Arlo Bates

Many of you will remember Arlo and Helen Bates. They lived in the early years of their marriage on Germain Street just up from Washington and later on Calais Avenue near the ball diamond.

At some point, probably after Arlo returned from the Second World War, he took over the family jewelry business which was located on Main Street between Monroe and North. He can be seen above walking on up main Street to his jewelry store probably in the 50’s.

In the early years  Arlo ran a currency exchange across from customs. The photos above are about 1933 before the new customs station was built. The Grant Anderson building seen above was demolished to construct the new customs house and across the street from Arlo’s currency exchange was the customs house seen in the photo dated August 9, 1933. When customs moved in 1935 to the new building across the street this building became a restaurant.

You can get a better perspective in this photo. The vehicle in the photo is stopped directly in front of customs. The point of all this is that Jack Alley sent me an email today with a description of Arlo’s business technique. He walked up and down the line of traffic backed up to Canadian side making deals with folks entering the U.S. before they cleared customs. Life was simpler on the border in those days, don’t imagine Arlo would get away with that today.

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