Brothers, visionary newest inductees to business hall of fame
COLUMBUS — The newest inductees into the Columbus Area Business Hall of Fame include a visionary for the city and pair of brothers who founded a longstanding downtown business.
Chauncey Hall “C.H.” Sheldon and Alfred and Frank Tooley will be honored at a Nov. 22 banquet.
Sheldon, a native of Jefferson, Ohio, moved his family to Columbus after buying a section of ground is Bismark Township in 1882. With more land than he could personally farm, Sheldon introduced the concept in which he would furnish the ground and necessary capital with which to operate. He allowed the operators of the farms to use their savings to purchase an interest in the livestock and equipment. This proved to be very successful, and a number of farmers owe their start to this plan.
In 1884, he was an incorporator of Commercial National Bank, serving as president for about 20 years. He was vice president of German National Bank until his death in 1917. Sheldon was a director of the Columbus Real Estate and Improvement Company, which built the Thurston Hotel. The company also organized the Columbus Sewer and Drainage Company that constructed the first sanitary sewer in Columbus. He also helped organize the local YMCA and built the first facility.
Alfred “Dick” Tooley and Frank Tooley founded Tooley Drug Store in 1928, a community staple that still exists today.
Frank was born in Oconee and attended pharmacy school in Des Moines, Iowa. After working at drug stores in Central City and Norfolk, he came to Columbus in 1926 to join his brother John managing the Meridian Café.
Dick, who was born in Central City and graduated from Creighton’s School of Pharmacy, moved to Columbus in 1927 to work at Pollock Drug Store.
In 1928, the two founded Tooley Drug Company at 2613 13th St. An estimated 3,500 people visited the store on opening day to see the modern fixtures and equipment, including a fully electric soda fountain made of Tennessee marble in the center of the store.
The store was moved to the corner of the block in 1931. Ten years later, it moved one door west to allow space for Woolworth’s to come to Columbus.
The original store doubled in size in 1961 and moved back to its original location, with an expansion again in 1991. A second location opened near Columbus Community Hospital in 2002.
Frank died in 1948 and Dick purchased the store. Dick passed away in 1971 and his son, Dick Jr., carried on the family business. His son Tim joined in 1984 and Tim’s daughter Jamie has come aboard to be the fourth generation of the family to work in the Columbus business.
The Columbus Area Chamber of Commerce will also present its annual awards during the banquet, including the Archway Award given to the area’s outstanding businessman, Ovation Award given to the area’s outstanding businesswoman and Charles Farnham Volunteer of the Year honor.
Tickets for the Nov. 22 banquet at Ramada-Columbus are $35 per person or $300 for a reserved corporate table of eight. Tickets can be purchased at the chamber office or BankFirst.