ebook  History of Watertown, Wisconsin

Koser’s Bakery

109-111 S. Second






F. J. Koser is having- plans and specifications prepared fora new business building on Second St. on the lot which he recently purchased just south of his bakery.  The building is to be 32x69 feet and two stories high and when completed will be occupied as a bakery, store and tenement, in addition to the building which he now occupies.                The Watertown News, 01 Nov 1905




Work of excavating has commenced for a new business building on Second Street, which, when completed, will be an ornament to that section of the city and a credit to the enterprising gentleman who is erecting the same.  Reference is made to the new 32x70, two story brick building which will be erected on the vacant lot on the above named street, between Main and Market streets, by F. J. Koser, the baker.


The plans for the new building were drawn by F. L. Lindsay, the architect.  It is to be finished in hardwood, with metal ceilings.  John Deihl has the contract for the mason work, while the contract for the carpenter work went to a Jefferson man.  The building is to be completed and ready for occupancy by the first of November.


Mr. Koser’s present quarters [known to be 109 S. Second] will be used for the bakery property while the new structure [109-111] will be used for a sales room and living apartments.                  The Watertown News, 20 Jul 1906




The undersigned physicians wish to state that the Koser Bakery on Second Street has been thoroughly fumigated and put in a cleanly and healthy condition and assure the public that there is no danger from any contagion owing to the recent quarantine.  The public can be assured that there is not the slightest danger of any contagion and that when the bakery opens on next Tuesday the public need have no fear of withholding the patronage accorded this business place previously.


C. R. Feld

Health Commissioner.


Dr. T. F. Shinnick


In this connection, I wish to return my thanks to the physicians for their care and treatment at my place and to also emphatically deny the statement circulated that I intended to institute suit against the city or others owing to the quarantine at my place. Nothing was further from my thoughts and I can only add that I have been treated fairly and manly in the matter.


F. J. Koser 




Albert Koser went to Neenah last Friday, where he purchased a large bread bakery and will operate it in the future.  His brother Leo will assist him in operating it.  Their many Watertown friends wish them success.   WG







Damage Done by Fire of January 9 Repaired

Steel Ceilings and Walls and Proof Box


After two weeks enforced rest from baking, the Koser Bakery, 111 S. Second Street, is now prepared to resume.  The baking room which was badly damaged by fire on Sunday, January 9, has been fully repaired and in a manner that makes it one of the best and most serviceable departments of its kind in any bakery.  The ceiling and walls are now entirely of steel and painted a pure white which gives it the appearance of ideal sanitary conditions.  The fire started in the “proof box,” a wooden structure which was destroyed in the blaze.  The new box is made entirely of steel and is much more serviceable.  The baking room is very spacious and well arranged.  Bakers who have looked it over say that it can hardly be improved upon. 


On account of the improvements made necessary, the Koser bakery had to suspend baking in its plant, but through Herbert Pagel of the West Side bakery, they were able to turn out barely enough to keep up with the trade.


The bakery, recognized as one of the best and most up-to-date to be found anywhere, is now better prepared than ever to serve its large and growing trade.


Mr. Koser went in business here 23 years ago and has been at the present location, 111 Second Street for the past 14 years.


The building is splendidly adapted to the bakery and confectionary business on a large scale and under the present efficient management of Mr. and Mrs. Koser and their children, the business has grown to large proportions.


The Koser Bakery is the manufacturer of the celebrated “Golden Crust Bread,” and specializes in rolls, pies and cakes.


The result has been a large shipping for foreign trade as is evidenced by the fact that numerous school girls are employed after school in wrapping food parcels to be forwarded to distant points.


The improvements just made as a result of the fire have added materially to the value of the bakery, which will commence to operate the ovens Monday morning.



A group of people standing in a bakery

Description automatically generated  




Miss Florence Koser, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. F. J. Koser of Koser’s bakery of this city, has purchased the Model bakery at Beaver Dam of S. H. Collingsworth.  She will make many fine improvements in the plant, and give the people of that city up-to-date service.  She has been employed for a number of years in the bakery of her parents in this city, and knows the bakery business thoroughly.  Four members of the Koser family now are proprietors of first-class bakeries, F. J. Koser in Watertown, Alex Koser at Neenah, Mark Koser at Fort Atkinson and Miss Florence Koser at Beaver Dam. 







