Gordon’s Fried Sea Food and Other Shops at 215 Hanover Street in Manchester NH

Yes, I realize that “Gordon’s Fried Sea Food and Other Shops at 215 Hanover Street in Manchester NH” is a long title for a blog post.  However it is very fitting, because my 215 Hanover Street, Manchester NHresearch took me on a long, convoluted, and interesting journey into the past.

My adventure started off with an Ebay purchase of three photographs and a menu from Gordon’s Fried Sea Food.  With  my usual knack for tangential discoveries, I began to track not only the aforementioned restaurant but all former owners of this shop at 215 Hanover Street in Manchester, New Hampshire.  Since I had no memory of Gordon’s existence, I inquired on the “Things I Remember Growing up in Manchester, NH” FaceBook page whether anyone remembered this place.

Luckily for me there was one person, Dick Katz, who knew and remembered Saul Gordon, the proprietor of Gordon’s Fried Sea Foods He told me, “He [Saul Gordon] was a very honest, honorable man. His word was his bond.”

Born Saul Gorenstein, Saul Gordon was the son of Samuel “Sam” and Anna “Chana” Gorenstein, born 24 May 1925 in Manchester, New Hampshire.  His father, Sam had immigrated from Poland to the United States in 1910, and became a well known peddler in Manchester–first of fruit, later vegetables, and finally of scrap. Saul Gordon grew up at 454 Central Street, attended local schools, and graduated from Central High School in 1943. He enlisted in the United States Army a few months after graduation on 14 Oct 1943, and received the Bronze Star for his participation in the Normandy invasion.

Gordon's Fried Sea Foods shop front at 215 Hanover Street in Manchester NH circa 1946-1949 (Photograph property of Janice W Brown, and may not be used without her written permission).

Gordon’s Fried Sea Foods restaurant storefront at 215 Hanover Street in Manchester NH circa 1946-1949 (Photograph property of Janice W Brown, and may not be used without her written permission).

Saul utilized the G.I. Bill (and the assistance of a local Manchester businessman) to attend Cornell University for three years.  Returning to Manchester, New Hampshire, he opened and ran a restaurant, Gordon’s Fried Sea Food at 215 Hanover Street from 1946-1949 .  It is unknown why he closed the restaurant, but in the 1960s he went to work for BeeBee Shoe, married and moved away, eventually living in Lebanon, Pennsylvania.  [For more information on Saul himself see the  later in this post].

Saul Gordon proprietor of Gordon's Fried Sea Foods standing at the counter in his shop circa 193?

Saul Gordon proprietor of Gordon’s Fried Sea Foods standing at the counter in his shop circa 193?

Aside from Saul and his restaurant, the building at 215 Hanover Street has a long and intriguing history.  I spoke with Paul Jacques today, the current owner and proprietor of Jacques Printing, the business that has been there since 1956 (58 years).

Paul Jacques told me that the building is the oldest business structure in Manchester, and he could very well be correct.  He states that it was originally built by Amoskeag Manufacturing as an engineering headquarters from which the mills were run and the city’s growth was orchestrated.  What I do know is that by 1873 the building was being used as a bakery by Samuel W.O. Smith.  The smell of baking must have been wonderful in that neighborhood for Mr. Smith was followed by a long and often changing list of bakers at the same address, from 1874 to 1915 (not to be repetitive the list is provided below).   The building early had a shop front (#215) with the upstairs accessed by a separate set of stairs sometimes used by the owners, and other times rented out (#217).

Inside of menu of Gordon's Fried Sea Foods

Inside of menu of Gordon’s Fried Sea Foods. Can you remember getting a cup of coffee for 10 cents, and a side dish of fried clams for 35 cents?

A tidbit about the 1887 bakers at 215 Hanover Street: BLY & FELLOWS (Wm A. Bly and Charles E. Fellows) were listed as the owners with Burke F. Stark also listed as a baker at the same address.  None other than General John Stark was Burke’s 2nd great grandfather (ie: Burke F. Stark > Benjamin Franklin-5 Stark > John-4 Stark > John-3 Stark > General John-2 Stark > Archibald-1 Stark.)

At least by 1901 and possibly before, a separate building was built behind the house, and this was sometimes owned separately from the original shop front, called #215 rear.  This building was expanded at some point in its history.

In 1917 there was a temporary break in the building being used as a bakery.  From 1917 to 1921 it was purchased by Joseph M. McDonough, who together with J. Charles McKeon maintained Joseph M. McDonough & Co., undertakers at the address.  In 1921 the company moved to 225 Hanover Street, and it remained there until at least 1986.

