HORACE LEE BREWER was born on April 14, 1882 in Stafford County, Virginia to Charles B and Mary Ann Brewer. On January 16, 1899 he enlisted in the UNited States Army at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was stationed in Huntsville, Alabama where he received his basic training from January 1899 into February of 1899, and then was assigned to the 16th Infantry Regimentsent, stationed at Fort Crook, near Bellevue, Nebraska. This installation is now Offut Air Force Base. The 16th Infantry shipped out for the Philippine Islands in May of 1899, arriving in Manila, on June 26. 

The 16th Infantry was initially assigned the duty of guarding the Manila and Dagupan Rail Road. Over the next 6 months, troops of the regiment participated in numerous small skirmishes somewhat reminiscent of those in which it would later engage in Vietnam. In December 1899, the regimental headquarters and several companies participated in a small campaign designed to retake the city of San Ildefonso back from a large insurgent force. Soon after this excursion, the regiment was redeployed to Nueva Viscaya Province to pacify and administer the area. The singular incident of note during that effort was the repulse of a force of over 300 insurgents on September 14, 1900 at Carig by a detachment consisting of 24 men from L and D Companies commanded by Sergeant Henry F. Schroeder. Schroeder was later awarded the regiment’s fourth Medal of Honor for that feat. The 1900 Census shows Private Brewer statione at Echague in the Philippines. By the fall of 1900, the regiment had administered the province so well that it was considered the most orderly area on Luzon.

The 16th Infantry returned to the United States at San Francisco on July 8, 1901. Private 

Brewer, apparently assigned to other duties, returned to the United States on January 10, 1902. He was honorably discharged from the United States Army at Angel Island, California on January 17, 1902, and in time settled in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

On October 6, 1903 Horace L. Brewer married Grace Ethel Beach, the daughter of Charles W. and Mary F. Beach, in Fredericksburg, Virginia.

The Brewers came to the Camden area after their wedding. Horace L. Brewer went into business It appears that he became involved in a brass foundry at 108 North Front Street known as the Camden Metal Works, which appears in the 1907 City Directory. The business relocated to 114
Erie Street in time for the 1908 Directory, and was renamed Camden Metal Company. Horace L. Brewer first appears in Camden City Directories in 1909, living at 509 North Front Street. His occupation was given as President of the Camden Metal Company, located at 114 Erie Street. John S. Schwab is listed as the secretary and treasurer. The 1910 Camden Census shows Horace L. Brewer, his wife Grace and daughter Olive, aged 3, living at 509 Erie Street in North Camden. Another child had been born,but sadly had not survived.

The 1910 Directory indicates that the business again moved, this time to the northeast corner of North 5th Street and Byron Street. Horace L. Brewer soon went into a venture manufacturing natural gas-powered clothes irons. The 1911 Directory shows that he had founded a business, Horace L. Brewer & Co., located at 12 George Street in Camden. The business incorprated in 1912 and by 1912 was known as the Modern Safety Gas Iron Company, with a factory  in Philadelphia. The Brewers stayed at the Erie Street address through 1914, according to City Directories. The 1916 Directory shows them at 3622 Westfield Avenue in East Camden, where he rented a house. The family remained at this adress through 1927.

In 1920 Horace Brewer went into the bus business. By 1923 he was the president of the Camden County Bus Association. Horace L. Brewer also became quite involved in local politics in Camden, as a Democrat. Rising to a leadership position in the Camden County Democratic Party, he was appointed to the position of Camden County Surrogate in 1924 after the elected official, Harry Reeves, passed away. He served as surrogate for three years. In 1925 Horace L. Brewer was elected to the chairmanship of the Camden County Democratic Party.

By the time the 1927 City Directory was compiled, Horace Brewer had gone into the restaurant business at 531 Market Street, close to the Camden County Courthouse and across the street from where Camden's new City Hall was to be built. Shortly afterwards he and his family moved to the Market Street adress, where they resided through 1928. 

