Heritage Businesses in WNY
Stories of Buffalo’s oldest businesses connected with the history of the region
The stories of Buffalo’s oldest businesses are closely connected with the history of the region. What did the earliest settlers do when they got here? Farmed, mainly, which is reflected in the fact that so many of Western New York’s longest-running businesses are connected with the green industry. What did Buffalo’s position as a gateway to the Midwest mean? For one, that millions of cattle came through the city, requiring enormous stockyards and a thriving slaughterhouse and meat-processing industry, leading to companies like Sahlen’s. Other stories of early Buffalo show that it drew inventors and entrepreneurs, like the founders of Tapecon, Flexlume, and S. M. Cristall. That these and many other businesses have survived through the highs and lows of WNY’s economic lifecycles is a tribute to their ability to adapt and survive.
This month's issue contains 30 pages highlighting WNY’s century-plus companies. Here's a small sample of Spree's feature this month: