East Side History Madison’s Blog

By and for the East Side History Club, a project of the Goodman Community Center

Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

On Atwood Avenue, Businesses Served Businesses

Posted by eastsidehistorymadison on January 26, 2019

Have you noticed a change in the “ghost signs” along Atwood Avenue? The old has given way to reveal the even older at 2716-20 Atwood Ave. Here’s the story:

The building was built in 1919 and became Thorson’s Store Fixture Co. in 1935. Fred Thorson owned the business for 55 years until about 1970. The company sold fixtures for grocery stores (Market), retail stores (Store) and Restaurants.


Photo by Rick Bernstein

Millvander’s Remodeling used the building as a salvage warehouse from 1972-1989. Then it became the Food Equipment Leasing Co. (Below is the sign that was removed to reveal the sign above.)

bank 1

Photo by Ann Waidelich

In 2014 the building was sold to Atwood Studios (Jeffrey Waldman) and has been undergoing an upgrade ever since. 

Photos and research by Ann Waidelich


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The Garver Story and East Side History Club Celebration

Posted by eastsidehistorymadison on July 24, 2018

The East Side History Club will meet on Saturday September 22 from 1 – 3 pm in the new Brassworks Building, Goodman Community Center, 214 Waubesa Street.   

Special guests include Garver Feed Mill site Project Manager Bryant Moroder and Tom Sylke. Tom is the great-grandson of Hans Struck who built the ORIGINAL Garver building and went on to found the Struck and Irwin Fence Company.  

Bryant Moroder will share a Garver project update, and describe how the eco-lodges will work, talk about the history of Garver and how this next generation food production facility will expand Madison’s profile as a Midwestern hub of high quality, hand crafted food and drink.     http://www.garverfeedmill.com/

We will also take some special time to celebrate and honor Ann Waidelich and Sarah White’s years of service, leadership and contributions made to the East Side History Club community.  Cake and refreshments will be served!


An East Side Album:  A Community Remembers, 2nd edition will be on sale and available for purchase.  Ann and Sarah will be happy to sign your copy – bring it along.


All are welcome.

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Help the Barrymore Theatre Replace Its Chairs! Donate Now

Posted by eastsidehistorymadison on April 14, 2018

From the Barrymore Theatre website:

“The historic Barrymore Theatre, an 88-year-old Madison entertainment institution and architectural landmark, is in need of capital improvements. We are beginning with your bottom and will be working our way to the top of the Dome over the next 12 years, as we approach the 100th anniversary of the building. The first project will be to replace the Theatre’s worn-out seating. The Barrymore needs to raise $200,000 to purchase and install approximately 750 new seats for the comfort and enjoyment of its patrons…

“The current seating at The Barrymore Theatre has been in place since 1967. For 50 years, thousands of people have made good use of those seats. Now they are in need of replacement. We anticipate that the new seats and the work involved in installation will cost $200,000 and we are looking to raise that money through ­our Chair-ity Appeal.”

Find out more at https://barrymorelive.com/donate/

The Eastwood Theater, 1933. Photo by Jan Foss.

p.s. Kind of looks like they used this photo from the East Side Album when they designed the Chair-ity Appeal logo, doesn’t it?

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February 2018 Meeting Examined Jenifer, Division, and Helena Street Businesses

Posted by eastsidehistorymadison on February 20, 2018

At the East Side History Club’s February meeting, Ann Waidelich led a conversation about businesses and homes in the area around Jenifer, Division, and Helena Streets. Ann offers the following notes on what she covered.

2018_2 meeting photo

The photo above shows the property at 351 Russell Street built in 1927 for the Badeau Plumbing Co., which  was there until 1942 when they moved to Atwood Ave. Then the Russell Street building became the Vogue Dry Cleaners, owned by Lars & Norma Hanson until they retired in 1978. In 1987 Ken Koeppler bought the building and used it as his home for 17 years.  An article in the Capital Times on Dec. 7, 2016 told how the State DNR tested the property for a dry cleaning chemical which has led to a long and difficult effort to remediate the property.

