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Stratford centennial
(1891-1991)

Businesses of today,   pp. 222-242


Page 233

1990 - Completed on this site, was a new, modem ma-
chinery complex which included offices, showroom, parts
and distribution center and a large modem repair shop.
At the present time (February 1991) Don Pemsteiner is
manager. The Stratford Farmers Co-op employs 40 full time
employees. The Board of Directors includes Mark Kaiser-
President, Bruce Hughes-Vice President, Peter Beining-Sec-
retary-Treasurer, Arnold Polege and Gilbert Leick-Directors.
The new Co-op Machinery Repair and Sales
Stratford Finance
First office of Stratford Finance Corporation. (r-l): Bob
Ulrich, Ardele Klemme and Larry Klemme.
Stratford Finance Corporation was formed in 1956 with
Bob Ulrich as manager. Business was transacted from an
office located in the garage of G.L. Klemme & Son. An
insurance agency was added to Stratford Finance Corporation
in 1959 when the agency of Arnold Steines was purchased.
After acquiring that business they expanded to carry 07 and 09
loan licenses.
G.L. Klemme & Son purchased the Guenther Building in
1960. This became the new home for Stratford Finance. The
following year a general line of insurance was offered to the
public as a result of the acquisition of the Frank Weber, John
Gorman, and Griesbach insurance agencies.
Business continued to grow and in 1963 an additional
employee, Bud Hargraves, was hired to ease the work load.
In 1970, the Stratford Finance and Insurance business
was moved to the O.R. Klemme building, (now Hair Unlim-
ited). They remained there until 1974 when a new office
building was built at 300 Third Avenue.
Business ventures were expanding and changing. They
purchased the Oconomowoc Canning Company property in
1969, Klemme Turkey Farms in 1969 and 1970, 50% of the
stock of Stratford Homes in 1973, the school bus route in
1974, and the Jerome Kaiser Insurance agency in 1977.
In May of 1977, Stratford Finance Corporation changed
its name to Stratford General Corporation.
A second office building was built in 1980. The insurance
portion of the business remained at the old site and the balance
of the business moved into the new location at 248 Third
Street. Several years later the insurance business also moved
to its present location. Four years ago Pam Ehrike leased the
old insurance building and established a new business
(Parkside Styles) in Stratford.
Business has continued to be diversified. Stratford Gen-
eral Corporation purchased 5 feed mills-Klemme Feeds in
1975, General Feeds and Seeds of Wausau, Ringle and
Bimamwood in 1979, and General Farm Supply of Spencer in
1981. In 1982 General Shoe Supplies Ltd. became a part of
Stratford General Corporation.
Sole ownership went to Bob Ulrich upon the retirement
of Larry and Ardell Klemme.
Presently employed are Bob Ulrich, Bud Hargraves, Don
Spindler, Bernice Steczynski and Mary Stack.
Stratford Hardware
Richard and Lucille Larsen own Stratford Hardware.
They purchased the business in 1988 from Joe and Carol Lato.
They have done some remodeling since taking over the
business and have plans for more in the coming years.
The first Stratford Hardware.


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