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Q: History of Reliance Bronze Corporation (1925-1935) ( Answered 4 out of 5 stars,   0 Comments )
Subject: History of Reliance Bronze Corporation (1925-1935)
Category: Miscellaneous
Asked by: dolgow-ga
List Price: $100.00
Posted: 07 Apr 2004 09:22 PDT
Expires: 07 May 2004 09:22 PDT
Question ID: 326629
Background information obtained and my questions are after the data I
have so far collected.

A.New York State records indicate Reliance Bronze Corporation was
incorporated on January 30, 1929, location Kings county.  Reliance
Bronze Corporation
changed its name to Reliance Bronze & Steel Corporation on April 15,
1929.  Reliance Bronze & Steel Corporation was reorganized on June 19,
1936 under the name Reliance Bronze & Steel Company, Inc.  Reliance
Bronze & Steel Company, Inc. was dissolved by proclamation on December
15, 1950.
B.Librarian provided this information: Many directories and financial
sources at Business Library have been consulted. There are two sources
contain the information related to Reliance Bronze and Steel.

C. My grandfather Samuel Dolgow was a partner (or cnnected in some
capacity) in Reliance Bronze and Steel,  the company that made the
Mercury statuettes that adorned traffic lights on Fifth Avenue, NYC up
until 1964.  I know that they were designed by Joseph H. Freedlander
(the architect that designed the Museum of the City of New York) in
1924-25). In fact pictures of these statuettes and lights can be found

1. Polk's Brooklyn(n.Y.) City Directory 1933-34 (p1535).
Reliance Bronze and Steel Company
Jacob A.Ranpaport (president)
Chas Andras and Geo C. Hess (Vice President)
Harry J Rosenblum (Sec-teas)
95 Dobbin (Address)
150 (Employee)

2.Annual Guide to Stocks 2004 (Obsolete Securities section p.1487)

Reliance Steel Corp merged into Detroit steel corp in 1944.
(Reliance steel is the closest entry in the book. Reliance Bronze and
Steel is not listed).

D.The New York Times article was from 12/23/64 and in the FOOD 
Fashions Family Furnishings section.  Somewhere on the museum website there's 
a City Lights Design Competition.  There's a time line on there and if you stop 
at 1925 you'll find 1925 Traffic Signal and you'll see the original designs of 
Mercury and a picture of the traffic light at what I think is the foundry.

E.Information from a relative: Reliance Fireproof Door Company 
Brooklyn  NY   extruded bronze windows---storefronts.     Got it off
of a mechanical pencil  and noteboook.

Questions to be answered:

1. Are there any information on this comapny that discusses this
comapny, its officers and bankrupcy? If so, where and how can I obtain
copies of the articles.This would include any written material such as
newspaper articles or annual reports, etc.

2. Are there any Mercury statuettes currently being displayed, in
storage or available for purchase? If so, who has them and where are
they located?

3. Does the surname Dolgow appear in any source that associates 
it with the company?

4. Can you reference any archive record found and describe how I may
access or obtain a copy?

Request for Question Clarification by pafalafa-ga on 10 Apr 2004 13:04 PDT
Shades of Martha Stewart!

Reliance Bronze -- and the NYC contract it held for working on
lampposts -- was at the heart of a dramatic stock scandal that pitted
NYC Mayor Jimmy Walker against the formidable Governor of NY, Theodore
Roosevelt in the early 1930's.

Walker, who owned shares of Reliant Bronze bonds -- and who appeared
to have profited nicely from them --  was accused of a sweetheart deal
with the company.

As a result, there are a TON of newspaper articles that make mention
of the company, both during the scandal, and also during the time of
the company's financial difficulties and eventual bankruptcy.

Overall, I've found over 200 newspaper articles spanning a range from
1929 to 1957, that make mention of Reliance Bronze.

And therein lies the difficulty.  There are far too many articles for
a researcher to access and review in the context of answering your
question.  Firstly, there is a charge (to me, anyway) for accessing
the full articles.  Secondly, the amount of time and effort required
really can't be justified, even if you were to set the price for the
question at the $200 maximum.

