LeRoy McVey Bickett


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George Hutton Anderson was born May 29, 1876, in the Village of Morrow, Salem Twp., Warren Co., OH, and died January 3, 1932, in the Village of Morrow, Salem Twp., Warren Co., OH, at age 55. Buried in Morrow Cemetery, Morrow, Salem Co., OH. He is the son of Jonah Anderson of Ohio and Hannah M. Ford of Ohio. He was a Funeral Director.

Gertrude Pearl Patricia "Gertie" Baker was born February 10, 1880, in the Village of Yellow Springs, Miami Twp., Greene Co., OH, and died October 21, 1968, at St. Joseph's Home for the Aged, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI, at age 88. Buried in Oak Hill Cemetery, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI. She is the daughter of William Penn Baker of Miami Twp., Greene Co., OH, and Helen Margaret Gebauer of Olan, Silesia, Prussia, Germany.

George Hutton Anderson (age 20) and Gertrude Pearl Patricia "Gertie" Baker (age 17) eloped April 28, 1897, and were married April 29, 1897, in Covington, Kenton Co., KY.

George Hutton Anderson and Gertrude Pearl Patricia "Gertie" (Baker) Anderson had no children.

The Anderson-Baker marriage was quickly annulled, and Gertrude Pearl Patricia "Gertie" (Baker) Anderson assumed her maiden name.

George Hutton Anderson then married Ruth Mae Ford.

Ruth Mae "May E." Ford was born December 27, 1878, in Maineville, Warren Co., OH,, and died April 22, 1961, in Silver Spring, Montgomery Co., MD, at age  82. Buried in Morrow Cemetery, Morrow, Salem Co., OH. She is the daughter of Charles Latham Ford of Gray, Cumberland Co., ME, and Caroline Ward "Carrie" Bramble of Madisonville, Hamilton Co., OH.

George Hutton Anderson and Ruth Mae Ford were married January 5, 1897, in Ohio.

George Hutton Anderson and Ruth Mae (Ford) Anderson had three children:

  1. Harry Ford Anderson: Born February 18, 1898, in the Village of Morrow, Salem Twp., Warren Co., OH; Died November 22, 1978, in Washington, DC (age 80). Married May 13, 1924, in Ohio, to Marguerite Elizabeth (Weaver) Besuden: Born August 21, 1890, in Toledo, Lucas Co., OH; Died November 20, 1973, in Washington, DC (age 83). Harry was a Medical Doctor. Marguerite was first married August 21, 1916, in Cincinnati, Hamilton Co., OH, to Frederick Frank Besuden: Born May 8, 1883, in Columbia Twp., Hamilton Co., OH; Died February 24, 1919, at his home, Montgomery, Hamilton Co., OH, due to Influenza (age 35). Buried in Spring Grove Cemetery, Cincinnati, Hamilton Co., OH. At the time of his marriage, Frederick was a Quarryman.
  2. Willard Earl Anderson: Born December 18, 1899, in the Village of Morrow, Salem Twp., Warren Co., OH; Died March 3, 1957, in Knox Co., OH (age 57). Buried in Spring Valley Cemetery, Spring Valley Twp., Greene Co., OH. Married Unknown to Mary Margaret Miars: Born March 1, 1900, in Spring Valley Twp., Greene Co., OH; Died November 23, 1981, in Golden, Jefferson Co., CO (age 81). Buried in Spring Valley Cemetery, Spring Valley Twp., Greene Co., OH. Divorced about 1940 in Unknown. Mary married (2) July 31, 1943, to Joseph Berton Polin: Born August 8, 1918, in Reedy, WV; Died February 28, 2005, at Majora Lane Care Center, Millersburg, Holmes Co., OH (age 86).
  3. Geneva Mae Anderson: Born May 29, 1907, in the Village of Morrow, Salem Twp., Warren Co., OH; Died June 28, 1938, at Christ Hospital, Cincinnati, Hamilton Co., OH (age 31). Buried in Morrow Cemetery, Morrow, Salem Co., OH. She committed suicide by shooting herself. Married about 1930 to George Thomas Morrison II: Born September 25, 1907, in Cincinnati, Hamilton Co., OH; Died December 5, 1986, at Kettering Medical Center, Kettering, Warren Co., OH (age 79). Buried in Arlington Memorial Gardens, Mount Healty, Hamilton Co., OH. Geneva's son is also buried in Morrow Cemetery.

Gertrude Pearl Patricia "Gertie" (Baker) Anderson then married LeRoy McVey "Roy" Bickett.

LeRoy McVey "Roy" Bickett was born May 1, 1883, in Xenia, Xenia Twp., Greene Co., OH, and died May 4, 1958, in Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI, at age 75. Buried in Oak Hill Cemetery, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI. He is the son of George McVey Bickett of Xenia Twp., Greene Co., OH, and Ruth Elizabeth Simons of Clark Co., OH. 

LeRoy McVey "Roy" Bickett (age 28) and Gertrude Pearl Patricia "Gertie" (Baker) Anderson (age 31) were married June 8, 1911, in the Village of Yellow Springs, Miami Twp., Greene Co., OH.

LeRoy McVey "Roy" Bickett and Gertrude Pearl Patricia "Gertie" (Baker) (Anderson) Bickett had two children:

  1. Helen Means Bickett: Born August 28, 1912, in the Village of Yellow Springs, Miami Twp., Greene Co., OH; Died October 25, 1988, in Elkhorn, Walworth Co., WI (age 76). Buried in Oak Hill Cemetery, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI. Married October 16,1938, in Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI, to Victor George Edward Fiegel: Born October 16, 1910, in Little Rock, Pulaski Co., AR; Died November 9, 1985, in Elkhorn, Walworth Co., WI (age 75). Buried in Oak Hill Cemetery, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI.
  2. Ruth Gertrude Bickett: Born December 23, 1916, in the Village of Yellow Springs, Miami Twp., Greene Co., OH; Died February 5, 1987, at Watertown Memorial Hospital, Watertown, Dodge Co., WI (age 70). Inurnment in Sunland Memorial Park, Sun City, Maricopa Co., AZ. Married March 2, 1940, in Dubuque, Dubuque Co., IA, to Wilbur Almo "Bill" Larson: Born June 14, 1913, in Farmington Twp., Waupaca Co., WI; Died October 19, 1996, at his home Las Vegas, Clark Co., NV (age 83). Inurnment in Sunland Memorial Park, Sun City, Maricopa Co., AZ.



TIMELINE


   

   

LeRoy McVey "Roy" Bickett and Gertrude Pearl Patricia "Gertie" (Baker) (Anderson) Bickett are buried in Oak Hill Cemetery, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI.


George Hutton Anderson was born May 29, 1876, in the Village of Morrow, Salem Twp., Warren Co., OH. Jonah Anderson was a Wool Dealer in the Village of Morrow, Salem Twp., Warren Co., OH, in 1880.

Gertrude Pearl Patricia Baker was born February 10, 1880, in the Village of Yellow Springs, Miami Twp., Greene Co., OH. She was named after the three daughters of William Means (Gertrude, Pearl and Patricia) who Gertrude's mother was a housekeeper for in Yellow Springs, OH.

The 1880 U. S. Census taken on June 28, 1880, shows William P. Baker (age 40) born in Ohio to Pennsylvania and Ohio-born parents is a House Painter living in the Village of Yellow Springs, Miami Twp., Greene Co., OH. Living with him is Helen M. Baker (age 34) born in Silesia to Silesia-born parents. Living with them are Baker children, all born in Ohio to Ohio and Silesia-born parents: Albert M. Baker (age 2); and Gertrude P. Baker (age 4/12). Also living there is William's brother-in-law, Charles Gerhardt (age 15) born in Ohio to Silesia-born parents.

The 1880 U. S. Census taken on June 9, 1880, shows George Bickett (age 28) born in Ohio to Ohio-born parents is a Plumber living on Hinling Street, 3rd Ward, City of Xenia, Xenia Twp., Greene Co., OH. Living with him is his wife Elizabeth Bickett (age 27) born in Ohio to Ohio-born parents. Also living at home are their children born in Ohio: Arnold Bickett (age 4); and Maud Bickett (age 2). Also living there was a boarder, William Simons (age 25) who was a Coal Merchant. Leigh Larson note: William Simons is the brother of Ruth Elizabeth (Simons) Bickett.

Leroy McVey Bickett was born May 1, 1883, in Xenia, Xenia Twp., Greene Co., OH.


JPG Gertrude Baker.jpg (131488 bytes)

Gertrude Pearl Patricia Baker, Ohio, about 1888.


George Hutton Anderson (age 20) and Gertrude Pearl Patricia "Gertie" Baker (age 17) eloped April 28, 1897, and were married April 29, 1897, in Covington, Kenton Co., KY.


The Xenia Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Tuesday, May 4, 1897

A dispatch from Springfield states that it was learned to-day that Gertrude Baker, the 17-year-old daughter of a prominent merchant of Yellow Springs, who eloped last Wednesday with Geo. Anderson, the son of a wealthy citizen of Morrow, near Cincinnati, is at her home in Yellow Springs. The young couple came here, where they took a train for Cincinnati and were married in Covington, Ky., Thursday morning. The young lady then returned to this city, where her mother found her Saturday. Miss Baker is considered the most beautiful girl in Yellow Springs, being a brunette of strikingly handsome face and figure and her elopement has caused the greatest sensation of recent years there. She and young Anderson were students at Antioch college, where they became infatuated with one another. Leigh Larson note: Morrow is a small Village located in Warren Co., OH.


The Anderson-Baker marriage was quickly annulled, and Gertrude assumed her maiden name.

George Hutton Anderson and Ruth Mae Ford were married January 5, 1897, in Ohio.

The 1900 U. S. Census taken on June 14, 1900, shows George M. Bickett (age 48) born September 1851 in Ohio to Ohio-born parents is a Plumber married for 24 years and is living in his own home in Xenia, Xenia Twp., Greene Co., OH. Living with him is his wife, Ruth E. Bickett (age 47) born in Ohio to New York-born parents, with 5 of her 6 children still alive. Also living at home are his children, all unmarried and born in Ohio to Ohio-born parents: Arnold R. Bickett (age 23) born August 1876, not employed and can not read or write; Maud F. Bickett (age 22) born February 1878 and not employed; Leroy Mc Bickett (age 18) born May 1882 and is a Blacksmith; Manley E. Bickett (age 14) born September 1885; and Dora A. Bickett (age 11) born August 1888.

The 1900 U. S. Census taken on June 7, 1900, shows William P. Baker (age 61) born May 1839 in Ohio to Unknown and Ohio-born parents is a House Painter owning his own home on North College Street, Yellow Springs, Miami Twp., Greene Co., OH. Living with him is his wife of 26 years, Helen Baker (age 55) born October 1844 in Prussia to Prussian-born parents and having emigrated in 1857. Also living there are their two unmarried children, born in Ohio to Ohio and Prussian-born parents: Albert M. Baker (age 22) born December 1878 a College Student; and Gertrude P. P. Baker (age 20) born February 1880, a College Student. Also there is William's unmarried brother-in-law, Charles G. Gerhardt (age 36) born January 1864 in Ohio to Prussian-born parents, a Carpenter.

The 1900 U. S. Census taken on June 6, 1900, shows Clara M. Harrigan (age 29) born October 1870 in Wisconsin to Swedish-born parents with 2 of the 3 children born to her still living and having Inherited Income is a divorcee owning her own home free of a mortgage and living in Amherst, Portage Co., WI. Living with her are her children, both born in Wisconsin to English Canadian and Wisconsin-born parents: Winnefred M. Harrigan (age 7) born August 1892; and Wesley W. Harrigan (age 4) born September 1895.


The Xenia Daily Gazette and Torchlight, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Wednesday, December 11, 1901

ALLEGED VIOLATOR GAME LAW RELEASED BY HABEAS CORPUS PROCEEDINGS.

Leroy Bickett, of this city, employed at the Xenia shoe factory, was given his liberty yesterday just as he was about to be committed to the workhouse for an alleged violation of the game law. Bickett was arrested by Edward Huff, deputy state game warden, and was charged with killing rabbits unlawfully. The affidavit was made Nov. 9th last and Bickett entered a plea of guilty to the charge before Raymond Swadner, justice of the peace of Bath township. He was fines $25 and costs but was given a chance to pay, the failure to do so being thirty days in the works. The amount was not paid and Bickett was taken into custody yesterday, but before the prisoner could be taken to the works Attorney Marcus Shoup secured a writ of habeas corpus in the Probate Court. The statute provides that before a case violation of the game law can be prosecuted that the game warden must either witness the commitment of the offense or must have the approval of the prosecuting attorney. This was not stated in the commitment papers and on these grounds Bickett was given his liberty by Judge Dean.


The Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Monday, April 13, 1903

Several of the boys who have been employed at the Xenia shoe factory resigned on Saturday and went to work this morning at the National Cash Register works at Dayton. Among the number were Will Jenks, John Fudge and LeRoy Bickett.


On August 17, 1903, LeRoy McVey Bickett was a 3rd Sergeant, 4th Infantry, Ohio National Guard, as they left for training at Camp McKinley, at Newark, OH.


The Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Thursday, June 16, 1904

Mr. Roy Bickett, who has been employed in the Xenia shoe factory, left Thursday for Horse Shoe, N. Y., where he expects to take a position with a large lumber firm. A place has been obtained for him by Capt. Charles Bull, who has been located at the point named for several weeks. Mr. Bull is acting as a stenographer and bookkeeper and telegraph operator for the firm, which is a very wealthy one, operating in the lumber business very extensively, and his position is a good one.


The 1905 New York State Census taken on June 1, 1905, shows Leroy M. Bickett (age 22) born in the United States, is a Shoe Cutter, and is Boarding at 131 Herkimer Street, Borough of Brooklyn, Kings Co., NY.

On March 8, 1906, LeRoy McVey Bickett was commissioned a Lieutenant in the Ohio National Guard.

On April 27, 1907, LeRoy McVey Bickett was a 1st Lieutenant in Xenia's Company I, 3rd Regiment, Ohio National Guard, and was determined to be the best appearing company in the state yet inspected.


LeRoy McVey Bickett was a 1st Lieutenant in Xenia's Company I, 3rd Regiment, Ohio National Guard. Article from The Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Saturday, April 27, 1907.


Mr. Bickett became identified with the rubber industry in 1908.


The Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Friday, September 24, 1909

Mr. Roy Bickett is ill at his home on Spring Hill, suffering with typhoid fever. Mr. Bickett has been employed in Akron.


The 1910 U. S. Census taken on April 16, 1910, shows Geo. M. Bickett (age 57) born in Ohio to Ohio-born parents is a Plumber in a Shop married for 35 years living in his own home at 242 South Chestnut Street, Xenia, Xenia Twp., Greene Co., OH. Living with him is his wife Ruth E. Bickett (age 56) born in Ohio to New York-born parents, with 5 of her 6 children still alive. Also living at home are all five of the living children, all unmarried and born in Ohio: Arnold R. Bickett (age 34) and not employed and can not read or write; Maud F. Bickett (age 32) and not employed; LeRoy M. Bickett (age 26) is employed in Tire Repairing in a Shop; Earl M. Bickett (age 24) and not employed; and Agnes Bickett (age 21) who is a School Teacher in a Public School.

