Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Talented Tuesday - Virgil Frederick Elsner, 1915-2009

Virgil Frederick Elsner, son of Frederick W. and Edith Lorena (Winsor) Elsner. 
Born - Dec. 3, 1915 in Princeton, Minn.
Died - Aug. 15, 2009 in Redondo Beach, Cal.
Married - Aug. 20, 1942 in Boston, Mass. to
Mary Louise Hart, daughter of Leo Hart and Ann (Gross) Hart
Born - Feb. 27, 1920 in Woodstock, Ill.
Died - Oct. 14, 2003 in Redondo Beach, Cal.

  The following passage is from: Down Winsor Way - A Family History and Genealogy, by Vivian Winsor Toothaker, Publish by Cuddy's North Park Printery, San Diego, CA (October, 1962).

  "As a very young child, Virgil showed great aptitude for drawing.  His parents encouraged him in this.  After taking an art course in high school, he attended the Art Institute of Chicago.  His work has been in the field of commercial art both in Chicago and on the west coast, having worked for Walt Disney Studios during one period.
  In 1960 an exhibit on electronics, which he designed, was chosen as the best of approximately 5,000 pieces submitted for the Annual Los Angeles Art Directors Club Exhibit.  This same exhibit won a medal in the annual competition for displays and exhibits conducted by Display World Magazine and it also won a first place award in the annual competition conducted by the West Coast Industrial Advertisers Council.  The design was carried out to display products in an electronic equipment show in New York City.
  His designs for some 42 departments were used in a new department store (Kauphman's) which opened in 1961 in a suberb of Philadelphia.  His industrial designs for various companies are often seen on the market.
  During World War II, Virgil served in the U.S. Navy for more than three years.  He was assigned to a Sub-Chaser which combed the waters of New Guinea, Australia and the Philippines.
  Before entering the Service, he had met Mary Louise Hart, who was teaching school in Oak Park, Ill.  They were married in Boston, Mass.  While Virgil was in the Service, Mary Lou taught school (physical education) in San Bernardino, and San Diego, Calif. and became very fond of the west.  Virgil, too, decided it had much to offer and they stayed in California upon his release from the Navy.  During 1958-59 Virgil again worked in Chicago but the whole family was happy to return to California once again.
  Creative work, such as Virgil's cannot be bound by hours from nine to five.  His great passion for the work he is doing very often causes him to burn the midnight oil and even to greet the dawn.  This calls for great forebearance on the part of Mary Lou, who has much understanding and interest in his work.
  Their sons show an inclination toward the business of art also."

  I did a google search for "Kauphman's" and could not find anything with that spelling.  However, there was a store called "Kaufmann's" which according to wikipedia, originated in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.   Click here if you want to read more about Kaufmann's.

  When I googled Virgil, I found 2 patents that were awarded to him!  This one is for a design for a waffle iron:

Patent number: D121386
Filing date: Apr 16, 1940
Issue date: Jul 9, 1940

Here is  the link to view it on google - Virgil Elsner's Waffle Iron Patent 

And this one is for a sprayer:

Patent number: D156873
Filing date: Jun 14, 1949
Issue date: Jan 17, 1950
The link to view it on google is - Virgil Elsner's Sprayer Patent


Patti said...

That's so neat that you found the patent drawing through google- It's amazing what we can find to add to our family stories that way!
Thank you for sharing,

Sheryl said...

You're so right, you never know what you might find when you do a google search! It is so exciting!