Saturday, January 11, 2020

J.T. and L.E. Eliason, Inc.

Eliason Delivery Truck, c. 1919 

Guest post by Robert Biddle

J.T. and L.E. Eliason, Inc. was founded in the 1870's and had grown into one of New Castle's most recognizable companies. Eliason's company provided building materials, coal, fuel oil, hardware, and household goods to New Castle residents. The Eliason brothers purchased their first motorized delivery truck in 1918, not long before this photo was taken at West Fifth and South Streets. Once the truck was purchased, the company's horse-drawn delivery wagons were slowly phased out of use. The tall building in the background was used as a warehouse for the company.
Parade of Progress, 1925

Eliason Warehouse 1950s 

The Eliason Lumber Company joined the rest of New Castle in celebrating arrival of the ferry in 1925. The company touted it's new delivery truck, which had replaced two horse-drawn wagons that were replaced 10 years prior. Here, both the old and modern vehicles on South Street headed toward the waterfront.

James and Lewis Eliason opened a warehouse at 5th and South Streets in the former Red Men's Hall, where the Lenape Fire Company, New Castle Cotton Glove factory, and the New Castle News had previously been located. Eventually, they moved out, and building was torn down.
The Eliason Store, 1940s

The company sold coal, harnesses, wagons, plows, and other farming items. While the business continued to sell agricultural products like fertilizer, it also began to increase amount of hardware and other products needed by urban homeowners. By the time photo was taken, the small business started in the 1870's had grown into one of New Castle's most recognizable companies. In 1966, the Eliasons merged with Brosius & Smedley Company.
Eliason Fuel Truck, late 1940s

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