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Title Newsletter: The Neumann News. Vol. 2, No. 5, December 1947.
Object Name Newsletter
Catalog Number 2014.070.0002
MULTIMEDIA LINKS CLICK HERE to view the PDF; note - please be patient while file opens.
Collection R. Neumann & Co. - Bernheim Collection
Credit Gift of the Bernheim Family.
Scope & Content Newsletter: The Neumann News. Volume 2, No. 5, December 1947.

Single folio printed paper, 8-1/2" x 11" high, 4 pp. PDF on file. See notes for full text.

From the Neumann files courtesy of the Bernheim family.

"Published once each month by and for the employees of R. Neumann & Company, Hoboken, New Jersey." (See page 2).

Related Records Show Related Records...
Notes Archives 2014.070.0002

A Merry Christmas And A Happy New Year

The holiday season is here again — Christmas and New Year’s Day. It is a time for buying presents, Christmas trees, holly, mistletoe and decorations; it is a time when there is a spirit of joy and happiness in the air and love for your fellow men. Santa Claus is the most important person these days — you find him everywhere, not only on street corners ringing a bell or in department stores, but in every home. Store windows are decorated in many ways, main streets have various Christmas decorations, and lighted Christmas trees appear in windows. Christmas carols fill the air and children are on their good behaviour. Yes, the holiday season is here again —

R. Neumann & Co. has dressed up for the holidays with large Christmas trees in the gatehouse and the 5th floor main office reception room, and small trees in the shipping department, factory office, and maybe some other places. Various types of decorations can be found here and there, and Andy Quirk has dusted off his white whiskers. Tony Musico hums jingle bells while making Lis rounds and Al Barci can’t decide what to get his wife for Christmas. Leslie Smith tells the story about the Scotchman (apologies to Dave McEwan and Dave Adams) who went outdoors on Xmas Eve and shot off his shotgun, then came back in the house and told his children Santa Claus had committed suicide. Well, it’s a good thing Christmas only comes once a year.

The holiday season also brings the end of the year — 1947 is just about over. New Year’s Eve is a time for celebration — ringing out the old and bringing in the new. But what about the year 1947 has it been a good one? In some ways it has and in some ways it hasn’t. Certainly the world hasn’t improved any during the year with all the turmoil in Europe and Asia. Also, it hasn’t been a good year for R. Neumann & Co.from a business standpoint. The types of leather we make just haven’t been selling any too well. The fancy leather trade has been rather slow in the pur-


chase of embossed leathers. We have been concentrating on samples lately and it is hoped that several volume items will develop from them for next year. The incentives have been low and it has been necessary to do a great deal of transferring from one department to another. But up to now everyone has been kept working and in spite of our slow year, we have all faired better in many ways in R. Neumann & Co., than have those in many other concerns in the Tanning industry. We all hope that the year 1948 will be a better year for R. Neumann & Co. Let’s all give the company more effort during the coming year in making quality leather.


The annual party for Neumann foremen and salesmen will be held this year on the night of Dec. 29th in New York City. This event is generally held the latter part of each year during the holiday season and always provides an evening of interest and enjoyment. This year will be no exception so all foremen and salesmen should remember the date — Dec. 29th.


Many Neumann employees took advantage of the opportunity to buy Neumann-leather women’s handbags during the past two weeks. There was a great e. selection to choose from this year with about ten different models in colors of black and brown. No one model seemed to outsell the others and each had admirers. The value was good and the price was attractive—they made excellent Christmas presents. Orders were taken and the bags given out in the factory office during the noon hours. The bags were made of Neumann seal and cowhide leather and looked very nice.