And thirdly, the articles alone won't answer all the questions you
have asked here, particularly about the Mercury statuettes.

I can tell you this, however:

--the articles do not appear to mention the name Dolgow

--nor do they appear to make mention of the Mercury statues

--nor do they mention the architect, Freedlander

--the articles likely DO mention some of the principals of Reliant
Bronze, but until they are reviewed in detail, it is hard to say for
sure what sort of information might be available.

Please let me know how you would like the researchers to proceed on
your question, given the odd combination of a wealth of information on
Reliance Bronze, but the difficulty for a researcher in accessing all
this info, along with an apparent lack of information on other areas
of interest to you.

I'd be glad to answer your question by walking you through the process
for accessing the 200+ articles on Reliance Bronze.  (You may want to
consider repricing your question to reflect the limited information
that I can provide.)

I look forward to hearing back from you on this.


Clarification of Question by dolgow-ga on 10 Apr 2004 15:44 PDT
If you restrict your search from 1925 to 1935 does that help. I do not
need evry article as I am sure some may be repetative on the fact. I
am waiting to hear from the NARA about the bankruptcy. That would be
something I would be interested in. What year it happened and did its
president subsequently commit suicide.
If you can skip question 2. I have gotten an answer on it. If you
answer Question number four to that same period and to only sources
that are easy to obtain, would that help. For example, if the New York
Times was the best source with a reference to the article. I do have a
copy of an article titled, Last of the %th Ave. Mercurys Take Flight
From Traffic Poles, by Joseph C. Ingram, undated from the New York
Times. In it Joseph H. Freedlander's name is mention. It start off
saying "The last 28 stauettes of Mercury have been removed from
pedistals atop the ornate bronzt traffic lights on Fifth Avenue. This
I believed occurred in 1964. Also Broadway Maintenance was the
contractor that did the removal. The Fifth Avenue Association
originally paid for them.
I was trying to give you all I had found, you have found some
interesting points. As I understand it, annually they use to award a
replica to someone. The mold was broken, a cousin paid to have it
fixed at a great cost and was given an original. (This I just out).
The period of interest is 1925 to 1935.Bankruptcy and anything that
may identify the officer of the company. Does this help. Please advise
me. I would reduce the scope of the search with more exact info on
that time period
Thank you

Clarification of Question by dolgow-ga on 10 Apr 2004 15:53 PDT
An addendum. Since it appear you are good-what answers would raing it
to $200 get me. Is there someway I could supsize the purchase of
articles, etc.?
Let me know the general scope of what you could now do.

Request for Question Clarification by pafalafa-ga on 10 Apr 2004 17:57 PDT
Hello again,

I'm not sure quite how to proceed on this one.  I've unearthed a few
additional bits and pieces of information on Reliance Bronze.  They
may be of use to you. Here's what I've got so far:

-Reliance Bronze received its corporate charter on January 31, 1929 in
New York State.

Reliance Bronze filed for bankruptcy twice, once in January 21, 1936
(and they emerged from that in July 1937), but then again on January
10, 1938 in Brooklyn Federal Court.  The 2nd (and as far as I know,
final) bankruptcy was precipitated by a strike by the CIO against the

--The company's main operations were at 95 Dobbin Street in Brooklyn,
though they also operated a plant on Long Island.

--Prior to 1938 a fellow by the name of George C Hess worked for
Reliance Bronze, apparently in a senior capacity.

--In 1936, E. F. Gillespie was listed as the President and Treasurer
of Reliance Bronze.


That's it...and I'm not sure that further digging online will really
turn up anything more without an enormous effort.

I suspect that only a trip to the archives of the Brooklyn courthouse
where Reliance filed its bankruptcy papers, would really provide you
the detailed information you're seeking.  And even though I'm Brooklyn
born and bred, I no longer live there, and can't really offer to make
the trip.

I wish I could suggest a way to proceed on this so that you could get
the information you're after (and so I could be compensated!). 
However, this may simply be one of those cases where only good old
fashioned footwork can unearth the information you need.

