The collection is primarily composed of large bound volumes dating from 1873 to 1959. It also contains some papers removed from their binding and stored in folders and boxes. It contains daybooks, journals, monthly reports, business ledgers, account books, registers, balance sheets, invoices, inventories, catalogs, city sales records, and lists of shipments received.
Stored off-site at the Library Service Center. Please request this material via firstname.lastname@example.org or call 713-348-2586.
Restrictions on Use
Permission to publish material from the F.W. Heitmann Business Ledgers must be obtained from the Woodson Research Center, Fondren Library.
Frederick William Heitmann was born in Potsdam, Germany, in 1828, but lived most of his life in Houston, Texas, as did his wife Mary Mathilde (Erhard). In 1865, Mr. Heitmann opened a heavy metal and hardware store in Houston, Texas, at 113 Main Street, where it stayed for 81 years. Mr. Heitmann died in 1889. In the early 1870s, Mr. H.S. Fox, then president of the Houston National Bank, became a partner in Houston’s oldest hardware store and its name changed to Fox and Heitmann. In 1903 the firm was incorporated under the name F.W. Heitmann and Company.. At that time the founder’s son, Frederick A. Heitmann became president of the company. Originally hardware establishment, the firm soon became a major post-Civil War importer of all lines of heavy hardware, tools, bar iron, tin plates, etc. from England and Germany. As the company grew it added major lines of domestically manufactured heavy machinery and became a major provider of products for rice growing and cotton ginning in the Southwest. It also furnished heavy equipment to the railroads and to the city of Houston.
The F. W. Heitmann Company business ledgers contains business materials from the F. W. Heitmann Company. It includes assorted business information and records, including daybooks, journals, monthly reports, business ledgers, account books, registers, balance sheets, invoices, inventories, catalogs, city sales records, and lists of shipments received. Most of the collection is still in its original bindings, in large ledgers. Much of the information is hand-written.