“Sunlight and Air”
Sunshine at the bench - daylight around the work - free ventilation - these encourage careful workmanship, speed and production and promote good feeling.
This is exemplified in its highest development in the Banister Shoe Factory, at Newark, N.J.
And the part of the Fenestra WindowWalls have fulfilled in these larger aspects of essentially good building, is significantly illustrated in the following letter from James B. Banister, president:
Fenestra WindoWalls are the least expensive of all wall materials-because they make light cost less and produce more.
Advertisement for Fenestra Steel Windowalls, featuring the Banister Shoe Company factory on Orange Street, Newark. Detroit Steel Products Company 1920.
May 1923 - Sold to a syndicate of local investors represented by Adolph Greebel
“We are complimented continually for the fine building we occupy, which some think almost too nice for a shoe factory.
“But more of our working hours are spent behind these glass windows than any other place, and we feel that we are to be congratulated on having such pleasant surroundings for our daily toil.
“Sunlight and air are the two natural elements to uplift humanity, and we have these to the fullest degree.
“Anybody who contemplates building would be very unwise to consider old-fashioned, little windows, and we are very confident that no particular of our new factory has given us any greater satisfaction than the windows that let the blessed sunshine in.”
Old Banister Shoe Plant on Washington Street Sold
- The Sunday Call, Newark, N. J., May 27, 1923
One of the largest remaining business parcels of real estate in the center of Newark, located at 185-187 Washington street and extending back to and including 256-262 Plane street, changed hands on Thursday by the signing of a contact for its sale through the offices of Louis Schlesinger, Inc. The contract was entered into by the West Side Realty Company, represented by James B. Banister, its president, as owners, and a purchasing syndicate of local investors represented by Adolph Greebel.
The property, known until 1916 as the home of the James A. Banister Company, manufacturers of high grade shoes for men and women has a frontage of fifty feet on Washington street, is on the north bank of the Morris Canal and extends 400 feet westward to Plane street, with a frontage of eighty feet on that street. The improvements on the land consist of a series of three, four and five-story brick buildings having and aggregate area of approximately 50,000. The Washington street front of the property was purchased by James A. Banister in 1887 from Stephen D. Tucker, and the Plane street end of the tract from the estate of Wilson F. Bell in 1892. The entire property was taken over in 1918 by the West Side Realty Company, which was incorporated on March 4 of that year to take over the holdings of the late James A. Banister. The sale price of the property in the present deal has not be been made known, nor has the use to which the new owner will convert it.
History of the Banister business, which occupied the Washington street property from early in 1888 to 1918, is closely interwoven with the industrial history of Newark. In 1845 the grandfather of the present Banisters, Isaac Banister, began the business of manufacturing shoes in a factory. Prior to that time, he had been a shoemaker of the old type, no factory being involved. He was an itinerant shoemaker, going from place to place and making shoes for the families with which he came into contact. He kept himself employed making shoes when the farm that occupied his attention a good part of the year did not need him. Further back, Elijah Banister, father of Isaac Banister, was a shoemaker and the family has been able to trade the shoemaking talent at least one generation beyond Elijah, thus making the present Banisters the fifth generation in line on the shoe business.
Isaac Banister began his factory career in a loft in Market Street about where Proctor's Theater now stands. When his son, James A. Banister, started in the shoe business in 1851 the factory was located at 218-220 Market street. Isaac Banister retired about that time and his son took for a partner, Lyman S. Tichenor. The latter continued in the business until his death about 1881. In 1892, the business factory was moved and was incorporated. James B. Banister being made secretary and John W. Denny being made treasurer. From 218-220 Market street the business was moved to 257-259 Market Street, where a fire occurred in 1884, necessitating temporary location of the business Mechanic street. The Washington street property was acquired later in order to meet the need of increased there in 1888. Further expansion became necessary later and in 1916 the present commodious, fireproof and up-to-the-minute factory at Orange Street and the Morris Canal was completed and the business was removed there. While the removal was underway there was a destructive fire in the plant of the Boyden Shoe Company and the latter concern took advantage of the opportunity to resume its business in the old Banister factory and has since remained there.
