606 Washington Ave. N.

This is where it all started! The M.H. Baker Company changed its name to Chem/Serv, Inc. in this multi-storied building in the now trendy warehouse district of Washington Avenue. Tall and narrow, this building was a harrowing place for a company that moves inventory. The office area occupied the first floor, so all inventory had to be moved up and down a very old, very rickety, and persnickety freight elevator. No one really knew how much weight “the thing” could accommodate; each trip up or down was an adventure, and our stalwart warehouse workers seemed to take it all in stride. There was a tiny room, sometimes called “the lab” and sometimes called “the kitchen,” depending on who was using it at the time. It was a kitchen because it contained a hot plate and a very small “fridge.” One of our favorite kitchen memories took place on our then sales manager’s Harry Fischman’s birthday. He loved chili dogs, so we gathered all the fixings. The chili wasn’t cooking fast enough in a crockpot, so Chem/Serv’s secretary thought it would be a splendid idea to leave the “crock” part of the crockpot on the hot plate. The crock exploded with a loud BOOM, and we quickly discovered chili hanging from the walls, as well as the ceiling. In the end, Harry Fischman went out for his birthday lunch.