William
Leonard
Hurley



WILLIAM LEONARD HURLEY is best remembered as the owner of the Hurley's, a department store chain whose home store was at Broadway and Pine Street in Camden for well over 50 years.

William Leonard Hurley was born in Atglen PA on October 24, 1862 to William and Ellen Hurley, both of home were Irish-born immigrants. After receiving his education at Atglen and working on his father's farm, he moved to Camden at the age of 19, finding work at the Hussong Dye Works. In 1882 he took a position with the Singer Sewing Machine Company in Philadelphia as a collector, where he worked for two years. After working from 1884 to 1887 as a brakeman on the Pennsylvania Railroad, he found work with E. Gately & Co, of Philadelphia. He was then living at 210 Channing Terrace, which was off Mickle Street, near the site of the present Mickle Tower apartment building.

William Leonard Hurley became a partner in the concern in 1890. The new company, Gately and Hurley, opened a store at the old 

Wildey Hall, at 804-806 South 5th Street, the corner of South 5th and Pine Streets, in 1890. He was then living at 505 Pine Street. Within a few years a new building at Broadway and Pine was erected, a location that would become a Camden landmark for six decades, and is still well-remembered in 2009. 

1902 saw William Leonard Hurley partnered with William J. Lorigan and his son, William H. Lorigan, who worked as the secretary of the Gately & Hurley store, in a real estate and home building venture. Their firm, Lorigan & Hurley, had its offices in the store building. That year the partners built Princeton Avenue, a block of homes between Pine and Division Streets, east of South 7th Street. They later built houses similar in appearance to those on Princeton Street on 27th Street north and south of Federal street

In 1904 William L. Hurley bought out his partner. The sign on the store simply read Hurley's, and until the stores closed, that was simply enough. During the 1900s and until the early 1910s The Hurley family lived at 708 Broadway. Oddly enough, by 1947 this building had become a tavern, and still is used as such in 2004, having been known over the years as the Towers Bar, Dale's Tavern, and most recently Nefertiti's. By 1914 he had built a mansion on the White Horse Pike at McGill Avenue in Collingswood NJ.

William Leonard Hurley developed his business into tone of the first modern department store chains, with satellite stores throughout South Jersey, and in in Pennsylvania and Delaware as well. He advertised extensively, and sold on credit. He hired well, and many of his top staff spent decades working at the Hurley's. Brothers James V. and Harry A. Moran worked there for over four decades. Experienced in credit and collections, he was among the first merchants to introduce credit at his stores, and sending salesmen into the country with vanloads of merchandise to sell to women who didn't have transportation to get to town.

William Leonard Hurley was a Republican, but never aspired to public office. He was an alternate delegate to the 1912 Republican National Convention. He was on the Board of Directors of the Central Trust, and was involved in the fund-raising drive that culminated in the erection of the Walt Whitman Hotel. He also was active in the affairs of the Church of the Immaculate Conception, of which he was a member. He was among the first officers of the Church of the Immaculate Conception's Lyceum Association along with John J. Burleigh, president; Michael Byrne, vice president; John M. Kelly, recording secretary; James Clark, financial secretary; and the Very Rev. Dean Mulligan. William L. Hurley served as treasurer.   

After a long illness, William Leonard Hurley passed away at Hilton Head, South Carolina on April 23, 1928. His close friend, city planner Charles Wellford Leavitt, passed away the same day at Hartsdale, New York. His son Jerome Hurley succeeded him in the business, along  with the Moran brothers.

Hurley's remained popular until its closing in 1956, brought in part by the economic downturn in Camden, but more so from the lack of a succession plan in the family.


Gately & Hurley

1890s

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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 - May 27, 1898

A. Lincoln James - Albert Stein - John Sinclair - William Selby - Caleb Williams Abraham Jackson - Jacob Hicks - Frederick Laird - Isaac Lovett - Albert Keyser
Robert Miller - John Wagner - Isaac Brown - Thomas Moore - William Harrison
Albert Batten - Martin McNeil - John Wallace - Henry Taliefarro - Joseph Cline
Horace Huelings - George Riley - Owen Macey - Lee S. Mills - Albert Primrose
George Davis - Joseph Wagner - Henry Schafer - Henry Hertline
Joseph Wilgus - John T. Rodan - James Melon - John K. Esler Jr.
Harry C. Kramer - William L. Hurley