Neumann employees received a pleasant surprise on the afternoon of Dec. 3rd by each getting a booklet, “The Romance of Leather,” and a Neumann-leather bookmark. The bookmark was placed inside the booklet and made a very nice souvenir to keep. The booklet gives a history of leather and a description of tanning which is very handy to have, and the red bookmark was made out of the same kind of leather (Neumann’s Levant-grained Pigskin) made especially by us to bind a book published in Norway commemorating the 75th birthday of King Haakon VII. This souvenir was also given out at the annual Hoboken Chamber of Commerce meeting held the same evening. Many favorable comments have been received regarding the novelty of our souvenir but its main purpose is to advertise Neuman leathers.


Vice-president Phil Bernheim held a sales meeting on Dec. 17th attended by all the Neumann salesmen. The main purpose of the meeting was to work out a plan for sales for the coming year. Many sample types of leather were made in the factory during the past several months and the more promising ones were picked out for greater concentration next year. It is hoped that a volume business can be developed from them. The salesmen are going to do their very best to get our volume of sales up next year. We in the factory can do our part by making sure that they have quality leather to sell. 1947 was just not a year for our types of leathers and we hope 1948 will be different. The sales department has a campaign worked out and they are really going to work on it. Let’s make 1948 a good year for R. Neumann & Co.


Page Two
December, 1947


Published once each month by and for the employees of
R. NEUMANN COMPANY Hoboken., New Jersey

All personal news contained herein is written and contributed by R. Neumann & Co. employees, and no responsibility is. assumed for its validity.


Staff Reporters Marie Tulko George Ferarra
Photographer Al Barci


There seems to be some misunderstanding among some of the employees in the plant regarding the handling of compensation cases, so a few words about it here may clear up any points that might have been unfamiliar to you. When you are injured on the job, your medical bills are sent in to the insurance company for payment. If your injury is such that you cannot work for an extended period of time, you are elegible to draw compensation insurance within a certain limit. Regulations and the method of handling are set up by state law and that is the way it must be done. Your company reports each case to the Insurance company who makes all payments in accordance with these regulations. Compensation checks are delivered to the employee just as soon as they arrive. Records are kept in the factory office to insure that no mistake will be made, but often-times there are delays. The reason for these delays is not known but each employee should rest assured that die will get what’s due just as soon asdtvis received in the factory office. This is one of the functions of our personnel division in the factory office. They do their best to see that everyone is taken care of properly. Let’s work with them — it will be a lot easier for everyone.


Every visitor that comes to R. Neumann & Co. for any reason, whether he be a salesman, a customer, someone desiring information or seeking employment, is giving the opportunity to see someone in the company connected with the reason for the visit. It may be that sometimes the proper person is not in or is temporarily busy, but arrangements are always made for a return appointment if desired. Recently there has been an increase in the number of people seeking employment at R. Neumann & Co. and none of them should be turned away without giving each one the chance to talk to someone in the Factory office. It is the policy of R. Neumann & Co. to show courtesy and consideration to all visitors, and, in the case of those seeking employment, a person might come along that could be hired. Naturally this depends on circumstances at the time, but at least make sure they get to the Factory office.



The will to succeed and get ahead in the world played an important part in the life story of Mr. E. C. Metzger, Secretary of R. Neumann & Co. The fact

[photo of Metzger]
[caption]Mr. E. C. Metzger Secretary of R. Neumann & Co.

that he did get ahead after starting at the very bottom shows what can be done in our country. It wasn’t easy and wasn’t done in a hurry, but let him tell it in his own way.

“I was just a young boy when I arrived in this country from Germany and started to work for R. Neumann & Co. in 1891. At that time the company had a sales and business office on Duane St. in New York City besides the factory in Hoboken. Mr. Gustave Bernheim, the nephew of R. Neumann, ran the business end of the firm and a Mr. Heitemeyer ran the factory. They were partners at the time but Mr. Heitemeyer retired some time later and sold his interest in the business to the Bernheims. Yes, I’ve been here during three generations of the family, first Mr. Gustave Bernheim, then Mr. George B., and now Richard and Philip.