Let me know if you have any thoughts otherwise.  

Best of luck.


Request for Question Clarification by pafalafa-ga on 10 Apr 2004 17:59 PDT
P.S. One more thought.  The Secretary of State in NY may be able to
provide a copy of the original corporate charter for Reliance, which
would include the principal officers for the company at the time of
its incorporation.  Worth a shot, anyway.

Clarification of Question by dolgow-ga on 10 Apr 2004 18:51 PDT
I believe ypu have tried your best. If I could have just one of your
references in hard copy to the first bankrupcy I would greatly
appreciate it. Maybe I could then continue on my own when I get to New
York this June.
I lways get confused..How do I okay payment to you on Google?

Request for Question Clarification by pafalafa-ga on 10 Apr 2004 19:17 PDT

Thanks for getting back to me, and for offering to accept some
additional information as an answer to your question.  I'll be glad to
provide the additional information, but there are some things I want
to make clear, first:

--I cannot give you full copies of the articles about Reliance's
bankruptcy -- these are protected by copyright, and I cannot reproduce
them in full.

--However, I can certainly provide summaries of the articles that
would excerpt all the relevant information for you.

--I can also give you simple instructions for accessing the full
articles yourself, online, should you wish to see them in their
entirety.  The articles are all from the NY Times, and these are
available online, for a modest fee.

If you want me to post the above information as an answer, just let me
know, and I'll be happy to do so.

You won't need to do anything in particular to see that I'm paid. 
Once the answer is posted, payment will occur automatically.

However, you can certainly change the offering price of your question
if you want to, since you are not receiving all the information you
asked for.  Instructions for changing a question's price can be found

"You can change your price at anytime as long as your question is not
currently 'locked' and being answered by a Researcher. To change your
question price, go to "My Account," select "My Unanswered Questions"
and click on the question with the price you want to change. Then
click on "Change Question Parameters" to modify the price."

I look forward to hearing back from you.  


Clarification of Question by dolgow-ga on 10 Apr 2004 22:05 PDT
$100 is for your effort if you supply the information you suggested.
You have provided me with some short cut to this process.
Thank you again
Subject: Re: History of Reliance Bronze Corporation (1925-1935)
Answered By: pafalafa-ga on 11 Apr 2004 20:07 PDT
Rated:4 out of 5 stars
Hello again, dolgow-ga.

Thank you for your generous offer.

Here is the information I unearthed on Reliance Bronze through
searches of old newspaper records of the NY Times and the Los Angeles

I've also included information  on accessing these articles yourself,
if you wish to see them in their entirety.

You have obviously undertaken an interesting and meaningful mission to
recreate some of this company's history as it relates to your family. 
I wish you all the best in your endeavor.

If you have any questions about the material below, please let me know
before rating this answer.  Just post a Request for Clarification, and
I'll be happy to assist you further.



The NY Times archives contained hundreds of references to Reliance
Bronze, but the bulk of these were simple business listings that
contained very little useful information.  However, there were some
substantial references as well, including:


January 11, 1938
page 14


Reliance Bronze and Steel Co. Also Cites "Selfish Strike" in Bankruptcy Law Action

The"cross-fire of selfish industrial strife" and an "effective
five-week strike called by the C.I.O" were given as the basis of a
petition to reorganize under Section 77b of the Federal Bankruptcy Act
filed yesterday by the Reliance Bronze and Steel Company, Inc.,
manufacturers of metal doors, windows and frames.

"The activities of the C.I.O. were fatal to the debtor," the petition
said.  "The large profits of the first six months of 1937 were
entirely wiped out and a large loss for the year substituted..."

[The article goes on to report the company was willing to meet wage
and hour demands, but was not willing to recognize the C.I.O because,
it argued, the building industry was controlled by the A.F. of L. and
that recognizing the C.I.O. would have resulted in a boycott of
Reliance Bronze products.]

[The petition also listed book-value assets of $869,581, and
liabilities in the same amount, and listed two secure creditors and
138 unsecured creditors.]


