Sheldon Aubut's Duluth History

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One of Duluth's famous stores from the 1910's to the 1950's was The SIEGEL HARDWARE CO.  In 1898-1899 The Siegel family started a furniture store located at 1515 N. 5th Avenue in Superior, run by Samuel, Mike, Louis and John called "S. Siegel & Bros."  Their mother Anna and sister Nellie (who married Joe Lindeke) also lived at that address.

In 1900 Sam moved to the Eveleth area with the family and opened store there and a few years later he opened another in Hibbing, one in Virginia and the first business to be established in the newly formed town of Gilbert, MN.  In the 1910's, the Gilbert store closed, while the Eveleth store stayed open and was run by Sam Siegel until his death in 1957.  The Eveleth store continued in operation for 90 years when at Sam's death his son Bill continued his legacy and ran the store until his retirement in 1990.

A few years after the move to Eveleth the other Siegel brothers, sister and mother moved back to Duluth and in 1915 the Siegel Hardware Company commenced doing business on the corner of the 103 East Superior Street building.  The following year additional space was leased at 103-105 East Superior Street and in May of 1919, the business moved across the street to the Loeb building at 102-104 E. Superior Street with a frontage of 50 feet.  The business occupied two floors, one facing Superior Street and the other on Michigan Street Level.  The store had everything a hardware store could have, was one of the largest in the region, and if they didn't have something, it was ordered.
The store was run by Mike, John, Joe and Louie Siegel and the building housed the Adair Book Store, and the Astoria Hotel as well as Siegel Hardware.  The handling of famous hardware lines plus their "beyond the call of duty" service contributed to the success of the business but unfortunately in March of 1929, the building had one of Duluth's largest fires and the building was mostly destroyed.
After the fire the store moved to 417 West Superior Street in Duluth, next to "The Great Northern Candy Co." owned by Joe Siegel until 1949.  In 1942, another Siegel Hardware store was opened at 5507 Grand Avenue in West Duluth which was operated by John Siegel and Joe Lindeke until the mid 1950's. 

Zenith Sportswear is where Joe Siegel's Great Northern Candy Co. was. to the right of that was the Siegel Hardware Co. buildings until almost 1950.


At the time of this writing (2010) the Siegel family lives in Eveleth, MN. and if anyone has any old photos of the stores, the Siegel family or any old items from their store or memories, please email Jack Siegel at:

About 1919

Some employees of The SIEGEL HARDWARE CO. in Duluth.
1936:  John D. Blowers  clerk
           Harry Lenesen  clerk
1937:  Harold Gilberstadt  clerk
           Harry Lenesen: clerk
1938:  Fred Lindbeck clerk
           Harold Gilberstadt clerk
           Geo Sindelar clerk
           Frank Sindelar  clerk
1939:  Geo Sindelar clerk
           Fred Lindbeck clerk
1940:  John D. Blowers  clerk
           Geo Sindelar  clerk
1941:  Geo Sindelar
1942:  John D. Blowers  clerk
           Geo Sindelar   clerk
           Fred Lindbeck  clerk
           Carl A. Nelson  clerk
1943:  Frank S. Sindelar clerk
           Carl A. Nelson clerk
           Grace A. Butler  clerk
1944:  Helmi Jackson  clerk
           Carl A. Nelson  clerk
           Frank S. Sindelar  clerk
1946:  Carl A. Nelson  clerk
note:  Sarah Mark, a relative of the Siegels'  also worked at the store.

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Books about Duluth and the region available from

Boomtown Landmarks (Discover Duluth) - by Laurie Hertzel

Sam Cook's "Campsightes"

Chronicles of Aunt Hilma and Other East Hillside Swedes - by Michael Fedo

Barton Sutter's "Cold Comfort:  Live at the Top of the Map"

Craig and Nadine Blacklock's "The Duluth Portfolio"

Destination Duluth (Port Cities of North America) by Martin Hintz

Duluth; The City and the People - by Chuck Frederick

Duluth/Superior Funbook - by Julie Ryan

Duluth Tour Book; An Illustrated Guide to Historic & Fun Places - by Jeff Cornelius

Friendship Fires - by Sam Cook

Ghostly Tales of Lake Superior - by Claire W. Schumacher

House of Stone : The Duluth Benedictines - Mary R. Boo

Just Keep Going North...You'll Know When You Get There! : Breath-Taking, Unforgivable Short & Tall Stories About Duluth & the Head-O-The Lakes - by Rick Eichert

Nina's North Shore Guide

The Raleigh Street Saga : Shattering the Legend - by Claire W. Schumacher

Trains of the Twin Ports Photo Archive : Duluth-Superior in the 1950s - by Marvin Nielsen

Up North - by Sam Cook


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Last modified: January 15, 2011
copyright 1986-2013 , Sheldon T. Aubut, all rights reserved

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