On April 17, 1928 the Trenton Evening Times reported that Horace L. Brewer was considered as a candidate for Congress to run against Charles A. Wolverton. He did not run, and perhaps that was a good thing, as the Democrat candidate, Alfred White, polled only 36,778 votes to Wolverton's 109,510. The Democrats were said to have had a difficult time finding a candidate for this and two other races in New Jersey that year.

The 1929 City Directory shows the Brewers at 125 North 3rd StreetHorace L. Brewer continued to run his restaurant, known as Brewer's Dining Rooms, into the early 1930s. By April of 1930 he and his family were living at 3080 Federal Street, near Dudley Grange Park, and close to political ally Victor King. The Brewers also appear at this address in the 1931 City Directory.

Horace Brewer go out of the restaurant business around the same time Prohibition was repealed. Neil Deighan operated their in 19344 and 1934, and by 1936 Tom Kenney had taken over. The Kenney family operated at 531-533 
Market Street into the 1970s.

Horace Brewer was still active politically as late as 1938, when he was a member of the Camden County Parks Commission.

After selling the restaurant, Horace L. Brewer left Camden. He was living in Bellmawr, New Jersey in 1935. The 1940 Census states that he and his wife owned a home on Park Avenue in Bellmawr and that Horace Brewer was at that time a poultry farmer. This was also the case when Horace L. Brewer registered for the draft in the spring of 1942.  The Brewers were still in New Jersey in the mid-1950s when Horace Brewer was issued a social security card.

Horace L. Brewer last resided in St. Petersburg, Florida, He passed away on November 2, 1972 at the age of 91    

South Jersey: A History 1624-1924

Richmond Times-Dispatch - October 10, 1903

Natural gas iron, "The Imperial Gas Iron"
 manufactured by Horace L. Brewer and Company, Camden NJ
Iron is 7 inches long

World War I Draft Card

Philadelphia Inquirer - November 1, 1921

Trenton Evening Times

September 27, 1923

Frank Homan
Robert A. Irving

Volney Bennett Jr.
Horace L. Brewer

David Baird Sr.

Trenton Evening Times - April 2, 1924

Trenton Evening Times
February 21, 1925

Edward J. Kelleher
Albert S. Woodruff
Horace L. Brewer

Camden Courier-Post * January 2, 1928

Bertman Frees Both After Police Tell of Fuss at Brewer’s Cafe

Mickey Blair Camden pugilist, and  Thomas Schneider, secretary to Commissioner William D. Sayrs. Jr., started the New Year by getting drunk and becoming both abusive and pugnacious when ordered away from Horace Brewer’s restaurant on Market street, it was testified by three policemen in Police Court today. 

But Blair and Schneider as well as James Borini, who was arrested with them, won their freedom when Judge Bernard Bertman suspended sentence.

“There is no doubt but that you were all drunk” was Bertman's comment. ‘Surely, if you had been sober, this would never have happened. I know you are respectable men of the community and I regret to see you here. I will suspend sentence”.

According to the three policemen, however, the trio of defendants acted like anything but respectable men of the community yesterday morning when the New Year was little more than three hours old.

Patrolmen Frank Evans, Charles Bowen and August Fortune testified that Blair, Schneider and Borini had been ordered away from the restaurant by Brewer and that they had become abusive, threatening the policemen and calling them names.

Schneider insisted that he entered the argument only because Evans was “beating up Blair," but Evans and the other officers retorted that Blair had warned the policemen that they would be sorry if they arrested him and Schneider had boasted that “no cop can pinch me".

All were charged with being drunk and disorderly. Blair, whose real name is Michael Tenerelli, is 19 years old and lives at 833 South Fourth Street. Schneider gave his address as 414 Spruce Street. He is acting secretary to Commissioner Sayrs as a temporary appointee. Borini, 22 years old, gave his address as 324 Pine street.

