his son Frank Budd Sitley. The Sitleys were farmer who saw opportunity in Camden, selling grain, feed and farm equipment. In 1886 they bought the business of Elias Kaighn, located at 128 Kaighn Avenue. 

In 1894 the Sitleys built a grain elevator and warehouse on the south side of Chelton Avenue between Fillmore Street and South 6th Street. The plant burned in 1905, was rebuilt. The Sitley's also owned a sister company Gloucester Grain and Dairy Feed Company, which had a grain elevator and warehouse in Gloucester City in the mid-1900s. 

Arthur M. Sitley in time left he running of the business to his son. He passed away on May 12, 1911 at the age of 76. Sadly, longevity was not granted to his son. Frank Budd Sitley died in 1915 of pneumonia in his 53rd year. His wife, the former Ada Smith, and eventually his sons, took over the business, and ran it successfully for over forty years. 

The Sitley & Son grain elevator and warehouse was again destroyed by fire in 1920. After this fire the Sitleys rebuilt their warehouse once again. They did not rebuild the grain elevator, and in time they branched into the roofing supplies business. Once again fire struck, in April of 1930, causing an estimated $45,000 worth of damage.

Sitley & Son closed went out of business in 1959. By 1962 the building had been razed. 

Histotical & Industrial Review
of Camden, New Jersey - 1890

SITLEY & SON, FLOUR, FEED, SEEDS AND GRAIN,
128 KAIGHN'S AVENUE

THE City of Camden has for a period past, been identified with the flour and grain trade, as a distributing point to the consumer of these products, and her merchants in this branch of commercial pursuit, enjoy a widespread reputation for the facilities they have introduced as a means of supplying the trade with fresh and choice goods.

One of the oldest establishment in this section is that founded by E.B. Kaighn in 1879, and succeeded by the present firm in 1886.

The office and warehouse occupied for business purposes, stands on a plot 40 x 125 feet in area. Every facility is here enjoyed for the prompt handling of grain and feed.

The various apartments are supplied with bins, shutes, elevators, scales etc., and all the modern accessories known to the trade are here enjoyed, Telephone No. 48, being in use.

A heavy stock embracing fine family and bakers' flour in bag or barrel, meal, mill feed, oats, corn, rye, barley, wheat, and farm seeds of every description, as well as implements. Oats are a specialty.

The trade is wide-spread and growing, and all the transactions are characterized by liberality and equity. In the successful prosecution of the business eleven assistants are employed, and two double and one single team, utilized for hauling and delivery purposes.

A. M. & F. B. Sitley, are the individual members of the firm, both gentlemen are natives of New Jersey, and prior to engaging in their mercantile venture, pursued the avocation of agriculturists.

Since establishing here, they are regarded high in commercial circles, as responsible dealers, progressive, enterprising citizens, who enjoy the confidence of all with whom they have business relations, and well merit the success attending their efforts..

 

Philadelphia Inquirer

August 20, 1896

Esterbrook Steel Pen Co.
Gately & Hurley
Toone & Hollinshed
Sitley & Son
Howland Croft
J.B. Van Sciver
William S. Scull
Anthony Kobus

John Campbell
William Leonard Hurley


Philadelphia Inquirer
April 21, 1900

Sitley & Son
Harry Kelly
Samuel Cox
John Painter
Stephen Robinson
Chelton Avenue
Railroad Avenue


Philadelphia Inquirer
February 21, 1905

Cooper B. Hatch
Joseph W. Cooper
Harry Burke
Carman Street
Homer W. Snyder
Walnut Street wharf
Annie Craig
Frank B. Sitley


Philadelphia Inquirer - September 21, 1902

Dr. Frances J. Bicker Sr.
Broadway - Fillmore Street - Van Hook Street

Philadelphia Inquirer - April 25, 1903


Philadelphia Inquirer - April 24, 1905


...continued...

