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Dietz Genealogy
1818-1849
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DIETZ GENEALOGY


Robert Edwin & Anna Hadwick Dietz

ROBERT'S FATHER & MOTHER:

John Joachim Dietz Jr.,
b. July 16, 1791
Sophia Meinell Dietz
July 10, 1793

JOHN J. Jr's SIBLINGS:

Michael, b. Feb. 9, 1793
Elizabeth Margaretta,
b. Feb. 26, 1795
Catherine, b. Oct. 13, 1897
Mary Elizabeth, B. May 20th, 1800
Andrew, b. February 16th, 1802
George, b. May 13, 1803 


ROBERT DIETZ' SIBLINGS:

John George, b. Dec. 26, 1814
William Henry, b. May 29, 1816
Alfred Meinell, b. Sept. 28, 1819
Mary Ann, b. July 23, 1821
Samuel Dunbar, b. August 17, 1823
James Meinell, b. May 26, 1825
Sophia Ann Meinell, b. Oct. 29, 1829
Michael Alexander, b. Aug. 2, 1830
Mary Elizabeth, b. May 9, 1835

CHILDREN:
(Children of Anna & Robert Dietz)

Mary Augusta Dietz, b. 1847
William Henry White
(Husband and
Son In-Law of R.E. Dietz)
(No Children)

F
rederick Dietz, b. 1849
Marie Louise Hick (Wife)
(No Children)

Anna Louise Dietz-Clement, b. 1850
Frank H. Clement (Husband and
Son In-Law of R.E. Dietz)

John Edwin Dietz, b. 1858
Olga Sanderson (Wife)

William Meinell Dietz b. 1860
(No Children)

Henry James Dietz, b. 1863
(No Children)

Howard James Dietz, b. 1867
Susan McLeod (Wife)
Stella Fairlamb (2nd. Wife)

(No Children)

GRAND CHILDREN:
(Children of
Olga & John E. Dietz)

Ethel Dietz-Nichols
Marton C. Nichols (Husband)

Robert E. Dietz II 
Barbara Johnson (Wife)

GREAT GRAND CHILDREN:
(Children of Barbara & R.E. Dietz II)
Robert E. Dietz III, b. 1915, d.1991
Ann Augusta Espe (Wife),
 b.1916, d.2000


Gerry Johnson Dietz, b. 1917
Cynthia Ann Goodhart-Dietz (Wife)

John "Sandy" Sanderson Dietz,
b. 1919

Julia Grant (Wife)

Olga Dietz-Turner, b. 1924
John Davenport Turner (Husband)


G. G. GRAND CHILDREN:
(Children of Cynthia & Gerry Dietz)
Hugh H. Dietz
Michael H. Dietz
Susan Larson & Cynthia G. Dietz (Twins)

(Children of Julia & John S. Dietz)

John "Jed" E. Dietz
Ulysses Grant Dietz
Edith Dietz (Deceased)
Ned Dietz (Deceased)

(Children of Ann & Robert E. Dietz III)

Gerry Dietz-Saunders (Daughter), b. 1939
Robert E. Dietz IV, b. 1941
Theodore "Ted" Espe Dietz, b. 1942

Ethelinda Dietz, b. 1945

(Children of Olga & John Turner)

Timothy Turner
Thomas Turner
Barbara Turner
Olga Turner

G. G. G. GRAND CHILDREN:
(Children of Theodore Dietz)
Zacharia E. Dietz of Ames, IA,
Maya H. Dietz of Seattle
Jessica Dietz-Wells of Lebanon, OR

Holly Dietz Algermissen of Albuquerque,

G. G. G. G. GRAND CHILDREN:
(Children of Jessica Wells)
Jonah Wells
Jackson Wells

(Children of Holly Dietz Algermissen)
Anna Louise Algermissen
Ella Marie Algermissen
John Algermissen

 

If you are a descendant of R.E. Dietz, please e-mail us for inclusion in our Dietz genealogy.

 

 


 


R. E. DIETZ  HISTORY

 

The ongoing amalgamation of historical, and sometimes trivial, information found here has been assembled from various sources, which includes:  The 1913 book "A Leaf from the Past" by Fred Dietz; Various Dietz Co. Catalogs and Price Lists published from 1874 to 1989;  The United States Patent Office Archive;  Ulysses G. Dietz' book, "Victorian Lighting - The Dietz Catalog of 1860"  The research of Linda Black;  And my personal research of the R.E. Dietz Archive, historical newspaper reports, as well as correspondence and interviews with Dietz family members and former employees, and other sources.

Please NOTE: 
If you wish to use text from this webpage in an auction or sales description,
please include a credit line that reads:
   


The Beginning:

Monday, January 5, 1818

Robert Edwin Dietz was born in New York on January 5, 1818 in a house on the corner of Spring and Crosby Streets built by his grandfather who came to America during the War of Independence.

