Unbound. Wilhelm Schrafft, was a Bavarian confectioner who, as the result of the failure of the German Revolution, fled along with 300,000 of his countrymen to America in 1851, first in New York, and eight years later when he moved to Boston, where he opened a shop, William F. Schrafft, Confectioner at 85 Eliot Street. Eventually his shop became a large candy company, assisted in part by the Civil War, which propelled his success in creating portable candies that could be transported by troops without substantially deteriorating, including gum drops, jelly beans, peppermint sticks, and hard candies. Joined by his sons, he later opened Schrafft's, a popular chain of restaurants, mostly in New York and Boston.
This archive consists of:
1. Six Autograph Letters of Recommendation for Wilhelm Schrafft (originals in German, with English translations provided) from six different German confectioners dated between 1840 and 1851. Old folds, each letter with an intact or mostly intact seal, near fine. During this period, Schrafft was a "journeyman" in the true sense of the word. He traveled to various towns, was required to find a job in his specialty within 24 hours, would work for an agreed period of time, and at the end of the period his employers were required to provide letters assessing his performance. All evidence here is that Schrafft was a diligent, competent, and well-behaved candymaker and baker.
2. Wilhelm Schrafft's Official Citizenship Document dated in 1888 and entered in Somerville, Massachusetts. Old folds, seal intact, Registrar of Voters stamp, near fine.
3. *An American Success Story: Monday Club Paper* by Hazen H. Ayer. 13pp. printed rectos only, plus printed front wrap and Typed Letter Signed by Ayer dated in 1968, presenting the paper, all stapled in upper left corner. some corrections in the text, near fine. History of the Schrafft family and company by a close friend of the family.
An interesting overview of the immigrant's evolution and success in America.