The 1910 U.S. Census taken on April 29, 1910, shows Marie H. Baker (age 64) born in Germany to German-born parents and emigrating in 1865 with 2 of her 4 children still alive is a widowed head of household owning her home on North College Street, Village of Yellow Springs, Miami Twp., Greene Co., OH. Living with her is her unmarried daughter, Gertrude P. Baker (age 30) born in Ohio to Ohio and German-born parents, who is a School Teacher.

The 1910 U. S. Census taken on April 18, 1910, shows Clara Harrigan (age 38) born in Wisconsin to Swedish-born parents is a divorcee renting her own home and living at 515 Milwaukee Street, 7th Ward, City of Milwaukee, Milwaukee Co., WI. Living with her are her children, both born in Wisconsin to English Canadian and Wisconsin-born parents: Winefred Harrigan (age 17) a Stenographer for Automobiles; and Wesley Harrigan (age 14).


The Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Saturday, March 12, 1910

Mr. Roy Bickett, who is employed by the Goodyear Rubber Company, of Akron, is spending a few days at his home, in this city.


The Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Friday, April 29, 1910

ADDITIONAL LOCALS.

Messrs. Roy Bickett and Archie Dean, two well known Xenia men, have gone into business in Dayton, having become members of the Globe Vulcanizing & Rubber Company of that city. Mr. Bickett, who has been employed for some time by a big rubber plant at Akron, is the manager of the Dayton company. The other members of the firm are Dayton men named W. H. Overpack and F. N. Trissel.

Leigh Larson note: Globe Vulvanizing and Supply Co., Dayton. $10,000.


The Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Monday, May 16, 1910


LeRoy McVey "Roy" Bickett (age 28) and Gertrude Pearl Patricia "Gertie" (Baker) Anderson (age 31) were married June 8, 1911, in the Village of Yellow Springs, Miami Twp., Greene Co., OH.


The Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Saturday, June 10, 1911

PRETTY WEDDING AT YELLOW SPRINGS

Miss Gertrude Baker Becomes Bride of Leroy McVay Bickett, of This City.

In the presence of members of the family and a few intimate friends, Miss Gertrude Baker became the bride of Leroy McVay Bickett, of this city, at the home of her mother, Mrs. William Baker, in Yellow Springs, at 7:45 o'clock Thursday evening. The Rev. William Graham, the bride's pastor, officiated. The home was adorned in masses of roses and other summer flowers, and the marriage service took place before a bank of blossoms. The bride was charming in a white lingerie gown, and she carried roses. There were no attendants and the bridegroom and bride entered together. The wedding march from Lohengrin was played by Miss Williams. A dainty wedding supper followed the service, and later in the evening Mr. and Mrs. Bickett went by automobile to Springfield, starting from there on a brief honeymoon trip. They will live in Yellow Springs. Mr. Bickett, who is now in business in Dayton as a member of the Globe Vulcanizing and Rubber Company, is a well known and popular Xenia young man. He is director of the new band recently organized in this city. His bride is a charming girl, who for some time has been a teacher in the Yellow Springs schools.


The Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Saturday, June 17, 1911

YELLOW SPRINGS

Mr. and Mrs. LeRoy Bickett, (nee, Gertrude Baker), who were recently married, will reside here with Mrs. Bickett's mother. Mr. Bickett is a prominent business man in Dayton, and his bride is one of the estimable and charming young ladies of this city. We wish the happy couple much joy and happiness in the future.


This is the picture of LeRoy McVey "Roy" Bickett that Gertrude Pearl Patricia "Gertie" (Baker) (Anderson) Bickett kept in the locket she wore. Probably from their wedding day.


The American Machinist, Hill Publishing Co., 505 Pearl Street, New York, NY, July 20, 1911

The Globe Vulcanizing and Supply Company, Dayton, Ohio, has been incorporated to do repair work and vulcanizing on automobiles. Incorporators, WW. H. Overpack, F. A. Dean, L. M. Beckett, etc. Capital, $10,000.


Helen Means Bickett was born August 28, 1912, in the Village of Yellow Springs, Miami Twp., Greene Co., OH.


The Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Friday, September 12, 1913

NEW ENTERPRISE STARTED IN XENIA

LeRoy M. Bickett Engages in Manufacture of Mechanical Rubber Goods--Auto Service Department.

Mr. LeRoy M. Bickett is the proprietor and manager of a new enterprise started in this city, which bids fair to become one of Xenia's leading and most prosperous concerns. It is a manufacturing concern with all kinds of mechanical rubber goods will be made, including auto tire accessories and a general line of molded goods. In this line of goods the rubber will be converted from its raw state, as it comes from the trees, into the finished product. A complete equipment is being installed to this work, which will be done under the personal direction of Mr. Bickett, who has a number of years' experience in this work. For several years he was connected with the Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company and during the past two years he has been employed by the Springfield Tire and Rubber Company as manager of the Auto Tire and Experimental departments. Mr. Bickett is a Xenia man. He is energetic and thoroughly acquainted with the business in which he is embarking and will undoubtedly meet with success. Locally the concern will be known as the Auto Service Company. All kinds of auto and motorcycle supplies will be carried and the tire repairing will be a specialty. The factory is located at 44 West Main street and is now open for business.


The Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Wednesday, September 17, 1913

Leroy M. Bickett of this place, has opened an auto repair shop in Xenia. Mr. Bickett is a practical auto man, having had a good deal of experience in that line.


LeRoy McVey Bickett worked at a bicycle shop in Dayton, OH; then as a vulcanizer in a rubber factory in Springfield, OH. In 1911 Roy was a shareholder in the Globe Rubber Company in Dayton, OH. In 1913 or 1914 he formed the Xenia Rubber Mfg. Co. in Xenia, OH, after five years of experience with several large rubber manufacturers.


The Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Tuesday, April 7, 1914

YELLOW SPRINGS

Mr. and Mrs. Albert Baker and children of Weeden, Canada, are visiting their mother, Mrs. Helen Baker.


The Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, July 3, 1914

MANY CITIES WANT XENIA RUBBER CO.

Offers are Received From Nearly 40 Places - Company Prefers to Stay Here.

The Xenia Rubber Company, which was recently incorporated with a capital stock of $40,000, has received about forty offers from various cities of the country which are anxious to have the plant locate within their boundaries. At the time the new incorporation papers were filed one of the trade journals published an announcement to the effect that the company was considering a proposition to locate in Dayton. Immediately the offers began to pour in from the boards of trade and industrial organizations from cities in every part of the country. Among the cities from which offers were received were Los Angeles, Chattanooga, Parkersburg, W. Va., Ithaca, N. Y., Cincinnati, St. Louis, Columbus, O., Keokuk, Iowa, and other places. However, none of the se propositions were considered. In the first place, the company originally had no intention of leaving Xenia, and in the second place, if it should decide to leave it would accept offers from places nearer home than those mentioned. London and Yellow Springs are two of the nearby places that are endeavoring to secure the local plant. The public spirited citizens of the latter place have a committee that is hard at work endeavoring to secure the necessary stock subscriptions, and the prospects are bright that the money will be raised. The company has made no effort to sell any of the stock in Xenia. Mr. L. M. Bickett, the manager of the company, informed a Gazette representative Friday morning that a number of local men that had offered to buy stock in the company, without being solicited, but that not a dollar's worth had been sold as it had been decided not to place any of the stock on the market until it was definitely decided just what the company's plans would be. There are tow Dayton and two Jamestown men who are financially interested with Mr. Bickett in the enterprise. The interest of these men is placed at $9500 and when the stock is issued these men will have shares representing that amount. It is planned to sell $18,000 of the stock, which is the amount needed for the building and equipping of the proposed new factory. The balance of the stock will be treasury stock. The company's present plant is far inadequate to take care of the requirements of the business. The plant has a mill, engine, boilers, tubing machines and a large number of molds for the manufacturing of rubber accessories. In the proposed new plant additional milling capacity is desired and other machinery will be installed to take care of the firm's growing business. The company has been doing a prosperous business in the manufacture of rubber novelties. One of the principal products of the factory has been a patent hot water bandage, and the present indications are that 40,000 to 50,000 of these will be turned out within the next six months. Carriage tires will be one of the new products of the new plant. The company expects to construct a new factory building which will be about 140 by 40 feet in dimensions. This will be but one floor but there will be a deep basement where the mills and engine room will be located. "We would prefer to stay in Xenia," said Mr. Bickett to the Gazette this morning. "The location of the city is splendidly adapted for a rubber plant, and the shipping facilities here are as good as could be desired. We expect to decide the matter of the location within a few days." This company has without doubt splendid prospects, and it is to be hoped that it will not be allowed to leave the city. It is understood that a number of local citizens are taking an interest in the matter and that a movement is on foot to sell the stock in Xenia. This would mean that the plant would stay here and the city is assured a very valuable industry.


The Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Tuesday, May 11, 1915

XENIA COMPANY BUYS HOME CITY RUBBER CONCERN

DEAL CLOSED MONDAY FOR THE PURCHASE OF STOCK, EQUIPMENT AND BUSINESS OF THE SPRINGFIELD TIRE AND RUBBER COMPANY.

With the stock and equipment the business of the Springfield Tire and Rubber Company was taken over in a deal signed Monday in Springfield by which the Xenia Rubber Company becomes the owner of the Home City concern. The equipment and machinery alone are valued at $20,000 while the business in a flourishing condition is equally as valuable. The consideration was not made public. All of the equipment and stock will be brought to this city and appropriated for the extension work of the local company. It is necessary to find new quarters to accommodate the new equipment and take care of the rapidly increasing business. Several sites are under consideration but the officers were unwilling to state which might be selected although they admitted that there was a favored place, - in Xenia. The Springfield Tire and Rubber Company was one of the most flourishing industries in the state until they were ordered out of their quarters by the owner of the building. The same difficulty in finding a suitable place was confronted by them and finally given up and it was decided to dispose of the machinery and business. In the correspondence of the firm are business letters from Bombay, India, Buenos Aires and other large points in foreign countries. That the acquisition of the business of the new firm will be a big asset to the business of the local firm may be realized from this indication of the extent of business carried on by the Springfield firm. All of the energies at the local plant are now practically directed toward the completion of immense orders for the new composition polishing wheel. This article has met an instant demand upon the market and is having wonderful sales. Manufacturers and men engaged in nearly every walk of life find use for this new polisher. Under the management of L. M. Bickett, the Xenia Rubber Company has grown into a concern of prominence in a remarkably short period of time. Not only is the prominence marked in this city, where the company is looked upon as one of the city's boomers, but all over the state in manufacturing circles and especially in the rubber industries. As soon as the available location is secured and buildings erected to accommodate the new machinery the wheels will be started in motion  on a far larger scale, which will subsequently entail the employment of more men and will bring more people to Xenia.


Xenia Rubber Manufacturing Co., Xenia, Ohio.

Mechanical (M), Heels & Soles (HS), Tire Accessories (TA), Druggists' Sundries (D), Dental Oum (Dl), Surgical Sundries (Su). Pres., J. H. Sanders; Vice-Pres., L. M. Bickett; Sec, L. W. Hunter; Treas., G. G. McClain; Purch. Agts., L. W. Hunter & L. M. Bickett.


The Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Friday, April 28, 1916

XENIA RUBBER CO. LEASES ITS PROPERTY

COMPANY OF CINCINNATI MEN TAKE LEASE ON PROPERTY OF LOCAL COMPANY AND WILL FORM AN OPERATING COMPANY OF WHICH MR. L. M. BICKETT WILL BE MANAGER

The Xenia Rubber Manufacturing Company, yesterday leased its plant, real estate and equipment to a party of Cincinnati men, who expect to form a company and operate the business at a greatly increased capacity. The arrangements for making the lease were ratified yesterday at a meeting of the stockholders, and the plan becomes effective immediately. The Xenia Rubber Manufacturing Company will continue as a holding company, but the plant will be operated by the new company. The Xenia Rubber Manufacturing Company has been in existence for three years, and within the last year purchased the Belden mill property at Old Town, and moved its plant to that point from this city, but retains its offices on West Main street. The plant has been a rapidly growing industry, and has been handling large orders. L. M. Bickett will continue with the new company, as general manager. 


Ruth Gertrude Bickett was born December 23, 1916, in Yellow Springs, Greene Co., OH.


The Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Tuesday, December 26, 1916

YELLOW SPRINGS

Mr. and Mrs. Leroy Bickett are the parents of a baby daughter, born Saturday afternoon.


The family lived in the Village of Yellow Springs until moving to Wisconsin in 1917.


Gertrude and Ruth Bickett, Village of Yellow Springs, Greene Co., OH, 1917.


In 1917, the Xenia Rubber Mfg. Co. was sold to a group of Milwaukee industrialists who organized the Everwear Rubber Co. and the business was transferred to Milwaukee, Mr. Bickett becoming General Manager of the Milwaukee organization.


The Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Monday, July 16, 1917

RUBBER PLANT SOLD AND WILL BE MOVED AWAY

The Old Town Rubber Company, and The Xenia Rubber Company, with a combined capitalization of $70,000, have sold their interest and holdings in the rubber manufacturing plant at Oldtown, to Milwaukee capitalists. The deal by which the sale was made, was completed Saturday. The equipment of the Old Town plant will be moved at once to Milwaukee, where a company which will probably be incorporated as The Wisconsin Rubber Company, will continue the manufacturing of rubber products along the same lines, but on a much more extensive scale than was done while the plant was situated here. Roy Bickett, who originated the Xenia Rubber Company, and who is vice president of The Old Town Rubber Company, and secretary of the Xenia Rubber Company, will go to Milwaukee, and will be factory manager and superintendent for the new company. His sister, Miss Agnes Bickett, who has been bookkeeper at the Old Town plant, will also go to Milwaukee to take a similar position with the new corporation. The Xenia Rubber Company, capitalized at $40,000, is the holding company, owning the real estate, buildings and equipment of the rubber factory at Old Town. The Old Town Rubber Company, capitalized at $30,000 is the operating company. The real estate and buildings will be sold and the equipment moved to Milwaukee. Robert Kuhn, a Cincinnati capitalist, is the president, and principal stock owner of the Old Town Rubber Company. He intended the business for his son, Robert Kuhn, Jr., who is secretary and treasurer of the concern, and has been actively engaged in the work. The son recently joined a branch of the military service and has already joined his command. The Xenia Rubber Company was started in this city in 1913 by Roy Bickett. It manufactured several rubber products in the plant on West Main street. Afterward it was moved to the Old Town property, and some time later The Old Town Rubber Company was formed. The plant now employs 35 people and its chief article of manufacture is rubber heels. L. S. Pease of Milwaukee, a corporation lawyer, is here representing the Milwaukee people who will take over the plant. D. N. Russell of Cincinnati is here representing the Kuhn interest in the companies. Mr. Bickett, who originated the rubber manufacturing business in this city, worked hard, and brought the business to a point where it has become an industry which promises to develop into a large concern. He received little encouragement from local capital, but strangers were quick to see the possibilities of the industry.