“But going back, I started working in the office as an office boy running errands and cleaning the desks every morning. However, I was interested in leather and used to stay late learning everything I could about it. The pay was not much to start with as we would look at it today but I always believed in doing more than I was paid for and in doing things myself—getting it done. It was not long before I was advanced to stock clerk. In those days all the finished leather came over to the New York office and we sold and shipped from there. Therefore, I had knowledge of all leather on hand, sorted it, and wrote out all the orders. Skivers was our big item then with calf a close second. About 1909 the New York office moved from Duane to Worth Street.

“Along with my stock work, I later did some selling to customers that came into the office. I remember one of my first sales. A man came in to buy 2 dozen skins and when he had left, I had sold him about 40 dozen. That made me feel very good. A real salesman must know leather — know the weights, sorting, quality, etc. Although I continually did more selling, I always had the responsibility of the finished stock in the New York office. In 1919, the New York office was closed down and moved


to the factory in Hoboken. Thereafter I concentrated on selling, making several trips to Europe in addition to my usual traveling around the eastern part of this country. Lately I have been doing most of my selling by mail and telephone — let the younger salesmen do the traveling now. It was about 1930 that I was elected Secretary and a director of R. Neumann & Co. and it was a very proud event in my life.

“I’ve seen some changes take place during my time here. We have progressed and kept up with the times. Our factory is more mechanized now and there is less handwork, working conditions have improved right along. We make more of a variety of leathers now than we used to do, and we now sell leather for shoes. Formerly our leathers were used only for small leather goods. This year has been a slow one for R. Neumann & Co. but we have had other slow years in the past and carried through alright. I have confidence in the company and its employees. Quality and good workmanship are the most important things that keep our company going. We have built up a reputation for manufacturing quality leather and we must continue to maintain it.”

Thank you, Mr. Metzger, for this brief interview, which gives us some good advice as well as the interesting story of your 56 years with R. Neumann & Co. Your expert knowledge of leather is respected by everyone and we all hope that you will spend many more years, with us here.



(Anyone is welcome to write a letter to the Editor on any subject, but publication will be at the Editor's discretion.)

Dec. 10, 1947

Editor, Neumann News:

The November issue of Neumann News contained a request from one of the departments that the Neumann salesmen get more orders so that the factory will get busy and get the incentive bonus up. On behalf of the Neumann selling organization may I say we would lika nothing better than this, and we are do-ing our best. There are certain conditions now existing that make it difficult to sell our leathers but there is one thing you in the factory can do to help us—give us good quality and good workmanship on every order, especially sample orders. We have had several orders, returned lately because they were not up to the usual Neumann quality standard, and this hurts our business and our reputation. Every department should do its best work otherwise the final finished leather will not be right.

I am sure that we can get more business if you will help us by concentrating on the quality of each order. I speak for all Neumann Salesmen when I say that our success in selling Naumann leathers comes from our great pride in you and your workmanship.

Max Kornreich


Page Three


Now that winter has arrived, there are extra precautions that must be taken in the matter of safety to prevent accidental injury. Winter brings added risks, expecially outside the factory. Cold weather brings freezing temperatures and any water will become ice that some one can slip on. Snow also can become slippery and cause a person to fall. There will probably be times when the weather is a mixture of snow, rain and sleet. Extreme caution should be used then, if out in it, because it is hard to see. Driving conditions are particularly dangerous. The ground when frozen is hard and a fall will cause as much injury as a fall on concrete. A cold hard wind can cause trouble when walking with or against it. It can slow you down until it is an effort to move forward, or, if the wind is behind you, blow you off your feet or into something.

Winter also brings more darkness with shorter days. All the winter perils are risky enough in the daytime, but darkness makes them doubly risky. Little patches of ice on the sidewalk can’t readily be seen and suddenly you find yourself flat on your back. This is the time when it would pay to be surefooted and extra careful. Many broken arms or legs, injured spines, and cracked heads have ben caused by slipping on ice or snow, especially in the darkness.

