Joseph Bishop Van Sciver was born on May 14, 1861, in Hainesport, New Jersey. He grew up in Camden and attended the E. A. Stevens School. In 1881, he founded his furniture manufacturing and retail business in a small shop at 210 Federal Street. The business grew rapidly, and by 1888, he had moved to a four-story building directly opposite the Pennsylvania Terminal and Ferry at Delaware and Federal. Over the years, he expanded his operations to Trenton and Allentown, Pennsylvania.
By 1923, the Van Sciver business occupied ten acres, with new construction and buildings added in 1890, 1896, 1902, and 1923. The furniture produced by Van Sciver was shipped all over the world, and the business was a household name. In addition to furniture manufacturing, J.B. Van Sciver was involved in other businesses related to the manufacture and sale of construction materials.
On June 9, 1892, he married Florence Groff Kelly at the First Baptist Church in Camden, and they had four children: Joseph B. Jr., Russell, Lloyd, and Ruth. The Van Scivers later made their home in the Chestnut Hill section of Philadelphia.
J.B. Van Sciver remained actively involved in his business until about a year before his death on June 19, 1943. He was succeeded by his son, Joseph Bishop Van Sciver Jr., as the chief executive officer of the company.
Just 100 years ago Camden was a thriving, prosperous industrial metropolis and the future looked bright for this river city.
In 1881, J.B. Van Sciver founded his furniture manufacturing and retail business, and by 1888, he had moved to a four-story building opposite the Ferry at Delaware and Federal.
A centennial review: the year was 1927 and the future had hardly ever looked brighter for the City of Camden. Times were prosperous, business and industry were booming, and the city was full of recently constructed public buildings, civic improvements, schools, the new Delaware River bridge and its new highway to the suburbs. The stock…
Various industries in Camden, circa 1929
First Camden National Bank and Trust Co. is celebrating its 130th anniversary today.
The Merchants’ Cooperative Association, has announced a three-day co-operative bargain promotion which will be known as Camden’s Co-operation Days.