The Clinton County Democrat, Wilmington, Clinton Co., OH, July 26, 1917

It is announced that the interests of the Oldtown Rubber Company and the Xenia Rubber Company in the manufacturing plant at Oldtown have been sold to Milwaukee capitalists and the equipment of the plant will be moved to that city at once. Roy Bickett, vice president of the Oldtown company and secretary of the Xenia company, will go to Milwaukee as factory manager and superintendent. 


The Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Wednesday, August 29, 1917

WORK OF MOVING RUBBER PLANT HAS BEEN COMPLETED

Work of moving the equipment of The Xenia and Old Town Rubber Companies from the plant at Old Town, was completed last Saturday. The equipment, stock and materials on hand were moved to Philadelphia, where the company which purchased the interests of The Xenia Rubber Company, and The Old Town Rubber Company, will establish a rubber manufactory on a much larger scale. Roy Bickett, who was manager of the Xenia Rubber Company, and his sister, Miss Agnes, started Sunday for Philadelphia, where they will be connected with the new plant. D. H. Russell, of Cincinnati, who was superintendent of the Old Town Rubber Company for Mr. Kuhn, has returned to Cincinnati.


The Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Tuesday, October 2, 1917

YELLOW SPRINGS

Mr. Leroy Bickett and family and Mrs. Helen Baker left Sunday for their new home in Milwaukee, Wis.


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Helen and Ruth Bickett, photos taken at the Burnam Studio, Mitchell Building, Springfield, OH, 1917.


The Evening Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Wednesday, April 10, 1918

YELLOW SPRINGS

Mr. and Mrs. L. M. Bickett and children and Mrs. Helen Baker, who spent the winter in Milwaukee, where Mr. Bickett is in business, returned home Friday.


The Evening Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Wednesday, June 4, 1918

YELLOW SPRINGS

Wednesday, June 12.

Leroy Bickett of Milwaukee, Wis., spent the past week here with his family.


The Evening Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Tuesday, July 16, 1918

MISS AGNES BICKETT WEDS A TEXAS MAN

Miss D. Agnes Bickett, daughter of Mrs. George Bickett of Yellow Springs, became the bride of Willoughby J. Chapman of Galveston, Texas, Monday, the quiet service taking place at the home of the officiating clergyman, the Rev. D. D. Dodds, on East Market street. The bridal pair was unattended. The bride wore a tailored suit in taupe. Following the ceremony Mr. and Mrs. Chapman started for Cleveland, and they will visit Mr. Chapman's mother and sisters in that city and Akron. They expect to be in Yellow Springs for a short visit before going to their home in Galveston. Mr. Chapman, who is an Englishman by birth, is a wholesale grocer and dealer in ship supplies at Galveston. Mrs. Chapman has been in Milwaukee for the past year, having been engaged there as bookkeeper for The Petley Rubber Manufacturing Company. She came home two weeks ago to prepare for her marriage.


The WWI Draft Registration Card and Registrar's Report dated September 12, 1918, at Milwaukee, WI, shows Leroy McVey Bickett was judged OK. L M Bickett signed his name on the form. Tall Height, Stout Build, Dk Brown Hair and Gray Eyes. He is employed as Superintendent of Petley Rubber Mfg. Co., 241 Oregon Street, Milwaukee, WI. He is living at 565 Van Remuadt, Milwaukee, WI. His wife, Gertrude P. Bickett of Yellow Springs, OH, was his nearest relative.


The WWI Draft Registration Card and Registrar's Report for Wesley Harrigan.


The Evening Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Tuesday, October 15, 1918

YELLOW SPRINGS

Mrs. Helen Baker, Mrs. L. M. Bickett and children, left Thursday for Milwaukee, Wis., where they will spend the winter. Mr. Bickett has a position there with a rubber company.


The Evening Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Wednesday, November 20, 1918

YELLOW SPRINGS

Leroy Bickett, of Milwaukee, Wis., made a business trip here Thursday and spent a short time with his mother, Mrs. George Bickett.


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Ruth and Helen Bickett, about 1919.


Helen, Roy and Ruth Bickett at the beach, 1919.

Helen and Roy Bickett at the beach, 1919.

Helen Bickett at the beach, 1919.

Helen Bickett at the beach, 1919.

Helen Bickett at the beach, 1919.

Helen Bickett at the beach, 1919.

Helen, Ruth and Gertrude Bickett at the beach, 1919.

Ruth Bickett at the beach with a bladder from a punching bag, 1919. This item was probably manufactured at the Petley Rubber Co. in Milwaukee, WI.


The Evening Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Tuesday, June 17, 1919

COURT NEWS

A petition asking for an order dissolving the Xenia Rubber Company, was filed in common pleas court today by J. H. Sanders, G. G. McClain, C. C. Hosier, L. M. Bickett and C. A. Harner, directors of the company. The application sets forth that the company was incorporated May 29, 1914 with a capitalization of $40,000 and that in 1917 the company disposed of all of its holdings. The appointment of a master commissioner and dissolution of the company is asked for. Harry D. Smith, attorney.


The Evening Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Tuesday, June 17, 1919

YELLOW SPRINGS

Mrs. Helen Baker, Mrs. Leroy Bickett and children left Sunday for Milwaukee, where they will reside. Mr. Bickett is connected with a rubber plant in that city.


The Evening Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Tuesday, September 2, 1919

YELLOW SPRINGS

Mrs. Leroy Bickett and children, and Mrs. Helen Baker, left Monday for their home in Milwaukee, Wis., after a week's visit with Mrs. George Bickett.


By December, 1919, the building of the Pan American Rubber Company in Milwaukee was purchased by the Lawson Airline Transportation Company, and had already begun manufacturing airplanes. Alfred W. Lawson, designer, builder and president of the company. The building was demolished in 2009 or 2010.


The India Rubber World, December 1, 1919

MID-WESTERN NOTES

The Pan-American Rubber Co., now of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, manufacturer of the "Parco" cellular pneumatic inner tire, is building a factory on South First street, Watertown, Wisconsin, which is expected to be occupied by the first of January, on which date the company will remove its office to the new factory address. Its leading product is an inner tire filled with a substance similar to sponge rubber, and which, because of its construction, obviates the trouble of punctures and blowouts.


The 1920 U. S. Census taken on January 15, 1920, shows LeRoy M. Bickett (age 36) born in Ohio to Ohio-born parents is a superintendent at a rubber factory who his renting his home at 604 Farwell Street, Ward 18, Milwaukee, Milwaukee Co., WI. Living with him is his wife Gertrude Bickett (age 39) born in Ohio to Ohio and Prussian-born parents. Also there are their two children, both born in Ohio: Helen Bickett (age 7), and Ruth Bickett (age 3). Also living there is Gertrude's widowed mother, Helen Baker (age 75) born in Prussia to Prussian-born parents.

The 1920 U. S. Census taken on January 3, 1920, shows Wesley Harrigan (age 23) born in Wisconsin to Wisconsin-born parents is an unmarried Production Foreman in a Rubber Plant renting his home at 184 Knapp Street, 1st Ward, City of Milwaukee, Milwaukee Co., WI. Living with him is his widowed mother, Clara M. Harrigan (age 49) born in Wisconsin to Swedish-born parents. Also living there is his unmarried sister, Winifred Harrington (age 26) born in Wisconsin to Wisconsin and United States-born parents, who is a Compforacter Oper. in Retail Dry Goods.

In 1920, the Everwear Rubber Co. was taken over as a going concern by Rubtex Products, Inc. of Indianapolis and manufacturing activities were transferred to that city.

After having resided in Wisconsin for approximately three years, Mr. Bickett decided to remain in Wisconsin, and in the fall of 1920 the Bickett Rubber Products Corp. of Watertown, WI, was organized to manufacture industrial rubber goods.

William A. Means died July 28, 1921, at his home, Yellow Springs, Greene Co., OH, at age 89. Buried in Woodland Cemetery, Ironton, Lawrence Co., OH.


The Enquirer, Cincinnati, Hamilton Co., OH, Friday, July 29, 1921

DAUGHTER

Watches at Bedside

When William Means Dies at Yellow Springs Home.

Former Mayor of Cincinnati Father of Mrs. W. A. Julian, Reached Age of Ninety.

William Means, 90 years old, former Mayor of Cincinnati, died at his home in Yellow Springs, Ohio, yesterday morning. One of his three daughters, Miss Pearl Means, was at his side when the end came. Although Mr. Means had been in failing health for several years his death came as a shock, as physicians had assured another of his daughters, Mrs. W. A. Julian, of 206 East Auburn avenue, Cincinnati, when she sailed last Tuesday for Europe with her husband, W. A. Julian, shoe manufacturer and Democratic candidate for United States Senator at the last election, that her father was not in immediate danger. Besides Miss Means and Mrs. Julian another daughter, Mrs. Pattie McElroy, of New York, survives him. Mr. Means was the son of Thomas W. and Sarah (Ellison) Means, of Lawrence County, Ohio, where he was born in 1832. His father was an early settler, who came from South Carolina, and who won success in business and prominence in public affairs. He became active in iron before that industry was centralized around Pittsburg, and acquired the controlling interests in banks in Ironton, Ohio, and Ashland, Ky. In his early years William Means became identified with his father's iron and steel business and represented them in this market, passing so much time in Cincinnati that he made it his permanent home in the early seventies. Here he also became associated with a Cincinnati bank and was prominent on Change, being elected Vice President of the Chamber of Commerce before an unusual turn of administrative affairs lured him into politics. When the more liberal element of the Republican party became dissatisfied with the policies of Mayor Charles Jacob, Jr., who had been elected to a two-year term in 1879, they let it be understood that they would support the opposition if a satisfactory nomination were made for the succession. Mr. Means was then a member of a coterie, largely Democratic, who lunched at the hotel at which he resided. He was a Democrat, but the fact that he had previously taken little active part in party contests induced this coterie to urge his nomination. After much hesitancy he consented and was nominated. The contest was spirited, but he defeated Mayor Jacob for re-election on April 4, 1881, by a majority of less than 1,500 out of 45,000 votes, which was an unusually heavy poll of the citizenry. Mayor Means's administration of the city's affairs was clean, conservative and efficient. His promised reforms were put into execution and carried out to the extent that he felt the purpose of his election had been achieved and steadfastly declined renomination. After retirement from the Mayoralty he resumed his business activities, until approaching years prompted his retirement, when he purchased an estate at Yellow Springs, Ohio, where he had made his home. For 40 years, while a resident of Cincinnati, Mr. Means maintained a summer home in Yellow Springs and a few yrears ago he went there to pass the remainder of his life. Recently 20 acres of the estate were sold to the trustees of Antioch College for the purpose of establishing homes for Antioch faculty members. Burial will be at Ironton, Ohio, but arrangements foir the services will not be completed until relatives can get into wireless communication with Mrs. Julian.


William A. Means is buried in Woodland Cemetery, Ironton, Lawrence Co., OH. Thanks to Find-A-Grave for making this image available.


   

William A. Means  and Martha Elizabeth (Campbell) Means are buried in Woodland Cemetery, Ironton, Lawrence Co., OH. Thanks to Find-A-Grave for making these images available.


In 1921 Roy was hired by the Pan American Rubber Company in Watertown, WI, and the company after reorganization was known as the Bickett Rubber Products Company.

The 1921 City Directory for Watertown, WI, shows Leroy Bickett living at 900 6th Street, essentially the intersection of 6th and Bailey Streets. The house at 700 Clyman Street is vacant.


The Evening Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Saturday, December 15, 1923

Mrs. George Bickett, of Yellow Springs, is at the McClellan Hospital, of this city, recovering from a fracture of her right hip, sustained when she fell at her home last Monday. Her son, Mr. Roy Bickett, of Watertown, Wisconsin, was called home on account of his mother's accident.


The 1924 City Directory for Watertown, WI, shows Leroy Bickett living at 700 Clyman Street, essentially the intersection of 7th and Clyman Streets. This is the home he would live in for the rest of his life.


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Helen and Ruth Bickett, about 1924, at the family home, 700 Clyman Street, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI.


Mary D. Pease, b. 1847, d. 1924 (Oak Hill Cemetery inscription)

September 25, 1924

DEATH OF MRS. HARLOW PEASE

Mrs. Mary J. Pease, widow of the later Harlow Pease, one of Watertown’s most prominent attorney’s for many years, died last week Monday in a sanitarium near Butte, Montana. Her remains were brought here last Friday and taken to James Boyle’s undertaking parlors, from where the funeral was held that morning to St. Bernard’s church. The interment was in Oak Hill Cemetery beside those of her husband. Mrs. Pease’s maiden name was Mary J. Davelin. She was born in Milwaukee in July 1847, and on June 4, 1877 was married to Harlow Pease, who died in this city in June, 1907. Mrs. Pease went west with her daughter nine years ago. One son Harlow Pease of Butte, Montana, and one daughter, Mrs. Leroy M. Gilbert of Dillon, Montana, and seven grandchildren survive her; also one stepson, Mr. Pease’s son by his first wife, Dr. Edward Pease of Proctersville, Vermont, and two sisters, Mrs. George Hannaford of Boise, Idaho, and Mrs. Wm. McMahon of Cleveland, Ohio. Mrs. Gilbert and daughter accompanied the remains of Mrs. Pease here and are at present visiting at the home of Miss Ella Wilder. For many years Mrs. Pease was one of Watertown’s most prominent lady residents and a lady of culture and refinement whose death is mourned here by all her old friends as that of a most excellent woman.

Leigh Larson note: Susan "Susie" (Huntley) Pease died January 30, 1865, in Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI, at about age 33.


The Evening Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Wednesday, August 5, 1925

YELLOW SPRINGS

The remains of Mrs. Helen Baker, aged 81 years, were brought here Sunday from Watertown, Wis., where she passed away at the home of her daughter, Mrs. Leroy Bickett Friday. The funeral services were held from the Presbyterian Church Monday afternoon with burial in Glen Forest Cemetery. Mrs. Baker is survived by her daughter, Mrs. Bickett and one son Albert of Michigan.


The Evening Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Thursday, April 15, 1926

YELLOW SPRINGS

Mrs. George Bickett, who has been an invalid for several years with a fractured hip, had the misfortune to fall Tuesday and injure the other hip. Her daughter-in-law, Mrs. Leroy Bickett of Watertown, Wis., arrived  Wednesday and had her removed to McClellan hospital in Xenia.


The Evening Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Thursday, April 21, 1927

Miss Dorothy Gerhardt left Wednesday for Watertown, Wis., where she was called on account of the serious illness of her cousin, Mrs. Leroy Bickett, who is in the hospital where she underwent an operation.


"To Ruth Bickett. My birthday party is on June 6, 1928 - 12 years old. Hope you like it. Merry Xmas. From Mary Hawkins." Ruth Bickett (age 11) is on the far left. The 1930 U. S. Census shows the Kenneth Hawkins family is living at 1010 8th Street, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI. He is a Bee Ware Factory Sales Manager.


The 1930 U. S. Census taken on April 10, 1930 shows Le Roy Bickett (age 46) born in Ohio to Ohio-born parents and first married at age 28 is a manager of a rubber factory who owns his home valued at $12,000 at 700 Clyman Street, Ward 9, City of Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI. Living with him is his wife Gertrude Bickett (age 50) born in Ohio to Ohio and German-born parents and first married at age 32. Also living there are his two children, both born in Ohio to Ohio-born parents: Helen Bickett (age 17); and Ruth Bickett (age 13).

