Biography of J. J. & C. S. Randall
Winona County, MN Biographies

J. J. RANDALL & SON, dealers in coal, office at 20 East Second street, sheds in rear of office and in the west half of block 69, the east half of which is occupied by the gasworks. J. J. Randall established himself in business in this city April 13, 1859, as a member of the firm of L. D. Randall & Co., dealers in leather, hides, shoe findings, saddlery, hardware and harness manufacturers. The original firm into which J. J. Randall came was established two years earlier, under the name of P. Voneschen & Co., L. D. Randall being a member of that firm. In 1859 the business was conducted on the east side of Main street, between Second and Third, and so continued until the great fire of 1862, in which their losses were $15,000; insurance only $2, 000. The fire occurred on Sunday, and the following Monday, no carpenters being available, Mr. Randall put tools into the hands of his own workmen, and in five days had completed a one-story frame structure, 20 x 70 feet, just across the street from the old location. This building - the first erected and taken possession of after the fire is still standing. The same fall they built upon the lot they now occupy a two story brick, with stone foundations and basements, 23 x 140 feet, of which they took possession November 1 of that year, continuing the old business. In 1873 the business, which had been successfully conducted here for sixteen years, was discontinued, and a coal office opened. In addition to their city trade, which aggregates about 3,000 tons per annum, they supply coal-sheds for settlers along the lines of the Hastings & Dakota and Minnesota Southern railways. These supplies are furnished to actual settlers through local agents at cost, plus fifty cents per ton for handling, and the aggregate annual sales are from 25,000 to 30,000 tons.

J. J. RANDALL was born July 6, 1829, near Ithica, New York, and at eight years of age came into Illinois with his parents, who settled at St. Charles, Kane county, in that state. His father was in the shoe, leather and harness trade, and Mr. Randall was engaged in this business in his father's establishment till he came to Winona in 1859. Appointed United States revenue collector for the first Minnesota district in 1866. Mr. Randall held that office until 1872. The following year he was appointed railway commissioner for the state, holding that position to the expiration of the term, eighteen months. He was also chairman of the board of county commissioners for twelve years - from 1862 to 1874 - and city treasurer one term. One of the original incorporators of the Winona 0-as Light Company, he is now president of that corporation; is also a member of the board of trade, and thoroughly identified with the industries of the city. Since November, 1872, has been president of the Woodlawn Cemetery Association. Of late years Mr. Randall has interested himself in farming operations, principally stock and dairy. His Lake View farm of 900 acres, near Tracy, Lyons county, has 500 acres under cultivation, is very pleasantly located, and makes a pleasant summer resort for his family.

C. S. RANDALL, the "son" of the firm, was born in St. Charles, Kane county, Illinois, May 14, 1856, received his education in the schools of Winona, and at twenty years of age entered the house of which he became junior partner, September 1, 1882.


FROM:
The History of Winona County
Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc.
BY: A. T. Andreas
H. H. Hill and Company, Publishers
Chicago 1883.

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