Indoors during the winter, there is a tendency to have your home or your workplace overheated. Overheating is bad because it causes, among other things, colds. However, it should be warm and comfortable, and less heat is required when working. Overheating causes stuffiness and there should always be plenty of ventilation in any occupied room or area. Avoid drafts and dry hot air—there should be a little dampness in the heat.

Here are the extra precautions that should be taken in the winter time to help avoid personal injury or illness:


Be warmly dressed, including hands and feet.

Make sure your clothes are dry— change wet ones right away.

If there is snow or ice, wear rubbers or galoshes.

Avoid walking on ice or in snow if possible.

If you can’t avoid it, take short steps and stop or turn very slowly.

Watch out crossing streets—cars can’t stop so easily.

If driving, chains won’t help when streets are icy.


The room or area should be warm but not overheated.

Not as much heat is required when doing physical work.

The room or area should be properly ventilated.

Avoid drafts

Dry heat should be dampened.

When going outdoors or in a cold place, even for a minute, dress for it.

Follow these precautions this winter and help cut down accidents and ill-


nesses which can cause a loss in workingtime no matter where they happen. Stay on your feet—SAFETY PAYS.

The first-aid report for the month of November shows a big improvement over the previous several months. We are now down to about our general average but there is still room for more improvement. The only time when an improvement can’t be made is when there are no accidents. That is something to shoot for. Here is the report for November :

Number of first-aid treatments . 18

Sent to doctor .................. 2

Sent to hospital .............. 0

Several cases lately requiring doctor treatment could have been avoided if the guilty parties had reported to first-aid for local treatment immediately instead of waiting for several days. This gives infection a chance to set in and makes it very serious. So don’t delay. Report any injury to your foremen right away, no matter how small it might be.



The writing ability of your Neumann News editor, Tink Shaver, has finally reached the outside world. Although he has done some writing for local trade publications, his first foreign literary attempt will appear in the December issue of “Leder-Gazette,” a leather trade magazine published in Switzerland. It has a world-wide circulation and is written in German. Considerable assistance was given by Fritz Goldmann in the arrangements for and translation of the article. The subject matter for this and future articles to be written for the “Leader-Gazette” concerns the Economics of Leather Manufacturing broken down into such topics as Production Control, Personnel Relations, Job evaluation, etc. These articles will help advertise the Neumann name in many parts of the world and, it is hoped, help sell more Neumann leather to old customers and develop sales to new customers.

[small group photo]
[caption] Neumann Shipping Department gathered to see their Christmas tree lights go on the first time.



“Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells,
Jingle all the way,
Oh what fun it is to work,
In NEUMANN’S Plant to-day.”

Christmas comes but once a year, we wait and plan for it a long time, but it’s gone before we know it. Ah yes there is some last minute Christmas shopping to be done: A pipe for Uncle Hugo, an apron for Aunt Kate, Tommy wants a set of trains so Pop can play and rest his brains, a housecoat for Joan, for Little Joe a phone, Mom wants a toaster, Billy a coaster, Grampa a sweater though he says Scotch would be better, Grandma some slippers anh also egg whippers, but all Pop gets are the bills and a tie or two that really “Kills.” So hustle and bustle to dress the tree, and Old St. Nick down the chimney , . . No, not yet NIKKI, can’t you read the seals on the packages, “DO NOT OPEN UNTIL X-MAS." Here is hoping all your wishes are fullfilled to your hearts desire.

Congratulations to Little Miss Tillie, why haven’t you heard, well here is the story: November 29th, Bob (he is the lucky fellow) popped the question, Tillie being the shy type said why of course Bob. Result, a diamond ring (she won’t tell when the other ring is due), so to both of you Congratulations . . . Lou Miller is saying thanks to Mother Fitzgerald for having such a lovely daughter. Oh yes, December 3rd . . . Abe Lewis first saw the light of day on December 12th, and not forgetting Irene Cusick on the 29th, two more days and you would have been a Happy New Year Gal: ... So to all Many, many more . . . November 29th has been a very happy day for Ida and Abe, that was back in 1919, and now they are celebrating their 28th year of wedded bliss, with their charming daughter Doris to add to their happiness . . . not forgetting the Youngs with two on, and twenty-three more to say “We are married 25 years on December 29th.

