Grab your two-wheeler

From Weise’s “The City of Troy and its Vicinity”: “Troy Bicycle Club, organized November 4, 1881, purchased the spacious Coliseum Building, on the south side of Federal Street, between Sixth and Eighth streets, in the early part of 1886, and fitted it for the purposes of the association. The clubhouse, built of brick, has a …

Family empire, or drug wars?

In the 1858 Albany City Directory, McClures of one form or another are all over the Albany drug trade. And by drugs, we also mean paints, oils, varnishes, alcohol, camphene, “burning fluid,” etc. Whether these likely adjacent businesses on State Street were friendly extensions of a family business or warring offshoots of a family feud, …

Mother’s little helper

I’ve previously lamented the loss of the word “apothecary.” Here’s another one, S.T. & A.M. Smith Apothecaries, which sold both drugs and medicines. They had all the finest patent medicines of the day, not least of which were Dr. F.G. Johnson’s French Female Pills (I’m guess non-French females used them as well). Aromatic coated pills …

Jack of all trades

In 1858, John Rodgers continued to manufacture with increased facility, at his old establishment, steam and fire engines, pumps, boilers, heaters, and machinery in general. And tobacco cutting engines, presses, and stem rollers. And he did iron turning and planing. Lumber Street is now Livingston Avenue, replaced by the railroad line that crosses the river …