The 1930 U. S. Census taken on April 4, 1930 shows Clara M. Harrigan (age 59) born in Wisconsin to Swedish-born parents, is a Proprietor of a Gift Shop who rents her home for $50/month, and is living at 606-1/2 Main Street, 11th Ward, City of Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI. Living with her are her two unmarried children, both born in Wisconsin to Wisconsin-born parents: Winifred Harrigan (age 30), a Sales Lady in a Gift Shop; and Wesley Harrigan (age 28), a Superintendent in a Rubber Factory.


   

Ruth Bickett in a Watertown School School Play costume, 700 Clyman Street, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI, about 1930.


The Evening Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Tuesday, March 18, 1930

Mr. and Mrs. Roy Bickett, Watertown, Wis., have arrived in Yellow Springs to attend funeral services for Mr. Bickett's brother, Mr. Ernest Bickett, who died at his home in Yellow Springs, Monday.


The Evening Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Thursday, April 10, 1930

Mr. and Mrs. Leroy Bickett, of Watertown, Wisconsin, were here Saturday making arrangements to start their brother, Earl Bickett to Galveston, Texas. They left Saturday evening by automobile for St. Louis, where Earl will take the train for Galveston, where he will make his home with his sister, Mrs. Chapman.


The Wisconsin Sate Journal, Madison, WI, April 20, 1930

W. A. Schumann Heads Watertown Rotary Club

WATERTOWN - W. A. Schumann was elected to succeed L. M. Bickett as president of the Watertown Rotary club at a meeting of the board of directors last week. Other officers elected are Frank W. Newbouer, vice president; H. C. Tidd, secretary; and E. E. Bentzin, treasurer. They will take their offices in July.


At the 1931 Elks National Bowling Tournament held in Detroit, MI the Watertown team broke three records and won the tournament with an overall score of 3,166. Lodge 666 members on the team were: Harry O'Brien, Joseph Lange, Fred Maertzke, L. M. Bickett and William Hartzeim.


The Wisconsin State Journal, Madison, WI, April 4, 1931

Watertown Bowlers Hit New Records

Bickett Team Rolls New Mark at National Elks Meet

DETROIT, Mich. - A new record was established in the National Elks Club Bowling tournament here Friday night when the Bickett team of Watertown rolled into first place with a score of 3,166. H. O'Brien and F. Maerzke starred with games of 692 and 689 respectively. Individual scores follow: F. Maerzke: 206, 226, 217 - 689; F. Lange: 248, 218, 192 - 659; L. Bickett: 159, 171, 175 - 505; R. Hartzheim: 216, 243, 162 - 621; H. O'Brien: 201, 289, 202 - 692.


During 1931 an effort was made to move the company to Anderson, IN, but because of the failure of the bank backing the move, after moving some equipment to Anderson, the company returned to Watertown, where it was reorganized as the L. M. Bickett Company, which continued until after his death in 1958.


The Anderson Daily Bulletin, Anderson, OH, May 3, 1956

25 YEARS AGO

Anderson in 1931:

Purchase of the International Rubber Co. plant on W. 25th St. by the Bickett Rubber Products Corp., Watertown, Wis., was announced by L. M. Bickett, vice president of the Wisconsin firm, who said operations would be transferred here and the idle International factory placed in operation again.


The Anderson Daily Bulletin, Anderson, OH, June 6, 1956

25 YEARS AGO

Anderson in 1931:

The plant of the former International Rubber Company on W. 25th St., was being placed in shape for the shipment of machinery here by the  by the Bickett Rubber Products Corporation of Watertown, Wis.


The Anderson Daily Bulletin, Anderson, OH, June 15, 1956

25 YEARS AGO

Anderson in 1931:

L. M. Bickett, president of the Bickett Rubber Products Company, said operations at the plant of W. 25th St. were scheduled to start July 1.


The Anderson Daily Bulletin, Anderson, OH, June 19, 1956

25 YEARS AGO

Anderson in 1931:

Four carloads of machinery acquired from the Kokomo Tire and Rubber Company were being set up in the plant of the Bickett Rubber Products Plant on W. 25th St.


The Anderson Daily Bulletin, Anderson, OH, July 19, 1956

25 YEARS AGO

Anderson in 1931:

Operations on a small scale were started at the Bickett Rubber Products Corporation plant, W. 25th St.


The Anderson Daily Bulletin, Anderson, OH, August 20, 1956

25 YEARS AGO

Anderson in 1931:

Operating with a force of nearly 30 persons and making 4,000 pounds of rubber products a day, the Bickett Rubber Products plant, W. 25th St., laid plans to double capacity of the factory.


The Anderson Daily Bulletin, Anderson, OH, September 5, 1956

25 YEARS AGO

Anderson in 1931:

Some departments of the new Bickett Rubber Products plant, W. 25th St., were working nights because of an influx of orders.


The Anderson Daily Bulletin, Anderson, OH, October 25, 1956

25 YEARS AGO

Anderson in 1931:

L. M. Bickett, president of the Bickett Rubber Products Corporation, reported the factory on W. 25th St. was operating nearly full time.


The Anderson Daily Bulletin, Anderson, OH, December 5, 1956

25 YEARS AGO

Anderson in 1931:

F. M. Bickett, head of the Bickett Rubber Products Company, W. 25th St., said an inventory was being taken at the plant.


In 1932, the Bickett Rubber Products Corp. reorganized and became the L. M. Bickett Company, and this reorganized company met with remarkable success specializing in the manufacture of sponge rubber cushions, desk and chair mats, and other rubber products, distributed through the office supply trade.


The Anderson Daily Bulletin, Anderson, OH, April 16, 1957

AROUND THE TOWN 25 YEARS AGO

Anderson in 1932:

The Bickett Rubber Products plant, W. 25th St., was sold to a Chicago firm for $43,000 on a high bid submitted at a receiver sale.


The Anderson Daily Bulletin, Anderson, OH, May 6, 1957

AROUND TOWN 25 YEARS AGO

Anderson in 1932:

The Bickett Rubber Products plant, W. 25th St., under the management of Ben Beeler, was operation under a reduced schedule.


The Anderson Daily Bulletin, Anderson, OH, June 11, 1957

AROUND TOWN 25 YEARS AGO

Anderson in 1932:

Contracts that were being filled by the Mid-West Rubber Products plant, W. 25th St., successor to the Bickett Rubber Co., compelled the factory to operate overtime for several weeks.


The Anderson Daily Bulletin, Anderson, OH, July 29, 1957

AROUND TOWN 25 YEARS AGO

Anderson in 1932:

Walter Zeigler, sales manager of the Mid-West Rubber Products Company plant, W. 25th St., reported that the firm has secured as customers four of the largest users of standard rubber products in the country.


George Hutton Anderson died January 3, 1932, at his home, Village of Morrow, Salem Twp., Warren Co., OH, at age 55. Buried in Morrow Cemetery, Morrow, Salem Co., OH.


George Hutton Anderson Death Certificate.


The , Warren Co., OH, January 7, 1932

George Anderson Succumbed Early Sunday Morning

His many friends throughout Warren county were shocked to learn of the sudden death of George H. Anderson, well known Morrow undertaker, which occurred at his home in Morrow early Sunday morning following an attack of acute indigestion. Funeral services were held at the M. E. Church in Morrow at 2 o'clock Tuesday afternoon and burial was made in the Morrow cemetery. The Masonic lodge at Morrow, of which Mr. Anderson was a member, had a part in the services. George H. Anderson was born at Morrow 55 years ago, a son of Jonah and Hannah Ford Anderson, and spent his entire life in that village. He married Miss May E. Ford, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Charles Ford, of Maineville, who survives together with three children, Dr. Harrt Anderson, of Washington, D. C., Willard Anderson, of Spring Valley, and Mrs. Geneva Morrison, of Cincinnati. One brother, Harry F. Anderson, of Norwood, also survives. Frank C. Anderson and Miss Bessie Anderson, of Lebanon, are cousins of the deceased. Mr. Anderson was educated in the Morrow schools and later attended embalming school at Cincinnati. Upon the death of his father he took over the Anderson undertaking business at Morrow which he has conducted for more than 20 years.


The Milwaukee Journal, Milwaukee, Milwaukee Co., WI, Tuesday, January 31, 1933

Bickett, Watertown Bowler, Scores 719 to Set League Record

BY BILLY SIXTY

From Watertown comes the news of a record strike flurry by L. M. Bickett in the City league that produced a 719 total on games of 236, 247 and 236. One of the unknowns of bowling, entering his third season on the alleys, Bickett has had remarkable success. At the end of his first year he averaged. He went to 178 in 1932 and is now thumping along at a 190 pace. The 719 was his first count over the coveted 700 mark.


The Galveston Coastal News, Galveston, Galveston Co., TX, Friday, June 25, 1937

To the right are a group of visitors from Wisconsin, who have been spending the week here as the guests of Mrs. W. J. Chapman and daughter, Miss Jean Chapman. Miss Ruth Bickett, standing, and Miss Helen Bickett, seated on the top step, are the daughters of Mr. and Mrs. L. M. Bickett of Watertown, Wis., and the nieces of Mrs. Chapman. They were accompanied by Miss Doris Kaddatz, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. E. C. Kaddatz, of Watertown, who is seated on the lowest step. Miss Chapman who is pictured with the group will accompany them when they leave. They will spend a few days in New Orleans before returning home.


The Waukesha Freeman, Wednesday, June 28, 1937

GIVES TALK ON RUBBER TRADE

Production Discussed at Rotary Meeting

Rubber, Its Development and Production, was discussed by L. M. Bickett, manufacturer of rubber goods at Watertown, before members of the Waukesha Rotary club, meeting for their regular Monday luncheon at the Avalon hotel. Mr. Bickett, who started in the rubber business in 1907, told how the price of rubber fluctuates and what Great Britain and the Dutch, two of the world's largest dealers in rubber, have done to hold the price of crude rubber at a standard price. "In case of war," Mr. Bickett said, "the government has assigned each rubber company in the United States to make certain rubber products. Our company has been assigned to manufacture gas masks and allied products. In 24 hours our plant would be operating at a tremendous rate under government supervision."  It is interesting to note, according to Mr. Bickett, that the work of inland rubber companies has been stressed more than that of coastal companies because of the possibility of air raids by a belligerent country. Guests of the Rotary luncheon Monday were Walter Smith of Racine, F. H. Mayfield of Waukesha, and Charles Doughty of Peterborough, Ontario, Canada.


Geneva Mae (Anderson) Morrison died June 28, 1938, at Christ Hospital, Cincinnati, Hamilton Co., OH, at age 31. Buried in Morrow Cemetery, Morrow, Salem Co., OH. She committed suicide by shooting herself.


The Enquirer, Cincinnati, Hamilton Co., OH, Wednesday, June 29, 1938

MOTHER

Shoots Self Fatally

Because Of Worry Over Young Daughter's Illness - Found Wounded In Kitchen.

Despondent over the illness of her two-year-old daughter, Mrs. Geneva Morrison, 28 Wyoming Avenue, Wyoming, wounderd herself fatally with a shotgun early yesterday in the kitchen of her home, Wyoming police reported. Mrs. Morrison's husband, George, en employee of the Procter and Gamble Company, was awakened by the shot. He found his wife lying on the kitchen floor with the shotgun beside her. Police said that Mrs.. Morrison, who was clad in a night dress, evidently pushed the trigger with her toe. The charge struck her below the heart. She died soon afterward at Christ Hospital, despite blood transfusions. On the way to the hospital Mrs. Morrison told police that she had been worried over her daughter, Ruth Ann, who has pneumonia. Besides her husband and daughter, she is survived by a six-year-old son, George, Jr. Services will be held tomorrow at the Vorhis funeral home, Lockland. The body will be sent to Morrow, Ohio, for burial.


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Helen Fiegel and Ruth Bickett on Helen's wedding day, Watertown, WI, October 16, 1938. Taken at 700 Clyman Street, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI.


Ruth and Helen Bickett, and two others, all smoking! Taken at 700 Clyman Street, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI, at the time of Helen's October 16, 1938, wedding.


The Watertown Daily Times, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI, Monday, April 3, 1939

TIMES SQUARE

Minnie Bickett. Minnie is just a dog, but she has been providing a lot of fun and laughs in a local department store. Minnie, in case you don't know, is the pet of the L. M. Bickett family and devotes much of her time to chasing the squirrels that live in the vicinity of Clyman street. . . . Minnie delights in running along the street, barking loudly, as the squirrels scamper to safety in the trees. . . . Some time ago Minnie wandered into the store of Chas. Fischer and Sons and her attention was attracted to the moving coin cars that carry sales slips and payments from clerks in various parts of the store to the office. . . . Evidently Minnie thinks anything that moves is a squirrel, for she set up a series of barks and ran up and down, chasing after the moving objects overhead. . . . Since then she has frequently returned to the store, barking and chasing the little boxes as they shuttle back and forth from office to counters. . . . Now whenever the phone in Mr. Bickett's home rings and somebody informs the family that "Minnie is down here again" they know just what it means.


The 1940 U. S. Census taken on May 4, 1940, shows Le Roy Bickett (age 56) born in Ohio, and 5 years ago was living in the Same House, and having completed 4 years of High School, is a President of Rubber who owns his home worth $1,200 and is living at 700 7th Street, 9th Ward, City of Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI. Living with him are: his wife, Gertrude Bickett (age 60) born in Ohio, and 5 years ago was living in the Same House, and having completed 4 years of College; his son-in-law, Wilbert Larson (age 26) born in Wisconsin, and 5 years ago was living Unknown, CA, and having completed 4 years of College, a Representative for an Automobile Manufacturer; his married daughter, Ruth Larson (age 23) born in Ohio, and 5 years ago was living in the Same House, and having completed 4 years of College; his son-in-law, Victor Fiegel (age 29) born in Arkansas, and 5 years ago was living Madison, WI, and having completed 4 years of College, a Retail Store Salesman; and his married daughter, Helen Fiegel (age 27) born in Ohio, and 5 years ago was living in the Same House, and having completed 4 years of College.

During the early 1940s Mr. Bickett decided the time had come to buy the farmland he said he always wanted to buy, to replace that which his grandfather Adam Reed Bickett had lost following the Civil War, so he bought several farms totaling 734 acres near Richwood, Dodge Co., WI. One of the farms turned out to be completely unsuitable for farming operations, so he decided to dredge it out, creating a pond, and turn it into a wildlife refuge. This was an extremely expensive operation, and he had a difference of opinion with the Internal Revenue Service over his claims he had been advised this was an operating expense and should not be capitalized. He contested the tax assessment, without success, and of course with prolonging the affair the penalties grew larger. His preoccupation with this matter had a greatly adverse effect on his health. Financially, the whole affair of the "ranch" was a disaster. Before his death he agreed to sell part of the farm property to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, and this area is still used for wildlife. In 1945, Roy acquired a number of adjoining farms representing a total in excess of 700 acres in Shields Twp., Dodge Co., WI. This project, known as Le-Ki-Re Ranch in honor of his grandsons, was his idea to make in Wisconsin a duplicate of ranches found in western states.