1823

Anna Hadwick is born

1836

Robert Edwin Dietz started as a hardware clerk for the firm of Woolf, Spies & Clark in Maiden Lane.

1837

Robert Edwin Dietz became a volunteer fireman, joining the No. 9 Hose Company,
and later the "Lady Washington" No. 40 Engine Company on Elizabeth Street.

June 9, 1839
Tubular lantern Inventor John Henry Irwin was born
in Trenton, N.J. to Mr. and Mrs. David H. Irwin
Summer of 1840
Robert E. Dietz at Age 22, purchases a lamp & oil business at
62 Fulton St., at the corner of Columbia St., Brooklyn, New York.
He began manufacturing candle lanterns, and was able to save
$600 in the first year of business
1842

Robert E. Dietz' brother, William Henry Dietz (b. May 29, 1816,) became partners to form Dietz, Brother & Company with their associate
John A.Weed
at No. 13 John Street, New York, N.Y.

1845

Dietz, Brother & Company introduce sperm oil lanterns

Monday, February 2,1846

Amasmus French admitted to Dietz, Brother & Company

Saturday, May 16, 1846

Robert E. Dietz weds Anna Hadwick

September 29, 1847

Mary Augusta Dietz was born to Robert and Anna Dietz

February 9, 1849

Frederick Dietz was born to Robert and Anna Dietz


The 1850's:
January 15, 1850
Anna Louise Dietz was born to Robert and Anna Dietz
1850

Dietz, Brother & Company sell "*Carcel" and "Doric" lamps, and manufacture improved camphene lamps, solar lamps, girandoles, hall lamps, and chandeliers.   They are awarded lighting contract for the
P.T. Barnum premier of Jenny Lind, the largest musical event in the History of New York up to that time

1855

Dietz, Brother & Company renamed Dietz & Company
and build large factory at 132-134 William Street New York City, N.Y.
Begin manufacturing of lamps, burners, and gas fixtures
Robert's Brother Samuel Dunbar Dietz opens a Sales Office in San Francisco, California around this time.

1857

Dietz & Company submit the first flat-wick burner for "modern" coal oil for patenting

December 1858

John Edwin Dietz was born to Robert and Anna Dietz
at the Dietz estate in Hempstead, Long Island

1859
Dietz & Company begin manufacturing coal oil flat-wick burners

The 1860's:
May 6, 1860
William Meinell Dietz was born to Robert and Anna Dietz  
1860
Dietz & Company opens sales office at No. 4 St. Pauls Building Little Carter Lane London, England.  This office was headed by
Michael Alexander Dietz (b. August 2, 1830-1883)

The Sales Office in San Francisco, California continues to do a brisk business.

Notes on Dietz & Company
This company was run by five of the Dietz Brothers:
William Henry Dietz, b. May 29, 1816
Robert Edwin Dietz, b. January 5, 1818
Samuel Dunbar Dietz, b. August 17, 1823
James Meinell Dietz, b. May 26, 1825
Michael Alexander Dietz, b. August 2, 1830
October 15, 1863
Henry James Dietz was born to Robert and Anna Dietz  
1867
At his father's advice to invent a lamp or lantern that can withstand movement without going out,
 
John H. Irwin invents the Hot Blast Tubular principle after tinkering for three days in the tool house.
August 9, 1863
Howard James Dietz was born to Robert and Anna Dietz  
Tuesday, January 7, 1868
28 year old John H. Irwin is issued the first Hot Blast Tubular lantern patent, #73012,
eventually worth $20,000 per year in royalties.
1868
Robert E. Dietz sells his interest in Dietz & Company to
his brother James M. Dietz
1868
Robert E. Dietz takes on Absalom G. Smith (formerly of the Archer, Pancoast & Company,)
as a partner to form Dietz & Smith and
they lease the upper floors of 25' x 100' 4 story building at
No. 4 College Place & Robinson Street in New York, N.Y.
Charles Frederick Eberhardt joins the company as delivery driver.
Thursday, July 30, 1868
Dietz & Smith purchased from a receiver the right to manufacture the "New Tubular Lantern" (under the Patents of John Irwin,) together with the stock, tools, patents & goodwill of the Archer, Pancoast & Company, and the license to sell them east of Chicago.
1868
21 year old Frederick Dietz, Robert E. Dietz' eldest son,
begins his business career as shipping and invoice clerk
Thursday, August 5, 1869

Robert E. Dietz buys out A.G. Smith for $17,000 and forms the
R.E. Dietz Company and continues business at
No. 4 College Place & Robinson Street in New York, N.Y.