From 1921-1940 the building reverted back to being used as a bakery.  Bronislaw and Julia Czerniewski purchased the property, living above the store. In 1926 with the Czerniewski’s continuing to own and live in the upstairs, the back portion was a bakery (European Baking Company) owned by Jacob Kotell, with a grocery store run by Arsene Markarian maintained in the shop front.   In 1934 Mr. Cherniewski took over the bakery in the back with B J Cherniewski Baking Company.

From 1942-1945 Mrs. Bessie G. Freed ran the rear portion as a bakery (Freed’s Bakery), with Arsen & Rose Markarian still running their grocery in the front.  By 1945 she also had a bakery at 359 Pine Street.

From about 1946-1949, as mentioned above, Saul Gordon ran his restaurant [see photographs and main story post].  In 1953 the building, for the first time, was entirely vacant, with the rear building being used as storage.

Finally, in 1956 B. Roger Jacques obtained the building and set up a business, “The Jacques Press.” He and later his son Paul K. Jacques have operating this business up until today.

215 Hanover Street today (red building on far right).

215 Hanover Street today (red building on far right).

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DETAILED LISTING OF OCCUPANTS
of 215 Hanover Street, Manchester NH

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1873 Manchester City Directory
Smith Samuel W.O. baker, 215 Hanover
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1875 Manchester City Directory
Benson William H driver bread cart, 215 Hanover, boards 294 Merrimack
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1877 Manchester NH Directory
Brigham (J.A.) & Pratt (A.), bakers, 215 Hanover, house 333 do.
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1879 Manchester City Directory
Brigham (James A.) & Pratt (Alvin), bakers 215 Hanover, house 333 do.
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1882 Manchester City Directory
BAKER: Clough, Albion L baker 215 Hanover
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1883 Manchester City Directory
BAKERS
Felch Worcester, 215 Hanover
Breen, James W. driver, house 215 Hanover
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1885 Manchester City Directory
Hardy, Frederick W baker, 215 Hanover
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1887 Manchester City Directory
BLY & FELLOWS (Wm A. Bly and Charles E. Fellows), bakers, 215 Hanover
Fellows, Charles E. (Bly & Fellows) baker 215 Hanover house Mast, near Wilkins, W.M.
Bly, William A. (Bly & Fellows) baker 215 Hanover, house 270 Laurel
Stark, Burke F. baker 215 Hanover, house 60 Appleton
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1890 Manchester City Directory
Reagan, Jeremiah, baker, 215 Hanover
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1892 Manchester City Directory
Bickford, William P baker, 215 Hanover, boards 192 Amherst
Davis, Margaret, widow, house 215 Hanover
Surrich, Annie, compositor, boards 215 Hanover
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1893 Manchester City Directory
Davis, Hugh McK. clerk, boards 215 Hanover
Davis, Margaret, widow, house 215 Hanover
Davis, Lizzie, bookkeeper, boards 215 Hanover
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1893-1894 Manchester City Directory
BAKER: Woods H. J. 215 Hanover advertising, p. 637
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1895 Manchester City Directory
Gallagher, James E. bottler 339 Pine, rooms 215 Hanover
Farrell, John, baker 215 Hanover
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1896 Manchester City Directory
Desmarais, Edouard, baker, 215 Hanover
Woods, Henry J. 215 Hanover
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1897-1898 Manchester City Directory
Smitten, William G., night foreman, 215 Hanover
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1901 Manchester City Directory
Olman, Ephraim, peddler, house 215 Hanover
Slosberg Bros. (james and Meyer J.) bakers, rear 215 Hanover
Slosberg, James (Slosberg Bros) baker, rear 215 Hanover, house 217 do
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1907 & 1908 Manchester NH Directories
Savage, Jacob driver 215 Hanover
Slosberg Bros (James and Meyer) bakers rear 215 Hanover
Slosberg, James (Slosberg Bros) baker rear 25 Hanover, house 217 do]
Slosberg, Meyer (Slosberg Bros) baker rear 215 Hanover house
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1911 Manchester NH Directories
Gremo Joseph dyer 127 Hanover rooms 215 do
Slosberg Bros (James and Meyer) bakers rear 215 Hanover
Slosberg, James (Slosberg Bros) baker rear 215 Hanover h 217 do
Slosberg, Meyer (Slosberg Bros) baker rear 215 Hanover h 217 do
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1912 Manchester City Directory
BAKER: Slosberg Meyer 215 Hanover
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1914 Manchester City Directory
BAKER: Slosberg Meyer rear 215 Hanover
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1915 Manchester City Directory
Slosberg Meyer r 215 Hanover
King, William, driver rear 215 Hanover b 217 do
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1917 Manchester City Directory
Kempinski, Felix, rear 215 Hanover
McDonough, Joseph (Mary T) (Joseph M McDonough & Co) 215 Hanover h 279 Spruce
McDonough, Joseph M & Co. (Joseph M McDonough J Charles McKeon) undertakers 215 Hanover