James Cahill - Samuel S. Elfreth  - Joseph Maxwell - John Hines
Frank Sagers - C. Oscar Brown - William F. Thompson -
South 2nd Street


Philadelphia Inquirer
February 21, 1905

C.B. Coles
Frank B. Sitley


Philadelphia Inquirer - April 26, 1905


1906 Sanborn Maps


Philadelphia Inquirer - January 17, 1905


Philadelphia Inquirer - January 28, 1908

...continued...
William Leonard Hurley - Charles H. Ellis - Charles V.D. Joline - Edmund E. Read
Harry C. Kramer - Howard Carrow - Philander Knox - James H. Davidson
Johm T. Dorrance -
E.G.C. Bleakly - David A. Henderson - Samuel W. Sparks
Henry C. Loudenslager - Francis Howell - Walter Wood - Elmer E. Long
George W. Jessup - Joseph Gaskill - Volney G. Bennett - Wilbur F. Rose
Alexander C. Wood - George A. Frey -
Charles A. Reynolds - E.B. Leaming
Heulings Lippincott - Charles K. Haddon - Fithian S. Simmons -
J.B. Van Sciver
David Jester -
Frank B. Sitley - Alpheus McCracken - Thomas S. Nekervis
DeCourcy May - Isaac Ferris - Lionel C. Simpson -  John M. Kelly
G. George Browning -
Watson Depuy - John C. Danenhower - John B. McFeeley
Elias Davis -
Anthony Kobus - Captain John B. Adams

Philadelphia Inquirer - May 15, 1911


Philadelphia Inquirer - April 21, 1915

Trimble Lodge No. 117 F.&A.M.


 

 

 

 

Philadelphia
Public Ledger
February 12,1920

 

 

 

 

,,,continued...
,,,continued...
Samuel Liker - J.C.Dunn & Co. oilcloth works - F.A. Poth & Sons brewery

Philadelphia Inquirer - February 12,1920

Peter B. Carter - Sitley & Son - I. Asbell - Chelton Avenue - South 6th Street
United States Wool Company


Philadelphia Inquirer - February 12,1920

Peter B. Carter - Thomas J. Nicholas - Sitley & Son - I. Asbell
Chelton Avenue -
South 6th Street - United States Wool Company


Camden Courier-Post - April 18, 1930

3 YOUTHS HELD AS BLAZE RAZES GRAIN PLANT OF SITLEY AND SON
Damage in Fire at Sixth and Bulson Streets Estimated at $45,000
FOUR MEN RISK LIVES TO SAVE TWO HORSES
Boys Believed by Police Probers to Have Been Smoking, in Building

Three boys are being held and two others are sought in the investigation of the $45.000 fire which today destroyed the warehouse of Sitley & Son, wholesale hardware, roofing material and grain dealers at Sixth and Bulson streets.

The three boys were ordered held by Police Judge Pancoast after authorities expressed belief that the three alarm fire was caused either by thieves or boys smoking cigarettes on the premises.

Two of the youths admitted they stole coal from the plant's siding last night, while the third confessed that he, and two other boys were in the plant last evening. He said his two companions, who are expected to be arrested this afternoon, were smoking

One fireman was slightly hurt when he ran a nail into his foot, while other firefighters narrowly escaped injury when the roof of the-blazing building collapsed.

 dense fog, rain, great clouds of thick smoke and intense heat' all hampered the firemen, and rendered them practically helpless for more than three hours. When the blaze was finally under control at 8:00 a.m., only the blackened and buckled walls remained standing,

Practically the entire stock was lost. but through the courage of four men including two policemen: a team of terrified horses and three trucks were saved from the blazing stable.

Twenty employees were temporarily deprived of work.

Discovery of three rolls of wire fencing on nearby railroad tracks and the presence at two men near the premises when the blaze was discovered led Fire Chief Thomas Nicholas to believe thieves had thrown a cigarette near some flammable material.

The arrested boy is John Brodzik, 1927 Fillmore Street.

