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Lunch With Books: A History of Bloch Brothers Tobacco Co.

Bloch Brothers Tobacco Co. was a major player in Wheeling’s business history. The Bloch Brothers Tobacco Works of South Wheeling was founded by brothers Andrew and Samuel Bloch in 1879. In those days, the Blochs were making hand-rolled stogies, but soon noticed that their employees enjoyed chewing the leftover tobacco bits that fell out as the stogies were rolled. Seeing an opportunity, the Blochs packaged up those bits and sold them as West Virginia “Mail Pouch” tobacco.

Stuart Bloch appeared at Lunch With Books at the Ohio County Public Library in Wheeling on Tuesday, April 27, 2010 to discuss the history of his family’s world-famous business: Bloch Brothers Tobacco Company, makers of stogies and Mail Pouch chew, a product famously promoted with iconic, painted barns that still dot the U.S. landscape.

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