Mr. & Mrs. Jesse Lehman came to New London on October 13th, 1928. They had just purchased the King Bakery here which had been vacant several months after the former owners, Mr. & Mrs. Mitchell, left town all of a sudden leaving the bakery empty. Jesse and Lillian Lehman had run a very successful bakery in Plymouth, Ohio for several years before coming to New London. They brought along Vic Weaver from Plymouth with them, and Victor stayed with the Lehman's right until the end.
Lehman's Bakery was located at the corner of East Main Street and Park Avenue in the building now occupied by the Verizon Telephone Company. The Lehman's took this small business and built it into a very lucrative business. At one time, they had five bread routes where they delivered baked goods to this immediate northern Ohio area.
They had a small store at the front of the bakery where you could go in and order baked goods, ice cream, sodas, etc. They Lehman's had three children, Lowell, Galen, and Muriel, who all graduated from our New London schools.
The children, of course, all helped in the operation of the bakery. Jesse decided the bakery needed more room so he bought fifteen acres of land at the south edge of New London on Route 60 and built a new modern bakery building along with a new home nearby. They moved into the new building on May 30th, 1949. In November 1951, Mr. Lehman made a deal with the Victoreen Instrument Company of Cleveland, Ohio, which had been looking for a new factory building, so he sold the building to Victoreen and the bakery business to Nickles Bakery of Navarre, Ohio.
For a short period of time, Nickles opened a surplus baked goods store at 12 South Main Street in downtown New London. Norma Goodman was in charge of sales and Mrs. Dan White was the cashier. Nickles later built a new building just north of the Victoreen building and re-established the bakery routes that Lehman's had for so many years. Mr. Al Crippen was the local manager for Nickles, and Maurice Bowerize was the route manager. Some of the men who worked for Mr. Lehman through the years were Orville Howsman, Al Crippen, Jim Hobbs, Carl Blake, and of course, Vic Weaver.
Vic ran a grocery business afterwards and in later years was custodian at the local schools. Mr. Howsman opened a small bakery at 48 Prospect Street after Lehman's closed but it was not successful and he spent his later years as custodian at EHOVE. Lowell Lehman also started a small bakery on North Main Street downtown but after a year or two he started a pizza business in Ashland and later went to county fairs in Ohio in the summer and Arizona in the winter months.
On Sept. 4th, 1952, Jesse Lehman opened a Massey Ferguson Tractor and Farm Implement dealership in the barn in back of the home at 16 Walnut Street which had been where his son, Lowell and his wife, Doris, had lived. Since they were on the road most of the time, Jesse and Lillian ("Babe" to all New Londoners) kept the home comfortable for them. On June 8th, 1961, Mr. Jesse Lehman suffered a fatal heart attack whiled driving his pick-up truck on North Main Street near the New York Central tracks. He was 58 years old. Services were held in the Fitch Funeral Home here and interment was at Pandora, Ohio.
From New London Record articles.