During WWII all civilian production was suspended and the L. M. Bickett Co. operated 100 percent on war work and had numerous contracts, both direct and subcontract.


Ruth Bickett, about 1940. Taken at 700 Clyman Street, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI.


Bickett Residence, 700 Clyman Street, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI, about 1940.


Ruth (Bickett) Larson and Roy Bickett, probably at Swamsauger Lake, near Tripoli, WI, 1941.


Ruth (Bickett) Larson, probably at Swamsauger Lake, near Tripoli, WI, 1941.


Ruth (Bickett) Larson, probably at Swamsauger Lake, near Tripoli, WI, 1941.


Roy and Ruth (Bickett) Larson, Bushey's Cabin, Swamsauger Lake, near Tripoli, WI, 1941.


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Roy Bickett, Wilbur Larson, and Unknown, at Bushey's Cabin, Swamsauger Lake, near Tripoli, WI, 1941. Herman Witt was born March 25, 1904, in Lipowiec, Poland, and died March 7, 1976, in Minocqua, Oneida Co., WI, at age 71. Herman Witt and his wife, Emma Witt, are buried in Evergreen Cemetery, Woodruff, Oneida Co., WI. In 1940 he lived in Minocqua, Oneida Co., WI, and his occupation was a Trapper.


   

Bushey's Cabin, Swamsauger Lake, near Tripoli, WI, 1941 (left), and 2016 (right).


Roy Bickett and Wilbur Larson at Bushey's Cabin, Swamsauger Lake, near Tripoli, WI, 1941.


Wilbur Larson at Bushey's Cabin, Swamsauger Lake, near Tripoli, WI, 1941.


   

The WWII Draft Registration Report dated April 25, 1942, shows LeRoy McVey Bickett is living in Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI.


Ruth (Bickett) Larson, at the Le-Ki-Re Ranch, Shields Twp., Dodge Co., WI, about 1943.


Ruth (Bickett) Larson, with her son, Leigh, at the Le-Ki-Re Ranch, Shields Twp., Dodge Co., WI, about 1943.


Ruth (Bickett) Larson and Gertrude Bickett, at the Le-Ki-Re Ranch, Shields Twp., Dodge Co., WI, about 1943.


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Pal Bickett, Leigh and Reed Larson at Christmas, 1943, 700 Clyman Street, Watertown, WI.


Leigh Larson and Reed Larson. Taken at Le-Ki-Re Ranch, Shields Twp., Dodge Co., WI, about 1945.


Back row, left to right): Ruth (Bickett) Larson, Vic Fiegel, Gertrude (Baker) Bickett. Front row (left to right): Reed Larson, Leigh Larson and Kirt Fiegel. Taken at Le-Ki-Re Ranch, Shields Twp., Dodge Co., WI, about 1945.


Leigh Larson, Kirt Fiegel and Reed Larson, on the house roof at Le-Ki-Re Ranch, Shields Twp., Dodge Co., WI, about 1945.


Leigh Larson, Kirt Fiegel and Reed Larson, taken at Pine Lake, Waushara Co., WI, about 1945.


   

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"Pal" Bickett with grandsons Leigh, Kirt and Reed at Le-Ki-Re Ranch, Dodge Co., WI, about 1945. Please note "The End of the Trail Tree."


   

Leigh Larson and Reed Larson, at Le-Ki-Re Ranch, Dodge Co., WI, about 1945.


In late 1946 the L. M. Bickett Company created a program to make a Respirator chair cushion available free of charge to qualifying Wisconsin working disabled veterans who had to sit down for extended periods of time. Shown below is the link to the front cover, inside article and back cover of Volume II Number 8 of the AMVETS Department of Wisconsin, published in 1947.


Please click on the picture for a three page PDF document from this AMVETS issue Volume II Number 8 from 1947.


The Janesville Daily Gazette, Janesville, Rock Co., WI, Wednesday, November 26, 1947

Cushions Are Offered Free to Disabled Vets

Watertown - The L. M. Bickett Co., Watertown, is offering free, a Spine Protex respirator chair cushion to every disabled veteran in Wisconsin required to sit long hours because of his disability. In his offer Mr. Bickett stipulates that all requests originate with the local AMVET service officer in each city, endorsed by him, and forwarded to Russell Ebert, Service Officer of the Riedemann-Thompson Post No. 35, Watertown, Wis. In addition, the American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars, as well as the offices of the Wisconsin State Employment service are all co-operating in helping disabled veterans who, due to their disability, are required to sit long hours at work to receive one of these Respirator Cushions. Inquiries may be directed to Russell Ebert, 114 South Warren St., Watertown, Wis.


The Rhinelander Daily News, Rhinelander, Oneida Co., WI, Thursday, December 4, 1947

Disabled Veterans Offered Cushions

The L. M. Bickett company, of Watertown, Wis., is offering a Spine Protex respirator chair cushion free to every disabled veteran in the state required to sit long hours because of his disability. In his offer Bickett stipulates that and disabled veteran in the state so disabled that much sitting is necessary may have a chair cushion absolutely free. He also insists that all requests be forwarded to Russell Ebert, service officer of the AMVET Post No. 35, Watertown, Wis. Ebert is in direct liaison with W. A. Larson, sales manager of the Bickett company. The degree of disability need not be as severe as imagined. The factor governing eligibility is that the disability may be alleviated due to long hours of sitting at work by one of these cushions. In addition, the Veterans Administration, the American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars, as well as the offices of the Wisconsin state employment service, are co-operating in helping disabled veterans to receive one of these cushions. Inquiries may be directed to Ebert, 114 South Warren Street, Watertown, Wis.


POST NO.35

RIEDEMANN-THOMPSON       WATERTOWN

The first organizational meeting of AMVETS Post No. 35 was held on June 24, 1947 at the Streamline. The meeting was conducted by John J. Millane, Dept. Sr. Vice Commander and various other State Department officials were also in attendance. Earl Danner, Commander; Robert Shubert, Adjutant and Don Mitchell, Finance Officer were the temporary officers elected at this meeting.

AMVETS Post No. 35 was named in memory of Harvey W. Riedemann, son of Hr. and Mrs. Erick A. Riedemann, who lost his life while a prisoner of war of the Japanese and George E. Thompson, son of Mr. and Mrs. E. G. Thompson, who died while a prisoner of war of the Nazis. Thus the Post is named after one Pacific and one European war theatre victim from Watertown to perpetuate their memories through the years to come.

The Riedemann-Thompson Post was chartered on September 2. 1947 with a total of 179 charter members. The charter was presented at ceremonies held in connection with the first Post Picnic on September 14, 1947 at Riverside Park.

Post No. 35 had the distinction of being the largest original charter Post in the United States and also won the National Commander’s Membership Plaque in the 4th National District, in 1947.

Watertown AMVETS were host to AMVETS first State Bowling Tournament, held at Raasch’s Bowl in Watertown in 1948 as well as the AMVETS State Golf Tournaments of 1948 and 1949. In fact, Riedemann-Thompson retired the State Golf Trophy after winning it three years in a row. The 1952 AMVETS Mid-Winter Conference was held in Watertown.

In 1948, Post 35 with the cooperation of the L. M. Bickett Co. of Watertown provided spine protex respirator chair cushions to be available at no cost to disabled veterans who were required to sit long hours because of disability.

AMVET Amputee Automobile Plates for Veteran Amputees entitling unlimited parking priveleges in the City of Watertown and surrounding cities were also provided and distributed by Post 35.

Post No. 35 AMVETS were instrumental in forming the Watertown Veterans’ Council comprised of representation from AMVETS, American Legion and V.F.W. Posts. This organization speaks for the combined effort of three great veteran organizations.


Roy Bickett with the deer he shot near Swamsauger Lake, near Tripoli, Oneida Co., WI.


The Milwaukee Journal, Milwaukee, Milwaukee Co., WI, Sunday, August 17, 1952

Egrets Flock to Wisconsin Wild Life Haven

By MARY DECKER

Watertown, Wis. - Submarginal farming lands, diked to hold the waters of 15 springs on the mile square holdings of LeRoy M. Bickett, have been converted into a wild life oasis which in a period of several years has come to be the evening camp of more than a thousand American egrets. They come when the night comes and stand silently tall like white unlighted candles in the treetops. Lying along the great marsh which stretches north to Beaver Dam and Fox lakes, Bickett's wild life oasis was a barren land for the most part when he took it over in 1945. A roile of dike was laid and tamped and the pools soon grew to reeds, sedges and all the rest of the blooming marsh plants. Then the birds came: Marsh wrens, black capped night herons, members of the rail family, ducks and geese and finally, three years ago, the egrets. Only 200 came that first year, but since then they have come in greater flocks until now, along with their lesser cousins, the snowy egret and the little blue heron, they fill the evenings with calls of contentment as they settle out of the sky to roost.

More than 60 years ago the government came this way. A pipe was driven many feet into the ground to test the subsoil, and it spurted a white plume water until an unthinking teamster hitched his horses to the pipe and broke it off. Even before that day the Indians used the marsh. Still standing is a tree bent away over to the ground to mark the trail's end and to signal that at this point the trail was no longer passable.

Bickett calls his farm the Lee-Ki-Ree ranch, a combination of the first initials of his three grandsons. "It is for them," Bickett says stretching a hand out toward the land, "for their enjoyment and for their education." The youngsters call him Pal. He built a tree house big enough for the three to sleep in. They idolize the Watertown industrialist and roam the farm with him..

The news pools harbor trout and Bickett says he will allow anglers to fish them. Trees have been left standing on the hummocks of land to break the skyline, and the handiwork of man is no longer discernable under the lush growth of greenery. That is the Lee-Ki-Ree ranch, a new monument to practical land use under a new order of reclamation which provides room for the wild as well as the domestic animals and birds of the earth.

Three grandsons for whom Le Roy Bickett, Watertown, Wis., named his square mile farm and wild life oasis are shown on the edge of the marsh with their grandfather. The boys (left to right) are Leigh and Reed Larson and Kirt Fiegel. The Bickett holdings, roosting grounds of hundreds of white egrets, are named from the first initials of the boys: Lee-Ki-Ree ranch. Ducks and geese also visit the marsh.


   

The cabin at Swamsauger Lake, near Tripoli, Oneida Co., WI, 1953.

   

The cabin at Swamsauger Lake, near Tripoli, Oneida Co., WI, 2016.


       

The side and end of the boathouse at Pine Lake, Waushara Co., WI, after Bill Larson painted it, 1953 (left and center), and in 2016 (right).


   

The cabin at Pine Lake, Waushara Co., WI, 2016.


Leigh Larson, Lee Dornfeld, Chessie the dog, and Roy Bickett, Le-Ki-Re Ranch, Summer, 1954.


Robert Chapman and Unknown (possibly Edwin Zubke). Picture taken at the Le-Ki-Re Ranch in 1953/1954.


The Le-Ki-Re Ranch Feed Mill truck when it was new. Left to Right: Tobe Bashor, John Chapman, Mickey Bashor and Paul Chapman. Picture taken in Watertown, WI.


The Watertown Daily Times, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI, September 28, 1954

The current issue of the Saturday Evening Post contains an advertisement by the Andrews-Alderfer Co. of Akron, Ohio, which features "Fabricushon," a rubber and fiber product which was the brainchild of L. M. Bickett of the Bickett Rubber Co. of Watertown. Mr. Bickett coined the name for it some years ago and his concern has been making a product under that name. Some time ago he sold the name to the Akron concern for $6,750 and the company is now turning out its products under that name. The Bickett Company is also making a new shredded fiber and rubber cushion which is sold under the name of Pedicushion. That, too, is a name coined by Mr. Bickett.


   

Promotional letter for the Le-Ki-Re Ranch Fish and Hunt Club, April 26, 1956.


Northern portion of the L. M. Bickett Co. building, 600 S. First Street, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI, 1957.


The last known picture of L. M. Bickett, taken about December, 1957, at the W. A. Larson residence, 311 S. Washington Street, Watertown, WI.


LeRoy McVey "Roy" Bickett died May 4, 1958, in Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI, at age 75. Buried in Oak Hill Cemetery, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI.


The Watertown Daily Times, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI, May 5, 1958, obituary for L. M. Bickett which appeared on the front page. 

L. M. Bickett Stricken Here At Age of 75

Business Leader Was Widely Known; Funeral Wednesday

L. M. Bickett, 75, of 700 Clyman Street, one of Watertown's widely known civic and industrial leaders, died late last night in St. Mary's Hospital. He had been in poor health for some time. Death came to him peacefully while he slept. Mr. Bickett was head of the L. M. Bickett Co., rubber products manufacturers. He was a native of Xenia, Ohio, where he was born on May 1, 1883, a son of George and Elizabeth (Simons) Bickett. He was united in marriage to Miss Gertrude Baker, Yellow Springs, Ohio, on June 8, 1911.

Family Survives

Besides his wife he is survived by two daughters, Mrs. Victor G. (Helen) Fiegel, Elkhorn, Wis., and Mrs. W. A. Larson, Watertown. Other survivors are five grandsons, Kirt and Todd Fiegel, Leigh, Reed and Bruce Larson. Mr. Bickett was preceded in death by one grandson, Alan Fiegel. Mr. Bickett became identified with the rubber industry in 1908, and after five years experience with several large rubber manufacturers organized the Xenia Rubber Mfg. Co. at Xenia, Ohio, in 1913. In 1917 the Xenia Rubber Mfg. Co. was sold to a group of Milwaukee industrialists who organized the Everwear Rubber Co. and the business was transferred to Milwaukee, Mr. Bickett becoming General Manager of the Milwaukee organization. In 1920 the Everwear Rubber Co. was taken over as a going concern by Rubtex Products, Inc. of Indianapolis and manufacturing activities were transferred to that city.

Came Here In 1920

After having resided in Wisconsin for approximately three years he decided to remain in Wisconsin and in the fall of 1920 the Bickett Rubber Products Corp. of Watertown, Wis., was organized to manufacture industrial rubber goods. In 1932 the Bickett Rubber Products Corp. reorganized and became the L. M. Bickett Company and this reorganized company has met with remarkable success specializing in the manufacture of sponge rubber cushions, desk and chair mats, and other rubber products distributed through the office supply trade. During the war all civilian production was suspended and the plant operated 100 percent on war work and had numerous contracts, both direct and subcontract.

Developed Foreign Market

Prior to the war an extensive market was developed for a patented type of office chair called "The Respirator", and the slogan "The World is Sitting on Respirator Cushions" was adopted for the reason that they were shipped to foreign countries completely encircling the globe. The Respirator ventilated seat cushion was developed and patented by Mr. Bickett and several additional patents were secured, all dealing with the manufacture or use of rubber products. Mr. Bickett was a hard working individual, spending a minimum amount of his time in the office, preferring to work in the factory with rubber products or preparing mold equipment to be used in producing special products. Quite frequently salesmen refused to believe that they had interviewed the boss himself as in the course of his work, soiled clothing, dirty face and hands led visitors to believe they were talking to one of the factory employees.

