The offices of Heuvelman & Co. were located at 842 Broadway from approximately 1881 to 1887. John Heuvelman (1829-1917) was a practicing architect and iron founder in New York City from around 1867 to 1890. In the U. S. Census of 1900, living at his long time residence, 49 W. 53rd St., Manhattan, Heuvelman declared himself "out of business." The same census records that he was born in Holland (the Netherlands) and immigrated to the U. S. in 1855. The home on West 53rd St. between 5th and 6th Avenues was a 4-story & basement brownstone, 22 by 100.5 feet. The New York Times in 1919 announced an executors' sale of the property with these details.
The 1880 U. S. Census (non-population schedules for manufacturers) recorded information about Heuvelmann [sic] & Co., Architectural Iron Works. They owned capital of $20,000 and raw material valued at $60,938. They employed as many as 90 workers with an average of 60. The work day was 10 hours, and skilled mechanics were paid $2.50 per day, ordinary laborers $1.50. Annual wages paid totaled $42,183. The value of the past year's production came to $122,715.
Heuvelman & Co. were listed in New York's Great Industries, 1884, edited by Richard Edwards: "Heuvelman & Co., Architectural Iron Works, No. 842 Broadway. ... A leading firm engaged in structural and ornamental iron-work is that of Messrs. Heuvelman & Co., No. 842 Broadway, which was established in 1865 and continued till the present time. The foundry and machine-shop are located at Nos. 186 to 210 Ninth Street, Brooklyn, E. D., where a large number of skilled hands are constantly busy manufacturing iron buildings, roofs, jail-work columns, railings, verandas, skylights, storefronts, girders, bank-vaults, stairways, etc., and many other varieties of iron-work ... The following buildings have been erected, or the iron-work manufactured, by Messrs. Heuvelman & Co., viz.: business premises at the corner of Union Square and Seventeenth Street; store of Messrs. Rogers, Peet & Co., Broadway; dome of extension to the New York County Court-house, also the iron-work at the New York Post-office, Astor Library extension, and also a large share of government work... The individual members of this firm are Messrs. J. Heuvelman and Juan B. Arci..."
In the early 1880s John Heuvelman had a partner, Juan Boner Arci (1846-1920). For at least a short period around this time the company was known as Heuvel & Arci. Arci's story comes to light through a passport application made by his wife, Thecla Arci, in 1920 when she wanted to return from Cuba to the U. S. Thecla claimed U. S. citizenship through marriage to Juan B. Arci. According to an attachment to the passport application written by the U. S. Consul in Cienfuegos, Cuba, "The applicant's husband was according to the Entry of Register of American citizens at this Consulate under date of February 15, 1904, born at Trinidad, Cuba on June 24, 1846. The statement that he emigrated to the United States from Bremen, Germany, is understood to be explained by the fact that he was educated in Germany and emigrated from that country to the United States after his education was complete." Thecla explained that she was born in Bremen, Germany, 21 Oct. 1854, and that she lived in Bremen until 1876 when she immigrated to the U. S. She further explained that she lived with her husband in Brooklyn, N. Y. from that date until 10 May 1910 when she accompanied Juan B. Arci to Cuba. "My husband had property near Cienfuegos, and in 1910 he came here to supervise it personally. I accompanied him for that purpose. This property was a failure and my husband entered into business in Cienfuegos. He died on January 17, 1920 at the Spanish Hospital of this city and as soon as I have distributed my property here, I wish to return to my home at 519 Fifth Street and Fifth Avenue, Brooklyn, N. Y."
Copyright © 2009 Walter Grutchfield