Philadelphia Inquirer - July 12, 1899
William L. Hurley - W. Penn Corson

CAMDEN DAILY COURIER - 1902

William Leonard Hurley - Princeton Avenue

Philadelphia Inquirer
February 2, 1905

Catholic Lyceum - B.F. Archer
John J. Burleigh 
William Casselman
William C. Dayton
William L. Hurley 
Frank T. Lloyd Sr.
Mahlon Ivins Sr.
Frederick A. Rex  - John F. Starr
Miss Mary A. Burrough
William Coffin - Richard Devlin
F.W. Marcy - Stephen Pfeil
Miss Laura Peabody - Oliver Smith
Joseph Watson - George Bergen
James S. Woodward 


Philadelphia Inquirer - January 28, 1908

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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

CENTRAL TRUST COMPANY
1906 Officers & Directors
From an 1906 City Directory Ad


A. McCRACKEN, President
C. T. SHARPLESS, Vice-President
T. S. NEKERVIS, Treasurer
C. CHESTER CRAIG, Trust Officer
WILLIAM C. JONES, Solicitor.

====== D I RECTORS ======

A. McCRACKEN
T. S. NEKERVIS
CASPER T. SHARPLESS
CHARLES HELM
CHARLES BOSCH
FITHIAN S. SIMMONS
A. J. FULLMER     
GEORGE A. MUNGER
MAHLON F. IVINS
JESSE W. STARR III
RICHARD F. SMITH
CONRAD SCHWOERER
W. LEONARD HURLEY

WILLIAM C. JONES
KILLIAM E. BENNETT


Philadelphia Inquirer - August 13, 1906
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Alpheus McCracken - W. Leonard Hurley
Central Trust Company

Philadelphia Inquirer - August 29, 1906


Charles H. Ellis - William Leonard Hurley - William Fox
Walter Tushingham - M.W. Taylor -
John Mather - Frank W. Tussey
Charles H. Laird - George Blake - Dr. Wallace McGeorge
Dr. William Martindale - Henry C. Dole - William Sangtinette


Philadelphia Inquirer - May 7, 1910

William Leonard Hurley
North 8th Street - South 9th Street - Mechanic Street

Philadelphia Inquirer - November 30, 1910

Dr. Marcus K. Mines - Dr. Frederick Jones Jr. - Dr. W.P. Wingender - Dr. W.K. Browning
Archer D. Norris - John Wagner  -
Charles G. Garrison - Lewis Hamel - George West
Charles H. Ellis - Clarence Governs - Michael Kirby - William Leonard Hurley - Amelia C. Rouh
Tammany Club - William Black - Redmond Pierson - Charles Redmond - Joseph Ryrie -
James Croker 
Broadway - Ferry Avenue  - Elm Street - Mechanic Street - Clare Street
State Street Methodist Episcopal Church

Hurley's

1915

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Hurley's - 1915


Philadelphia Inquirer - October 27, 1918
F. Morse Archer - National State Bank - William T. Boyle
William J. Strandwitz - Walter J. Staats - E.A. Stoll
David S. Rush Jr. -
E.G.C. Bleakly - James H. Long
William L. Hurley - Francis B. Wallen - Wilbert Pike
Volney Bennett

Camden Courier-Post - January 30, 1928


Hurley Store 50th Anniversary Dinner
Walt Whitman Hotel - April 11, 1939
Supersized Version

Hurley's

1952

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South Jersey A History 1624-1924
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William Leonard Hurley
had built this home in Collingswood NJ by
1914

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This house is on the White Horse Pike in Collingswood NJ at the intersection of the White Horse Pike (Route 30) and McGill Avenue. The Hurley family gave what was known as their Camden suburban home and grounds to a Masonic organization, the Excelsior Scottish Rite around 1930. The building is still here. In 1931 the Rite built an auditorium to the building. In 2003 they entered into an agreement with Collingswood Borough to develop the property into a community arts theater and a ballroom. Tours are available with a member. Also of note on the property is an oak tree that is dated to be about 230 years old.



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.


WILLIAM L. HURLEY
on
Hilton Head Island,
South Carolina

1920s


Camden Courier-Post - April 23, 1928
Camden Evening Courier
WILLIAM L. HURLEY DIES
ON SO. CAROLINA ESTATE;
CHARLES W. LEAVITT DEAD
DEATH STRIKES MERCHANT AT ISLAND HOME
Succumbs to Complications After Long Illness
BODY DUE TO ARRIVE IN CAMDEN WEDNESDAY
Collingswood Priest First to Receive Word;
Hurley Had Colorful Career
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His condition was declared to have improved. At that time the merchant seemed to recognize members of his family but was unable to speak. It was then hoped he might rally to the extent that his removal north would be possible. Nothing further was heard until Father Murphy's message to Father O'Farrell this morning.