Loved Outdoor Life

Mr. Bickett's hobbies were bowling, fishing, hunting and the outdoors. He was one of Watertown's outstanding bowlers and one of the teams he sponsored won the Elk's national tournament in 1931. In 1945 he acquired, in the Town of Shields in Dodge Co., a number of adjoining farms representing a total in excess of 700 acres. This project, known as Le-Ki-Re Ranch, named in honor of his grandsons, was his idea to make in Wisconsin a duplicate of ranches found in western states. Mr. Bickett was actively identified in all civic affairs. He was past president of the Watertown Rotary Club, past exalted ruler of the Watertown Elks Club 666, and a charter member of the Watertown Country Club; past president of the Watertown Business Men's Association which later became the Watertown Chamber of Commerce and still later the present Watertown Association of Commerce. He was also active in the Jefferson County Taxpayers Association, having served as one of its presidents.

Interest In Government

Mr. Bickett took great interest in government and in the late 1920s and early 1930s began advocating the city managership for Watertown. He sponsored a public meeting at which such a plan was outlined. He brought to Watertown the late George S. Parker, head of the Parker Pen Co. of Janesville, and the late Henry Traxler, then city manager of Janesville, to address the meeting. The move, however, failed, and Watertown remained under the mayor-aldermanic system until 1950, Mr. Bickett having been far ahead of his time, but he did live to see his views on city government vindicated three times in three separate elections. Mr. Bickett's personal life was one of warm and loyal friendship and his generosity, which was great, hardly ever came to public notice. He preferred to help others without taking credit or accepting acclaim. He had many interests and contributed to all of them. Watertown has been made better and richer in civic and community progress because of Mr. Bickett's influence. He leaves behind him a rich heritage for civic interest and improvement and by reason of the part he played in this community.

Service Wednesday

The funeral will take place Wednesday afternoon at 2 o'clock in the First Congregational Church, the Rev. Royal F. Shepard, Jr., officiating. Interment will be in Oak Hill Cemetery. Friends may pay their respects at the Schmutzler Funeral Home Tuesday from 3 to 9 p.m. and up to 10 a.m. on Wednesday. From 11 a.m. Wednesday until the funeral service the body will be in state in the church.


Leigh Larson note: About 1960, Wesley Harrigan contacted Wilbur Larson and suggested that making inflations was a good business to be in, and that he could help Mr. Larson get started. Mr. Bickett had given Wes his first rubber industry job in Milwaukee around 1919, and he felt a kindred connection with his past. These fortunate circumstances evolved into the eventual Larson family success in the manufacture of milking machine inflations for the dairy industry. Wesley W. Harrigan was born September 29, 1895, in Rhinelander, Oneida Co., WI, and died March, 1972, in Pewaukee, Waukesha Co., WI, at age 76. His sister, Winnefred Harrigan, was born July 25, 1892, and died October, 1969, in Oconomowoc, Waukesha Co., WI, at age 77.

Ruth Mae "May E." (Ford) Anderson died April 22, 1961, in Silver Spring, Montgomery Co., MD, at age 82. Buried in Morrow Cemetery, Morrow, Salem Co., OH.

Gertrude Pearl Patricia "Gertie" (Baker) Bickett died October 21, 1968, at St. Joseph's Home for the Aged, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI, at age 88. Buried in Oak Hill Cemetery, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI.


The Watertown Daily Times, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI, Tuesday, October 22, 1968

Mrs. L. M. Bickett Is Dead at 88

Mrs. L. M. Bickett, 88, who resided at St. Joseph's Home for the Aged, passed away yesterday afternoon. She had resided in Watertown from 1921 until 1963 when she moved to Elkhorn to make her home with her daughter. About a year ago she moved to St. Joseph's Home for the Aged in Watertown. The former Gertrude Baker was born Feb. 10, 1880 in Yellow Springs, Ohio, to Mr. and Mrs. William Penn Baker. She married LeRoy M. Bickett on June 8, 1911 at Yellow Springs, Ohio. He preceded her in death in 1958. Survivors include two daughters, Mrs. Helen Fiegel, Elkhorn; Mrs. Ruth Larson, Watertown; five grandsons; three great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by three brothers and one grandson. Mrs. Bickett was a graduate of Antioch College and had a degree in music and teaching. She was a member of the First Congregational United Church of Christ, and the Clover Club of that church, a member of Watertown Chapter No. 44 Order of Eastern Star and the Past Matrons Club of the Eastern Star. Mrs. Bickett was the first president of the Band Mothers Club, now known as the Parents Music Club. Services will be held at 3 p.m. Thursday at the First Congregational United Church of Christ, the Rev. Roy P. Steen officiating. Interment will be in Oak Hill Cemetery. Eastern Star services will be held at 8 p.m. Wednesday at the Schmutzler Funeral Home. Friends may pay their respects at the funeral home from 3 to 9 p.m. on Wednesday and until 10 a.m. on Thursday. After 11 a.m. Thursday the body will be in state at the church.


The Janesville Daily Gazette, Janesville, Rock Co., WI, Tuesday, October 22, 1968

Mrs. L. M. Bickett

ELKHORN - Mrs. L. M. Bickett, 88, died yesterday in St. Joseph's Home, Watertown, after suffering a stroke two weeks ago. Gertrude Baker was born in Yellow Springs, Ohio, Feb. 10, 1880, and was a graduate of Antioch College in music and teaching. She was married in Yellow Springs June 8, 1911, to LeRoy M. Bickett. He died in 1958. She was a member of First Congregational Church, Watertown, and its Clover Club, and a member of the Ladies Society of Elkhorn Congregational Church, Watertown Chapter of Eastern Star and past matron's club. A resident of Watertown from 1921 to 1963 when she moved to Elkhorn to live with a daughter. She moved to St. Joseph's Home last year. Surviving are two daughters, Mrs. Victor (Helen) Fiegel, Elkhorn; Mrs. Ruth Larson, Watertown; five grandchildren; three great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by three brothers and one grandson. Mrs. Bickett was a graduate of Antioch College and had a degree in music and teaching. Services will be at 3 p.m. Thursday in the First Congregational Church. Friends may call tomorrow afternoon and evening at the Schmutzler Funeral Home, Watertown, where Eastern Star rites will be held.


Herman Witt of Minocqua, WI, sent this letter to Ruth (Bickett) Larson following the death of Gertrude Bickett (Click on the picture for the PDF letter).  


Edited reflections by their daughter Helen Means (Bickett) Fiegel

Roy was a man possessed of a great deal of "drive." He did not have a lot of formal education, but he had many and varied interests, and acquired a surprising education from, as he said, the "school of hard knocks". As a young man, he belonged to the Ohio Militia. He was a self-taught musician and played the coronet, and organized and was the leader of the Militia Band. This was in the early 1900s.

He worked at a bicycle shop in Dayton, OH; then as a vulcanizer in a rubber factory in Springfield, OH. In 1911 he was a shareholder in the Globe Rubber Company of Dayton, OH. In 1914 he formed the Xenia Rubber Company.

In 1917 he moved to Milwaukee, WI where he was employed by the Petley Rubber Company. In 1921 he was hired by the Pan American Rubber Company in Watertown, WI, and the company after reorganization was known as the Bickett Rubber Products Company.

Lawson Airplane Company--Continental Faience and Tile Company (added 2001 - Building - #01000964); also known as Pan-American Rubber Company, 909 Menomonee Ave., South Milwaukee.

During 1931, an effort was made to move the company to Anderson, IN, but because of the failure of the bank backing the move, after moving some equipment to Anderson, the company returned to Watertown, where it was reorganized as the L. M. Bickett Company, which continued until after his death in 1958. LeRoy Bickett had several patents issued to him (see below). The L. M. Bickett Company, in addition to custom rubber molding, developed a line of products for office use. Mr. Bickett designed, patented, and developed a world-wide market for the Respirator Chair Cushion. They also made chair mats (trade names Rolmaster and Flexmaster), and he developed the link-mat (trade name Ruberlynk) for entrances to large buildings. There were also standing mats (trade name Standees), and other mats for various purposes, as under typewriters, desk tops, jail cell beds, and bowling alley pits. He developed a rubber pencil cup holder (trade name Bicco), and a molded rubber covered mallet. In one section of the factory he had a machine shop, and he made practically all the molds that were used in production. They also produced a line of rubber-bonded abrasive grinding wheels and razor hones. A specialty product for home use was "Kleenzum", a mixture of soap and sand for cleaning really dirty hands. An unusual solid natural rubber rubber ball was also manufactured, which was about 3 inches in diameter and had two external 360 degree half round circular ridges at 90 degrees to each other, providing very lively but erratic and unpredictable bouncing properties.

Gertie was a graduate of Antioch College in Yellow Springs, OH, with degrees in music and teaching. She was a member of the First Congregational United Church of Christ, and the Clover Club of that church; a member of Watertown Chapter No. 44 Order of Eastern Star and the Past Matrons Club of the Eastern Star; was the first president of the Band Mothers Club, now known as the Parents Music Club. She had resided in Watertown from 1921 until 1963 when she moved to Elkhorn, WI, to make her home with her daughter Helen. She resided at St. Joseph's Home for the Aged in Watertown from late 1967 until her death in 1968. 

Roy and Gertie were married in the Village of Yellow Springs, Greene Co., OH, on June 8, 1911, and they lived in Yellow Springs until moving to Wisconsin in 1917. After 1921 their home was in Watertown, WI and they both became community leaders in various activities. 

During the mid-1940s Mr. Bickett decided the time had come to buy the farmland he said he always wanted to buy, to replace that which his grandfather Adam Reed Bickett had lost following the Civil War, so he bought several farms totaling 734 acres near Richwood, Dodge Co., WI. One of the farms turned out to be completely unsuitable for farming operations, so he decided to dredge it out, creating a pond, and turn it into a wildlife refuge. This was an extremely expensive operation, and he had a difference of opinion with the Internal Revenue Service over his claims he had been advised this was an operating expense and should not be capitalized. He contested the tax assessment, without success, and of course with prolonging the affair the penalties grew larger. His preoccupation with this matter had a greatly adverse effect on his health. Financially the whole affair of the "ranch" was a disaster. Before his death he agreed to sell part of the farm property to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, and this area is still used for wildlife.

Life was far from easy for Roy and Gertie. They raised their two daughters through the Depression years, just at the time the company was attempting to make the move to Indiana, and the Respirator Seat Cushion idea and patent were the result of desperately searching for a saleable product to make. Then the economic conditions gradually righted themselves and they had the problems of the "ranch" to handle, plus Roy's onset of diabetes. They were beloved by their grandsons, more than many knew. How those grandsons loved to go to the "ranch" with Pal and Granny!


The Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, March 22, 1967

CRACKER BARREL

Start Of World War 1917 Story

Roy Bickett sold the Old Town Rubber Co., where he had been manufacturing rubber heels in a former flour mill and moved his operations to Wisconsin where he manufactured cushions for desk chairs.


The Xenia Daily Gazette, Xenia, Greene Co., OH, Wednesday, April 23, 1969

Twenty Years Ago

CRACKER BARREL

Many Businesses Died Here - - Rubber Firm Stayed Alive

One successful local manufacturing venture reached its full potential elsewhere. Roy Bickett started his Xenia Rubber co. in a downtown location, acquired new equipment, bought the Ben Belden flour mill at Old Town and moved there. The company was incorporated for $40,000 with Bickett, Harvey Sanders, A. C. Sanders, E.. D. Stroup and L. H. Hunter as incorporators. But Bickett, frustrated here, took his operation to Wisconsin where his rubber-filled chair cushions prospered along with a recreation park he established.


LeRoy McVey Bickett's U. S. Patents

No. 1,453,123    April 24, 1923    Mold for rubber mats, etc.

       

No. 1,516,113    November 18, 1924    Parting material recipe for molding flasks. The co-inventor was Erwin F. Moldenhauer.

No. 1,767,165    June 24, 1930    Weather stripping.

       

No. 2,025,712    December 31, 1935    Ventilated seat cushion.

       

No. 2,617,751    November 11, 1952    Rubber pad for sleeping.

       

December 13, 2003, marked the 100th anniversary of the first flight of the Wright brothers, Wilbur and Orville. They owned a bicycle shop in Dayton, OH, their home town. A newspaper article stated: "There were more U. S. patents per capita in the Wright's hometown at the turn of the century than anywhere else in the nation," said Tim Crouch, senior curator of the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum. The automobile self-starter and the cash register were among other inventions developed in Dayton. "They really had to come from a place like Dayton, where there were good ideas floating in the air," Crouch said. This may help to explain where or why Mr. Bickett's creativity was fostered and why he knew the value of patents. Mr. Bickett used to relate with pride that he had personally met the Wright brothers.   


A 2010 ebay posting listed a Bickett Razor Hone No. 6C for sale.  It is 2 1/2 by 3 7/8 inches. Manufactured by Bickett Rubber Products Corporation, Watertown, Wisconsin, USA. It is a man-made barber hone. The hone is new in box and shows a price of $1.50. All identification on hone is on back. It is interesting that the text on back has a double strike (for lack of better terminology) on the ETT in the name.

They also made rubber-bonded abrasive grinding wheels. Does the razor hone look rubber-bonded, too?

WARNING: the link has a somewhat "racy" picture on the page (Swamsauger Lake). Well... racy for 1941; maybe...

The Bickett Razor Hone No 6 C is stamped on the green box with separate set of Bickett, Watertown, Wisconsin, instructions. The 3 inch x 1/2 inch x 2 inch hone is in excellent condition and is embossed "Sunset Ebony Dry Hone" on the side of the hone.

       


Men Of Achievement In Wisconsin, 1946, Page 191, John Moranz Associates, Milwaukee, Milwaukee Co., WI.

JPG Leroy Bickett 2.jpg (79111 bytes)

     LeRoy McVey Bickett was one of the few Wisconsin men honored in the first edition for manufacturing in that state.

L. M. Bickett

L. M. BICKETT COMPANY

L. M. Bickett became identified with the rubber industry in the year 1908, and after five years experience with several large rubber manufacturers organized the Xenia Rubber Mfg. Co. at Xenia, Ohio in 1913. In 1917 the Xenia Rubber Mfg. Co. was sold to a group of Milwaukee industrialists who organized the Ever Wear Rubber Co. and the business was transferred to Milwaukee, L. M. Bickett becoming General Manager of the Milwaukee organization. Iin 1920 the Ever Wear Rubber Co. was taken over as a going  concern by Rubtex Products, Inc., of Indianapolis and manufacturing activities were transferred to that city.

After having resided in Wisconsin for approximately three years he decided to remain in Wisconsin and in the fall of 1920 the Bickett Rubber Products Corp. of Watertown, Wis. was organized to manufacture industrial rubber goods. In 1932 the Bickett Rubber Products. Corp. reorganized and became the L. M. Bickett Company and this reorganized company has met with remarkable success specializing iin the manufacture of sponge rubber cushions, desk and chair mats, and other rubber products distributed through the office supply trade. During the war all civilian production was suspended and the plant operated 100% on war work and had numerous contracts, both direct and subcontract.