11 05       Mrs. F. J. KOSER DIES

Widely known woman expires at hospital this forenoon


Mrs. F. J. Koser, one of Watertown's most widely known women residents and long identified in the bakery business here, died at St. Mary's Hospital at 10:30 o'clock this forenoon.  She had long been suffering with a heart ailment and entered the hospital Friday after her condition had been critical for some time.


Born in Jefferson 68 years ago, her maiden name was Catherine Spangler.  She was a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Peter Spangler.  Forty-seven years ago she married Mr. Koser and for a time they lived on a farm near Sun Prairie.  Then they moved to Minnesota and later returned to Wisconsin.  For the last 38 years they lived in Watertown, having taken over a bakery establishment here [assumed to be that of Charles Herger].


Surviving are her husband and seven children, Mrs. A. Brechtl of West Allis, Mrs. Ben Neumann and Miss Florence Koser of this city, Mrs. Mike Heilmeier of Fort Atkinson, Albert Koser of Neenah, and Leo and Mark Koser of this city.  There are ten grandchildren.  Two sisters and four brothers also survive, Mrs. Anna Miller of Beloit, Mrs. Hubert Krusing of West Allis, Andrew Spangler of West Allis, Peter and Lawrence Spangler of Jefferson and Arthur Spangler of Beaver Dam.  Three children preceded their mother in death, Miss Agnes Koser and Arthur and Clarence Koser.


Mrs. Koser played a prominent part in developing the bakery establishment which she and her husband operated for many years, starting in a small way, until it became one of the foremost businesses of its kind in this section, serving not only Watertown but surrounding communities as well.


Mrs. Koser had a talent for business and the home and could divide her time between the two with equal ease and ability.


It is no exaggeration to say that she was one of the city's most beloved women, a woman who had friends in every walk of life and acts of charity and kindness endeared her to countless numbers of people. Her death removes a woman who will be missed in the community and news of her passing came, as a shock to people throughout the city today.


She was a member of St. Henry's Catholic Church, the American Legion auxiliary and the Christian Mother's Society.


The body was taken to the James W. Boyle chapel and will be returned to the home, 111 Second Street, tomorrow. The funeral will be held from there Thursday morning with services in St. Henry's Catholic Church at 9:30 o'clock.  A solemn high mass will be sung by the Rev. Dean F. X. Schwinn.  Burial will be in St. Henry's Cemetery.   WDT






07 16       EDWARD MEYER,s formerly a driver for Koser’s, took over the management and operation of the Cities Service station on N Fourth.







02 10         



01 05       KOSER’S CLOSES

Koser’s Bakery, 111 South Second, has closed its doors and the last owner and operator, Ernst Stellbrink, has gone out of business.  The bakery, one of the oldest and most widely known of its kind, was founded by the late Mr. and Mrs. Frank J. Koser, who operated it for many years.  Both died here.  It was taken over by the family and the last family owner and operator, Miss Florence Koser, sold the business to Mr. Stellbrink who came here from Marshfield and has operated it for the past 12 years, continuing the fine quality baked goods for which it was known.  Equipment in the bakery has been purchased by Pagel’s Bakery of 114 West Main Street.   WDT



10 26       FORMER KOSER BAKERY PROPERTY PURCHASED by Fin & Tail Foods, Inc.

Fin & Tail Foods, Inc., announced plans for expanding its operations by franchising additional stores dealing in fish, sea foods, and a variety of food products, sauces, etc.  The announcement was made by Robert Franz who has purchased the former Koser Bakery property in South Second Street and converted it into wholesale office quarters for the organization, renting it to Fin & Tail Foods, Inc.  The building also has been remodeled to provide a large and modern kitchen on the second floor where the line of sauces, foods and fish are prepared.   WDT


1981       MARY ENGELHART [1887-1981].  Was employed at Koser's Bakery for 45 years.


2009       ROSE M. CHRISTIAN, 70, of Watertown, passed away Nov. 18, 2009, at St. Mary's Hospital in Madison.  Funeral services were at St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church in Watertown.  Burial in Ixonia Lutheran Cemetery.  The former Rose Marie Kohls was born on May 14, 1939, in Watertown, daughter of George and Katherine (Kaiser) Kohls. On Nov. 10, 1956, she married Willard E. Christian at St. John's Lutheran Church in Watertown.  Rose graduated from St. John's Lutheran Grade School and attended Watertown Senior High School. She worked as a clerk at Koser Bakery and as a waitress at the Beaver Hotel Dining Room in Beaver Dam. Rose and her husband moved to Milwaukee where she worked at Johnson Cookie Factory.




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History of Watertown, Wisconsin