The 1870's:
Wednesday, January 18, 1871
John H. Irwin purchases 76 acres in the Borough of Morton, Springfield Township, County of Delaware, Pennsylvania for the amount of $8500, naming it "Faraday Park" in honor of the famed chemist and inventor.  There he established a laboratory, and donated land for the construction of the Episcopalian Church.  He also established the Faraday Park Hotel.  His home was located to the west of the intersection of Amosland and Highland Avenues.
Wednesday, February 22, 1871
Dietz & Company building at 132-134 William Street New York City, N.Y. destroyed by fire, never re-opens
Spring, 1871
R.E. Dietz relocates to 54-56 Fulton Street and
29-31 Cliff Street in New York City, N.Y
1872
R.E. Dietz is the first factory to use steam power to cut and draw
a lantern bottom or oil pot from a sheet of tin
Tuesday, June 9, 1874
John Henry Irwin is issued the first Cold Blast Tubular lantern and lamp patent, #151703
October 10, 1874
John Henry Irwin brings a patent infringement suit against Dane, Westlake, & Covert
October 29, 1875
Judge Blodgett finds in favor of plaintiff John Henry Irwin and issues an injunction
against Dane, Westlake, & Covert  

August, 1874

R.E. Dietz publishes it's first illustrated lantern catalogue
with 38 pages and soft cover. 
Other items also manufactured by the R.E. Dietz Company include:
hand lamps, brackets, fruit jar wrenches, jack chains, molasses jugs,
"Catchemalive" mouse traps, & kerosene fireplaces (heaters)
1876
The Buffalo Steam Gauge & Lantern Co. is formed, and builds a new factory on the Genesee Falls inRochester, New York,  under the direction of  Charles T. Ham and F.D.W. Clarke 
1877
John H. Irwin establishes the Faraday Electric Light, Heat & Power Company in Morton, PA., a coal fired plant adjacent to the railroad tracks in the center of town.
1879
R.E. Dietz introduces the "Racket" and the "Baby" brass lanterns,
(manufactured by the Bristol Brass & Clock Company,)
the 4 1/2" tall "Baby" lantern being the smallest ever sold by Dietz

The 1880's:
1880
The Dietz #3 Tubular Street Lamp is invented by
*Lewis F. Betts, and put into production.  Eventually, more "Pioneer"
street lamps are sold than all other makes combined.

*Lewis F. Betts held more than 25 lantern patents, including:
~Principle of air supply for the Dietz Union Driving Lamp
~Square Tube Lantern Frame
~Cross Wire Globe Guard for Tubular Lanterns

1881
R.E. Dietz buys 50% of the stock of the newly incorporated Steam Gauge & Lantern Co. of Rochester, New York.
(An amalgamation of the Buffalo Steam Gauge & Lantern Co. and the Dennis and Wheeler Co. of Chicago., and other concerns) 
Dietz signs an agreement that allows the SG&L Co. to manufacture east of Chicago in Rochester, NY, and allows both companies to sell lanterns in all states.
  
Charles T. Ham is elected as the first president of the S.G.&L. Co.
1881
R.E. Dietz in conjunction with the S.G.&L. Co. introduces the "No.10 Brass Tubular Lantern," often called the first Cold Blast lantern, although it is technically a "warm" blast. 
It features a 1/4" wick, and stands 10" tall
1881
Warren McArthur joins the R.E. Dietz Company as outside salesman
May 1, 1882  
R.E. Dietz opens a Western Sales Office at 25 Lake Street, Chicago, Illinois, headed by John Edwin Dietz, (son of R.E. Dietz)  and Warren McArthur, formerly representing Dennis & Wheeler.
1882
R.E. Dietz Awarded Silver Medal for "Dietz Tubular Oil Stove"
at Cincinnati, Ohio Exposition

Globes marked "DIETZ" are introduced

1883
Michael Alexander Dietz passes away, and Dietz & Company in
London, England, becomes Dietz, Davis, & Company
1883
R.E. Dietz purchases 4 lots at Greenwich & Laight Streets
in New York City, N.Y.

Issued Illustrated Catalogue No. 17 with 49 pages and soft cover

1883
R.E. Dietz Awarded Bronze Medal for "Dietz Tubular Oil Stove"
at Delaware County Fair, Pennsylvania
1882
1884
The "Dietz Tubular Oil Stove" was awarded:
A Silver Medal at the New Jersey State Fair
A Bronze Medal at the American Institute Fair
A Diploma at the Queens, N.Y. County Fair
1885
The "Dietz Tubular Oil Stove" was awarded:
A Silver Medal at the New Orleans Exposition

Charles L. Betts, (Lewis F. Betts brother,) joins R.E. Dietz, and is eventually granted over 35 patents for lantern improvements issued between June 7, 1887 and July 22, 1913, including several methods of manufacturing.

