From The Archives
c. 1904 Neoclassical
Fresno, California 93721
The Long-Black Home
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The Long / Black HomeFrom Heritage Fresno, "The imposing red brick house has a large portico supported by Ionic columns. Above the portico is a widow's walk surrounded by a balustrade. Dormers decorated with shingles in fish-scale design flank the pediment in the center of the house, which in turn is broken with three windows, the center one surmounted by an oval light. A porte-cochere on the north side sheltered the carriages which swept up to the home.
Two well-known business men and their families have lived in this house. Arthur B. Long, vice president of the Fresno Flume and Irrigation Company, acquired the house in 1907. the flume, which carried lumber from the Shaver Lake area to the valley, was considered "one of the greatest enterprises ever established in Fresno County."
The house was occupied by the Long family until the death of Mr. Long and then was sold to the Fred P. Black family, for whom it is best known. A veteran Fresno merchant, Mr. Black built a retail grocery empire and helped to revolutionize the grocery trade in California with one of the first cash and carry grocery stores.
Black, who was born in London, Ontario, Canada, came to San Jose with his family as a boy in 1877. When he came to Fresno in 1913, grocery stores delivered their products by horse and wagon. The larger stores had as many as 100 horses and made three or four deliveries daily in almost every section of town.
An earlier change that he inaugurated in the food business was that of packaging in convenient amounts staples which ordinarily sold in bulk. These products included beans, rice, potatoes, crackers, cookies and candy.
At the time of his death in 1949, Black owned five grocery stores in Fresno and ten in Stockton."
Archived in May, 2012
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