Chase and Sanborn fire map-sm

The photo above shows the 1942 Sanborn Fire Insurance map I used to help identify the properties on Division, Helena and Jenifer Streets.

On Helen Street we talked about:

  • 2096: the motor freight building that became an extension of Capital Plating/Capital Water Sofeners;
  • 2084-70: the Coan Vending Machine Co. now called U-Select-It which is still in business in Clive Iowa;
  • 2069: Richard Neesvig’s Capital City Awning and Tent making company;
  • 2066: William & Helen Dewey’s Visual Education Consultants, an educational current-events filmstrip company which is now New Currents, available on line or on DVD and located in Middleton.

 On Division Street we talked about:  

  • 418: Capital Plating & Machine and Capital Soft Water; 502 – Arthur Fosdick Automotive Electric Co;
  • 514: Schoep’s Ice Cream; 518 – Community Laundry and then Red Dot Potato Chips for a short time; 526 – Teamsters Union Hall until they moved to N. Stoughton Road;
  • 530:  Floyd Leveneck’s Grocery before he moved to Atwood Ave. and then Norman Foulke Rubber Products Co. which is now run by his granddaughter, Ava Foulke, out of Sun Prairie.

At the corner of Division and Jenifer there was a small gas station set at an angle, run by Leo Copus until it closed in 1950.

On Jenifer Street, where the Jenifer Street Market has operated since 1979, there first  was Robert Girard’s Hi-Lo Super Market, which became Len Roosmalen’s Super Valu grocery store.

At 2034 Jenifer Street, the Appliance Products Co. was started by John Kaiser and his son David.  They are still in business in Sun Prairie.

We ended with this wonderful picture of a tiled toilet room in the basement of 2013 Jenifer St. where Carl Dojeva had his East Madison Tile Co. He didn’t make the tile; just installed it in homes and businesses all over Madison from 1928-1945.


  • By Ann Waidelich

The Club continues to look for co-leaders and new group partners to carry the club forward. Please share your ideas or suggestions through comments on this blog.

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February 17, 2018: History Club Examines Jenifer Street Businesses

Posted by eastsidehistorymadison on December 31, 2017

The East Side History Club will meet to discuss the Jenifer-Division streets commercial district.

Do you remember these businesses?

  • Hi-Lo Market (now Jenifer Street Market)
  • Community Laundry
  • U-Select-It vending machines (made by the Coan Manufacturing Co.)
  • Capital Plating and Machine / Water softener Company (now the site of a new apartment building?)

Ann Waidelich and Don Ross will lead a conversation about these and other businesses and homes in the area.

The East Side History Club meets Saturday, February 17, 1-3 p.m., Goodman Community Center, 149 Waubesa Street. The Club continues to look for co-leaders and new group partners to carry the club forward. Please join us at the February meeting and share your ideas or suggestions.



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Give the gift of history!

Posted by eastsidehistorymadison on December 20, 2017

The East Side’s most coveted local history book, full of memories of the Schenk’s-Atwood, Union Corners, and Eken Park neighborhoods, is the perfect holiday giftPurchases of An East Side Album support the Goodman Community Center, so your gift gives even more joy.

An East Side Album may be purchased in-person at the Goodman Community Center front desk for $20. ($15 if you contributed to the book, the front desk has a list.) Copies are also available to purchase at Stone Fence (2322 Atwood Avenue) and the Olbrich Gardens Gift Shop for $24.95. 

Mail order copies are available for $20 + $5 to ship the first copy, $6 to ship 25 books (ordered at the same time.) Send check (made out to the Goodman Community Center) to 149 Waubesa Street, Madison, WI 53704.

Thanks for your continued support of An East Side Album. Happy holidays!

Is the book perfect? Not quite–every local history is a work in progress, because new information is always coming to light. Click here for the corrections list–you can download a copy or ask that it be included in your purchase of An East Side Album.

