Freund, Freund & Co, Franklin St. at Church St., New York, 1989
The pater familias of this family owned business was Joseph Freund who immigrated from Germany in 1839. He was in the "feathers" business at 142 Pitt St. (corner of Houston) in New York City as early as 1850.
The business relocated to 359 East Houston St. in 1861 where it became Joseph Freund "mattresses" by 1864. Joseph was joined by the second generation of Freunds: Jacob (1866), Lazarus (1871) and Moses (1871). The business became known as J. Freund & Co. (1867), dealing variously in mattresses, bedding, feathers, linens, and dry goods. There were also a plethora of locations, including prominently 339 Grand St.
When Joseph Freund died in 1874, Jacob Freund assumed leadership of the business. In 1879 the wholesale side of the business separated from the retail (at 339 Grand St.) and located in the area of Franklin St. and Broadway. In 1888 the Freunds joined with Asher Foise to create Freund, Foise & Co., importers, at 102 Franklin St. In 1892 Moses J. Freund (1867-1938) (beginning a third generation of Freunds in the business) joined Freund, Foise & Co. at 102 Franklin.
In 1897 Joseph L. Freund (another 3rd generation Freund, he seems to be the son of Lazarus) went into the linen business at 321 Canal St. By 1901 Moses Freund had died (his widow Henrietta was living at 49 E. 91st St.)
In 1906 Jacob M. Freund (he seems to be the son of Moses Freund) became another of the third generation of Freunds, joining Freund, Foise & Co. at 85 Franklin St. By 1907 there were 3 Freund linen businesses: (1) J. L. Freund & Co. at 114 Franklin St. (2) Freund & Co. at 339 Grand St. and (3) Freund, Foise & Co. at 85 Franklin St. By 1910 the Grand St. location (Freund & Co.) had been discontinued.
The name Freund, Freund & Co. is first mentioned in 1913, with its address at 85 Franklin St.. (It seems then that Freund, Freund & Co. constituted a merger of Freund, Foise & Co. with J. L. Freund & Co.). Moses J. Freund headed the firm with Joseph L. Freund a partner and Lazarus a salesman. In 1916 they moved from Franklin St. to 25 White St.
By 1920 Henry M. Freund (possibly Joseph L.'s son) joined Moses J. and Joseph L. at 25 White St. In 1927 the business moved to 58 Walker St. and Joseph L. Freund took over as head. It was also at this time that the importing of European linens (which had been an important part of the business) was discontinued in order to concentrate on the ticking field.
Moses J. Freund died in 1938 at the age of 71. In 1945 Freund, Freund & Co. celebrated its centennial with Joseph L. Freund, president, in association with Henry M. Freund and Burt Schweri.
The "ticks" and "ticking" in the sign refer to (1) a tick which is a bed cover and (2) ticking which is a strong, closely woven linen or cotton fabric, of which ticks are made. Ticking is also used for mattresses and pillow covers.
As of 2002 Freund, Freund, Co., Inc. was still in business in the building pictured above at 102 Franklin St. David J. Freund was president.
Copyright © 2002 Walter Grutchfield