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Butz Flowers - New Castle PA

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Paul F. Butz, an experienced landscaper and botanist, opened a small commercial greenhouse in the Croton section of New Castle in October 1851. The operation, known as the Croton Gardens & Nurseries (shown above), grew considerably over the years and Butz’ sons William and Frank joined him in 1874. The business, which later opened a retail store on North Mercer Street, was known by several names over the years to include Paul Butz & Son, Butz Brothers, and Butz Flowers. (c1870)


William’s son Paul, a civic-minded leader often referred to as “Mr. New Castle,” later ascended to take over ownership from 1938-1968. The store moved into a small annex (shown above) attached to the Johnson Building at the north end of the East Washington Street Bridge in early 1950. (c1960) Full Size


In 1972, after the Johnson Building was slated for demolition, the business was moved to #120 East Washington Street (shown above). Paul’s son, the well-known humanitarian John “Jack” Butz, ran the company until he passed away in 2003 ending 152 years of family ownership. Butz Flowers & Gifts, currently owned by local pastor Dr. Mark Kauffman, is reportedly the second oldest floral business in the United States and remains a symbol of the days of downtown prosperity. (c1975) Full Size


(Aug 2012)


The current location of Butz Flowers on East Washington Street – at intersection with South Apple Way. (Jul 2013)


(Jul 2013)


Seemingly hidden at the former location of the Pearson Block/Johnson Building sits a little-known monument to Butz Flowers. (Aug 2013)


A closeup of the plaque on the monument near the north end of the East Washington Street Bridge. (Aug 2013)


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Comment

  1. Butz Flowers spent some of it’s history in the Pearson or Peirce Building (sometimes called the Singer Building because Singer Sewing Machines had a store on the main floor. This building was located on East Washington Street as well. It was on the west side of the bridge. The ad above makes mention of that same bridge.Butz was on the side of that building hanging over the river. There is a monument at this location stating a brief history of Butz Flowers. Before Butz Flowers moved into that building, Metzler Camera/Books/Stationary was in there. When my family moved here in 1960, I believe Butz Flowers was in that building. They moved into their present location sometime in the 70’s (I think!)

    Mike Bruening · 01/18/2013 11:03 AM · #

  2. Jack Butts was a friend of mine. What a wonderful man. He did so much for New Castle. He left a lot of his money to so many things inn Lawrence County. I miss him. Harry Banks

    Harry Banks · 01/16/2014 09:42 PM · #

  3. In 1895, two of my great uncles, Will and John Cromie worked there. I suspect others in my family may have worked there as well. My Uncle John was a florist. Will was a wonderful gymnast, who started his career with the YMCA in New Castle, then worked his way to a position as a professor at University of Pennsylvania. At Penn, he worked with Dr R Tait McKenzie, the famous artist and sculptor. During his career, Dr Cromie was credited with being a part of the early development of the game of volleyball, and voted into the volleyball hall of fame. He also knew James Naismith and helped him with developing basketball. He was instrumental in bringing physical education into college training for both men and women, and first proposed intercollegiate college boxing, and brought it to reality as a sport. His training programs were utilized during World War One with both American and Canadian troops. This work led to what is today called ROTC (Reserve Officer Training), known at many universities. It began at University of Pennsylvania under Dr Cromie’s direction. His books and articles are still in print today (2016), and his collections are part of U of Pennsylvania and Springfield College Archives.

    Jim Keil · 05/09/2016 11:20 AM · #