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“An East Side Album”–always a work in progress

Posted by eastsidehistorymadison on December 10, 2017

After we published the first edition of An East Side Album in 2007, we heard many compliments and a few corrections and omissions, too. In fact, we learned we’d overlooked a whole neighborhood that felt part of the old East Side–Eken Park, which has its own rich architectural and social history. A new chapter fills that gap in the revised East Side Album, 2nd Edition, now available at the Goodman Community Center, Olbrich Gardens gift shop, and Stone Fence shop on Atwood Avenue.

And of course, after publication of the second edition, we’ve heard about a few corrections. When you purchase a copy at one of the outlets mentioned, it should include a half-sheet like this one.

If you already have your copy of the book, feel free to print this out and tuck it inside! And if you notice any additional corrections, please call Ann Waidelich at 249-7920 or email annwaid@charter.net.

We’re all grateful to the Goodman Community Center for publishing our “community family album”!

  • Sarah White and Ann Waidelich

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October meeting: We Learned about Ho-Chunk History

Posted by eastsidehistorymadison on November 20, 2017

Thank you to all who attended the October 21 meeting to learn more about Ho-Chunk history in Wisconsin.

The group enjoyed watching the Wisconsin Public Television film “Ho-Chunk History,” part of their Tribal Histories programming, and spent time browsing selected books and articles. (You can stream that film from the WPT website.)

We were joined by special guest Kimberly Crowley, Ho-Chunk artist and master basket maker. Kimberly shared examples of her black ash baskets and spoke to the group about basket making. Learn more about Kimberly on the Wisconsin Dells Events website.


We are so glad Kimberly could join us, with her lovely baskets and informational display. Thanks to Catherine Stephens and Brad Kuse, SASY volunteers, for organizing the October 2017 meeting.

Stay tuned for news about future meetings — to be announced. The club welcomes new co-leaders to step forward to carry this history club into the future!

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“An East Side Album, 2nd Edition” now available!

Posted by eastsidehistorymadison on October 22, 2017

The new edition of the East Side’s most coveted local history book is finally off the presses, through the bindery with improved, stronger spine, and ready for purchase!

Copies are available for $24.95 at Stone Fence (2322 Atwood Avenue) and the Olbrich Gardens Gift Shop. Copies may be purchased at the Goodman Community Center front desk for $20.00. If you contributed to the book, you may purchase one copy of the book for $15 at the Goodman Community Center. (The front desk will have a list of contributors.)

If you live out of town and would like one or more copies mailed to you, the price is $20 plus $7 shipping and handling for the first copy and $14 for 2 to 5 books (ordered at the same time). Send check made out to the Goodman Community Center to the Goodman Center, 149 Waubesa Street, Madison WI 53704.

Purchases of An East Side Album support the Goodman Community Center. Revised and expanded, the 2nd edition is full of memories of the Schenk’s-Atwood, Union Corners, and Eken Park neighborhoods.

Note: If you purchased a copy in August or September, you probably have one with unsatisfactory binding on the spine. If it hasn’t started shedding pages, it soon might. Please bring it to the Goodman Community Center front desk, where you can pick up a new copy with improved binding. We apologize for the inconvenience!

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October 21 meeting: Sharing Ho Chunk History

Posted by eastsidehistorymadison on October 9, 2017

Schenk-Atwood-Starkweather-Yahara (SASY) Neighborhood Association plans to continue the East Side History Club in partnership with the Goodman Community Center

The effigy tree Whitehorse sculpture after restoration in 1997.


Sharing Ho-Chunk History

Saturday, Oct. 21, 1-3 pm

Meet in The LOFT, Goodman Center, 149 Waubesa St.

$2 suggested donation.

Join us as we gather and share Ho-Chunk tribal history and ancestral stories from the East Side!

And there’s more good news–copies of An East Side Album, 2nd Edition, with new improved binding will be available at the Goodman Center by this meeting. If you purchased a defective copy, please bring return it for replacement.

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