A Schumm Christmas Surprise

Merry Christmas to me!

Last week I received a Christmas gift that was quite a surprise. Bob, a friend of ours and someone who Joe worked with for many years, likes and collects antique and vintage items as well as local advertising memorabilia. He has given me some local items of interest in the past.

Blue Ribbon Baking Powder, for Wolf & Schumm, Schumm, O.

Bob said that he had had this old tin for some time and that it had been stored away. He took it out of storage and as he was looking it over he noticed the names on the back—Wolf & Schumm. He learned only a couple years ago that my mother was a Schumm and that I have a Schumm connection. He remembered that.

And Bob gave me is this amazing old tin–a Blue Ribbon “Surest Purest” Baking Powder tin as a Christmas present! The label is darkened with age but still very readable.

Blue Ribbon Baking Powder, for Wolf & Schumm, Schumm, O.

The reverse side of the tin tells that it was “manufactured for Wolf & Schumm, Schumm, Ohio.”

Blue Ribbon Baking Powder, for Wolf & Schumm, Schumm, O.

That information is printed right on the label! I wonder if it was common to have the store name on the product label?

The Wolf & Schumm General Store served the little village of Schumm in the early 1900s and was run by Logan Wolfe and Gustav Schumm. [1] [2] Gustavus “Gustav” Jacob Schumm was born 18 December 1881 to Henry and Rosina (Schinnerer) Schumm. He married Dorathea Elizabeth Bienz on 27 December 1908 and they had 5 children: Arthur William, Ora Katherine, Karl George, Ida Johanna, and Paul. Gustav’s son Karl George is still living and remembers his father’s general store, the brick building that once stood along the railroad tracks in Schumm.

By 1920 Logan Wolfe and his family had moved to Sprague Street in Willshire, where he managed a garage. His father-in-law John Acheson, an 86 year-old widower, lived with them. [3]

This tin would have been from that time period, likely sometime between 1908 and 1920.

The can is 4¾ inches tall and 3 inches in diameter and probably held a pound of baking soda.

I had never seen anything like this, bearing the name of a small store. There are a few Blue Ribbon Baking Powder tins on Ebay but they have a different label, a red label with a blue ribbon. They also look more recent.

Blue Ribbon Baking Powder, for Wolf & Schumm, Schumm, O.

There are directions on the back label of the tin: “Use one heaping or two rounded teaspoonsful only of this baking powder to one quart of sifted flour.”

“This baking powder is composed of the following ingredients and none other: bicarbonate of soda, phosphate, alum, starch. Manufactured by Wabash Baking Powder Co., Wabash, Ind. Guaranteed under serial number 5444.”

Very interesting that the baking powder company was not all that far from Schumm.

Actually, this is the second Wolf & Schumm item Bob has given me. A couple years ago he gave me a small wooden box with Wolf and Schumm, Schumm, Ohio, stamped on it. It was likely a mailing box.

Box to Wolf & Schumm, Schumm, Ohio.

What a wonderful Christmas surprise that I will always treasure.

Thank you, Bob and Sharon!


[1] 1910 U.S. Census, Willshire, Van Wert, Ohio, ED 114, p.2B, dwelling 39, family 39, Gustav Schumm; digital image by subscription, Ancestry.com; FHL microfilm 1375251, NARA microfilm T624, roll 1238.

[2] 1910 U.S. Census, Willshire, Van Wert, Ohio, ED 114, p.2B, dwelling 43, family 43, JF Wolf; digital image by subscription, Ancestry.com; FHL microfilm 1375251, NARA microfilm T624, roll 1238.

[3] 1920 U.S. Census, Willshire, Van Wert, Ohio, ED 146, p.10A, dwelling 95, family 96, John Logan Wolfe; digital image by subscription, Ancestry.com; NARA microfilm T625, roll 1446.


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    • Judy Edmonds on December 29, 2017 at 7:27 am
    • Reply

    Such a wonderful surprise. My father also owned a sundries store and we have received some items from that store.

    1. Have you seen this before, where they printed the store name on the label? Unusual for today, but maybe it was a common practice back then. I am always grateful when items like these somehow survived. I wonder if someone didn’t use this old tin later for storing oil. It is stained and so smooth, almost like something had preserved it. Thanks for writing.

  1. Lucky you to have these treasures to pass down in your family! Happy new year and happy ancestor hunting.

    1. Happy New Year to you and yours!

    • Kristy Gilbert Kramer on January 1, 2018 at 12:33 pm
    • Reply

    Greetings! Does anyone have information on a little town called Dixon,Ohio. It is on the Ind/Ohio stateline. Not near Columbus,Oh. At one time it may have been called Bobtown. It had a grain elevator, 2 grocery stores, , even a post office & Methodist church. Thank you! Kristy

    1. I have been through the little town but know nothing about its history. Perhaps someone else does and can help you.

    • John Vining on January 2, 2018 at 4:52 pm
    • Reply

    I have lived around 6 miles south of Dixon for about 32 years. I don’t know much about its history. The old “Cateco Grain” (wooden) elevator finally burned during a thunderstorm last year (2017). There was an old “business”-like structure near the railroad tracks that was torn down around the turn of the century (circa 1995-2005). There is one old “storefront”- like building left in the southeast quadrant of the town, and a more modern grain elevator in the southwest quadrant that is now privately owned. I believe the town suffered some damage from either the 1918 or 1920 tornadoes. The old Pennsylvania Railroad mainline runs through there (now the Chicago, Fort Wayne, & Eastern [CF&E]). The railroad was updated a couple of years ago to handle 40 mph traffic so oil could be transported east on it (before the Keystone Pipeline was approved). Dixon still has a lot of oil trains pass through it. Dixon is not incorporated. This is really all I know about the town.

    1. Thanks for this good information, John!

    • Debbie Hillger on January 5, 2019 at 10:22 pm
    • Reply

    Thank you for sharing the information about the baking powder container. Gus and Dora (Bienz) Schumm were my great-grandparents. (My grandfather was their oldest child, Art.) I share a birthday with Great-Uncle Karl. Gus and Dora moved from Schumm to her parents’ farm south of US 224 and a little east of St. Thomas Lutheran Church. Art and Karl were later in the egg and chick hatchery business in Convoy.

    Baking powder was supposedly “invented” in Fort Wayne in 1865. The Fort Wayne History Center has some information on their website: http://www.fwhistorycenter.com/vex18/22DB42BC-F7FC-4447-AA15-708908475206.htm

    1. Thank you for that interesting family information. I always enjoy hearing these stories. Thanks for writing!

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