Camden Courier-Post * January 3, 1928
Mickey Blair Denies Charge of Police
Says He Wasn't in Cafe; Blames 'Mistaken Identity' for Fuss
Mickey Blair 
Thomas Schneider
William D. Sayrs
Horace Brewer
Augustine Fortune
Charles Bowen
Frank Evans
Bernard Bertman
Edward Kelleher
Joseph Bardini


Left: January 2,  1928
Right: April 2, 1928

Jimmy See & His Gang
Ed Morton & his Kentuckians

Trenton Evening Times
July 19, 1930

Camden Courier-Post * December 1, 1930
Horace Brewer - Lillian S. Turner - Neil F. Deighan - John L. Durkin
Thomas J. Boland - Bronx Cafe
North 3rd Street - Arch Street - Federal Street - Market Street 

Tall Cedars of Lebanon
Banquet Program Ad
April 25, 1931

Camden Courier-Post * June 20, 1933

July 9 Set for Reception and Picnic to New Revenue Collector

"Harry L. Maloney Day" will be celebrated by South Jersey Democrats, Sunday, July 9, when the newly-appointed collector of internal revenue will be guest of honor at a picnic at Silver Lake Park. State leaders of the party will attend. Maloney, Democratic state committeeman from Camden County and Mayor of Bellmawr, was named by President Roosevelt to succeed Edward L. Sturgess and is expected to take office by July 1. 

Plans for the outing were made last night at a meeting in Democratic headquarters, 538 Stevens Street, at which Albert S. Marvel, Jr., was named chairman of the general committee. Vincent de P. Costello was elected secretary and former Mayor Victor King treasurer. 

The committees follow: 

Ways and means- Sidney Kaplan, chairman; Judge Samuel M. Shay, Judge Frank F. Neutze, Victor King, Vincent Gallaher, Samuel P. Orlando and Thomas N. Madden. 

Entertainment- Joseph A. Varbalow, chairman; Patrick H. Harding, Joseph E. Nowrey, Calogero Salvagio, Thomas Cavanaugh and Joseph A. Gorman.

Refreshments- Ralph W. Wescott, chairman; Raymond Hadley, Walter Bateman, Joseph Ackroyd, James Hainesworth, Joseph Harczynski.

Athletics- Frank Abbott, chairman; John Lyons, Joseph McVey and Daniel T. Hagans, 

Music- John P. Bissinger, chairman; Ventorino Francesconi, William Bell, Bernard Tracy and Matthew P. Johnson. 

District organization- Michael J. Powell, chairman; Dominick Josephs, Ralph Comilli, Herbert McAdams, William Noonan, Edward Huston, Harry Daly and William Kistner. 

Transportation - Mayor Emerson Jackson, of Gloucester, chairman; Lewis C. Parker, George Cohen, John Bennett, Horace L. Brewer and Sabba Verdiglione.

Printing- Charles J. Clark, chairman; Raymond Saltzman, Jack Goldstein, Walter Kelly and William M. Williams. 

Publicity- Edward C. Bowe, Herbert Beattie, Patrick Whalen, Alfred R. White and Luke Bates. 

Mrs. Emma E. Hyland, state committeewoman, and Miss Marie V. Kelley, vice- chairman of the county committee, will head a women's reception committee to be chosen later. 

The committees will meet again Monday night to complete arrangements.

Camden Courier-Post - February 9, 1938 

Vincent Gallaher to Be Named County Solicitor
by Freeholders To Replace Keown Tonight


Vincent J. Gallaher, of Collingswood, a Camden attorney and chairman of the Camden County Democratic Committee, will be elected county solicitor at tonight‘s regular meeting of the coalition-controlled Camden County Board of Freeholders.

This was learned through two unimpeachable sources yesterday. Gallaher informed close friends he would be chosen for the post.

Gallaher will be chosen despite claims of Walter S. Keown, present county solicitor, that he cannot he removed from the position. Reports last week that Keown had decided to resign without a fight to keep his job were declared by him to be false. He said yesterday he had no statement to offer.