Prior to the war an extensive market was developed for a patented type of office chair cushion called the RESPIRATOR, and the slogan THE WORLD IS SITTING ON RESPIRATOR CUSHIONS was adopted for the reason that they were shipped to foreign countries completely encircling the globe. The Respirator ventilated seat cushion was developed and patented by L. M. Bickett and several additional patents were secured, all dealing with  the manufacture or use of rubber products.

L. M.. is a hard working individual spending a minimum amount of his time in the office, preferring to work in the factory working with rubber products or preparing mold equipment to be used in producing special products. Quite frequently salesmen refuse to believe that they had interviewed the boss himself as in the course of his work, soiled clothing, dirty face and hands led visitors to believe they were talking to one of the factory employees.

L. M. Bickett's hobbies are bowling, fishing, and hunting, and as the result of his outdoor life whenever occasion permits, also exercise secured by bowling, he has always enjoyed good health and his physical activity is a great endorsement of temperance, exercise and fresh air.

In anticipation of the time when he can retire from more active life he has acquired a number of adjoining farms representing a total in excess of 700 acres, and it is his plan to convert this into a ranch, specializing in the raising of steers, sheep, poultry and the usual line of grain crops. This project will be known as Le-Ki-Re Ranch a duplicate of the dude ranches found in the western states.

Having had many years experience in the rubber industry, principally in the mechanical and industrial field, his advice and cooperation in adapting rubber to industrial requirements are of great advantage to the various industries located in Wisconsin, and this to a great extent is responsible for the success of the L. M. Bickett Company.


The Daily Record, March 1, 2005

MILLERSBURG

Joseph B. Polin, 86, of Millersburg, died Monday morning, Feb. 28, 2005, at Majora Lane Care Center, Millersburg, following an extended illness. Services will be Thursday at 1 p.m. at the Alexander Funeral Home, Millersburg, with the Rev. Jim Cooper officiating. Burial will be at Oak Hill Cemetery in Millersburg. Friends may call Wednesday from 6-8 p.m. at the funeral home. Family suggests that memorial contributions be made to Majora Lane Care Center Physical Therapy Department. He was born Aug. 8, 1918, in Reedy, W.Va. and was the son of Charles C. and Anna (Newhart) Polin and married Geneva Anderson on July 31, 1943. She survives. He was a veteran of World War II, serving in the U.S. Army. He worked in the oil fields and retired from the Holmes County Highway Department in 1982. Surviving in addition to his wife are a son, Larry and daughter-in-law, Debi Polin of Millersburg; a daughter, Patricia and son-in-law, David Wilson of New Port Richey, Fla.; granddaughters, Stephanie Wilson and Lisa Wilson; great-granddaughters, Britany Wilson and Ashley Wilson and a brother, Russell "Red" Polin of Reedy, W.Va. He was preceded in death by a brother, Tom Polin, two sisters, Ella Ellison and Susie Cottle and a half-sister, Pauline Conrad.


The Watertown Daily Times, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI, Saturday, June 26, 1954, Centennial Edition

Businessmen Purchased Pan-American Rubber Co., Started Bickett Firm Here

The rubber business in Watertown dates back to 1918 when a group of Watertown businessmen purchased controlling interest in the Pan-American Rubber Co., which had been operating in South Milwaukee, manufacturing a sponge rubber tube filler. After severing control of the company, the businessmen purchased a building at 600 South First Street in Watertown and moved the equipment from South Milwaukee to Watertown. The Pan-American Rubber Co. experienced considerable difficulty in disposing of its product; also, had some trouble in manufacturing sponge rubber fillers for the larger size tires, and as the result operations were not successful and profitable. In the fall of 1920 the group arranged for L. M. Bickett to come out to Watertown and, if possible give them some advice regarding the solving of their problems. At that time a meeting of all the stockholders was held to discuss the situation and to listen to the suggestions made by Mr. Bickett. After reviewing the entire situation Mr. Bickett suggested that they discontinue manufacture of the sponge rubber tire fillers and convert the factory into mechanical rubber goods, for which there was a great demand and orders could be secured without sales expense. After several conferences it was decided to liquidate the Pan-American Rubber Co. and to organize a new mechanical rubber goods company, and although L. M. Bickett was at that time employed by the Rubtex Products Corp., he agreed to resign and accept a position with the new corporation to be organized, and accordingly, in April of 1921 the Bickett Rubber Products Corp. was organized, the Pan-American Rubber Co. was liquidated and immediately thereafter the newly organized Bickett Rubber Products Corp. started operations.

Three Still Living

The following is a complete list of all the original incorporators of the Bickett Rubber Products Corp., and all, excepting three of the gentlemen listed, have passed on: L. M. Bickett, R. A. Cebell, Charles Feisst, R. J. Hoge, E. J. Hoermann, Dan Kusel, Louis H. Kusel, Max G. Kusel, A. F. Mayer, Fred Saxmann, Edward L. Schempf, W. S. Siebert, Herman Wertheimer, O. C. Wertheimer and G. Pritzlaff. Of this group Mr. Bickett, Mr. Hoge and Dan Kusel, are the men still living. Due to the fact that the equipment used by the Pan-American Rubber Co. was not suitable for the manufacture of mechanical rubber goods it was necessary to purchase approximately $100,000 worth of new equipment, and this was accordingly done and installed within 12 or 18 months after incorporation. In order to get into production as soon as possible, while developing the mechanical rubber goods business, the company secured contracts from a number of chain store organizations for stair treads and rubber heels, and within three years time the company achieved the honor of being the largest manufacturer of stair treads in the United States. As mechanical rubber goods orders were received the volume of business increased and profitable operations resulted.

Operations Moved

In 1931 the Bickett Rubber Corp. received a proposition from a group of citizens in Anderson, Ind., to transfer the business to Anderson, Ind., and in view of the fact that 80 per cent of the company's business was in the eastern states, which could better be served from Anderson, Ind., than Watertown. The offer made was accepted and in August, 1931, operations were discontinued in Watertown and removal of the equipment was made to Anderson. Unfortunately, in October, 1931, the bank at Anderson which had undertaken the financing of the transfer and had agreed to invest $100,000 in the Anderson organization, was forced to close, and as the result the Wisconsin corporation lost all of the equipment, finished goods, raw materials and current assets which had been transferred to Anderson. It was the plan of the Indiana stockholders to operate the rubber business at Anderson just as soon as it was possible for them to raise the capital and reopen their bank; however, under such a plan the Wisconsin stockholders would have lost their entire investment, although in their plans for the reopening of the Anderson factory Mr. Bickett was to remain at Anderson, he refused to do so and instead took legal steps to secure the release of the buildings and equipment at Watertown so that operations at Watertown could be resumed. In order to secure the release of the assets at Watertown Mr. Bickett personally had to assume obligations of approximately $73,000, and in addition it was necessary to borrow from the Falk Corporation of Milwaukee $17,000 with which to reopen the Watertown plant and resume production. Approximately $14,000 of the borrowed $17,000 was expended for equipment to replace the most essential part of the equipment, which had been transferred to Anderson, leaving less than $3,000 as working capital for the newly organized L. M. Bickett Company which was incorporated in April, 1932.

Stock Exchanged

Although it was deemed advisable and planned to continue operations under the original charter issued to the Bickett Rubber Products Corp. and using the same name, unfortunately this was not allowed and it was necessary to organize a new corporation. However, stock in the new corporation was exchanged for stock in the old corporation held by the original stockholders and not one of them was called on to contribute $1 to the new L. M. Bickett Company. Starting operations in the spring of 1932 was extremely difficult because at that time and for two or three years thereafter the entire country suffered from a severe depression, and this resulted in a great handicap to the company. However, resulting from the goodwill established under the name of the old corporation, production was started and increased continuously and within three or four years time the production equaled production established by the old corporation.

In 1934 L. M. Bickett secured a patent on a new and greatly improved type of seat cushion. Although he was offered $100,000 for this patent three days after it was issued it was assigned to the L. M. Bickett Company at a total cost of $258, which represented the lawyers' fees in securing the patent. The trade accepted the new ventilated type of cushion, which was named “Respirator”, and within five years time was being sold and used in approximately 45 foreign countries. This business continued to increase until the war in December, 1941, at which time the government prohibited the use of rubber in seat cushions and all other non-essential products reserving everything or wartime needs. The rubber restraining order continued until the conclusion of the war in 1945. In order to keep the factory in operation essential war orders were secured and the factory operated approximately 18 hours per day during the years 1944 and 1945. At the conclusion of World War II all restrictions on rubber were removed and the company resumed production on civilian products and there has been no interference with production since the war ended and the company has been in continuous profitable production ever since.

Plant Enlarged

In 1942, and continuing up through 1946, additional buildings were constructed and additional equipment was installed - all from profits resulting from operations, and as the result the plant is now completely equipped to an even greater extent than it was before the transfer to Anderson, Ind. Since 1932, after the reorganization and with a starting working capital of less than $3.000, the L. M. Bickett Company has transacted up to December, 1953, a grand total of $3,188,965 of business. Earnings have been sufficient to pay dividends to all stock­holders, and the company has an established trade extending from coast to coast with approximately 3,000 customers located in practically every large city in the United States. Unfortunately, the foreign business which had been created during the years 1935 to 1941 has been wiped out due to restrictions in the various foreign countries which prohibit the importation of non-essential products, the difference in exchange resulting from World War II and economic conditions which still prevail in a great many of these countries. Operating as the Bickett Rubber Products Corp. from 1921 to 1931 and as the L. M. Bickett Company from 1932 up to date, the company has never had an idle period and continuous operation has been the rule. It might be stated that this situation is because of the diversified nature of the products manufactured, also the possibility of adding additional lines whenever any particular line indicates a slack period. Within six years after the organization of the L. M. Bickett Company all the obligations which had been assumed in the separation from the Indiana corporation had been paid, the Falk Corporation loan was repaid and occasionally new equipment is installed which automatically increases our production. Acknowledgment is made by Mr. Bickett to the original stock­holders and incorporators of the Bickett Rubber Products Corp. for their assistance in creating a new industry in Watertown, which because of the fact that it was one hundred per cent locally owned has been a contributing factor to the industrial prosperity of Watertown for the past 33 years.


The Watertown Daily Times, Watertown, Jefferson Co., WI, Saturday, June 26, 1954, Centennial Edition

Eastern Star Organization Is in Its 61st Year Now

Sixty-one years ago the Watertown Chapter No. 44, Order of the Eastern Star was organized. The first meeting was held Feb. 23, 1893 at which time the following officers were elected: Carrie Sleeper, worthy matron; William Rohr, worthy patron; Ema Eaton, association matron; Amanda Fuehrman, treasurer; Tillie Valerius, secretary; E. Gar­dener, conductress; Augusta Schmutzler, associate conductress; Stella Jossi, Ada; Marie Sproes­esr, Ruth; Elizabeth Solliday, Electa; Anne Wadleigh, Esther; Helen May, Martha; Shara Bradbury, chaplain; Jennie Thorne, warder; Ella Brickell, organist; William Hawkins, sentinel.

56 Charter Members

Of the 56 charter members of the chapter, three are still living. They are John Seager, Anna Wadleigh, and Stella J. Cebell. Others listed as charter members were D. O. Bradbury, Mary Bradbury, Ella Brickell, A. E. Calhoun, Mary Calhoun, George Cooley, Rachael E. Davies, F. M. Eaton, Dudley Fitzgerald, Rocena Fitzgerald, Charles Fuermann, Amanda Fuermann, Charles Gardner, Emma Gardner, William Humphrey, William N. Hawkins, Annie Harrison, Theodore Huber, Jacob Jossi, Elizabeth Jossi, William H. Rohr, Samuel Kussel, Ida Kussel, Edward May, Helena May, A. Solliday, Elizabeth Solliday, Ferd. Schmutzler, Augusta Schmutzler, W. D. Sproesser, Marie Sproesser, William Sleight, Aminda Sleight, Jennie Seager, S. R. Sleeper, Carrie Sleeper, Viola Stahl, David Schwab, John Throne, N. P. Valerius, Tillie Valerius, Paul Valerius, Bertha Valerius, Frank Weber, Augusta Weber, W. Wadleigh, Sarah Webb, O. H. Will, George Weber and Emilie Weber. Past grand officers include. Lavisa Collins, grand sentinel, who served in 1915; L. J. Marsh, who acted as grand sentinel in 1943, grand associate patron, 1944, grand patron, 1945, and trustee from 1945 to 1953; Elsie Joseph, grand Rep. of Utah, 1936; Evelyn Krietzman, Rep. of Oregon, 1940, and Lena Cross, Rep. of Arkansas, 1945.

Past Matrons

Past patrons, who have served the chapter, include: Carrie Sleeper - 1893-94-95; Emma Eaton - 1896-97; Marie Sproesser - 1898; Stell Cebell - 1899; Jen­nie Seager - 1900-01; Ametia Huber -1902; Julia Rathbourne - 1903; Artie Mendenhall - 1904-05; Elizabeth Henrich - 1906-07-08; Anna Krueger - 1909-10-11; Mary Sabin - 1912-13; Lavisa Collins - 1914-15, Florence Kraemer -1916; Meta Calhoun - 1917-18: Anna Schaufler - 1919; Mary Weigel - 1920; Elizabeth Kelly - 1921-22; Maude Moen - 1923; Ethel Krueger - 1924-25; Lydia Keel - 1926; Elsa Rose - 1927; Gertrude Bickett - 1928; Laura Harte – 1929; Edna Voss - 1930-31; Anna Kuenzi - 1932; Anna Kleineschay - 1933; Inez Richards - 1934; Alice Alt - 1935; Elsie Joseph - 1936; Annie Zick - 1937; Vivian Hansen - 1938; Marie Grossert - 1939; Evelyn Kreitzman - 1940; Irene Roth - 1941; Loda Carlson - 1942; Lorina Starkey - 1943; Zita Landsverk - 1944; Olga Lehtoma - 1945; Lena Cross - 1946; Ruth Moser - 1947; Milderd Nack - 1948; Ella Birk­holz - 1949; Mabel Breithaupt -1950; Ruby Pugh - 1951; Doris Koerner - 1952; Kathleen Killian - 1953.

Past Patrons

Past patrons include the following: William Rohr - 1893-94; Frank Eaton - 1895-1900, 1905-06; Ferdinand Schmutzler – 1896 -18­98, 1901-1903, 1908-1910; John Seager - 1899, 1904; Arthur Mulberger - 1907; William Collins - 1911-12; William Thomas - 1913; William Richard - 1914; Frank Burke - 1915-17; E. T. Hayhurst - 1913; J. B. Atkinson - 1918-19; John Calhoun –­ 1920, 1924; Carl Meckes - 1921; C. L. VanderBie - 1922-23; Frank Slight -1925; Joseph Rhodes - 1926-27-28; William Kleineschay - 1929-30; Fred Alt - 1931-32-33-34; William Zick - 1935; P. D. Joseph - 1936; Theodore Zick - 1937; Oscar Hansen - 1938; Oscar Carlson - 1939; Frank Johnston – 1940, 1950; Herbert Smith - 1941; Victor Nowack - 1942; Leonard J. Marsh - 1943; William E. Radke - 1944; Morris Cross - 1945; U. R. Hagman - 1946; Erwin Keepman - 1947; Herbert Birkholtz - 1948-49; Milo Ray Shackley - 1951; Gerald Barlow - 1952; Theodore Koerner - 1953.