Two other youths, John Hadyniak, 16, of 685 Ferry Avenue, and Anthony Parraine [Piraino- PMC], 11, of 2026 South Seventh Street, arrested on a charge of stealing coal from the Sitley siding last night are also being held. They declare they were not in the plant.

In addition to the smoke and heat firemen were further hampered by the fact that two railroads pass the building. Many of the hose lines had to be stretched over the tracks, so that in order to prevent passing trains, from which thousands of commuters saw the fire, from cutting the lines, holes were dug under the tracks and the lines run through the excavations.

Captain David Ellis, of No. 7 fire company at Mt. Ephraim and Kaighn Avenues, ran a nail in his foot, and after being given first aid treatment at the scene was taken to the West Jersey Homeopathic Hospital.

The first alarm was sounded at 4:18 a.m. from a box at Fillmore Street and Chelton Avenue. The fire was discovered by Paul N. Naurath, 1727 Master Street, an engineer at the Camden brewery, which is in the immediate vicinity of the Sitley plant.

Naurath ran to a gasoline filling station at Broadway and Chelton Street from where he telephoned to fire headquarters. He later told Police Lieutenant George Frost that when he noticed the smoke and flames he saw two men running around the Sitley stable, which is attached to the main plant. However, he paid no attention to them, being intent upon turning in an alarm.

While fire apparatus sped to the scene, Naurath, Frederick Baum, 431 Winslow Street; Patrolman Frank Del Rossi and Police Sergeant Edward Carroll, heard the shrill screams of horses in the stable, which had quickly become an inferno,

Horses Rescued

The four rushed into the stable, broke down the door, and led out the two horses, which several times attempted to run back into the flames. The men also drove three trucks out of the place before they were driven away by the dense smoke.

The building occupies a plot about 300 feet square and comprises several one and two-story sections. There wax formerly a grain elevator on the site belonging to the Sitleys, but it was destroyed by fire more than a decade ago and never rebuilt. On the south side of the plant are the Atlantic City Railroad tracks, and on the east side the West Jersey and Seashore Railroad lines.

Flames Spread Rapidly 

Believed to have started either in the stable or at the extreme northern end of the plant, the fire quickly swept through the entire building. Rolls of tarred paper and bins of grain were quickly consumed, throwing out huge clouds of smoke.

Two more alarms were sounded for additional apparatus, but it was not until 7:30 a.m. that firemen could enter the building. Meanwhile, about 50 hose lines were stretched to the building and water continually played on the fire. Commissioner Frank B. Hanna arrived and increased the water pressure five points at the pumping stations to keep a water supply to feed the hose lines. Chief of Police Lewis H. Stehr also sped to the fire.

A touch of tragedy was added when Thomas Mills, 70, of 431 Viola Street, employed by the Sitleys for 40 years as a packer, arrived. The elderly workman burst into tears when he saw the flames, and sobbed that he was now out of work and had a family to support.

Finally, about 8 a. m., firemen had the blaze under control, after the roof had caved in. Only the walls stood, but several times they threatened to collapse.

The owners, Frank L. Sitley, Sr., of Woodbury, and his son, Frank L. Sitley, Jr., arrived, but declined to estimate their loss. However, police and firemen fixed an approximate damage of $25,000 to the building and $20,000 to the stock.

Lieutenant Frost found three rolls of wire fencing which had been taken from the building, They were lying on the Reading Railroad tracks, apparently dropped by thieves when police arrived.

Young Brodzik was arrested at 8:00 p.m. yesterday by Special Officer John Stevenson, who turned him over to Patrolmen Smith and Riehm. The youth was charged with suspicion of having broken into the place, and is alleged to have first denied being in the building, but later admitted that he and two other boys crawled through a basement window.

The boy declared that he neither smoked nor stole anything, but said that other boys had smoked. He refused to divulge their names.

Hadyniak and Perraine were arrested last night and charged with theft of coal from the siding. Brodzik declared those two were not the boys who were with him last night,

All three were arraigned before Judge Pancoast in police court this morning and held without bail pending investigation.

 

Trenton Evening Times - July 20, 1959

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