Our County History
by County Historian Marion W. Coplen

A. E. Wertenberger, of South Union street, Warsaw, recently loaned us a map of Warsaw published by Kingman Brothers in 1879. It is especially valuable because it gives a good picture of Warsaw just after it became a city.

We were particularly interested in noting the various industrial establishments shown on this map. At the time the city fathers were engaged in an active campaign to bring industries to Warsaw. Moneyed men in Warsaw were encouraged to buy shares in factories that would come to the city.

The Warsaw Woolen Mills is shown on the east side of North Detroit street just a little north of the Fort Wayne street intersection. The planing and saw mill of A. W. Thomas was at the southwest corner of Center and Columbia streets. Located at the south end of Washington street was a bung factory owned and operated by William L. Standish. On the west side of the court house square at the present site of the Studebaker garage was a grist mill. A foundry and machine shop is shown on West Market street where the Fitzpatrick paint company is today. On Columbia street was a spoke house and bending factory.

A big enterprise in Warsaw at that time was the ice business of O. P. Jacques. His wholesale houses were located on North Detroit street along the lake, and his retail houses were at the north end of Buffalo street.

In describing Mr. Jacques' ice business the 1879 atlas has this to say: "The houses are 30x59 by 30 feet high. During the 'ice season' from 90 to 120 men are employed daily for ten hours each day, at $1.25 per day. The load is about 12 tons to the railroad car. To facilitate loading, they have constructed a side-track to the ice houses, and can readily load a car in from 20 to 30 minutes. The force in operation is capable of cutting and stowing into the house an average of one car-load every five minutes."

We appreciate very much the opportunity of looking over this map which Mr. Wertenberger has in his possession. If any of our other readers have maps or manuscripts which are of value for local history, we would like to hear from you.

Warsaw Times-Union Sat. Jun. 19, 1954