Quincy Firehouse/Bernzen Lumber Co. 

c. 1850-2017    |    1637 Broadway, Quincy, IL

The old Quincy Firehouse was built in 1850, and operated as a municipal until the late 1950’s.  The structure over the engine bays was constructed with a variety of unique dimensional lumber, including 3” thick by 13” wide by 26 feet long beams. 

Bernzen Lumber was Quincy's oldest family-owned businesses, as it stood for 127 years until its closure in 2016.  The business acquired the Quincy fire station in 1962 and later became its office and showroom.

Bernzen Lumber Co. was founded in 1889 as Middendorf Brothers Lumber Co. It initially operated at 10th and Broadway before moving to 17th and Spring in 1910.

According to Herald-Whig archives, the company was started by two brothers -- Theodore A. Middendorf and William H. Middendorf -- who were later joined by a third brother, Henry B. Middendorf. One of Henry's daughters, Edith, married Walter J. Bernzen, who eventually took on a leadership role with the company.

Walter Bernzen was Bill Bernzen's grandfather and Greg Bernzen's great-grandfather. The company's name was changed to Bernzen Lumber Co. in 1988.

Greg Bernzen, the fifth generation of his family to operate the company, sold the building in 2016.

Our goal at Sangamon Reclaimed is to honor our past and preserve it for future generations to come.  The heirloom-quality pieces we built allow this structure to live on for years to come.

 

-Bring History Home-