November 26, 1934
pg 31

Bronze Factory Is Sold

The Reliance Bronze Corporation sold its industrial plant on the south
side of Review Avenue...Long Island City, to Bloch & Guggenheimer for
a pickle and condiment works...


August 22, 1957
page 27

[An obituary for George C. Hess notes that he was an executive at
Atlantic Metal Products, Inc. since 1938, and had previously worked
for Reliance Bronze and Steel Corp.]


January 22, 1936
page 35

Court Approves Reorganization Under Section 77b

The Reliance Bronze and Steel Corporation of 95 Dobbin Street,
Brooklyn, filed yesterday in the Federal court...a petition seeking
reorganization...The petition, signed by E. F. Gillespie, president
and treasurer...stated that it had been authorized by the directors on
Jan. 16.

The petition was approved by Judge Grover M. Moscowitz...[who] set
Feb. 10 as the date for a hearing...


The Los Angeles Times also had some materials that referenced Reliance Bronze:

September 20, 1929
page 15 

[There was a classified ad for Reliance as follows]

Listed on New York Curb Exchange
Reliance Bronze & Steel Corp.
Convertible 6% Debentures
Due 1944

The largest company of its kind in the United States...

[The bonds were offered by DeFremery & Company in Los Angeles and San Francisco]


September 2, 1932
page 8


NEW YORK, Sept. 1 -- The following is a summary of the principal
"conclusions" against Mayor Walker on which removal hearings have been
in progress before Gov. Roosevelt...

(4)  That the Mayor violated the city charter by holding convertible
bonds of the Reliance Bronze and Steel Corporation, which received a
city contract for traffic light standards.

[Note that I had earlier identified the Governor at the time as
Theodore Roosevelt, but it was of course, cousin Franklin who held the


You can access the NY Times archives online by opening up a subscription at:

Just conduct a search at this site for "Reliance Bronze" (include the
quotation marks), and check the box that says "Closest Match" (unless
you want the articles sorted by date).  Clicking "Search" will then
return several hundred hits.

You can preview each article, which will show you either the first
paragraph or, very often, nothing at all.  To see the full article,
you'll select the option for viewing the full article, and the system
will walk you through the sign-on process to open an account.

The LA Times archives back to the 1930's are not available online, but
can often be accessed through library databases at public or
university libraries.


You may also want to contact the office of the Secretary of State of
New York State to see if the historical incorporation records for
Reliance Bronze are available.

According to their website at:

the records -- which usually contain the names of the senior officers
of the corporation -- should be available, and must be requested in


Q. How do I get information on a corporation or other business entity?
What information is available?

...The records of corporations that went out of existence prior to
December 5, 1977, are contained in manual inactive files at the
Department of State. Although still maintained, a written request must
be made for these records.

By Telephone: Callers to our 1-900-TEL-CORP (835-2677) information
line may request a database search of up to five entity names during a
single call. A fee of $4 (which will appear on your telephone bill) is
charged for each call. Information available includes the following:
(1) current entity name; (2) date of organization; (3) jurisdiction,
if other than New York State; (4) county location; (5) service of
process address; (6) registered agent, if any; and (7) filing history.
Information on business corporations may also include the name and
address of the chief executive officer and the principal business
location. Record search by telephone is only available through the use
of the 900 number listed above.

By Mail, Fax, or E-mail: Written requests containing up to five entity
names may be submitted by mail directed to the Department of State,
Division of Corporations, 41 State Street, Albany, NY 12231; by fax to
(518) 473-1654; or by e-mail ( The
information for up to five record searches is provided free of charge.
Requests for more than five record searches must be accompanied by a
fee of $5 for each entity search exceeding the first five. Requests
for more than five record searches must be submitted (with the
required fee) by mail or in person at our Albany office.


Once again, the best of luck in your efforts.  Let me know if you have
any questions about the material I've presented here.
dolgow-ga rated this answer:4 out of 5 stars
Although all questions could not be answered the researcher found
other valuable information. A great deal of effort was made.

There are no comments at this time.

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