Early 1886
R.E. Dietz incorporates in New York State as the R.E. Dietz Company with a paid capital of $100,000 owned by:
Robert E. Dietz, President
*Frederick Dietz, Vice President & Treasurer
John Edwin Dietz, Secretary

Illustrated Catalogue No. 19 is issued with 52 pages and soft cover

*Frederick Dietz originated the familiar Dietz trademark and most of the companies' trade names which appear on lanterns and printed material

Tuesday, January 4, 1887
Production of the original Dietz Cold Blast Tubular Driving Lamp begins 
Spring, 1887
Construction begins on a new seven story factory and office building at 429-433 Greenwich & 60 Laight Streets in New York City, N.Y.

The 1870's:
1888
John H. Irwin's second wife, Rebbeca Elder Irwin passes away at age 33.

Spring, 1888

New factory and office building is complete and occupied

The 1890's:
Monday, July 29, 1890
Prolific tubular lantern inventor, and Morton Pennsylvania's chief citizen, John Henry Irwin, died suddenly at the Jone's Hotel in the Adirondack mountains at age 51 while rowing a boat.  The death was attributed to heart disease and acute dyspepsia.  Twice a widower, he left his entire estate, estimated at between $300,000 and $500,000, to his fiancé, (and second cousin,) 22 year old Lillian Warren of Springfield, Illinois
He had no children, and was survived by his father, David H. Irwin of Springfield, Illinois
John H. Irwin is buried at the Media Cemetery, Delaware County, Pennsylvania
Monday, September 29, 1890
R.E. Dietz' son William Meinell Dietz died at age 31. 
The internment was at Green Wood Cemetery
1891
The Dietz "Cross in Circle" logo is first used.
1892
Warren McArthur Sr. comissions young architect Frank Lloyd Wright to design his home to be built at 4852 Kenwood Ave. in Chicago Ill.
(Still standing in 2007)


Warren McArthur Sr. also owned one of the first automobiles in Chicago.
1892
R.E. Dietz Company publishes illustrated catalogue No. 26 with
111 pages and hard cover.

A retail oil stove department is opened at 76 Fulton Street, New York.

Fall, 1894
Robert E. Dietz retires from the R.E. Dietz Company
Wednesday, January 30, 1895
A new Board of Directors are elected:
Frederick Dietz, President, Treasurer, and General Manager
John Edwin Dietz, Secretary
*William Henry White, Vice President

This board was re-elected annually for 9 consecutive years (1895-1904)

*William Henry White was the son-in-law of Robert E. Dietz, and had no active part in the company.

1896
R.E. Dietz Company introduces the original Cold Blast Motor Truck Lamps and first auto kerosene lamps
1896
*Warren McArthur Sr. becomes the Exclusive U.S. Sales Agent for
R.E. Dietz Company, along with the following manufacturers:
C.T. Ham, Rochester, New York
Buhl Stamping, Detroit, Michigan
Winfield Manufacturing, Warren, Ohio
Ohio Lantern Company, Tiffin, Ohio
Wheeling Stamping Company, Wheeling, West Virginia

*Warren McArthur Sr. has the distinction of selling more lanterns than any other salesman in the history of tubular lanterns

Late 1896
R.E. Dietz Company opens a Sales Office at 29 Shoe Lane & 7 Farringdon Ave., London, E.C. England, headed by *John L Sardy

*John L Sardy was engaged by the R.E. Dietz Company to circumnavigate the globe in 1894 to increase the export part of the business.  Some of the places he visited include:  Honolulu, Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, and Dunedin in New Zealand, Tasmania, Melbourne, Adelaide, Sydney, Brisbane, Batavia, Java, Singapore, Madras, Calcutta, Bombay, Chain, Japan, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Nagasaki, Kobe, Yokohama, Vancouver, Montreal.  On his second trip around the world, he re-visited the places on his first trip and also visited:  Manilla, Saigon, Penang, Rangoon, Perth (in Western Australia,) and Suva (in the Fiji Islands.)   The combined mileage was nearly 82,000 miles, and without any mishap.  After eighteen years of faithful service, John L. Sardy passed away on May, 12, 1912 in London

Wednesday, June 23, 1897

The Dietz New York Factory at 60 Laight Street was completely gutted by fire, along  with all the  stock, tools, & machinery, a loss of over $50,000 to the building, and $75,000 to the inventory. 