1917 Manchester City Directory
ONeil, Charles S. carpenter rms 215 Hanover
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1919 Manchester City Directory
McDonough Joseph M & Co (Joseph M McDonough, J. Charles McKeon) undertakers 215 Hanover
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1920 Manchester City Directory
McDONOUGH JOSEPH M & Co (Joseph M McDonough, J. Charles McKeon) undertakers 215 Hanover–See back cover
[in 1921 McDonoughs moved to 225 Hanover Street]
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1921-1925 Manchester City Directory
Czerniewski Bronislaw (Julia) Baker 215 Hanover, h 217 do
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1926 Manchester City Directory [baking in rear, grocer in front]
European Baking Co. (Jacob Kotell) rear 215 Hanover
Freeman, Irving D (Mildred A) mgr rear 215 Hanover h 302 Lake av
Kotell, Jacob (Ida) (European Baking Co) rear 215 Hanover h 237 Spruce
Markarian Arsene grocer 215 Hanover res 217 do
Ohannasian Krikor (Alice) clerk 215 Hanover res 121 do
Czerniewski, Bronislaw, apt 2 217 Hanover
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1927 Manchester City Directory
Kolarba Franciszek (Pauline) baker r 215 Hanover h 23 Washington
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1930 Manchester City Directory
Cherniewski Bronislaw (Julia) baker rear 215 Hanover h 217 do
Cherniewski Herman baker res 217 Hanover
Cherniewski Leonora student res 217 Hanover
Markarian Arsen (Rose) grocer 215 Hanover h 236 Merrimack
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1933 Manchester City Directory
Cherniewski B J Baking Co. (Bronislaw J. Cherniewski) rear 215 Hanover
– Bronislaw J (Julia) (BJ Cherniewski Baking Co.) rear 215 Hanover h 217 do
– Herman chauf r 217 Hanover
– Leonora r 217 Hanover
Markarian Arsen (Rose) gro 215 Hanover h 236 Merrimack
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1934 Manchester City Directory
Cherniewski B J Baking Co (Bronislaw J Cherniewski) rear 215 Hanover
–Bronislaw studt r 217 Hanover
–Bronislaw J (Julia) B J Cherniewski Baking Co) rear 215 Hanover h 217 do
–Eleonora r 217 Hanover
–Herman S hlpr rear 215 Hanover r 217 do
Markarian Arsen (Rose) gro 215 Hanover h 265A Central
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1936 Manchester City Directory
Cherniewski B J Baking Co (Bronislaw J Cherniewski) rear 215 Hanover
–Bronislaw J (Julia) (B J Cherniewski Baking Co) rear 215 Hanover h 1143 Union
–Elinora r 1143 Union
–Herman S hlpr rear 215 Hanover r 1143 Union
Markarian Arsen (Rose) gro 215 Hanover h 391 Manchester
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1938 Manchester City Directory
Chernewski Herman S (Stella) baker rear 215 Hanover h 735 Lake av
Cherniewski B J Baking Co (Bronsilaw J Cherniewski) rear 215 Hanover
–Boleslaw H baker rear 215 Hanover h 217 do
–Bronislaw J (Julia) (B J Cherniewski Baking Co) rear 215 Hanover h 1143 Union
–Elinora r 1143 Union
Markarian Arsen (Rose) gro 205 Lowell and 215 Hanover h 391 Manchester
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1940 Manchester City Directory
Chernewski Herman S (Stella A) baker B J Cherniewski Baking Co h 735 Lake av
Cherniewski B J Baking Co (Bronislaw J Cherniewski) rear 215 Hanover
–Boleslaw H baker B J Cherniewski Baking Co h 217 Hanover
–Bronislaw J (Julia) (B J Cherniewski Baking Co) h 1143 Union
–Elinora r 1143 Union
Markarian Arsen (Rose) gro 215 Hanover h 391 Manchester
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1942 Manchester City Directory
Freed, Bessie G. Mrs. (Freed’s Bakery) h 478 Beech
Freed’s Bakery (Bessie G. Greed) rear 215 Hanover
Markarian Arsen (Rose) Gro 215 Hanover h 391 Manchester
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1945 Manchester City Directory
215 Hanover Street (front) Vacant
Freeds Bakery rear 215 Hanover
Freed’s Bakery 359 Pine Street
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1947 Manchester NH City Directory
GORDON, Saul (Gordon’s Fried Sea Foods) restr r 454 Central
GORDON’S FRIED SEA FOODS (Saul Gordon) restaurant 215 Hanover
Gorenstein Saml (Anna) junk pdlr h 454 Central
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1948 Manchester City Directory
GORDON, Saul (Gordon’ Fried Sea Food) restr r 454 Central
GORDON’s FRIED SEA FOODS (Saul Gordon) restr 215 Hanover
Gorenstein Saml (Anna) junk pdlr h 454 Central
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1949 Manchester City Directory
GORDON, Saul fish dlr r 454 Central
Gorenstein Saml (Anna) junk peddler h 454 Central
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1950 Manchester City Directory
GORDON, Saul clk A & P Super Market r 454 Central
Gorenstein Saml (Anna) junk Peddler h 454 Central
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1953 Manchester City Directory
215 Hanover Street Vacant
–Rear Storage
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July 1956 Jacques Press in operation per Paul Jacques
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1958-1959 Manchester City Directory
Jacques Press The 215 Hanover
Jacques, B. Roger (Florence A; The Jacques Press) h 217 Hanover
Jacques, Edward A died July 24, 1957.
Jacques Eglantine (wid Dolphia) died Dec 11, 1957
JACQUES, The (B Roger Jacques) 215 Hanover
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1964 Manchester City Directory
Jacques Press The 215 Hanover Street
Jacques Press The (B Roger Jacques) Printing 215 Hanover Street
Jacques B Roger (Florence A) (The Jacques Press) H217 Hanover Street
GORDON, Saul Emp Foster Grant H184 Irwin Drive
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—ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ABOUT SAUL GORDON—

