Long Island Foundry

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Long Island Foundry Co.
Long Island City

The Long Island Foundry Co. was listed in the Brooklyn/Queens section of the New York telephone directory in 1918. This was their year of incorporation, as noted in the New York Times, 23 Aug. 1918, pg. 13, "new incorporation: Long Island Foundry Co., Long Island City, $50,000; G. L. Stuebner, G. Buchanan, T. F. McMahon, Long Island City." They were in business from 1918 to 1935, and were located initially in the Hunter's Point area of Long Island City, Queens, on 11th St. Their address changed to 10-27 45th Rd., Long Island City, in 1931 (approximately the same location).

Among the incorporators, G. L. Stuebner was Gustavus L. Stuebner (1854-1923). Stuebner had a foundry in Long Island City at 168-70 East 3rd St. from at least as early as 1891. This was the G. L. Stuebner Co., whose specialty was iron hoisting tubs used for handling coal and other heavy material. This ad for G. L. Stuebner dates from 1916 when the products were more varied, and their location was Nott Ave. at Vernon Ave., Long Island City.

Gustavus L. Stuebner was the subject of a sketch in Schlegel's American Families of German Ancestry in the United States, 1926, reading in part, "Gustavus L. Stuebner, second child and eldest son of Gustavus L. and Marie (Lettenmeyer) Stuebner, was born in the city of Reading, Berks County, Pennsylvania, July 15, 1854. He there obtained his educational training and soon after laying aside his school books the boy began to apply his time to the practical duties of life and assisted his parents in the support and maintenance of the family home. Being desirous to learn some useful trade he acquired a practical knowledge of the machinist's and iron working business, partially under the guidance and tuition of his father. The young mechanic continued engaged in his chosen line of work in the city of Reading, Pennsylvania, for a number of years, and about 1875, he being desirous to improve his opportunities in life, he accordingly came to the city of Hoboken, Hudson County, New Jersey, where he entered the employ of his uncle, George Focht, who was at that time engaged in the machine and foundry business in the city of Hoboken. Here young Stuebner quickly acquired a practical knowledge of the various details and technique of the machine and foundry business. He continued actively engaged with his uncle, George Focht, who was also manufacturing a patented automatic iron bucket for lifting ores or other heavy materials from vessels or other basic positions. Here the young mechanic applied himself diligently to the performance of his duties, and as a result of his industry and fidelity to duty, he was advanced by his uncle to the position of foreman of the Focht Machine Works and Foundry in the city of Hoboken. The responsibilities of this position young Stuebner faithfully discharged up to 1885-6, when he decided to engage in the iron and machinery business on his own account; he accordingly associated himself and his interests with a fellow worker of the Focht Machine and Foundry Establishment and together Gustavus L. Stuebner and Patrick Woods engaged in the manufacture of automatic iron buckets and other accessories used in mines and quarries. They established their plant and business offices in Long Island City Queens County, New York, under the firm name of Stuebner & Woods. In this undertaking the firm of Stuebner & Woods met with immediate success as the result of their superior workmanship and practical utility of the various wares which they manufactured. The interests of the firm of Stuebner & Woods was later dissolved by mutual agreement, and Gustavus L. Stuebner continued the business alone, and in the course of time, as a result of his ingenuity and practical management, he succeeded in establishing one of the leading concerns of its kind in Long Island City, where, in the course of time, the Stuebner establishment was greatly enlarged in order to meet the increasing demands for its products. In 1916-17, Mr. Stuebner organized and had incorporated the Long Island Foundry Company, of which organization he was a director and was made president of the corporation; his was the leading genius in the direction and management of the entire Stuebner industries in Long Island City. at the time of his death, which occurred September 12, 1923, it was justly stated in the public press in Long Island and in the community where he was best known, that Queens County had lost a good and valued citizen."

More about Stuebner's uncle, George Focht, and the George Focht Sons Iron Works, can be found on the Focht page.

