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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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c. 1884 Photo courtesy: James E. Jacobsen
Photo courtesy: Bob Reding

WESTPHAL AND HINDS. This large wholesale hardware business began in 1855, when the business was established by Mr. William Westphal. The firm changed its name in 1857 to Westphal and Hinds and lastly to Westphal, Hinds and Company.

The premises occupied by the company as office and salesrooms comprised a four-story building with double cellars, 60x112 feet in dimensions, in addition to which the company had a large warehouse 50x112 feet, and yards 50x112 feet.

The company carried a large stock of heavy and shelf hardware, cutlery, wagon-makers' supplies and were manufacturer agents for Ashtabula Farming Tools, Brandford Locks and Knobs, Romeo Barn Door Hangers, Western Washing Machines, Buffalo Forges, Green River Screw Plates and Collins' Axes.

A force of thirty-two were employed by the company in Dubuque. A staff of traveling salesmen represented the company in a trade territory reaching throughout Iowa, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Illinois and the Dakotas. The volume of its sales ranged from $500,000 to $750,000 annually. Charles H. EIGHMEY, the company president in 1887, was also vice president of the FIRST NATIONAL BANK OF DUBUQUE, President of the Board of Trade, and a large stockholder in the NORWEGIAN PLOW COMPANY.

Westphal and Hinds relocated to Main Street and their former building was purchased by Bishop John HENNESSY. A new facade was constructed with contracts for iron and steel work going to the IOWA IRON WORKS. The new building ready for business was expected to be ready by September 1, 1890. (1)

According to the 1857-1858 through 1861 Dubuque City Directory, this business was located at 170 Main.

The 1865 Dubuque City Directory listed 76 and 78 Main.

The 1868 Guide, Gazetteer and Directory of the Dubuque & Soux (sic) City Railroad stated that this business was located at 65 Main.

The 1868-69 and 1870-71 Dubuque City Directory stated that this business, now listed as an implement dealer, could be found at 76 and 78 Main.

The 1873-74 through 1880 showed an address of 80-82 Main.

According to the 1883 Dubuque City Directory, this business was located at 448 Main.

The 1884-1885 and 1886-87 Dubuque City Directory gave 430 to 448 Main.

In 1929 the business was located at 76-78 Main.



The Industries of Dubuque: Her Relations as a Trade Center, Dubuque: J. M. Elster and Company, Publishers, 1887, p. 55

1. "To Be Born Again," Dubuque Daily Herald, July 12, 1890, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=_OG5zn83XeQC&dat=18900712&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

Trade card for a hay knife
Trade Card-back