Alfred Nickles Bakery History Timeline


  • 1903 - Alfred Nickles immigrates to the United States at the age of 19.
  • 1904 - Alfred marries Emma Baumgardner from Iens, Switzerland.
  • 1909 - Alfred, a Swiss immigrant, opens the Navarre Bakery and Ice Cream Company, In Navarre, Ohio, in the "Corl Building." Alfred, his wife Emma and Emma's sister Ida Baumgardner are the first employees.
  • 1914 - First delivery truck purchased. 
  • 1927 - First sales distribution branch established in Canton, Ohio.
  • 1928 - Ernest Nickles marries Lucile "Cookie" Rowe.
  • 1934 - Company buys bakery in Martins Ferry, Ohio.
  • 1934 - Alfred Nickles Bakery becomes incorporated. The Board of Directors are Alfred Nickles, Ernest Nickles, Edward Nickles, Charles H. Miller, and John F. Locke.
  • 1936 - Edward Nickles marries Thelma Whitmore.
  • 1938 - Company acquires Limbrecht Bakery in Warren, Ohio. 
  • 1941 - Company builds an addition at the Navarre bakery. 
  • 1949 - Alfred Nickles dies. Son, Ernest Nickles becomes President and CEO.
  • 1949 - Marie Nickles marries David E. Gardner. 
  • 1950 - Company builds an addition at the Navarre bakery. 
  • 1952 - Company acquires Frank Baker Bread Company in Lima, Ohio. 
  • 1953 - Company builds a new bakery in Martins Ferry, Ohio.
  • 1955 - Company becomes a Charter Member of the W.E.Long Co-Operative.
  • 1956 - Company acquires Hossick Bakery in Elkhart, Indiana.
  • 1968 - Edward Nickles, (Ernest's brother) dies.
  • 1974 - Company acquires Tony's bakery in Fremont, Ohio. 
  • 1974 - Company builds an addition at Navarre bakery and adds an automated bun line and shipping department.
  • 1978 - Company builds an addition at Fremont bakery and adds anautomated Adamatic roll line.
  • 1980 - David E. Gardner, (husband of former Marie Nickles, Ernest&rsquos and Edward&rsquos sister) becomes President. Ernest Nickles remains CEO.
  • 1984 - Company builds an addition at Martins Ferry bakery to automate bread line.
  • 1988 - Company relocates bakery in Lima to former Monsanto building and adds two automated bun lines.
  • 1994 - Company builds an addition at Lima bakery and adds an automated bread line and an automated Adamatic line.
  • 1995 - Ernest Nickles dies after a 70-year career with the Company. David E. Gardner becomes CEO.
  • 1996 - Company is named a "Family Firm of Distinction" by the Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve University.
  • 1996 - Bakery in Fremont is closed. 
  • 1997 - Company builds a sales distribution branch in Massillon, Ohio.  
  • 1998 - Company builds an addition at Navarre bakery and automates the bread line and adds an automated bun line.
  • 1998 - Company builds a sales distribution branch in Washington, PA.
  • 1998 - Bakery in Elkhart, Indiana, is closed.
  • 1998 - David E. Gardner, retires after a 50-year career with the Company.David A. Gardner becomes President and C.E.O.
  • 2003 - Company automate bun line at Navarre bakery.
  • 2003 - David E. Gardner dies.
  • 2007 - Addition to Martins Ferry bakery built to house the creme yeast tanks.
  • 2008 - Former Navarre Elementary School property located adjacent to Navarre bakery purchased in May.
  • 2009 - Celebrated 100th anniversary.
  • 2009 - Sweet roll finish at Navarre bakery automated.
  • 2011 - Former Navarre Deposit Bank building located across street from Navarre bakery purchased to house Human Resources and Payroll.
  • 2013 - Ernest Nickles inducted into the Baking Hall of Fame in March.