Wooster Community Food Storage building was built by general contractor Lake L. Webb.
After coming across two photographic prints in the S.H. Dawson Collection of a building having signage labeled Community Food Storage, I was puzzled. Personally, I had never heard of this company before and don’t ever remember seeing a building in Wooster that looked anything like the one in the pictures.
Wooster Community Food Storage building as it appeared in 1937 upon completion of construction by contractor Lake L. Webb.
After referencing a number of old Wooster City Directories I found the first listing for “Wooster Food Storage Corp.” in the 1939 directory (the 1938 City Directory was unavailable). It listed the company’s location at 170 S. Columbus Ave. Wooster, Ohio with W.A. Snure as manager. By 1940, it was simply listed as “Wooster Food Storage” with manager L. Gordon Watson.
Ad from the 1952 Wooster City Directory for Wooster Food Storage located on the corner of S. Columbus Rd. and South St.
However, the 1939-1940 city directories gave me no indication what type of business was run at this food storage company. Was it some type of government requirement to keep food supplies during WWII? Was it part of a charity organization? After further investigation an advertisement in the 1952 Wooster City Directory finally revealed that the facility was possibly the first freezer plant in Ohio. Featuring low temperature storage and freezing of frozen foods. They processed and cured meat, fruits, vegetables, and rendered lard. Unfortunately, I could find no further information on the Wooster Food Storage company: who originally owned and ran the business, how many employees it had, or how long it stayed in business.
Originally the location of Wooster Food Storage, 160 S. Columbus Ave. is now home to Tignor’s Hometown Hardware and Fisher Auto Parts store.
After finding the location for this building I took a walk down S. Columbus Ave. to get a current picture of the building. It has changed significantly over the years with multiple building additions and facade coverings. The old brick building is now home to Tignor’s Hometown Hardware store and Fisher Auto Parts with the modern day address of 160 S. Columbus Ave. The back of the building shows it was built in 1937.
The back of Tignor’s Hometown Hardware store that faces on South St. in Wooster, Ohio