Every move of the Banister Company has been because of and has resulted in advancement of its business and through all the generations it has maintained a superiority in the shoe manufacturing trade. Its footwear is known throughout the world and in many expositions has carried off first honor. At Vienna in 1873, the Philadelphia Centennial in 1876, the Cotton Exposition in 1884, the Chicago Exposition in 1893 and the Paris Exposition in 1900. The present Banister factory is equipped to turn out 3,000 pairs of shoes a day.
Manufactory # 1 - Isaac Banister
114 Market Street
First shop for the previously itinerant custom shoemaker, located in what is now the Proctor Theatre
Manufactory # 2 - Banister & Son
252 Market Street
~Father, Isaac, and son, James A., build a business together
~1857: Isaac Banister retires
Manufactory #3 - Banister & Tichenor
218-220 Market Street
~James A. Banister and Lyman S. Tichenor become partners in 1865
~1881: Lyman Tichenor dies
~1884: F I R E !!! (#1)
~1885: Isaac Banister dies
Manufactory # 4 - James A. Banister
#? Mechanic Street
Now called Edison Place (named for Them Edison, who had his factory there when he was in Newark before moving to Menlo Park and West Orange, N.J.") - Timothy Crist
Manufactory # 5 – James A. Banister
257-259 Market Street
1885 – 1894
~Four-story brick manufactory built to replace the building lost in the fire
~1892: The James A. Banister Company is incorporated
~August 11, (Year?): F I R E !!! (#2)
Manufactory # 6 - James A. and James B. Banister
185-187 Washington Street
~James A. becomes a business partner with his son, James. B.
~February 4, 1906 - James A. Banister dies
~March 4, 1914: F I R E !!! (#3)
Manufactory # 7 – James B. and Arthur C. Banister
370-386 Orange Street at Morris Canal
1915 – 1930
~A new state-of-the-art, fire-resistant brick manufactory is built
~1918: Four of James A. Banister's sons incorporate family's business: Albert Lincoln, James Bryan, Arthur Chadwick & Robert Louis
~1924: James B. retires
~August 20, 1930: The James A. Banister Company shutters its doors
~1933: Arthur C., last President of the Original Banister Shoes, dies
~1943: James B. dies
Banister Shoes' Manufactories
Newark, New Jersey
1845 – 1930
Fire trucks respond to blaze at 257, 259 Market Street
1940s - Streetcar alongside the Banister Manufactory
ran alongside the final Banister Manufactory.
It was filled and replaced with streetcars and trolley lines.
Presently, light rail lines service the city of Newark.
Isaac Banister began his factory career in a loft in Market Street, roughly where Proctor's Theatre now stands. When his son, James Albert Banister, started in the shoe business in 1852, the factory was located at Nos. 218-220 Market Street.
World-class shoe manufacturing meets
world-class industrial architecture:
James A. Banister Company's
370 Orange Street ~ Newark, New Jersey
Above: The James A. Banister Co., Newark Shoe manufacturers, are constructing a new five-story concrete, faced with brick building at 370-380 Orange street, and expect to move into their new quarters some time next November, when the new home will be completed. The factory will be one of the most modern of
The James A. Banister Company, shoe manufacturers, have finished moving into their new quarters in Orange Street.
The Boyden Shoe Company, whose factory in South Canal Street was recently destroyed by fire, has moved into the factory just vacated by the James A. Banister Company, and though not entirely settled yet, is operating some departments. The cutting department is busy, and as soon as a sufficient quantity of stock has been cut the making departments will begin work in full force.
The Boyden Shoe Manufacturing Company, whose plant on South Canal Street was destroyed by fire on December 15, (1915), had leased the plant at 185-187 Washington Street, this city, which has been occupied for a number of years by the James A. Banister Shoe Company, and from which the Banister company is now moving. The Boyden company has begun work at its new quarters on a small scale and will then be put on and the plant worked to capacity to get out order on hand. One department at a times is being established by the Boyden company in the new quarters at the Banister company moves out.
1935 - 1966: Tung Sol Lamp Works
acquires the former Banister Manufactory on Orange Street
The last manufactory built by the James A. Banister Company
was sold to Tung-Sol Lamp Works, Inc. on June 17, 1935.
Tung-Sol Lamp Works, Inc. was a founded in 1907 in Newark, New Jersey. The company manufactured many electrical products including a wide variety of lamps and vacuum tubes.