Further it was learned that Keown was sworn in as county solicitor by Deputy County Clerk Truax on January 7. It was the first time he had even taken the oath of office.

Others Take Oath

Truax also admitted a number of other county officials were sworn in last month. No record of the other officials previously taking the oath of office is on file in the county clerk's office.

"As I understand the law the county solicitor does not have to take the oath of office," Truax said. "The act specifically sets forth that he shall be elected for a term of three years. Mr. Keown was elected county solicitor on January 1, 1937.

"An act does require the county physician must be sworn in by the county clerk or deputy clerk. Dr. Edward B. Rogers, who was elected county physician, neglected to take the oath.

It is understood that City Solicitor Firmin Michel recommended the appointment of Gallaher, who also is said to have the endorsement of Commissioner Mary W. Kobus, who successfully directed the coalition movement that wrested the control of the Board of Freeholders from the Republicans after an uninterrupted reign of 92 years.

Michel with Isadore H. Hermann and Edward V. Martino, all affiliated with the Camden city legal department, are said to have looked up the law and reached the unanimous conclusion that Keown can be ousted from his job and that Gallaher’s appointment will withstand all tests in the courts.

Other Jobs in Doubt

Other present Republican jobholders may also be routed out of office at tonight's meeting of the freeholders, it was indicated.

Apparently some who have held county jobs, many for long periods; anticipate the freeholders plan to replace them.

Among several known to have taken oaths of office during the last month are Mrs. Grace Anthony Riggins, superintendent of the county juvenile detention home; William B. Macdonald, county court stenographer ; George R. Braunwarth, custodian of the Court House-City Hall; his assistant, Thomas B. Dickinson, Jr.; Jacob Price, county supervisor of roads; Martin J. McNulty, county purchasing agent, and Dr. Lee J. Hammett, secretary-treasurer of the Camden County Welfare Board.

Ali members of the Camden County Park Commission have been sworn in. They include Leroy A. Goodwin, president; Dr. Frank O. Stem, treasurer; Horace L. Brewer, assistant treasurer; former Mayor Roy R. Stewart, William H. Dunn, of Collingswood; J. William Markeim, of Haddonfield and George Kleinheinz, of Camden.

Royden S. Matlack, assistant county treasurer and assistant auditor to the board of freeholders was sworn in on January 13, for both positions.

Truax did not attach any significance to the fact that the number of officials decided to take their oaths of office.

Following the appointment of Dr. David S. Rhone as county physician, Dr. Rogers did not legally oppose the naming of his successor.

Records of the county clerk's office show that Dr. Rhone was the first county physician to be sworn in and to sign the "book," as the official registry is called by attaches of the office.

Camden Courier-Post - February 9, 1938 

3000 Face Loss Of Parkway Jobs In Board Threat
Delay on Bond Issue By Freeholders Brings Lay-off Ultimatum
Showdown Demanded on County Fund for WPA Work


"Complete shut-down of all county parks projects and the dismissal of approximately 3000 WPA workers was threatened yesterday by the Camden County Park Commission.

A resolution was adopted advising the Board of Freeholders of such action unless the pending $350,000 parks bond issue is approved or the board, at its adjourned meeting next Wednesday night, provides emergency funds to carry on the parks program until March 9.

Failure of the freeholders to approve the bond issue at its meeting Wednesday night, when action on the bonds was deferred until March 9, precipitated a stormy meeting of the commission.

Yesterday's meeting originally was called to receive bids for equipment.

Markeim Threatens to Quit

For nearly an hour members of the commission commission debated what action could be taken to compel the freeholders to give financial relief and prevent the closing of all projects and the layoff of WPA workers.

J. William Markeim threatened to resign if the others did not demand a showdown. Markeim and Horace L. Brewer engaged in an argument after which the former repeated his threat to quit. LeRoy A. Goodwin, commission president, said he was "bitterly disappointed" because the freeholders failed to hold a public hearing and approve the bond issue of $350,000.

