Date of Construction: 1903; 1914 one-story rear addition.
Architectural Style: Commercial Vernacular.
Holland native John Baeten operated his grocery and general merchandise business out of the larger of the two storefronts from 1903 until 1915. Following a remodeling that was completed in July 1915, the east storefront held the groceries, while the west portion handled the dry goods. John and his wife Elizabeth lived in one of the second-floor apartments.
In October 1915, John Baeten purchased a truck to deliver merchandise. It was reportedly the first truck to be used for delivery purposes in the city of De Pere. In 1947, Baeten’s Food Market (as it was then named) advertised itself as the first food store in the state of Wisconsin to offer a self-service meat counter with pre-packaged meats.
In 1918 John sold the business to his sons, Albert and Peter Baeten and his son-in-law, Ferdinand Van Dyck. The business continued under their leadership until 1943, then subsequent generations of the family maintained the store until it closed in January 1973. The Baeten Store was a familiar fixture for multiple generations of De Pere residents due to the long tenure of the store at this location.
Today the building houses locally owned businesses.
The second storefront was first occupied by an undertaking and furniture goods store run by Austrian-born cabinetmaker Frank Schumerth. Although he moved out within less than six months due to lack of space, his furniture business, which was continued by his sons, would remain in De Pere into the late 1960s.
De Pere, Wisconsin 54115
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