Tung-Sol was an old hand at electron tubes and such. Starting in 1907 they developed the first successful electric headlamp for cars, they followed that in 1913 with the two filament high and low beam headlight in a single bulb. They also developed the flashing turn signal, and made that little thing that goes click, click under the dashboard for almost every American car until the 1970's, yes, we all grew up listening to Tung-Sol. In the 1920's they entered the electronics field and applied their basic company policy "make the best that can be made." They were leaders along with R.C.A. in the development of sophisticated, statistical quality control systems and one of the greatest qualities of Tung-Sol tubes to this day is consistency! Tung-Sol's greatest contribution to the world of audio was the 6550, conceived and developed for Hi-Fi and introduced in 1955 this tube is still powering many of the world's greatest sound systems 45 years later! Tung-Sol was a privately held company and was run like a laboratory this gave T-S tubes some of the best metallurgy and chemistry that has ever been pulled off in actual production. Source: Vintage Tube Services.
- Collection of Historical Scientific Instruments - Harvard University
Occupants in the Banister manufactory
~ Newark Academy Social Club
~ Tung-Sol Lamp Works, Inc.
~ Domino Manufacturing Corporation
(wrapping paper production)
~ U-Haul Corporation (2015 to present)
Above: Date unknown. Intersection of First Street, looking east, with Holly's Luncheonette on the corner. By the time this photograph was taken, Tung-Sol no longer occupied the Banister Manufactory.
Frank Hill Smith
Dedicated on: February 5, 1915
When did the American Tung Sol factory cease production?
Just out of curiosity—does anyone know when the last “real” Tung Sol 650s were produced in the New Jersey factory? I think I've seen them as late as 1974-75.
Rhodesplyr - Dec. 2008
I don't doubt your '74-75 guess. A couple years ago a mint SVT crossed my workbench, with half a dozen Tung-Sol 6550's, dated 1972.
As I recall the As I recall the Tung-Sol factory was some miles distant from Newark NJ's industrial center, and was located alongside a railroad track a bit north of town, near Nutley or Clifton. Two features: there was a road that crossed the tracks, and the factory building bridged the road. So you could "drive through" the factory, and I remember doing just that as a passenger in my parents' car. Atop the factory, a water tank in the shape of a shoulder tube with Tung-Sol painted on the side. A distant memory from childhood, @ early 60's.
~ Last edited by Leo_Gnardo; 10-31-2013
Above: James A. Banister & Co., manufacturer of shoes, Newark, N.J., will build a new garage at its plant on Orange St.
With the passing of time, freeway overpasses took precedence over historical preservation, and the beauty of the James A. Banister Company's premier manufactory in Newark, New Jersey was diminished. A flicker of light appeared. This light was seen by the U-Haul Corporation, a company whose leaders committed their vision, resources and labor to save the significant Banister building, while bringing it forward to 2019. Through the tireless efforts of countless heroes, the Banister Manufactory has been added to the New Jersey Register of Historic Places.
Above: The Banister Manufactory is in the background on the left. Army maneuvers were being held in the adjacent playground on Duryee Street during WW1 (1914-1918). This playground has had many incarnations. Note it in green in the map below. There appears to be a building crane above the Banister Manufactory in this photograph, suggesting this image was captured during 1915. (Exact length of construction dates is unknown.) The Banister Manufactory was dedicated on February 5, 1916, and WWI 's date range is: July 28, 1914 – November 11, 1918. Thus, this photograph must have been taken sometime between late 1914 and 1915.
- Provided by Timothy J. Crist on behalf of: Alberto Valdes > Old Newark on Facebook
"Tung-Sol was an old hand at electron tubes and such. Starting in 1907 they developed the first successful electric headlamp for cars, they followed that in 1913 with the two filament high and low beam headlight in a single bulb. They also developed the flashing turn signal, and made that little thing that goes click, click under the dashboard for almost every American car until the 1970's, yes, we all grew up listening to Tung-Sol. In the 1920's they entered the electronics field and applied their basic company policy "make the best that can be made." They were leaders along with R.C.A. in the development of sophisticated, statistical quality control systems and one of the greatest qualities of Tung-Sol tubes to this day is consistency! Tung-Sol's greatest contribution to the world of audio was the 6550, conceived and developed for Hi-Fi and introduced in 1955 this tube is still powering many of the world's greatest sound systems 45 years later! Tung-Sol was a privately held company and was run like a laboratory this gave T-S tubes some of the best metallurgy and chemistry that has ever been pulled off in actual production." Source: Vintage Tube Services
284 AMERICAN SHOEMAKING May 15, 1915
--James. A. Banister & Co., shoe manufacturers at 185 Washington street, contributed $250 toward the $250,000 fund which is being raised to defray the expenses of the celebration of the 250th anniversary of the founding of Newark, which will take place in 1916. John Pell & Son, Inc., last manufacturers at Tichenor and Hermon street, contributed $50 to the fund.
