Archive for the ‘Commercial Club’ Category

The Fort Dodge Messenger: Oct. 29, 1912

“Women Can Do More Than Commercial Clubs,” H.J. Finn

Packing House Man Tells How to Boost Trade

Proposes “Ft. D. Stamp”

“Patronize Home Industries,” He Declares

Packing Plant Helps City

Brings Stock Shippers Here and Increases Trading — Employs Fifty Men and Will Double Number Soon – Increases Clearing House Receipts.

H.J. Finn, provision manager for the Suizburger & Sons company at Kansas City who has been assisting in opening the local plant, declares that large donations to the Commercial club of Fort Dodge will not assist in advertising the city and its products as much as would the co-operation of the women in a league of some kind. In an interview today, Mr. Finn advocated patronizing home industries.

“It is the general impression,” said Mr. Finn as he sat in the Wahkonsa hotel, that Commercial clubs must be inactive owing to an indisposition on the part of certain parties to put in money, but in this I do not agree. Let me offer some suggestions.

“Let the Commercial club get up a ‘Made in Fort Dodge’ stamp. I am sure all manufacturers here would use it, every dealer might attach it to his correspondence and the revenue from this would go far toward advertising the city.

“Form a Women’s league and let them get out small advertising cards calling attention to goods effecting the home and every woman writing to a friend with(in) 100 miles from here enclose a copy to her friend inviting a visit here to shop. A little such enthusiasm by your people for six months or a year systematically followed up would mean more than Mr. Merchant, Tom Jones or William Smith would hand over $1,000 each. The idea is to get ‘everybody doing it’ and keep at it — newspapers, merchants and people.”

Patronize Home Industries

In commenting upon the patronizing of home industries as a means of aiding their growth, Mr. Finn spoke of the business the packing company are now engaged in.

“The advantage of such a business as ours is manifold,” he said. “At present we employ about fifty men and in the very near future this would nearly double. We are bringing many hogs to Fort Dodge that would go to Chicago and other places. Shippers accompanying them will do considerable shopping here instead of Chicago.

We are shipping large quantities of finished meat to country points, the pay for which is collected by your banks. Altogether in normal times we should increase the bank clearings from $50,000 to $75,000 weekly. Is such business not worth the moral support of your people. Notice as you visit the shopping if our meats for example are as much in evidence as they should be.

“But we are not the only ones. Do your citizens ask for Fort Dodge made shoes and other products? If people want Fort Dodge made shoes they can get them by demanding them.

“You certainly have a beautiful city and I should imagine it would be delightful to live here. Your hotel cannot be excelled outside of Chicago. Your churches are beautiful and your amusements are cheap. You have a nice scenic river, but have little water so that it has but little boating value.

“Suppose you put in a low dam across the river at about the tile factory or better still at Shady Oaks – a dam high enough to raise the water say four or five feet. This would not cost much and the county might (undecipherable word) it to reduce the cost of bridge foundations. With three or five feet of water in your river who would not (undecipherable word) a canoe, skiff or motorboat? The opportunities for pleasure in your city would be increased one hundred per cent.”

Mr. Finn has traveled all over the country and is familiar with conditions in may cities. He believes that Fort Dodge has a great future. As his work of putting the local plant is about completed after more than six weeks’ stay here, he will go back to Kansas City.


Should Not Lose Opportunities

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: March 11, 1904

Should Not Lose Opportunities

Commissioner Harmon of the Commercial Club, on Manufacturing Institutions

Many Are Moving West

City Shows an Unprogressive Spirit in Not Securing Locations

‘Western towns never had a better plum plucking opportunity than the present,” said Commissioner Harmon of the Commercial Club today. “Factories and labor employing institutions all thru the east, harassed by the numerous labor troubles prevailing there, are driven to seek new locations. Many western cities are reaping large benefits from this condition of affairs and are landing factories galore. Fort Dodge has had scores of opportunities to get good things in this line, but she is too slow in closing her deals. While Fort Dodge is dickering for better terms, some other town, willing to pay the bonus asked, steps in and takes the prize. We have lost a number of splendid things in just this way.

“Fort Dodge, with her numerous natural advantages, shipping facilities, etc., works on the principal (sic) that she ought not be required to give any bonus; that her superior advantages should suffice without any cash inducement. it always proves, however, that it is the town that is willing to pay, which lands the institution every time. Fort Dodge should be forced to realize the situation. It should get out and cinch these deals before they are all snapped up by other towns willing to pay the price.

“Fort Dodge as a town is all right, but she is slack in this one matter. When I was in Chicago, the manager of a great bonding firm said: ‘Say, do you know Fort Dodge is the best town on the map of Iowa. Her wealth of gypsum, when fully developed alone is enough to make her the best town in the sate.’ I think the gentleman was right, but a town can’t rely altogether on natural resources. It must get out and hustle for things and be willing to spend a little money or be left behind. I know of one instance where a city no larger than Fort Dodge received a proposition and raised a bonus of $100,000 in forty-eight hours. Fort Dodge is just as wealthy as the place in mind, but such an amount could not possibly be raised here in even a much longer period of time.”


Will Open a Broom Factory

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: March 26, 1903

Will Open a Broom Factory

Fort Dodge Commercial Club Completes Arrangements With a Promising New Industry

Will Open Here on April 1

Factory is to be Operated by Brennan Bros., One of Whom Comes From Waterloo

Fort Dodge is to have a new factory by April 1. A Waterloo man haas decided that Fort Dodge is a better place to live, and as a result Brennan Brothers propose to come to this city to establish a broom factory.

One of the brothers makes his home in Waterloo. The other lives at some place near that city. The factory which they propose to put in will employ four or five men from the start, and it is expected that it will be gradually increased, as the out put for Fort Dodge brooms expands.

Brennan Brothers will probably secure one of the Laufersweiler buildings on First Avenue south, across from Sherman’s laundry, as the point in which they will begin their business operations.

The Commercial club, as a meeting held on Wednesday evening, talked over the broom factory proposition, and decided that it was a worthy enterprise, and should be extended the hand of fellowship by Fort Dodge industries.

The factory comes to Fort Dodge without a bonus of any kind. Its projectors are simply content to get into a bustling town and take their chances of the success which they are sure will come their way.

(Editor’s note: It’s interesting to see an article about a new business, and that the Commercial Club encouraged new businesses, much like the Fort Dodge Area Chamber of Commerce and the Development Corporation of Fort Dodge and Webster County do today. It’s also interesting that the newspaper noted that there were no financial incentives offered by the city, but the company just wanted to locate the broom factory here.)