My Grandpa in 1936 invested in the Koester Springs Distillery Company... it didn’t work out so well.
My Grandpa, the former mayor of the great Bloomsdale, Missouri, invested in the Koester Springs Distillery Company in 1936. I am quite sure it didn’t work out so well as when he passed away a few years back this certificate was found tucked in a Ford Motor Company envelope that simply said, “Past Experience.”
I suppose my Grandpa saved it to remember that sometimes things didn’t always go his way. There were 50,000 shares available to the now defunct Koester Springs Distillery and my grandpa was able to pick up 25 of them which means he owned .0005 of the company. A quick internet search didn’t turn up any history on Koester Springs but I did find out that Koester is around 16 miles from Bloomsdale.
I guess what is most interesting in this old stock certificate is the detail involved with a certificate representing a mere 25 shares. I would venture to say that in 1936 shares weren’t running a bit over 10 cents but the certificate has such fine details, two actual signatures (President and Secretary), Francis Basler’s typed name, an official Koester Springs stamped seal, and a finely detailed drawing of a lady holding a lightbulb up in front of a factory with a street car moving through the scene.
As you know in today’s computer world, stock purchases show up as a simple line on a computer screen. They can happen at a rate so fast that no human really understands. Programs vie for any advantage and humans sit behind computer screens trying to figure out how their program can gain an advantage from even the smallest most insignificant moves in the price of a stock. When someone loses money in the stock market or a company goes out of business, someone gets a message from a computer.
I am not sure about any of the history behind my grandpa’s decision to invest in this company. My bet is he knew one of the guys running the company and did a courtesy investment to try and help him out. I doubt he was terribly upset about the loss at the time but I do know he at least filed it away but he wasn’t really caught up in the pursuit of money.
He didn’t have to be. He and my grandma canned most of their food, raised chickens and cows, and the house he built was paid for as he was building it. He had kept the records on that too and if I recall correctly it added up to around 2,000 dollars. (Nick if you are reading this please confirm this...my cousin Nick moved into my Grandpa’s house).
So here’s to a simpler time and the “past experience” my Grandpa passed on me.
Hello earthlings. I have been sent here to open a brewery. I hope you have time over the next year to check in from time to time and see our progress (or lack there of at times).
Morning beer delivery at Tynan’s Bridge House Bar in Kilkenny, Ireland.