During his illness Mr. Hurley had the constant attention of skilled physicians and nurses who were taken to Hilton head. Previous to this last illness he had been in comparative good health. some fifteen years ago he underwent a serious operation  in the famous Mayo hospital at Rochester, Minnesota and only occasionally felt the effects of that ordeal.

On receipt of the announcement of mr. Hurley's death, the Camden and other Hurley stores were closed until after the funeral. They include the stores at Wilkes Barre, Trenton, Wilmington, Atlantic City, and Bridgeton.

Moran stated it is not known what day the funeral will be held. That will be determined by the family on arrival at their West Collingswood home. 

 

Camden Courier-Post - April 23, 1928
Camden Evening Courier
William Leonard Hurley Dies at Hilton Head, S.C., Winter Estate
HURLEY BASED SUCCESS IN LIFE
AND IN BUSINESS ON SQUARE DEAL TO ALL

By BEN COURTER
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Wildey Hall - Fifth Street -  Pine Street

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Broadway - Chestnut Street - Kaighn Avenue - Sycamore Street
Walnut Street - Fuhrman Brothers - Hughes Brothers
E.V. Story - Toone & Hollinshed - Mrs. Varney
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Broadway - Line Street - West Street - Turner Hall
William Kairer - Theodore Lambert - George Leathwhite 
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Committee of 100
David Baird Sr. - E.G.C. Bleakly - Cooper B. Hatch - Harry B. Kramer - Lewis H. Mohrman 
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Third Regiment Armory
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Broadway - Cooper Street
Walt Whitman Hotel - Wilson Building - Non Partisan Movement
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Charles M. Curry - Louis T. DeRousse

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William J. Lorigan - William H. Lorigan
27th Street  - Federal Street - Pine Street - Stevens Street
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Hilton Head
 

Camden Courier-Post - April 23, 1928
Camden Evening Courier

Camden Courier-Post - April 23, 1928
Camden Evening Courier
 

Camden Courier-Post
Camden Evening Courier

April 23, 1928

James V. Moran


Camden Courier-Post - April 24, 1928
Camden Evening Courier
HURLEY FUNERAL IS THURSDAY AT COLLINGSWOOD
Solemn Requiem Mass to be Sung at St. John's Catholic Church
INTERMENT TO BE MADE IN CALVARY CEMETERY

Final Rites Held in New York Today for City Planner Leavitt
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Camden Courier-Post - April 24, 1928
Camden Evening Courier
 

Camden Courier-Post - April 25, 1928
Camden Evening Courier
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Camden Courier-Post
Evening Courier - April 25, 1928



Charles Leo McKeone - Dr. William G. Bailey - Dr. Roland Haines Alfred L. Sayers
Federal Street - Haddon Avenue - Mount Ephraim Avenue

Camden Courier-Post - April 26, 1928
Camden Evening Courier
THRONGS MOURN AS W.L. HURLEY IS LAID TO REST
Thousands Pay Tribute To Merchant Prince at Home In Collingswood
SOLEMN REQUIEM MASS AT ST. JOHN'S CHURCH
Many Follow Funeral Cortege to Mausoleum in Calvary Cemetery
By BEN COURTER
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As Casket Was carried From Hurley Home at Collingswood

Honorary Pallbearers, men prominent in the industrial, the commercial, the professional world were ranged down the steps of Dungarven this morning as the casket carrying the body of William L. Hurley, Camden's merchant prince, was carried to the waiting hearse. Later the cortege wended its way to St. John's Church, where solemn high mass was sung.

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Scene at Chyrch as Hurley's Body is Carried to Chancel

Long before the funeral cortege of William Leonard Hurley reached St. John's Catholic Church, Park and Lees Avenues, Collingswood, scores of men and women, the exalted and the lowly, had gathered. They waited, some an hour or more, until the arrival of the mourners. The little brown church was too small to contain the great host of friends who desired to pay final tribute by attending the solemn high mass celebrated by priests, with many at the right. Scene shows the body being carried into the church.  

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Camden Courier-Post
February 19, 1938

Mrs. William Leonard Hurley
Knights of Columbus
Hotel Walt Whitman


Thanks to Ray Garrison for providing information about the former Hurley estate in Collingswood. 


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