Stuebner died in 1923 when the following obituary ran in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle, 13 Sep. 1923, p. 22, "Gustavus L. Stuebner, one of the leading business men of Long Island City, died last night after a short illness at his home, 14 Botanic pl., Murray Hill, Flushing, L. I., where he had lived for the past 23 years. He was 69 years old. The funeral services will be held Saturday night under the direction of the Masons and Elks. The interment will be in St. Michael's Cemetery on Sunday. Mr. Stuebner was born in Reading, Pa., and came to Long Island City when he was 25 years old. He established the partnership of Stuebner & Woods and set up an iron foundry at Vernon ave. and 4th st. Some years later he was forced to change his location when the Long Island Railroad used his property for a freight yard. He was president of the Long Island City Foundry Company and the Stuebner Iron Works. He was a trustee of Long Island City Savings Bank and a member of the advisory board of the Queens branch of the Corn Exchange Bank. He was a member of the Queens Chamber of Commerce and the Upper Flushing Association. He was a trustee of the Island City Lodge, F. & A. M., and a member of the Mystic Shrine, Knights Templar, Royal Arcanum and Queensboro Lodge of Elks. Mr. Stuebner is survived by three sons and three daughters. They are: Mrs. Charles Bresloff, Mrs. Amelia Bresloff, Mrs. Ella Holmes, George A., William E. and Charles H. Stuebner." A shorter obituary appeared in the New York Times, reading, "Gustavus L. Steubner died last night at his home, 14 Botanic Place, Flushing. He was the head of two iron foundries - the G. L. Steubner Iron Works and the Long Island City Foundries. Mr. Steubner was born in Reading, Pa., 69 years ago. He came to Long Island City when a young man and formed the partnership of Steubner & Woods. He was a trustee of the Long Island City Savings Bank and a member of the advisory board of the Corn Exchange Bank in Queens County. He left three daughters." (The Times obituary consistently misspells Stuebner's name putting the E in front of the U.)

Gustavus Stuebner was awarded several patents in the early years of his career. For instance, from Scientific American, vol. LX, no. 1, 25 May 1889, pg. 330, "Coal Conveyer.- Gustavus L. Stuebner, Long Island City, N.Y. This invention relates to a conveyer for depositing coal in bins, so that wagons and carts may be loaded from a trap at the bottom of the bins, a series of buckets or receptacles being supported on a track and adapted to be moved beneath a hopper or spout and over the bins, automatically depositing their contents in the bins." Also, from The American Artisan, vol. 17, issue 7, 17 Aug. 1889, pg. 18, "A novel coal bucket is the subject of a patent by Gustavus L. Stuebner, of Long Island City, N. Y. This bucket is composed of two sections having straight meeting edges, one section having a sloping front and sloping bottom, and having at its upper edge a band adapted to embrace the other section, the band having arms to which the other section is hinged, the sections being adapted to lock or open conveniently as desired." A few years later from Scientific American, vol. LXVII, no. 16, 15 Oct. 1892, pg. 250, "Coal Chute.- Gustavus L. Stuebner, Long Island City, N. Y. This chute consists of a tubular column with openings at intervals in its length and a hopper at its upper end, doors being hinged to swing over and from the openings, so that coal delivered to the chute may be drawn out at any desired height from the ground in sufficient quantities to provide space above at the top for one load of coal, preventing coal from becoming broken when dumped into the chute by providing that it may fall only a short distance. Any of the doors in the chute may be readily opened from the dumping platform."

Another of the original cooperators of Long Island Foundry was George Buchanan (c1867-1931). His death in 1931 was noted as follows in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle, 24 May 1931, pg. 19, "Buchanan - George Buchanan, aged 64 years, of 101-08 Christie St., Corona, L. I., on May 22, 1931, beloved husband of Marie, loving father of Helen, Martha, George and Charles Buchanan. Funeral services, B. P. O. E. 878, Sunday, May 24, 8 p.m. Regular services Monday, May 25, 8 p.m., followed by Mizpah Lodge, F. & A. M., 738. Interment Tuesday, 10 a.m. Maple Grove Cemetery." Born in Scotland, Buchanan appears in the 1910 U. S. Census as "laborer, iron works," then in the 1915 New York State Census as "Iron Foundry, Superintendent." In the 1930 U. S. Census he was "Foreman, Foundry." The foundries involved here may either have been G. L. Stuebner or the Long Island Foundry.

The third cooperator in the Long Island Foundry was Thomas Francis McMahon (1876-1948). He registered for the World War I draft in 1918 as Thomas Francis McMahon, age 43, born 17 January 1876, "Vice President, L I Foundry Co. Inc., 11 & 12 Sts., L I City Queens." According to his entry in the 1925 New York State Census he was born in Ireland, immigrated to the U. S. at the age of four, and became a citizen through his father's naturalization. He appears in the 1940 U. S. Census, living in Woodside, Queens, age 63, born Irish Free State, "Foreman, Iron Foundry." A great-grandson, James McMahon, in an email writes that Thomas F. McMahon died in 1948. James McMahon also provided this photo of the Long Island Foundry. Thomas F. McMahon is thought to be the man in the middle in a top hat.

The last entry for Long Island Foundry Co. in the Brooklyn telephone directory was in 1935. A notice in the New York Herald Tribune, 13 Aug. 1940, pg. 27, mentions the Long Island Foundry Company in bankruptcy.

A Long Island Foundry manhole cover is found at 10-13 47th Ave. Long Island City.

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