JOHN SCHIMPF was born in Dreihausen, Germany in 1865. He came to America at the age of 15. After working in a North Dakota lumber camp and as a government stage driver, he came to Camden NJ. A John Schimpf is listed in the 1890-1891 Camden City Directory as living at 234 Burns Street, in the Poet's Row section of North Camden. He was then working as a shovelmaker in Philadelphia.

Shortly before the 1896 City Directory was compiled, John Schimpf moved to the Cramer Hill section of Camden, where he went to work as a driver for Christopher L. Dietz, who had founded the Crescent Bottling Company on River Avenue at Fulton Street (present-day North 25th Street) in 1893. John Schimpf eventually took over management and ownership of the business. Christopher Dietz passed away in September of 1900.

John Schimpf married Louisa Ortlepp, and they had a son named Louis, born August 19, 1903. Sadly, Louisa Schimpf passed away February 3, 1909, ten days short of her 31st birthday.

John Schimpf was very active in the civic and business life of Camden. He was a director of the Broadway Merchants Trust Company bank, and, with Dr. C.F. Hadley and Frederick von Nieda among others, co-founded of the East End Trust in 1905. He was a member of Mozart Lodge No. 121 F&AM, the Germania Maennerchor, the Improved Order of Red Men, the Lincoln Club, and the Elks.

At the time  of the 1920 Census, Louis Schimpf was working with his father in the bottling business. Seeing an opportunity in the auto repair business, the Schimpfs founded the Crescent Garage auto repair business in the 1920s. This business remains a successful garage today, and has been known popularly since the 1930s simply as Schimpf's.

John Schimpf passed away on December 3, 1935 after a short illness. He was buried at Bethel Cemetery in Pennsauken NJ. Among his pallbearers were Camden Mayor Frederick Von Nieda, and many other members of Camden's German- American community. He was survived by a sister, Anna, in Germany, and his son Louis.

Crescent Beverage

February 1, 2004

Camden City Directory - 1913

Camden City Directory - 1913

Camden City Directory - 1917

Crescent Beverage

Seltzer Bottle

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Camden Courier-Post


Louis E.
Schimpf, Inc.

February 1, 2004

Camden Courier-Post - December 4, 1935

Camden Courier-Post - December 5, 1935

Frederick von Nieda, George Spicks

Bottle Up and Go - A Look at Bottlers & Beer Distributors in Camden