Buffalo Grain Elevator Preserve - Table of Contents   ............... Grain Elevators - Table of Contents 

General Mills and St. Mary's Elevators
By Dennis Galucki and Chuck LaChiusa
Center for the Study of Art, Architecture, History and Nature

On this page, below:

Frontier / Washburn Crosby / General Mills Elevators

Spencer Kellogg Elevator / Schaefer Brewing / St. Mary's Cement Elevator



2013 photo

Frontier / Washburn Crosby / General Mills Elevators

The large General Mills elevating and milling complex at 54 South Michigan Street began as a small Buffalo-owned elevator company, Frontier Elevator, incorporated by six local businessmen in 1886. The Frontier has a capacity of 4.75 million bushels and was the largest of Buffalo's 21 elevators in operation at the time.

In 1903 a new flour milling company came to buffalo from Minneapolis, the Washburn Crosby Company. The mill was built next to the Frontier on the site of the old Dakota Mill that had burned some years earlier. The company's tile storage tanks lacked marine legs. Washburn Crosby made an agreement with Frontier for unloading and transferring grain. In 1907 Washburn Crosby bought out Frontier.

In 1928 General Mills was organized in Buffalo with Washburn Crosby as its nucleus. The Buffalo operation has made the Gold Medal brand flour as well as Wheaties, Bisquick, Betty Crocker mixes and Cheerios (originally called Cheerioats).

By 1964, General Mills owned O-Cell-O, a manufacturer of synthetic sponges, and Kittinger Furniture.

Other elevator additions on the site were constructed of concrete, although the only remaining tile elevator in Buffalo is still part of the complex.

Sources:

  • Built in America
  • "Buffalo: Lake City in Niagara Land,"by Richard C. Brown and Bob Watson. USA: Windsor Publications, 1981
See also: HABS (online April 2014)


General Mills Elevator
2004 photos


General Mills framed by the Skyway - 2004 photo


General Mills on Kelly Island ... - 2004 photo ... Buffalo Ship Canal



General Mills - 2004 photo


General Mills - 2004 photo


General Mills - 2004 photo


General Mills - 2004 photo


General Mills - 2004 photo


General Mills ... 2004 photo ... Silos with mainhouse above



General Mills - 2004 photo


General Mills - 2004 photo


General Mills - 2004 photo


General Mills - 2004 photo


Spencer Kellogg Elevator / Schaefer Brewing / St. Mary's Cement Elevator
389 Ganson Street, Buffalo

History of the site:

    ? - Coatsworth wooden elevator  built on north side of the slip

    1890s - Spencer Kellogg wooden elevator built on south side of the slip

    1893 - Coatsworth burned down

    1894 - Replacement Coatsworth built

    1903 - New brick Kellogg elevator built

    1901-1910? - Kellogg acquired the Coatsworth which became Kellogg "A"; the original Kellogg became Kellogg "B"

    1910 - Kellogg "A" (former Coatsworth) replaced with reinforced concrete elevator

   1912 - Original Kellogg elevator ("B") demolished and replaced with a single loading bin; the overhead gantry constructed

    1923 - Single loading bin augmented by 4 steel bins and one interstitial bin

The earliest elevator built on the Wadham Slip (later renamed the Spencer Kellogg Slip), was the wooden Coatsworth Elevator The second Coatsworth Elevator became the Kellogg "A" Elevator.

Spencer Kellogg's grandfather began milling linseed oil in 1824 in the Mohawk Valley near Amsterdam, New York.

Spencer Kellogg moved to Buffalo and, at age 28, built his first linseed oil mill in 1879. By 1894, he constructed a second mill, giving him a total of 36 presses, making his the largest linseed oil plant in the U.S. The company existed in Buffalo from 1879 to 1961, growing from a modest one-man operation to become a diversified international enterprise operating in eight states and several foreign countries.

The elevator consists of a large set of bins joined at the top through a 1917 transfer system to a small collection of bins on the south, with a gap of perhaps 150 feet between. The reason for this odd setup is that there was once a slip here underneath the transfer system (see photo showing the slip). Two vessels could be handled at the same time.

Instead of storing grain, the elevators now store cement.

- Sources:

Built in America
See also: HABS (online April 2014)
St. Mary's Cement Elevator


2013 photo





Kellogg "A" and "B" Elevators; Michigan Street Bridge in foreground.
"A" was demolished in 1912.  ...  Elevator "B" which had replaced the Coatsworth elevator in 1894 was demolished in1909.

Source: "The Picture Book of Earlier Buffalo," Frank H. Severance, ed. Buffalo Historical Society Publications, Vol. 16, 1912, p. 42



Kellogg "A" and "B" Elevators; Michigan Street Bridge in foreground.
"A" was torn down 1912.  ...  Elevator "B"  was torn down in 1912.

 Source: "A History of the City of Buffalo," published by the The Buffalo Evening News, 1908



Demolished 1912.
Spencer Kellogg Elevator / Schaefer Brewing / St. Mary's Cement Elevator



Spencer Kellogg & Sons, manufacturers of linseed oil, bought the Barnard property (98 Delaware Avenue) in 1910 and enlarged it, keeping the original Colonial design.

Kellogg & Sons was the first business to move to Niagara Square. The house was razed and replaced by a parking lot in January 1960.




Eastern elevations ...  2014 photo.
Brick building: General Mills flour mill ... Center: St. Mary's ... Right: Michigan St. Bridge

1910 - Kellogg "A" (former Coatsworth) replaced with reinforced concrete elevator ...
1912 - Original Kellogg elevator ("B") demolished and replaced with a single loading bin; the overhead gantry constructed
1923 - Single loading bin augmented by 4 steel bins and one interstitial bin


Spencer Kellogg Elevator, 389 Ganson Street.

The elevator (left) consists of a large set of bins joined at the top through a 1917 transfer system to a small collection of bins on the south, with a gap of perhaps 150 feet between. The reason for this odd setup is that there was once a slip here underneath the transfer system . Two vessels could be handled at the same time.

Source: HABS



St. Mary's Cement Elevator
In 1917, a slip ran between the two elevators.  To connect the two, an overhead bridge  - a 1917 transfer system - was built. Two vessels could be handled at the same time.


St. Mary's Cement Elevator, gantry and loading bins - 2004 photo



St. Mary's Cement Elevator - 2004 photo


St. Mary's Cement Elevator - gantry and loading bins ... 2004 photo


St. Mary's Cement Elevator - Loading bins and gantry ... 2004 photo


St. Mary's Cement Elevator - 2004 photo


Photos and their arrangement 2004 Chuck LaChiusa
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