In the Lake County Directory of 1909, the name Peter Angelo was listed at the old address of 114 W. Commercial Ave. in Lowell, the location of the present Roberts Drug Store. Angelo was a contractor for ditchdigging, and lived in a frame building replaced by the present brick structure.
In 1927 three Lowell churches received gifts of money from Angelo's will, presented by executor C.U. Ragon. The Methodist Church, The Church of Christ, and St. Edward Church each received a sum to be used for 'a good purpose.'
In May, 1929, the new clock and bell in the tower of the First Methodist Episcopal Church was dedicated, funded partially by the gift from Peter Angelo and with additional funds raised by the Ladies Aid Society of the church. The other two churches chose to use their gift for expansion purposes. In 1968, the name was changed from First Methodist Episcopal Church to the First United Methodist Church.
The business room there was occupied by the Hunt Drug Store, with Frank Hunt as proprietor. He moved his business from about a block east, mentioned in the 'Pioneer History' article of January, 1985. In the late 1920's Keith Hunter came from Kentland to open Hunter's Drug Store after the retirement of Hunt.
The Old Timer remembers going there to meet high school friends and to enjoy the soda fountain treats. Hunter was a well-known Lowell business man until the 1940's.
On Mar. 31, 1947, the present owner, pharmacist Charles Roberts, came to Lowell after working in Dyer for a time. He remodeled the original building, as well as the building to the west, and put in a rear entrance.
Roberts, the son of Victor K. Roberts, a prominent south county attorney for many years, graduated from Lowell High School in 1936, attended Northwestern University from 1941 to 1943, and served in the U.S. Navy from 1943 to 1946.
He and his wife, Grace, have four children: Diane, Jan, Gail, and Douglas. Douglas is now associated with his father as pharmacist. Grace is the daughter of Merritt and Belle Love.
George Washington Heilig, (1855-1938), the son of William Heilig, came to Lowell from Remington in 1897, and opened a bakery and confectionery on the present site of B & G Carpet Store (317 E. Copmmercial).
On his birthday, Oct. 4, 1898, the building burned to the ground during the big fire that flattened most of the business buildings on the north side of Commercial Ave. After moving to temporary quarters for a time, he moved his shop to the old frame building that was on the site of the present Lowell License Bureau. [Note from 2001: This building is now the "Vault," antiques.]
When the Lowell National Bank building was erected there in 1903, he was forced to move again, but this time was able to build a structure of his own, just west of the drug store.
The following is a quote from an August, 1908, 'Lowell Tribune:' "George W. Heilig is proprietor of a first-class bakery here, has a fine, fresh stock of bread fresh from the oven. Choice pies and cakes. Lunch of all kinds served promptly. He tries to please his customers in every way in eatables, luxuries, cigars, etc. The ice cream parlor is very attractive, and he supplies ice cream for family use. He is a citizen who deals upon honor and he is well-deserving of the progressive patronage which he receives."
George married Elizabeth Regal in 1876, and she died in 1923. Their four children were: Myrtle, who died at four years of age; Fernando; Cecil, whose nickname was Ray; and Claire. Heilig was a Lowell business man until he retired in 1935, and he died in 1938 at age 82.
Glenn Bolt, one of Lowell's progressive merchants, moved from Crown Point in 1932 to open a meat market in the building now occupied by The Annex. In 1935, he purchased the Heilig building, and added groceries in 1936.
The following advertisement appeared in a 1940 'Lowell Tribune': "Bolts I.G.A. Modern Market: Wheaties - 10c box, smoked ham only 16c pound, bologna at 29c, homemade pork sausage at 3 pounds for 29c, coffee at 3 pounds for 39c, bacon 15c pound, and sirloin steak at the low price of 29c per pounds."
As his volume of business swelled beyond the capacity of his building, Bolt was soon eager to expand. The building on Commercial Ave. was sold, and his new Super Mart was constructed on the Washington Street site now occupied by Costas Foods. The grand opening of the new store was in December 1950 and featured the addition of the new Super Bakery operated by Joe Ottengheime.
The following was written by our local paper: "Faith in Lowell's future, plus his own sound judgement, have been Mr. Bolt's stepping stones to success."
Donald Fuller was manager of the meat department at Bolt's for many years. Carl Sullivan and Bob Bolt were store managers there, and stayed with the store when it was sold to Scot Lad of Logansport and changed its name to Garden City Foods. In 1955, the store was expanded to 17,000 square feet, and 11,000 people attended the big grand opening celebration. The bakery was managed then by Dick Winslow.
The little meat market that became a supermarket is now Costas Foods.
Glenn Bolt retired in 1959, moving to Sarasota, Fla., for the warmer climate. His daughters are Marcia (Arne) Carlson, who has four children, and Marilyn (Robert) English, who has one child.
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