Sunday, February 27, 2011


This barber shop owner was by Clarence Herbert.  It was located in the basement of the old City Clerk's Office.  Mr. Herbert is pictured at the left and Ed Wiegel, who later purchased the shop, is shown at the right.  The picture was taken about 1914. 
             The men of Sleepy Eye smoked cigars of plenty back in the day - back in the early 1900s that is - so no wonder the showcase in Mr. Herbert's barber shop would have none other than a generous stock of them.  We know that back in 1901 Sleepy Eye had at least four men practicing the craft of cigar making.  They were; C.A. Lemke, J.B. Hecker, Otto Nothardt, and Albert Wandersee.
 Lemke lived on the north side of Main in the block across from the L.P Jensen residence, and that house was between the corner (later site of the creamery) and the Dyckman Library.  Hecker had been employed by Lemke and in 1901 he opened his own shop.  Northardt apparently was on the North side of Main near the Radl (later Martinka) corner.  At least, his saloon was in that block.  There is reason to believe that Hecker later went to New Ulm.  No information has turned up so far about Wandersee, who was perhaps relative of the Wandersee’s living in Sleepy Eye.  In 1902 a William Davison also became a cigar maker, and in 1905 an Albert Kaping was apparently here as well.  H. J. Schobert made the Verdict Cigars.  We know the most about his cigars or at least his boxes.
This is what we do know about Verdict Cigars: the lid of the cigar box has an oval with VERDICT in the center, words Unity and Effort above.  Community Development below.  Inside the lid: VERDICT – To all whom these presents come, Greeting: Be it known that the cigars herein contained are manufactured by H.J. Schobert, Sleepy Eye, Minn.  That care has been exercised in the selection and blending of the different tobaccos to insure a good wholesome smoke.  One which the public will be sure to appreciate after sampling.  In testimony whereof this verdict is rendered and support is solicited for a meritorious article.  Community Development Committee.
            Inside the back of the box – Verdict Cigar Made Right – Right Here.  Outside of the back, no wording.  Right end of box VERDICT.  Front of box, inside and out: The contents of this box have been TAX PAID as cigars of class B as indicated, by Internal Revenue Stamp Affixed.
            Left of box: Community Development Movement – organized to unite the trade of community – Made Right Right Here.  The Revenue Stamp is still on the box, a blue paper stamp with words: Cigars 50, Class B.
            Bottom of box, outside: Fact. No. 247 Dict, Minn. 50, Notice --- Notice.  The manufacturer of the cigars herein has complied with all the requirements of law.  Every person is cautioned not use either this box for cigars again or the stamp thereon again, nor to remove the contents of this box without destroying said stamp under the penalties provided by law in such cases.

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