Lounsbury, George A.

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George A. Lounsbury married Annie Clark and worked with his brother-in-law George N. Clark in the firm established in 1878 on the Newcastle Wharf by Leonard W. Johnston. This is the first store of what was to later become Lounbsbury Company Limited. From 1878 until 1892 the company operated under the name JOHNSON AND COMPANY. During this time John T. Clark and W. G. Clark, who later became Lieutenant Governor of N.B., came to work with the company.

George and Annie Lounsbury had a daughter Maude and a son G. Hollie. Maude married Herb McDonald in Chatham and their children, Jack McDonald and Jean (McDonald) Burchill are grandchildren of G. A. Lounsbury.

Leonard W. Johnston, still as JOHNSON AND COMPANY, had headquarters in Woodstock for that district, Newcastle was the headquarters for the eastern side of the province and New Carisle was headquarters for Bonaventure and Gaspe counties in Quebec. An agency was located at Rexton, N.B. under Mr. Edward Hannay. G.A. Lounsbury was hired as a traveling salesman by J. Clark and Son. In 1892 Mr. Johnston sold his Newcastle business to George N. Clark and G.A. Lounsbury, who operated under the name CLARK AND LOUNSBURY.

At this time they also opened an agency in Chatham, N.B. under George Hildebrand. In 1894 an agency opened in Moncton, N.B. with Warman and Bourque as representatives. The company was known as CLARK & LOUNSBURY until 1896. In 1895, C.C. Hayward, who would later become company president, was hired as an office boy in Newcastle. In 1896 the partnership of George N. Clark and George A. Lounsbury was dissolved, with Clark selling his share to Lounsbury - and the business became G.A. LOUNSBURY AND CO.. Mr. Lounsbury then expanded to open a small store in Bathurst, selling farm machinery and in 1897 the company started selling pianos and home furnishings.

The company went under the name G.A. Lounsbury & Company until 1902. During this period (in 1898) a store was opened in Campbellton in rented premises on Water Street and a new brick building was begun to replace the original wooden one on the Newcastle Wharf. The Newcastle building was completed in March of 1902 and George A. Lounsbury died the same month at the age of 46. After his death W.G. Clark and Annie E. Lounsbury, Executors of his estate, called a meeting of some of Lounsbury's business associates: Joseph Howe Taylor - Campbellton, George Hildebrand - Chatham, C.C. Hayward - Newcastle, Samuel R. Shirley - Bathurst, Edward Hannay - Rexton, and Havelock Warman and Joseph Bourque - Moncton, to discuss carrying on the business.

It was agreed, the company was incorporated as THE LOUNSBURY COMPANY LIMITED and the first meeting of shareholders, as named above, was held in Newcastle June 17th,1902. Letters patent incorporating the company were adopted as the charter of the company. Newcastle became the Head Office of the company and By-Laws were confirmed. Directors were: John T. Clark, W.G. Clark, and C.C. Hayward. W.G. Clark was elected President and C.C. Hayward, Secretary. This stage of The Lounsbury Company Limited continued until 1950. During this time the company continued to flourish, opening new agencies and branches covering the north-east side of New Brunswick and taking on the new lines of merchandise to keep abreast of the times. In 1911 the Lounsbury Company sold its first automobile, a 3 Speed Model B. Russell Roadster, to Earnest Hutchison, a retired businessman of Douglastown, who printed the first N.B. Road Map and Guide Book. The second sale was a Brockville Atlas, made by Canada Carriage Co., this was sold to C.C. Hayward.

In 1915 a milestone in the company's history was recorded. Mr. Hayward visited the Canadian National Exhibition in Toronto where the famous 490 Chevrolet chassis was on display. He signed a contract as Chevrolet dealer for the company's whole territory - with what was then called Chevrolet Motor Car Company, later to become General Motors of Canada Limited. Lounsbury's association with General Motors has continued, and the names Lounsburys and Chevrolet have become synonymous in eastern N.B. An interesting note from the Annual Meeting of February 1921 refers to the fact that a luxury tax was placed on cars in 1920.

In 1916 C.C. Hayward was appointed General Manager. This was the same year that furniture was added to the line of merchandise being sold. The Executive Office of the company was moved from Newcastle to Moncton in 1923. During this period employee benefits were increased with a Group Insurance Plan being introduced in 1930 and a Pension Plan in 1942. At a Directors' Meeting in August 1947 a By-law was enacted changing the name of the company to LOUNSBURY COMPANY LIMITED as it is known today. In 1948 Hon. W.G. Clark died and was succeeded as President by his son, Alden.

1950 brought about another significant change in the history of the company when 35 employees purchased the late Hon. W.G. Clark's financial interests, giving 99% of the voting shares of the company to the staff. Directors and Officers elected at this meeting were; C.C. Hayward, President: S.V. Sisson, Vice-President; David A. Smith, General Manager and Treasurer; F.E. Locke, Secretary; and W.R. McKinnon as director. Mr. Hayward died in 1955 and David A. Smith was elected President and General Manager.

In 1957 the Head Office of the company, which had been located in Newcastle, was moved to Moncton, N.B. In 1960 four of the company's Industrial branches, located at Moncton, Campbellton, Fredericton, New Brunswick and Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, which dealt exclusively with the retail sale and service of heavy construction and farm machinery, were sold to the employees of those branches and the Lounsbury Industrial limited company was formed. An industrial branch was opened in Saint John, N.B. in 1963. This left Lounsbury Company Limited comprised, as it is today, entirely of Store and Motor branches, with two special Truck branches located at Fredericton and Moncton.

From one small store in Newcastle, Lounsbury Company is now located in 5 towns and cities in New Brunswick, namely; Bathurst, Caraquet, Miramichi, Sussex, and Moncton.

The Lounsbury Company Limited employs over 400 employees in its Home Furnishing Stores, Automotive and Truck divisions. All of its officers, directors and managers are men and women who have moved up through the ranks of the company to their present positions.

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