Monday, November 17, 2014

Isaly's Dairy Store Opening Ad – November 16, 1949

Opening Ad Published in the Lorain Journal on November 16, 1949
Mention the name of Isaly's today, and you might think of the great Isaly's chipped chopped ham that you get at your local grocery's deli counter. But did you know that Lorain once had its very own Isaly's convenience store?

Isaly's roots go back to when its founder settled in Monroe County, Ohio in 1833. The family business was originally making cheese, before expanding to dairy farming and eventually home delivery of milk. The Isaly family later branched out by opening a chain of retail stores in Ohio and western Pennsylvania.
Courtesy Brian Butko from his book
Klondikes, Chipped Ham & Skyscraper Cones: The Story of Isaly's
The Isaly dairy stores not only became famous for their uniquely shaped "skyscraper" cone (shown above), but also for the Klondike Bar – an Isaly's creation.
Anyway, the Lorain Isaly's dairy store and restaurant held its formal opening on November 17, 1949 at 735 Broadway. At the time, it was announced that the Lorain store was the most modern of the chain's 413 retail outlets.

The store was erected by John Dandrea, according an article in the Lorain Journal at the time. The sales room was more than 3,200 square feet in size, with 100 feet of counter space and seating for 107. The store sold fountain products, ice cream, grocery and deli items in addition to full-course lunches and dinners.

Robert Terrel of Elyria was in charge of the outlet's 25 employees. Lawrence Radick of Lorain was assistant manager.

Vintage Isaly's Sign
The Isaly's store concept apparently didn't work out in Lorain, unfortunately. Maybe it was ahead of its time, or the location wasn't conducive to walk-in business. Possibly there were just too many other places to get an ice cream cone. But at any rate, the 735 Broadway location was listed as vacant by the time of the 1958 directory.

Around 1960, the 735 Broadway address became the longtime home to City Loan & Savings Company. That company remained there until the late 1970s. (Although the 735 Broadway address is not in use today, the closest location seems to be the 737 Broadway address of the Lorain Arts Council.)

To find out more about Isaly's, click here to visit their website. And if you're a really big Isaly's fan, click here for information about a book about the company's history, written by author Brian Butko.

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