It seems like Christmas in the office, with the Beautiful Christmas tree in the reception room, and not forgetting the one in the gate house . . . The Sixth floor had some excitement on Friday, December 12th, when through an open window a very tired pigeon flew in and perched itself on the water hose. No matter what was done to try and shoo it off, the poor old tired bird just sat. Finally it was decided to help it on it’s way and with a gentle push the bird took off, from where and why no one seems to know. Maybe that is where the expression has originated — By way of carrier pigeon . . . Does any one have an extra torch? Max Kornreich seen with a cigar after having Lunch with a customer, and to see Max struggling along with a match does not seem possible.

Neumann News is getting quite popular with the outsider’s as well as with its employees, traveling to the four corners of the world—To Guam, Trieste, Switzerland—as well as to many of the 48 states in our good country . . . Marge Eleson would like to travel over the country, so a copy of Neumann News was sent to Switzerland, yes our Marge was on the front cover of the paper.


Page Four
December, 1947


Dept. 1 and 2 . . . Congratulations to Vic Guarnieri who became the proud father of a baby girl on Nov. 30th.

Dept 3 . . . Mike Compitello is back in this department and is providing valuable help again . . . Tony DiMonte became a grandfather again last month. His daughter, Lucy, presented him with a new grandson . . . Congratulations twice to A. Capporrino who became a nephew of Uncle Sam on Dec. 10th and celebrated his 28th wedding anniversary on Dec. 11th.

Dept. 4 and 5 . . . Nick Babich is out on account of illness and we wish him a speedy recovery . . . Dave McEwan attended an Educational Conference in Newark . . . Al Bolter and Claus Bischoff are pulling the Maintenance Dept, out of the hole temporarily with their services . . . Congratulations to Henrey Heer on his birthday this month . . . There were birthdays in the Halko and DeSomma families this month . . . Louis Moser is getting back in shape after his vacation.

Dept. 6 . . . There was a birthday in the Bufis family this month . . . M. Skretkowich’s daughter Helen, a former Neumann employee, is learning airport traffic control down in Oklahoma City.

Dept. 8 ... No news in this department but they all wish a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to everybody.

Dept. 9 and 19 . . . Lot’s of birthdays here this month so congratulations to you all: Margaret Weber, D. Vanora, Mauro Magarelli, to G. Piomelli’s son, and to Catherine Vodopia’s daughter and son-in-law ... We are glad to hear that G. Pascale’s boy is getting well now . . . The Trimming Dept, is having their annual Christmas party during the noon hour on the day before Christmas, and have some pretty decorations hung up in their department.

Dept. 12 . . . Andy Eatman is back to work after several days absence due to illness . . . Congratulations to Johnie Dwonch on his wedding anniversary this month. His son Larry, has a birthday this month too.

Dept. 13 and 16 ... A Happy Holiday Greeting to all out friends in all departments from 1 to 25—A Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year.

Dept. 14 . . . Congratulations to Carl (Dorsey) Isidor on his birthday this month . . . Fritz Wolff would like to exchange a brown seal pocketbook for a black one of the same kind. Anyone have a black one that wants a brown one?

Dept. 15 . . . This department would like to extend Holiday Greetings to Louie Schneider. Louie has been a Neumann man for over 50 years and is soon to be operated on again. We wish him the best of luck (everyone in Neumann’s does too, Louie).

Dept. 18 . . . Bill Symes' daughter was recently married . . . Al Rapp has moved into his house on Columbia Ave. in Jersey City.


Dept. 21 ... A bushel of congratulations are in order here this month. Celebrating their birthdays are: Herman Hummel, Fritz Diehl, Ive Susberic, George Grunewald and Tony Musico. Celebrating their wedding anniversaries are Gordon Johnson and—who else is it? let’s see—guess that’s all, oh yes, almost forgot—Helmuth Young.