Summer, 1897
In order to stay in business, the R.E. Dietz Company merged with the Steam Gauge & Lantern Company of Syracuse, New York, absorbing the S.G.&L. Factory at Wilkinson Street and Leavenworth Avenue
Sunday, September 19, 1897
Robert Edwin Dietz passes away at age 79, without knowing his seven story factory had been gutted by fire only a few months before.  He was survived by his wife Anna.  His six brothers and three sisters preceding him in death.
1898
In less than one year, The Dietz New York factory is rebuilt with fire-proof construction and is back in operation as "Factory No.1"    The exterior walls were reused and two stories were added to the original 7 story structure, increasing the square footage to 84,000.   (Today, the brick exterior of the building has a noticeable delineation between the seventh and eight floors.
Wednesday, October 12, 1898

Fred Dietz sells his late father's property at 21, 23, 25, 27, and 29
East 76th Street at the northwest corner of Madison Ave.  (4-story and basement, high stoop Brownstone Dwellings with two story brick extensions

1899

The Dietz "Victor" Hot Blast Lantern sell for $.37 each, and the
"Buckeye" Dash Lantern sell for $.55 each


The 1900's:
1900

R.E. Dietz Company introduces the first tinned steel lantern burners

The Dietz "Blizzard" cold blast lantern is introduced

1900
Warren McArthur Sr.'s sales office is located at 19 & 21 Randolph St., Chicago, Illinois
1902
The Dietz "Junior" cold blast lantern is introduced
January 21, 1902

Mary Augusta Dietz-White passes away, leaving her husband, William Henry White.

1903

R.E. Dietz Company is awarded the contract to supply lanterns
for the construction of the Panama Canal

Illustrated Catalogue No. 34 is issued with 110 pages and soft cover

July 3, 1904

William Henry White, Robert Dietz' son-in-law and Vice President of the R.E. Dietz Co. passes away.

1904

A new board of directors are elected:
Frederick Dietz, President and Treasurer
John Edwin Dietz, Vice President and General Manager
*Frank H. Clement, Secretary

This board was re-elected annualy for 10 consectutive years (1904-1915)

*Frank H. Clement was a son-in-law of Robert E. Dietz

1904
A four story (plus basement) addition to the Syracuse factory
measuring 56' x 300' was built.

The Dietz "Oval" logo is first used.

1906

R.E. Dietz Company introduces acetylene gas automotive headlights, taillights, mirror lens search lights, square and round "Handy" acetylene generators

Illustrated Catalogue No. 35 is issued with 111 pages and soft cover

Friday, November 15, 1907

Marie Louise Dietz, wife of Fred Dietz, and youngest daughter of the late Jonathan P. Hick of Mount Vernon, N.Y., passed away.  Services were held at her late residence at 312 West 76th Street at 11 o'clock on November 18th. 

1908

"A Maximum of Light with a Minimum of Care" was the Dietz Motto

Saturday, December 26, 1908

Mrs. John E. Dietz of West 75th Street gave a theatre party for her débutante daughter, Miss Ethel Dietz, who made here debut last week.  After seeing "Salvation Nell," the guests, who numbered 24, went to Sherry's for supper.

1909

The modern Dietz "Vesta" cold blast tubular railroad lantern is introduced

Sunday, September 4, 1910

Dietz delivery driver Charles Frederick Eberhardt dies at his home in Rutherford, N.J..  He was survived by his partner of 21 years, "Charlie."  The two won the prize for "Old Work Horse" class in both the 1907
and 1908 New York City Work Horse Parades. 
 

Thursday, September 8, 1910

The Dietz New York Factory #1 remains closed as a mark of respect for the late Charles Frederick Eberhardt, who for 41 years delivered Dietz lanterns by horse drawn wagon. He was one of the original employees when Dietz and Smith first started manufacturing tubular lanterns in 1868.  

Monday, July 24, 1911

Anna Hadwick Dietz, widow of R.E. Dietz, passes away at her home in Hempstead, Long Island at the age of 88

Tuesday, March 12, 1912

Fred Dietz sells his late father's estate at auction which consisted of the subway corner of Broadway and 50th St.  known as 1627-1629 Broadway & 210-212 West 50th Street, (approximately 9000 Sq. Ft.,) and
116 West 50th Street, 124 West 48th Street, and the Dietz estate in Hempstead, Long Island, described as: 
"An elegant three-story frame mansion with attic and basement, containing about 20 rooms, 1 bath and 3 toilets.  Electric lights, steam heat and running water.   The outhouses consist of a two-and-one-half-story and basement cottage, with running water, containing 11 rooms and a toilet:  Also a two story and cellar barn with harness room, carriage house, coachman's quarters, twelve stalls for horses, cow barn containing eight stalls and space for hay loft;  Also a chicken house with a capacity for 500 chickens, a shed for machinery and storage and two corn cribs."

The estate was located on Mill Road, straight down from Franklin Street. 

1912
Warren McArthur Jr. designs the "short globe" (D-Lite) Tubular Lantern, also known as the Nu-Style Lantern by the C.T. Ham Company.  Both models feature a unique top lift feature, not found on any other style lantern.  Production of the D-Lite lantern wouldn't begin until 1913.  Eventually this style was displaced by the "Wizard" style lantern.
1912

The Dietz "Hy-Lo" hot blast lantern is first introduced, it's name derived from it's high performance and low price, the lowest of all hot blast lanterns when introduced.

