Friday, February 26, 2010

Victorian Houses: Where did they get all that cool stuff?

It is what we love about Victoriana, the intricacies, the trim, the details. So where did they get all that cool stuff in the 1890's in Cincinnati?
Well they didn't have Home Depot or Lowes back them but surprisingly Cincinnati was one of the Centers for decorative artisans. Tile companies, Tinworks, wrought iron works all of which thrived and flourished here, and they all had those "new fangled' mail order catalogs so Cincinnati products were shipped far and wide. The city was major supply center.
Looking Back at old Cincinnati Advertisements gives us look at just what things were like back in the glory days of this city. You didn't have"mail away' for it either, it was all right here in Cincinnati.
The Bortoli & Co, located at 112 West Sixth, was purveyor of superior productions in Mosaic and flooring. In fact they were silver medal winners at the California Industrial Exposition in San Francisco in 1893! Cincinnati Mosaic flooring can in fact be found in many of the Grand Painted Ladies of San Francisco!
If you desired an elaborate Victorian fence you merely went to see the W. C. Gholson fence Company at 140 Gilbert Avenue. In fact as their ad states you just take the Walnut Hills Cable. Imagine that! Public transportation all over the city!
Not far away at 500 Gilbert was John Jansen who did galvanized Tin work. Many of the elaborate Dormer windows finials and cresting's we all admire came John Jansen.

If you needed those Victorian awnings ( all the rage of fashion) to keep your house cool on those hot summer days you would have called John Eger Awning,Tent and Flag Manufacturer located on the Southeast corner of 8th and Main.
Of course you needed to pick yup that special wallpaper to impress your visitors as they entered your formal parlor and there were dozens of places in Cincinnati that sold the latest in Wallpaper fashions. You could go to Marzinzek and Stone at 554 Main street or perhaps you would see Louis Zeller Jr. at 422 Central Ave. Not only did they sell wallpaper but also offered a cleaning service , a highly desired service as the city was covered with soot from all the manufacturing that once went on here.
In future blogs we will look back at other local businesses from "Back in the Day."


fordmw said...

Fabulous post, Paul. Enjoyed it. Also mega snaps on getting the Gamble initiative going.

Paul Wilham said...

Glad you enjoyed the post.

There are a ton of dedicateed people working on the Gamble housee, I am just a voice of many!