--Salesman for James A. Banister & Co., shoe manufacturers at 185 Washington street, have left for their respective territories with samples of fall styles. Although they have been cut but a short time they are already beginning to send in good fall orders. The South is still a little quiet in a business way, and this condition is reflected in the orders received from that section, which are smaller than those received from the North, East and West.
--Plans have been completed for a new factory building by James A. Banister & Co., shoe manufacturers at 185 Washington street, and work will be begun on the new plant in the near future. It will be located at Orange avenue and the Morris Canal. It will involved the expenditure of $125,000. The plans call for a four-story fireproof building of reinforced concrete with steel window frames and sashes. The main building and power house will measure 158 by 274 feet. The architect and engineer in charge is Frank Hill Smith. It is expected that the new building will be ready for occupancy by November.
Should read, "J.A. Banister's..."
Above Left: The Banister Manufactory as it appeared when it was sold. The new, state-of-the-art location was built at 370-380 Orange Street, Newark, New Jersey
Bottom Left: Rendering from Newark, New Jersey Illustrated: The Boot and Shoe Industry, showing 185 (right half of building) and 187 (left half of building) on Washington Street.
Above Right: Parcel map for the Washington Street manufactory.
Banister Shoes' Manufactory at 185-187 Washington Street
Construction at 370-380 Orange Street
Above: Exceptional image of the Orange Street Manufactory under construction.
Since the building was dedicated on February 5, 1915,
this photograph must have been taken in 1913-1914.
Special thanks goes to: 1) Beth Zak-Cohen, Librarian Extraordinaire, for loaning Your Host this priceless piece, and 2) Timothy Crist, who produced the item-by-item inventory, researched the history, and wrote the finest summary to date (below) on The James A. Banister Collection, located at: .
SALES IN NEW JERSEY.
Banister Shoe Plant in Newark
Tung-Sol Lamp Works, Inc., manufacturers of metal radio tubes, flasher lamps and automobile lamps, purchased the five-story plant of the James A. Banister Shoe Company at 370-386 Orange Street, Newark. The buyers plan to erect a new structure adjoining the Banister Building, according to Berry Bros., brokers in the deal.
"The factory is eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places under Criterion C
as a good local example of an important type of early 20th-century American industrial loft
called “daylight factory,” utilizing reinforced concrete construction with exterior brick faced
curtain walls filled by large expanses of steel-sash windows. The latter provided ample light
and ventilation to the factory floor, a feature that was of particular importance for the type of fine machine- and hand-work that would have characterized operations at both Banister and Tung-Sol.
The factory was designed by Frank Hill Smith, a prolific engineer who specialized in the construction
of industrial buildings throughout the eastern United States and was an early innovator in the use
of reinforced concrete in the U.S. Despite the removal of many of the windows, compromising the appearance of the James A. Banister Company/Tung-Sol Lamp Works Factory, the property, building and site retain features sufficient to convey its industrial history and original design and construction, giving it integrity of location, design, materials, feeling, and association." - Timothy J. Crist
Above: From the "Old Newark" Facebook page. Forwarded by Timothy Crist. June 2020.
Phase-Out of Trolley Service
"With the success of the trolley bus, by the late 1930s, Public Service laid plans to phase out street trolley car service. Trolley service on Broad Street officially ended on December 18, 1937, although it took more than a decade before all trolley service on Newark's streets finally came to an end. The last two street trolley lines in service, the 21 Orange, and the 29 Bloomfield, continued rolling on steel tracks until March 30, 1952 when they made their final runs. The Orange Street Car on that date was replaced by the No. 22 Roseville bus.
On many discontinued street trolley lines, the tracks remained embedded in the roadway for many years after the trolleys had ended their runs."
- Newark Memories website:
1950s - Electric trolley alongside the Banister Manufactory