John H. Osier, Jr., chief engineer, submitted a report in which he declared the future of the parks projects is dubious because of lack of funds.

Mandamus Plan Defeated

The engineer pointed out that unless more money is allotted he would be forced to recommend to WPA officials the immediate lay-off of at least 2000 workers, and asserted a complete shutdown would force the dismissal of about 3000 workers. The monthly payroll loss, he said, would be about $210,000.

Brewer moved the commission solicitor, Henry M. Evans be empowered to institute mandamus proceedings to force action by the freeholders.

The motion was opposed by William H. Dunn, of Collingswood. Goodwin said the situation called for calm and deliberate judgment and he said nothing could be gained by mandamus proceedings.

"There is no use of the members of this commission sticking their necks out any more," Brewer said. "The people of Camden county twice voted for bond issues for parks. The freeholders promised the commission this money. If these men are laid off and thrown on relief the blame cannot be put on the park commissioners. The freeholders will have to take the rap, whether they like it or not."

Goodwin explained that out of the $150,000 appropriated to carry the projects to December 31 last approximately $21,000 has not been allocated. He warned that this sum could not possibly carry on the work more than two weeks.

Markeim Urges Layoff

"It is high time we took a stand," said Markeim. "We're a bunch of fools, if we don't force the issue. The Freeholders make promises and we believe them.

"If we don't have the money we cannot continue to keep the WPA workers employed. Let us shut down every project and lay every worker off. It's time for a showdown."
Brewer suggested the engineers make a quick check-up and survey and determine just how long the WPA workers can be continued on the job.

"That's the whole trouble," Markeim shouted. "We make surveys and we listen to promises but we don't ever do anything but wait and wait and wait.

"I don't intend to waste my time sitting in meetings of this commission when we can't get anywhere simply because the freeholders are playing politics with human misery and poor devils who can barely exist on WPA a pay.

"I tell you all that unless you take definite action right now I will quit as a member of this commission."

Goodwin asked Evans if the freeholders could legally move up consideration of th« bond issue from the March 9 date.

The solicitor said such a procedure would be illegal and would surely affect the credit standing of all park bonds. Goodwin said the parks projects could not be continued another month.

"Unless the freeholders give us financial relief in less than 10 days we must shut down every project and lay off virtually every WPA worker," Goodwin said.

Emergency Fund Sough

Goodwin suggested the freeholders may be induced to make an emergency appropriation to prevent the shut down of projects. Evans said he thought this could be done if the freeholders agreed,

"We must have the guts to demand a showdown," interrupted Brewer. "There is no time to spare. We must take action right here and put this matter right in the laps of the freeholders."
Brewer moved to communicate immediately with the freeholders and demand action at its Wednesday night meeting.

The resolution was dictated by Goodwin who asked for a vote. The vote was unanimous. Those voting were Brewer, Dunn, Markeim, former Mayor Roy R. Stewart, George Kleinheinz and Goodwin.

An adjourned meeting will be held Wednesday. No action was taken on a suggestion that members of the commission attend the freeholders session.

Verga Gets Crane Work

Eugene F. Verga, local contractor, was awarded the contract for the rental of a gasoline powered crane with pontoons, all equipment and with operators at a charge of $7 an hour for 300 working hours.

Other bidders were Emil E. Estoclas, of Philadelphia, whose bid was $7.60 an hour, and W. H. Todd, of Camden, with a bid of $8 an hour.

Bids were received for the purchase of two reconditioned caterpillar cranes with equipment.
J. Jacob Shannon, of Philadelphia, submitted bids of $2950 each. The Service Supply Company bid $3550 and $3600 on the two cranes.

The Locomotive Crane Company, of Philadelphia, offered a bid of $5491 and Estoclas gave a price of $2850.

Payment of $2800 to the Eastern Engineering Company tor two reconditioned cranes was approved. Payment of $9685 to Verga for a steam pile driving machine also was authorized.

World War II Draft Card

Horace  L. & Grace E. Brewer