Dept. 22 and 23 . . Happy birthday to Al Fusco. Al is trying out for a part in a Broadway play and we all wish him luck . . . Patsy Procure is sprouting a cabbage patch on his upper lip and it looks good—when you are far behind him . . . Dick Keller didn’t do so well during this hunting season . . . Favorite songs: Hugo Wafzig — She’s Too Fat Polka, John Stefano — Ain’t Gonna Rain No More! . . . Something nice to see: Cathy and Nini Minissale walking hand-in-hand like young lovers . . . Congratulations to Mike Malatesta on his 28th wedding anniversary this month.

Misc . . . Congratulations to Irene Cusick on her birthday this month . . . The same to Gloria Miller on her birth day . . . Abe Lewis says he doesn’t have them anymore but congratulations anyhow on your birthday . . . Also, congratulations are in order for Miss Mathilda Veith in the Factory office who recently announced her engagement.


[small photo: woman in dress holding papers in front of face]
[caption[ Looks like one of the office girls needs a new Pair of glasses. Recognize her?



News by the Maple Splinters

Well here we are again, the gals are sure putting the pins down. The only draw back now is that “White Metal” has two new players, and theyare really good, so they have us girls a little worried. Here is the News

Jo . 102.271351833
Rosemary. 97.8145616
Barbara 95.11156931
Marie . . 89.35138936
Pauline .. 88.132629
Lillian . 83.2122635
Grace, 76.22127229
Beatrice 71.99621
Dorothy. 63.5813

The girls enjoyed their Christmas party which took place at the Hudson Alleys.



The Neumann Buffalos bowling team felt pretty low when White Metal, a team in the league that had only won three games all year, took two out of three games. But they didn’t feel so bad a week later when the same lowly White Metal bowlers took all three games from Ohio Chemical. So now the boys are starting to bowl some good games again after a couple of weeks of “sour pitching.” It seems like everything was against them in both leagues good pocket hits left splits standing, the pins didn’t fall right, and there were too many pins standing at the end of each frame. Anyhow, they have been having a bad time lately and they need encouragement to get back into the winning habit again. Come on, team, do your stuff!

In the Hoboken Industrial League, the Neumann Buffaloes have dropped from first place to a tie for fourth place in the past four weeks. However, the first six teams are only two games apart so one good week could put them back up there again. Here are the results of the last four weeks matches:

Nov. 24th
Neumann Buffalos .... .785704799
Keuffel & Esser No. 2. ..795698866
Dec. 1st
Neumann Buffalos860771725
Ohio Chemical. .736896759
Dec. 8th
Neumann Buffalos .... . 783801720
White Metal. 809708792
Dec. 15 th
Neumann Buffalos .... 809751803
General Electric .. 818825836

In the Mile Square League, the Neumann team, has dropped to fifth place again after being on top for severaL weeks. They say this is only a temporary set-back and they will be right back on top very soon. Here are the team scores for the last four matches:

Nov. 26th
R. Neumann & Co. ,799801775
Autographic Register...842842804
Dec. 3rd
R. Neumann & Co..... .704879770
Shoup-Owens. ,849706802
Dec. 10th
R. Neumann & Co. .....779810793
Wonder Bread. .764921891
Dec. 17th
R. Neumann & Co. 730950781
Franklin Bakers . 935841764

That high game in the last match above is the highest of the year so far. It was accomplished by Eddie Topoleski bowling 161, Herald Della Bella having a 168, Tony Adamo and George Ferrara each rolling 191, and Captain Johnnie DeSomma ending with a nice 234.



Date 1947
Year Range from 1947
Year Range to 1947
Search Terms R. Neumann & Company
Neumann Leathers
Neumann Leather Company
300 Observer Highway
Caption page [1]
Imagefile 318\20140700002.TIF
Classification Business & Commerce
Social & Personal Activity