Louis Gelders

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Louis Gelders (born March 16, 1862 in Hilsbach, Baden-Württemberg, Germany; died March 5, 1927 in Birmingham) was a real estate investor, restauranteur, and part-owner of the Parisian department store.

Louis was the son of Joseph and Fanny Gelders. He and his wife, the former Blanche Loeb of Mississippi, lived at the Opera House Hotel until their first daughter, Emma, turned two. They moved, in 1896, to a large house at 1525 Beech Street on the slope of Red Mountain.

Gelders and his children, Emma, Joseph and Louis Jr, rode horses in the nearby forests. He was naturalized as a U.S. citizen on January 16, 1900, with Frank O'Brien appearing to attest to his character.

His Gelders' Restaurant was located at 110 20th Street North in downtown Birmingham. He helped organize the city's Mardi Gras celebrations in 1886. In 1911 he and G. W. Beringer purchased the Parisian Dry Goods & Millinery Company from its founders, Estalla and Bertha Sommers. They hired Lauren Bloch as general manager, and then sold the company to him in 1918.

The family attended Temple Emanu-El, where Gelders served on the building committee for the 1914 temple, nearby on Highland Avenue. He died in 1927 and is buried at Cemetery Emanu-El.

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