Niagara County

1897 History - J. W. Little & Son

Little, J. W. & Son. -- Joseph W. Little, the senior member of this firm, was born in the village of Lockport, N. Y., March 12, 1842, and has been a resident of this city (late village) during his whole life. His early education was obtained in the Union school, although not a graduate. In his early boyhood he learned the cooper's trade with his father. At the age of nineteen years he enlisted in the 28th Regiment, N. Y. S. V., Co. A, Captain E. W. Cook. This was in April, 1861, and served two years, receiving his honorable discharge in Lockport, the place of enlistment, in June, 1863. He then returned to his trade as a cooper, and as a manufacturer of barrels, running a shop for several years, finally purchasing the stave and heading plant in 1890, which, under the firm name of W. Little & Son - his son, Alfred M. being associated with him-is still operated by them; it is located between Vanburen street and the Erie Canal in East Lockport, a branch of the N. Y. C. & H. R. R. running on the north side thereof. The plant is one of the largest of the kind in Western New York. The mechanical equipment embraces all of the very latest improved machinery for the manufacturers of staves and heading, giving employment to from forty to fifty men and boys. In connection with this factory is a large cooperage, giving employment to about forty men the greater part of the year; the products consist of flour and fruit barrels and staves and heading, which find a ready market in this and adjoining States. The firm of J. W. Little & Son are among Lockport's most enterprising citizens and are respected by all who know them. This plant was originally established by the late Lyman A. Spalding about 1850, afterwards passing into the hands of William Norman, who was succeeded by Fursman & Dumville, and about 1866 was incorporated as the Niagara Stave Co. In 1890 the subject of this sketch purchased the plant, soon after admitting his son into copartnership. They have had a successful career, and bid fair to continue as one of the great manufacturing concerns of Lockport.

Contributed 2017 by Lisa Slaski from Landmarks of Niagara County, New York, by William Pool, D. Mason & Co., Syracuse, NY, 1897

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