The Dietz "Crescent" cold blast lantern is introduced as a lower priced version of the Blizzard

1913

Under the direction of Fred Dietz, the Dietz Factory #2 in Syracuse is enlarged to over 50,000 square feet, presumably using proceeds from the sale of R.E. Dietz' estate the previous year.  
Illustrated Catalogue No. 43 is issued with 200 pages and soft cover

The Dietz "U.S." dead-flame lantern is introduced to take the place
of the "Racket" and "Boy" lanterns.

The Dietz "FITALL" combination hot/cold blast globe is introduced.

Friday, January 9, 1914

The Dietz "Little Wizard" cold blast lantern is introduced.

1914

The book "A Leaf From The Past" is compiled from the diaries of R.E. Dietz by his eldest son, Frederick, and published, 198 pages and hard cover

Illustrated Catalogue No. 43 is issued with 200 pages and soft cover

Monday, December 21, 1914

John Johnston commits suicide by throwing himself in front of a subway express train at the 72 St. Station in New York City at noon.  He had failed to show up to work for a week at the home of Fred Dietz,  The coat he was wearing had been made by a Fifth Avenue tailor in 1906 for Fred Dietz.  Inside the coat was a pawn ticket for $1.12 issued to Johnston for an overcoat. 

1915

The Dietz "FITALL" globe is renamed "FITZALL"
(LOC-NOB ears aren't added until 1918)

1915

Dietz purchases the C.T. Ham Mfg.Co. and moves tooling for the "Gem" and a few other select Ham lantern models to Factory #2 in Syracuse, then sells the balance of tooling and equipment to the Star Headlight and Lantern Co. of Rochester.  Dietz continues production of a few Ham lantern models through the end of World War I

James Barnes, formerly of the C.T. Ham Co. is placed in charge of Motor Lamp Sales, and runs the Dietz Rochester Office in the Carter Building. 

1915
Warren McArthur Sr. sells the Dietz line exclusively from his new office located at 168 N. Michigan, Chicago, Illinois.
Wednesday, March 31, 1915

Frederick Dietz, age 68, dies suddenly at his home at 312 West 76th street.  Services were held at 1 o'clock the West End Collegiate Church at
West End Ave. and 77th Street on Saturday, April 3, 1915

Friday, April 23, 1915

Frederick Dietz' Last Will and Testament was filed for probate.  The estate was estimated to be worth $5 Million.  There were bequests of $100,000 to both his younger brother John E. Dietz, and his sister Mrs. Anna Louise Clement, both of whom were to divide the residuary estate.  His niece Ethel Dietz Nichols of Greenwich, Conn. was to receive $100,000.  His cousin Frederick W. Van Duyn of Ridgewood, N.J. was to receive $50,000 and 300 shares of the preferred stock of R.E. Dietz Co., valued at $100 per share.  A similar bequest was made in favor of his nephew Robert E. Dietz II  of Albuquerque, N.M.  He also left $1000 to a little orphan boy, Allan Schiller.  Each of the more than 600 employees of the R.E. Dietz Co. who have been connected with the company more than 1 year or more will receive a bequest of $25 to $2500.  Pomeroy Salmon, Manager of Dietz Factory #2 in Syracuse was to receive a bequest of $5000

Sunday, March 26, 1916

John E. Dietz sells his late brother Fred's three story home at
312 west 76th Street in New York to settle the Estate.

1916

A new board of directors are elected:
John Edwin Dietz, President
R.E. Dietz 2d, Vice President (Only grandson of R.E. Dietz)
Edgar Price, Treasurer
Frederick W. Van Duyn, Secretary (Nephew of R.E. Dietz)
Fred H. Twombly, Ass't Sectretary and Export Manager

This board was re-elected annually for 4 consecutive years (1916-1920)

Arthur W. Carr becomes the Lantern Production Manager as noted in July 1st Price List 

1917

The only short globe, cold blast, fire department lantern made by Dietz is introduced, the No. 2 Wizard New Fire Department Lantern.

Illustrated Catalogue No. 49 is issued with 139 pages and soft cover

James Barnes, formerly of the C.T. Ham Co. is placed in charge of Motor Lamp Sales, and runs the Dietz Rochester Office in the Carter Building. 

1918

The Dietz "Scout" dead flame lantern is first introduced. 
(The first version features a brass tag soldered to the tank, and does not have the patent dates stamped into the crown.)

LOC-NOB ears are added to the Dietz "FITZALL" globe


The 1920's:
1921

A new board of directors are elected:
John Edwin Dietz, President and General Manager
R.E. Dietz 2d, Vice President
Frederick W. Van Duyn, Secretary
Fred H. Twombly, Ass't Secretary and Export Manager

Illustrated Catalogue No. 50 is issued with 79 pages and soft cover

1923

Production of the Dietz "Scout" dead flame lantern is streamlined, eliminating some of the soldered joints.
The revised model is r
e-named "Sport."