In February of 1916 a fire destroyed the Masonic Temple, after which Star meetings were held in the homes of members, the Knights of Columbus Hall and the Knights of Pythias Hall. The chapter, which is an auxiliary of the Masonic order, is a welfare organization and as such is engaged in welfare work.

Current Membership

The current membership of the chapter totals 238. Present officers are: LaDorna Mae Frish, worthy matron; William G. Frisch, worthy patron; Genevieve Behlke, association matron; Milo Ray Shackley, association patron; Elsie Joseph, secretary; Loda Carlson, treasurer; Elsa Peck, conductress; Helen Osterhout,  associate conductress; Esther Flater, chaplain; Alice Dauer, marshal; Clara Reinhard, organist; Elizabeth Johnson, Adah; Aethol Stockli, Ruth; Joan Killian, Esther; Marian Carlson, Martha; Marilyn Birkholz, Electa; Shirey Hille, warder; Mark Osterhout, sentinel, and Grace Flath, soloist.

Past Matrons Club

The Past Matrons Club of the Watertown chapter, Order of Eastern Star was organized Sept. 16, 1938 when a meeting of all past matrons was held at the home of Laura Harte. Elizabeth Kelly acted as chairman at the meeting of organization. The objectives of the club are social and to aid in any altruistic endeavors promoted by the Watertown Star Chapter. First officers were Ann Miller, president, and Gertrude Bickett, secretary-treasurer. The following became charter members: Gertrude Bickett, Meta Calhoun, Laura Harte, Elsie Joseph, Lydia Kiel, Elizabeth Kelly, Ann Kleineschay, Ethel Krueger, Ann Kuenzi, Ann Miller, Maud Moen, Elsa Rose, Ann Zick, Inez Richards and Vivian Hanson. The club, which meets on the first Monday of the month with the exception of July and August, has a membership of 23. Hostesses entertain in alphabetical order.


 

William MEANS

Born: 18 Dec 1831, OH

Marriage: Martha E CAMPBELL on 12 Oct 1859

Died: 28 Jul 1921, Yellow Springs, Greene Co., OH at age 89

Buried: Woodland Cemetery, Ironton, OH

 

1900C: Yellow Spring, Greene, OH- 68 yrs, b. Dec 1831 in OH, m. 40 yrs, retired, parents b. SC & OH, w/wife & 2 daughters
1910C: Miami, Greene Co., OH- William Means, widower, own income, all else (unkown), w/daughter, Pearl A

OHIO Deaths
b. 18 Dec 1831 in OH d. 28 Jul 1921 in Yellow Springs, Greene Co., OH
buried- Ironton, OH


Find A Grave Memorial# 35424023
William A. Means, son of Thomas Means became successful in the iron industry at Ironton Ohio and engaged in the same business in Cincinnati when he was about 45 years old and later became head of a Cincinnati bank. He was the mayor of Cincinnati in 1881-1882. Mr. Means was prominent in democratic politics for many years. For forty years while a resident of Cincinnati he maintained a summer home in Yellow Springs, Ohio eventually moving there to spend the remainder of his life. It was at his home in Yellow Springs that he died, on Friday July 29, 1921 at 10 o'clock. He was married to Martha Elizabeth Campbell (1842-1904) daughter of John Campbell of Ironton on October 12, 1859 by Rev. J. Chester. They had three daughters, Pearl Means (d.1931), Gertrude Means (c1869-1949) and Pattie Means (1874-1921).

William married Martha E CAMPBELL on 12 Oct 1859. (Martha E CAMPBELL was born in Aug 1842 in Lawrence Co., OH, died on 19 Feb 1904 in Cincinnati, OH and was buried in Woodland Cemetery, Ironton, OH.)

 

He was married to Martha Elizabeth Campbell (1842-1904) daughter of John Campbell of Ironton on October 12, 1859 by Rev. J. Chester.

 

Martha E CAMPBELL

Born: Aug 1842, Lawrence Co., OH

Marriage: William MEANS on 12 Oct 1859

Died: 19 Feb 1904, Cincinnati, OH at age 61

Buried: Woodland Cemetery, Ironton, OH

1900C: 42 yrs, b. Aug 1842 in OH, parents b. OH, listed as Martha E C, w/husband & 2 daughters

1900 children- Pearl A Feb 1866, Patti W Dec 1873

OHIO Deaths
Martha E C Means b. 1843 d. 19 Feb 1904 in Cincinnati, OH

Find A Grave Memorial# 35425741
FUNERAL FOR MRS. MEANS. - Martha Elizabeth Campbell Means, second daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Campbell, was born at Mt. Furnace, Lawrence County, in 1842, and married October 12, 1859 by Rev. Joseph Chester; died February 19, 1904, in Cincinnati, Ohio, of pneumonia. William Means and daughter, Pearl, of Yellow Springs, Mrs. Alex Julian, Mr. and Mrs. Thaddeus McElroy, of New York, accompanied the body from Cincinnati. Two brothers, Albert Campbell, of Washington, D. C. and Charles Campbell of Hecla Furnace, are the only survivors of the Campbell family. The funeral services were held Sunday afternoon at 2 o'clock from the home of Mr. and Mrs. David Nixon, of Park avenue, Rev. L.O. Richmonds conducting the services. A male quartet, composed of Carl Moulton, Allen Dolin, Albert Marting and Gus Kerr sang "Abide With Me." S. B. Steece, Eugene Willard, James Bull, C. C. Clarke, Harry Mountain and Albert Murdock were pall bearers. The burial was at Woodland Cemetery

Martha married William MEANS on 12 Oct 1859. (William MEANS was born on 18 Dec 1831 in OH, died on 28 Jul 1921 in Yellow Springs, Greene Co., OH and was buried in Woodland Cemetery, Ironton, OH.)

 

Pearl Means

William Means

http://digicoll.library.wisc.edu/cgi/f/findaid/findaid-idx?c=wiarchives;cc=wiarchives;view=text;rgn=main;didno=uw-whs-whit00bf

 

Summary Information
Title: L. M. Bickett Papers
Inclusive Dates: 1921-1958

Creator:
  • Bickett, L. M., 1883-1958
Call Number: Whitewater Mss BF

Quantity: 0.4 c.f. (1 archives box)

Repository:
Archival Locations:
UW-Whitewater Library / Whitewater Area Research Ctr. (Map)
 

Abstract:
Fragmentary records of Bickett, and of Bickett Rubber Products Corp. and L. M. Bickett Co., Watertown, Wisconsin, rubber products manufacturing firms which he founded in 1920 and operated until 1955. The companies manufactured stair treads, shoe heels, and seat cushions. The few personal papers include family letters, financial records, a speech, an open letter to the Watertown business community, and objections to the probate of Bickett's will. Corporate records contain Bickett's historical summary of his companies, articles of organization and by-laws, minutes, audit reports, balance sheets, legal documents, stockholder subscription lists, product descriptions and costs, an inventory, promotional correspondence, salary records, and a retrospective appraisal of the L. M. Bickett Co., which went into bad standing in the mid-1960s.

Language: English

URL to cite for this finding aid: http://digital.library.wisc.edu/1711.dl/wiarchives.uw-whs-whit00bf
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Biography/History

L. M. Bickett was born May 1, 1883, in Xenia, Ohio, to George and Elizabeth S. Bickett. Although little is known of his educational background and early years, Bickett was first identified with the rubber industry in 1908. On June 8, 1911, he married Gertrude Barker. Two years later, Bickett organized the Xenia Rubber Manufacturing Co., in Xenia, Ohio. In 1917, he sold the Xenia company to a group of Milwaukee businessmen who then reorganized it as the Ever Wear Rubber Co. in Wisconsin, with Bickett as general manager. Rubtex Products, Inc., Indianapolis, bought Ever Wear in 1920 and transferred the business to Indiana. Bickett decided to remain in Wisconsin.

In the fall of 1920, Bickett accepted an offer from a group of Watertown, Wisconsin businessmen who had recently purchased the Pan American Rubber Co., West Allis, to organize the company in Watertown. In April 1921, the Bickett Rubber Products Corporation was formed, with Bickett as chief stockholder, director, and manager of the company. He held these positions until 1955.

From 1921 to 1930 the Bickett Rubber Products Corp. manufactured various products, specializing in stair treads and rubber heels. The company's main market was chain stores such as S.S. Kresge and Woolworth, and much of its product was shipped to the eastern part of the country. In order to expedite its shipping, the company established warehouses in Buffalo and Albany, New York, and in Pittsburgh.

In 1930 the company accepted an offer from a group of businessmen in Anderson, Indiana, to purchase a quarter interest in the company for 100,000 dollars. The next year the company moved to Anderson in expectation of receiving this new capital and to eliminate some of its warehouses. But, in October 1931, the Citizens Bank of Anderson, Indiana, the source of the new funds, failed, and Bickett decided to return to Wisconsin. He secured a release for the building and equipment that had remained in Watertown, and resumed manufacturing operations there.

In order to secure this release and to re-equip the Watertown plant, Bickett personally assumed a debt of 73,000 dollars and borrowed 17,000 dollars more from the Falk Corp. in Milwaukee, which owned the diesel engine generating the power at the plant. In April 1932, the Bickett Rubber Products Corp. was reorganized under the new name of L. M. Bickett Co. The stock of the Bickett Rubber Products Corp. was exchanged for that of the new company without further investment required. This reorganization later became the basis of a long battle over taxes assessed on the profits of the L. M. Bickett Co.

In 1934 Bickett secured a patent on a new type of ventilated seat cushion called the “Respirator” and within a few years the company's business was on the increase. In 1938 Bickett purchased the interests of the Falk Co. and the equipment and real estate held by several bond holders, and thus became not only the chief stockholder of the company, but also its landlord. The upward trend in business continued until World War II brought production of commercial rubber products to a halt in 1941. During the war essential orders were obtained to keep the plant in operation, but the disruption of business both during and after the war brought serious financial problems to the company.

Sometime in 1943 or 1944 both the L. M. Bickett Co. and Bickett personally were assessed additional taxes. According to Helen Bickett Fiegel, Bickett's daughter, his personal tax problems involved a tax deduction unrelated to the operation of the company. The dispute over the company's taxes involved a basis for computing the net profits of the company after its reorganization.

Bickett maintained that until the financial statement of the L. M. Bickett Co. equaled the value of the investments of the original stockholders of the Bickett Rubber Products Corp. plus the value of the newly invested capital at the time of reorganization in 1932, there could be no net profits on which taxes were due. This issue remained unsettled until the fall of 1953, when an arrangement for payment was made. Payment was completed by the end of 1955.

The financial problems of the company were compounded by a series of internal organizational, management, and control problems during the early 1950s. The outcome of these problems was Bickett's resignation as president and director in January 1955. He severed his relationship with the company except as its landlord, although the company continued operation under the direction of his daughter and son-in-law, Ruth G. and W. A. Larson.

L. M. Bickett died May 4, 1958, and the company he founded went into bad standing sometime during the mid-1960s.

Scope and Content Note

Most of the records of Bickett's companies remained with the L. M. Bickett Co. when Bickett retired. This collection includes only scattered personal papers and corporate records of both Bickett Rubber Products Corp. and L. M. Bickett Co.

Within the PERSONAL PAPERS are a small file of family correspondence, mainly pertaining to company organizational problems involving family members; personal financial records, including worksheets of debits, credits, and accounts, and a list of personal property sold as of December 31, 1955; and Ruth G. Larson's objections to probate of L. M. Bickett's will. There is also a speech, possibly delivered by Bickett at a graduation ceremony, and an open letter for Watertown's centennial (1954) urging promotion of industry in the community.

The CORPORATE RECORDS contain a historical summary of L. M. Bickett Co. and its predecessors, written by L. M. Bickett; articles of organization and by-laws; balance sheets and other financial records, including a list of creditors of the failed company, 1931; leases and legal papers; and stockholder subscription lists of both Bickett Rubber Products Corp. and L. M. Bickett Co.; minutes of board of directors and stockholders meetings of Bickett Rubber Products Corp.; and audit reports of the L. M. Bickett Co., with additional notes and related financial data. Records of products and sales include the only illustrations and descriptions of the company's products, with a calculation of costs and profits on individual products produced by the Bickett Rubber Products Corp. There is also an inventory of machinery and equipment not shipped to Anderson, Indiana in 1931; promotional sales correspondence, mainly humorous annual Christmas letters written by Bickett under the pseudonym of Jim Brown; and salary data, consisting of a letter concerning salary policy, wage rate schedules, comparative salary summaries, and a record of past salaries. Also included is the retrospective appraisal of replacement values, depreciation and net sound values as of April 18, 1941, of the L. M. Bickett Co. There is little documentation of the company's lengthy tax problems.

Administrative/Restriction Information
Acquisition Information

Presented by Helen Bickett Fiegel, Elkhorn, Wisconsin, 1975. Accession Number: M75-226


Processing Information

Processed by Richard A. Cameron and Joanne Hohler, 1975, and by Bill Beaudreau and Menzi Behrnd-Klodt, 1986.


 
Contents List
 
Series: Personal Papers
 
Box   1
Folder   1
Family Correspondence, 1949-1955
 
Box   1
Folder   2
Personal Financial Records, 1946-1958
 
Box   1
Folder   3
Objections to Probate of Will of L. M. Bickett by Ruth G. Larson, July 15, 1958
 
Box   1
Folder   4
“What Kind of an Education Present Day Business Requires” - Speech and Open Letter to Watertown Community
 
 
Series: Corporate Records
Box   1
Folder   5
Historical Summaries of L.M. Bickett Co. and Predecessors, 1920-1955, prepared by L. M. Bickett
 
Box   1
Folder   6
Articles of Organization and By-Laws of Bickett Rubber Products Corp. and L.M. Bickett Co., 1921
 
 
Minutes of Bickett Rubber Products Corp.
 
Box   1
Folder   7
Board of Directors Meetings, 1921-1935
 
Box   1
Folder   8
Stockholders, 1921-1935
 
Box   1
Folder   9
Audit Reports of L.M. Bickett Co., 1952-1957
 
Box   1
Folder   10
Balance Sheets and Other Financial Records of Bickett Rubber Products Corp. and L.M. Bickett Co. 1921, 1926, 1955
 
Box   1
Folder   11
Leases and Miscellaneous Legal Records, 1928, 1932, 1952, 1954 of Bickett Rubber Products Corp. and L.M. Bickett Co.
 
Box   1
Folder   12
Stockholder Subscription Lists of Bickett Rubber Products Corp. and L.M. Bickett Co., 1921, 1952
 
Box   1
Folder   13
Product Descriptions and Costs, Bickett Rubber Products Corp.
 
Box   1
Folder   14
Equipment and Supplies
 
Box   1
Folder   15
Sales Correspondence and Promotional Material, 1926-1952
 
Box   1
Folder   16
Monthly Salaries, Based on Sales, 1945-1953
 
Box   1
Volume   1
Retrospective Appraisal Prepared by Lloyd Thomas Co. Chicago, 1951-1952, for L.M. Bickett Co., Reflecting Replacement New Values, Depreciation and Net Sound Values as of April 18, 1941