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Employers in St. Louis censuses - Commission and Mission Com House

Employers in St. Louis censuses - Commission and Mission Com House

Posted: 18 Mar 2013 3:46PM GMT
Classification: Query
Surnames: RUETER, KROELL, SCHIENDERJANS/SCHIENDERJAUS, KOLLEY
I am conducting research for a friend whose relatives were from St. Louis. In those records, there is reference to "Commission" as an employer (i.e, he was a driver for "Commission", or a teamster.) Also, there is a reference to a salesman for the Mission Com House. Not being familiar with the area or its history, can anyone provide me with some information on these employers?
Lastly, what was the name of the Candy Factory - it it still there? And did they manufacture a certain kind of candy?
Thank you for your assistance!
Michelle

Re: Employers in St. Louis censuses - Commission and Mission Com House

Posted: 19 Mar 2013 9:28PM GMT
Classification: Query
A little more context might help with all of these questions. What time period are we talking about (which Census?) What part of town did they live in?

For the driver/teamster, my first thought: is it possible that he worked "on commission" rather than for a specific Commission? Could this be a way of saying he was an independent contractor or got paid by the haul?

As far as the candy factory, a few possibilities come to mind. Bissinger's Chocolates is still in business, with a retail location on McPherson in the Central West End and a factory in the Midtown area on Gratoit Street. Here is some information on Bissinger's history:

http://www.bissingers.com/aboutus/aboutus.php?page=history

And a blog post from a local resident who toured their current plant:

http://nickidwyer.typepad.com/nicki/2011/04/in-case-you-miss...

Switzer's Candy was located just north of Downtown along the Riverfront. Here is their history from their current webpage:

http://www.switzercandy.com/about/our-story

Finally, there was a candy factory in deep south St. Louis (possibly in Lemay, St. Louis County) which made SweetTrats. I don;t think they opened until the 1950's, and closed within the last 5 years.

Nothing comes to mind for "Mission Com House."

Hope this helps!

Tim

Re: Employers in St. Louis censuses - Commission and Mission Com House

Posted: 19 Mar 2013 11:48PM GMT
Classification: Query
Thank you, Tim, and apologies for not being more specific. The censuses were between 1910 and 1940. What I learned this morning (after my friend spoke with an 87 year old aunt) is that Commission was a euphemism for "...Commission Row or Produce Row. It was an area that had rows of different produce houses where retailers (grocery stores) would buy produce. It was on 3rd street off Washington Ave." This makes sense as the son of the "Commission Driver" becomes a vegetable Salesman! Wondering if the Mission Com House (where he was a salesman also) might somehow be related. In addition, the Candy stores were National Candy Company on Gravois Street near Chippewa (STL) and Marvoks (spelling?) Candy Company (STL).
Thank you for the links. I will definitely be looking at that information, as well.
Next stop - info on the Sanitarium on Arsenal off Kings Highway. (I've not lived or have any relatives in the St. Louis area, so I have MUCH to learn).
Thanks again, Tim! I appreciate your assistance!
Michelle

Re: Employers in St. Louis censuses - Commission and Mission Com House

Posted: 20 Mar 2013 3:01PM GMT
Classification: Query
Hi Michelle:

Very interesting! Produce Row is still there, but it is now located about 1.5 miles north of Washington Avenue near Broadway and North Market. I never heard it referred to as Commission Row.

I didn't think of National Candy, but I know that building. I think the third street bordering the block is Meramec. Here is some information about the building, from when it was added to the National Register of Historic Places:

http://route66news.com/2009/11/13/st-louis-factory-building-...

I believe the City Sanitorium is now referred to as the Psychiatric Rehabilitation Hospital. The original building is a beautiful coupola-domed structure visible from almost anywhere in the southwest part of the city. Here's a bit more information:

http://dmh.mo.gov/slprc/history.htm
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