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Encyclopedia Dubuque


"Encyclopedia Dubuque is the online authority for all things Dubuque, written by the people who know the city best.”
Marshall Cohen—researcher and producer, CNN

Affiliated with the Local History Network of the State Historical Society of Iowa, and the Iowa Museum Association.


From Encyclopedia Dubuque
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Letterhead. Photo courtesy: Bob Reding
JOHN T. HANCOCK & SONS. In 1858 John T. Hancock established his wholesale grocery business. The 1867 Dubuque City Directory gave the address for this business as 38 Main.

The company name was changed to John T. Hancock & Company around 1875-1876 according to the Dubuque City Directory. When Charles Thomas HANCOCK joined the business, the name was changed to JOHN T. HANCOCK & SON. The company operated at 215-219 Main. Business reached through Iowa, southern Minnesota, and northern Illinois.

Frank A. Hancock joined the company in 1891, and the company name was changed to John T. Hancock & Sons. After John T. Hancock died, the business was moved to 220 South Main. The name stayed the same, but the president of the company was C.H. Young. The business became a part of the Western Grocery Company in 1909 and was no longer listed after 1918.

Photo courtesy: Jim Massey
Advertisement for cut tobacco.
Label. Photo courtesy: www.labelman
Large coffee container. Photo courtesy: Jim Massey
The lid of the large coffee container shows the Bishop's Block Building where the company was located. Photo courtesy: Jim Massey
Bottle from the company. Photo courtesy: Bob Reding
Photo courtesy: Dubuque Herald
Photo courtesy: Jim Massey
Cigar box cutter/hammer