1924

John Edwin Dietz builds a nearly 8000 sq. ft. winter home at 237 El Bravo Way in Palm Beach, Florida.  The Mediterranean style home was designed by architect Marion Sims Wyeth in 1923, and featured pecky cypress, stone and hardwood floors.

Wednesday, December 24, 1924
Warren McArthur Sr. passes away after serving 43 years as the R.E. Dietz National Sales Manager
1928
Robert E. Dietz II moves to the country for health reasons and takes up farming. 
He builds a new home at
4117 Rio Grande Blvd., NW in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Saturday, February 23, 1929

Warren McArthur Jr. and brother Charles open the famed "Arizona Biltmore Hotel" designed by his brother Albert Chase McArthur, (with assistance from Frank Lloyd Wright.)
1930
The Stock Market Crash and a doubling of the cost of construction (2 Million Dollars) forces Warren McArthur Jr. and brother Charles to sell the "Arizona Biltmore Hotel" to Chewing Gum Mogul William Wrigley Jr.
1931

Factory No.1 is closed, leaving just the business office in New York City
Manufacturing is consolidated with the Syracuse plant

1932

Dietz lantern sales hit bottom after a steady decline since 1924;
($50,000, down from $150,000 in 1924.) 

1934

The "Comet" cold blast Lantern is first marketed to the foreign market only.

1936

Industrial designers Joseph Sinel and Ruth Gerth are hired to create the the streamline pattern Little Wizard and Monarch lanterns. (The streamline Blizzard and D-Lite lanterns were released the following year.)

Friday, June 12, 1936

John Edwin Dietz of 330 Park Avenue, New York, dies at age 79 at his summer home in Greenwich, Connecticut after a year and a half illness.  He was survived by his wife, Olga, his son Robert E. Dietz II, his daughter Mrs. Ethel Dietz Nichols, and his sister Mrs. Anna Louise Clement of Hempstead, Long Island.

1936

Following the death of his father, R.E. Dietz II becomes the fourth President of the R.E. Dietz Company

Saturday, November 26, 1938

John E. Dietz' widow Olga Sanderson Dietz died suddenly at Greenwich, Connecticut.  She was survived by her son Robert E. Dietz II, and daughter Mrs.Ethel Dietz Nichols, four grand-children, and three sisters.  Mrs. Dietz was born in Chicago, and was the daugher of Mr. and Mrs. William Sanderson.


The 1940's:
1940

Production of the Dietz "King" Fire Department Lantern is ceased
Regular production of all Brass and Copper tank lanterns ceases

1940

Robert E. Dietz II son, Gerry (pronounced Gary,) Johnson Dietz, graduated from Governor Drummer Academy and with the class of '40
at Yale and is engaged to Miss Cynthia Ann Goodhart of Syracuse.

1942

World War II causes shortage of tin & tin plate.  The War Production Board orders the use of the less rust resistant Terne Plate as a substitute 
To help prevent lanterns from rusting, they are coated with gray enamel through the war years, until the more familiar metallic blue is adopted in 1949.

1945

The "Night Watch" dead flame highway streamlined Lantern is introduced to replace the obsolete "8-Day" square tank highway lantern

1945

Robert E. Dietz II son, 2nd Lieut. John (nickname Sandy) Sanderson Dietz is wed to Miss Julia Grant, (a great grand-daughter of the late President Ulysses S. Grant,) at St. John's Episcopal Church in Clinton, N.Y.

Late 1946

Dietz purchased the lantern division of the Wheeling Stamping Company

1948

The "Comet" cold blast Lantern, first sold to the foreign market in 1934, is introduced in the U.S.A.,
and later becomes the official lantern of the Boy Scouts of America 

1950

R.E. Dietz II resigns, and his thirty three year old son, Gerry J. Dietz becomes President
and Chairman of the Board of the R.E. Dietz Company

1952

The office and factory building at 60 Laight Street, New York City, is sold and consolidated with the factory on Wilkinson Street in Syracuse

Sunday, March 1, 1953

Dietz purchases the assets of the Embury Manufacturing Company
of Warsaw, New York

1955

The Federal Government bans the use of kerosene lanterns on the nations highways, local agencies, however, continue use as late as 1972

July, 1955

Dietz Electric Pioneer Street Lamps are installed in Anaheim, California at new amusement park, Disneyland

1956

Gerry J. Dietz establishes R.E. Dietz Co., LTD in Hong Kong
to redevelop a large world lantern market
Original tools and dies are relocated from Syracuse, including tooling for the Junior and Cresent, and the Pre-Streamlined versions of the Blizzard, D-Lite, Monarch, and Little Wizard models.

1957

Dietz ceases production of the Streamline D-Lite and Streamline Blizzard lanterns, and begins production of the No.8 Air Pilot by reworking the tooling of the Streamline D-Lite.

