UHL ART (Under Construction)
BETTY UHL • PEGGY UHL RAY • PHIL UHL • JUDITH UHL TUMA • POLLY UHL SNYDER • PATTY UHL SAVONA • DAVID UHL • TED UHL
UHL ART: BEGINNINGS
The "PERFECTION CHAIR"
Museum of Art
In Toledo Ohio, on the 1st of March, 1898, Clement R. Uhl, and his brother Philip Edward Uhl, opened a small bicycle repair shop in a little frame building at the corner of Monroe and Eleventh streets. The name of their enterprise was Uhl's Cycle Emporium. Their capital was eighty five dollars. Business grew rapidly, so that thirty days later they built a brick addition and added some machinery, together with a brazing furnace and enameling oven. Two years later, with additional brothers who had joined the firm, they incorporated the Uhl Brothers Company with a capital stock of fifteen thousand dollars and moved across the street to the one story Chiesa building. As the bottom had dropped out of the bicycle business, they started to manufacture novelties, finally developing a steel chair and table. One of their first orders was providing equipment for the soda fountain parlors of Hoffman & Company on Summit street. They soon found their space was not large enough for their growing business and moved to a two story brick building on South Huron street, that was formerly used as a bottling works. The name of the company was changed to the Toledo Metal Furniture Company. The business continued to grow and in 1910 they purchased a factory on the Lake Shore Railroad, just north of the Champion Spark Plug factory .
Clement R. Uhl was our grandfather and his son, Philip E. Uhl (2nd) was our father. Philip married Betty J. Mayes and together they had seven children. Peggy, Philip, Judith, Paula, David, and Ted. In 1953, the family moved from the original Parkwood home in the old West End of Toledo, to their cottage on the shores of Lake Erie, at Luna Pier, Michigan. Philip, (Skip) was the plant engineer at the furniture factory, and Betty, when she wasn't raising kids, taught herself to paint, sculpt, and even learned carpentry in order to help with the renovations at the family home. The Luna Pier cottage was built around 1910 as the summer home for Clement and his family, so it needed to be winterized. Skip was able to complete the major projects that made it livable year round, but he was just too busy at the factory to do much of the finishing work, so it was left to Betty. Betty was always involved in one creative project or another and was certainly the primary artistic influence on the children. Growing up looking at 100 feet of sand and 200 miles of Lake Erie also had a major impact. The drama of living so close to nature could be as terrifying as it was beautiful, and it has left lasting visual and emotional impressions on the entire family.