In 1904 Will KILLALEA worked for P.J. SILVER in his barber shop. In 1905 Louis LANGER helped him. In that year Pat ordered a lighting plant for his building. He was tired of shaving people with a poor light and leaving part of the whiskers on. He said the old married fellows didn’t mind if an occasional hair was skipped but the young ones howled to beat the band if they found a little patch of fuzz the barber failed to remove. By 1906 George MANUEL had learned the barber trade and worked at SILVERS’. This was an up-to-date concern boasting a bath tub at the rear of the shop with everything from a sponge to a candlestick.
In 1908 P.J. SILVER moved to the MCCALL building where T.A. THORTENSON had his Golden Rule Store previously. Pat and George could amputate whiskers with great speed in this new location.
Pat MARTIN was one of the early barbers. He also sent laundry to Mankato. George MANUEL opened a new shop in the vacant building next to GEYERMAN’S in 1910. He put in all new fixtures, running a most up-to-date tonsorial parlor. J.T. MORGAN was his helper. George also sent laundry to Sheldon. In 1911 Frank BESSER was an apprentice at the MANUEL shop. In 1913 Roy JACKSON worked at MANUEL’S. That same year E.C. SCARP of Waterloo, Iowa bought the MANUEL shop and hired E. GANZEL of Wisconsin to run it. Roy JACKSON then went to Heron Lake. In 1914 E.C. SCARP sold out to GANZEL. This was called the City Barber Shop.
In 1914 Fred BRIGHT came to Brewster. He located in the building which formerly housed DITCH’S Café. In 1915 E.C. GANZEL sold to V. ABBOTT of Worthington.
In 1916 R. VAN HORICK who worked for Mr. BRIGHT went to Canova, South Dakota. To those getting work done, Fred gave a registration card. Drawings were made and a free shave was given each day; on Wednesday a free hair cut and on Saturday a free shave and hair cut. In 1916 Fred sold his business to E.C. SCARP who had been in his employ. Fred remained to work for him. In 1917 the City Barber Shop introduced the ticket system on Saturday nights so that people could hold their turn without waiting in the shop. Fred BRIGHT spent his time with Uncle Sam during World War I. He returned to Brewster afterward and resumed his profession. In 1919 Noel CARTER was assisting Wilbur BRASKER in his shop. Fred BRIGHT, who was employed at the City Barber Shop bought the business of Wilbur BRASKER who purchased a shop at Lake Wilson. In 1921 Fred moved the barber shop to the basement of the State Bank. In 1926 a Master Barber’s Association was organized for Nobles County at Worthington. The president was Mike CARRIGAN of Adrian and the vice president Fred BRIGHT of Brewster.
Among the many employees of Mr. BRIGHT are George MANUEL, Arnold AHRENS, Art MCCHESNEY, Jack MILLER, E.F. STOUT, Glen FRAZEE, George GERDES, Red WALDE and Peter ODEGARD. These were some of the names I gathered as I read the news items of those years in the old papers.
Of special interest was the ad in 1931 which advertised a specialty on wind blown bobs and rag-a-de-Anns . . . recalling the styles of that year.
In 1928 the Barber Pole was redone and a flicker bulb placed on top of the pole. Fred retired in 1957 after forty-three years of service to Brewster and the community. When his customers were unable to come to him he went to them at the hospital or to their home to keep them shaved and their hair in apple-pie order!
The shop is now in the capable hands of Clarence STRUBLE whose home is in Dundee.