Saul Gordon

Saul Gordon

Saul Gordon: Newspaper Obituary and Death Notice
Daily News, The (Lebanon, PA) – Monday, July 28, 2003
Saul Gordon, 78, of Lebanon died Saturday, July 26, 2003. He was the husband of Norma Gordon. Born May 24, 1925, in Manchester, N.H., he was a decorated World War II veteran and a Brother of the Mason. Surviving, in addition to his wife, are daughters Amy S. Gordon and Debra L. Gordon; and a grandson. Interment will be in Manchester, N.H. Reese Funeral Home, Harrisburg, is in charge of arrangements.
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Saul Gordon: Newspaper Obituary and Death Notice
Union Leader, The (Manchester, NH) – Wednesday, August 13, 2003
Deceased Name: Saul Gordon
LEBANON, Pa. — Saul Gordon, 78, a Manchester, N.H., native, died unexpectedly July 26, 2003, in Pennsylvania. A retired shoe manufacturer who also worked as a representative for other manufacturers, he was the youngest of the family and the only one born in the United States. Following graduation from Central High School in 1943, he entered the military and served in the Normandy invasion, landing in France on June 9, 1944, just three days after the first attack on the beaches. He earned the Bronze Star for his participation in the invasion. Following military service, Mr. Gordon studied for three years at Cornell University under the GI Bill and then returned to Manchester, where he opened a seafood restaurant. Later, he went to work at BeeBee Shoe Corporation, where he learned the business that became his lifelong occupation. Although it was many years since he had lived in Manchester, he retained fond memories of growing up and returned for frequent visits. He had been looking forward to his 60th high school reunion in September. Family members include his wife of 52 years, Norma (Zelinsky) Gordon of Lebanon, Pa.; two daughters, Amy S. Gordon and Debra L. Gordon, both of Rockville, Md.; a grandson.SERVICES: The funeral took place at Temple Israel in Manchester, with services conducted by Rabbi Jacob Rosner. Burial was in the Manchester Hebrew Cemetery. Memorial donations may be made to Temple Israel or to the Heart Association.The Durning Funeral Home was in charge of local arrangements.
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Norma Gordon Obituary
LEBANON (PA) Norma Gordon, 83, passed away on Thursday, February 9, 2012. She was born on June 5, 1928. Within Lebanon, Norma was known for being a cherished religious school teacher and a member of Congregation Beth Israel Synagogue, Sisterhood, and Hadassah. Beloved wife of the late Saul Gordon, Norma is survived by her daughters, Amy S. Gordon of Rockville, Md., and Debra L. Gordon of Lebanon. She is also survived by her grandson, Jared A. Gordon. Services will be held in Manchester, N.H. Local arrangements were handled by Hetrick-Bitner Funeral Home, 3125 Walnut St., Harrisburg. To send condolences to the family please visit www.hetrickbitner.com
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One Response to Gordon’s Fried Sea Food and Other Shops at 215 Hanover Street in Manchester NH

  1. George Grant says:

    I am sure that was alot of work, You did a dam good job congrats

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