1958

Dietz introduces the "Visi-Flasher" battery powered strobe light road marker and the "Dietz Hazard Division" is established

1959

Dietz ceases production of all railroad lanterns, including the Vesta and Acme Inspector


The 1960's:
1962-1965

Dietz "Visi-Flasher" rental offices open in Chicago(1962,) Detroit (1963,) and Boston (1965)

1965

The R.E. Dietz Company celebrates 125 years in business

1967

Gerry J. Dietz resigns as President, and remains
Chairman of the Board of the R.E. Dietz Company

John S. Dietz, (Gerry's brother) becomes President

1971

Dietz acquires the former trolley barn on Wolf Street and uses it for plastic injection molding

1971

Lantern manufacturing completely ceases in Syracuse factory in 1971, the last lanterns produced were Streamline Little Wizard Patio/Post Lamps

The tooling for the Comet and the No. 8 Air Pilot are shipped to Hong Kong to continue production.

1973

Annual Dietz Lantern production in Hong Kong in tens of millions

May 1, 1974

Dietz becomes the first manufacturer in Syracuse to computerize
Material Requirements Planning

1976

A bi-centennial commemorative "Comet" lantern is issued
in place of the new "The Original" lantern

1977

Annual lantern production in Hong Kong at 1.5 million and are shipped to 75 countries

1977

John S. Dietz retires as President

1978

Edward F. Reynolds (Formerly of Smith-Corona Typewriter Co.) is elected
as the first non-family President of the R.E. Dietz Co.
Hugh H. Dietz, (son of Gerry J. Dietz) and
John E. Dietz, (son of John S. Dietz) are elected as officers of the corporation.

Dietz develops "floating traffic lights" for use on N.Y. Barge Canal

1978

Tooling for the bicentenial "The Original" #76 Lantern
is completed two years late

1982

Dietz Lantern sales drop to under 8000 dozen per annum

1982

The R.E. Dietz Co., LTD  factory in Hong Kong
is relocated to mainland China
Serial numbered Junior Lanterns made of solid brass are made to bolster sales
(made sans post-1956 model "No. 20" marking)

1983

Dietz Lantern sales rebound to 12,000 to 15,000 dozen per annum

1984

Dietz Lantern sales drop to 8,000 to 10,000 dozen per annum

February 9, 1984

The R.E. Dietz II Farmhouse in Albuquerque, NM is placed on the National Register of Historic Places


The 1990's to Present:
1990

Dietz Lantern sales in the United States drop to an all time low,
(less than $50,000) in the year of the 150th anniversary.

Wednesday, January 31, 1990

The Federal Mogul Co. makes an offer of 14 Million Dollars to buy the assets and approximately 6 Million Dollars to cover the debts of the R.E. Dietz Co. 

Wednesday, February 7, 1990

The R.E. Dietz Co. Board of Directors approves the offer from the Federal Mogul Co. 

Thursday, March 8, 1990

The sale of the Automotive Lighting Division of the R.E. Dietz Co. is completed

Friday, March 9, 1990

Dietz continues production of items #7-21-021, #7-22-001, #7-2000, #7-27001, 7-72001 for the Federal Mogul Co for 2 years.

1991

Dietz sells the tooling for the "Visi-Flasher" to the
Reva Plastic Co. of Weedsport, N.Y

1992

Dietz permanently closed the Syracuse plant and eventually sells the property to the Superior Office Furniture Company.

May 27, 1993

R.E. Dietz' great grandson, and former Chairman of the Board, Gerry Johnson Dietz, passes away at age 76. 

Labor Day, 1998

The 110+ year old Dietz Building in Syracuse was severely damaged
by a "Micro-Burst" windstorm, destroying major portions of the roof and exterior brick facade.

2001

The Reva Plastic Co. files bankruptcy and dissolves, then reforms. 
The Visi-Flasher tooling was relocated from New York to China.

Spring, 2002

The Federal Mogul Company sells all of its automotive lighting division, including what remained of the Dietz buyout, to the Truck-Lite Company.

Today

The Dietz Building at 60 Laight Street in New York City (Factory #1) has been renovated and now sports a restaurant on the ground floor, and condos on the upper floors. 
The Dietz plant (Factory #2) on Wilkinson Street in Syracuse, New York, has had major repairs, and is owned and occupied by the Superior Office Furniture Company.
R.E. Dietz Co., LTD. established in 1956 continues to manufacture lanterns and operates
in Hong Kong and China.


Dietz Genealogy  1818-1849  1850-1859  1860-1879  1880-1899  1900-1919  1920-1939  1940-1959  1960-1989  1990-Present

W.T. KIRKMAN® LANTERNS
Ramona, (San Diego County,) California 92065

This Page Updated on September 21, 2014

Copyright © 1997 - 2014  All Rights Reserved,  W.T. Kirkman