# 1 Madison Avenue

A Great Address


Dan May, the MetLife archivist, has been a big help to me with this project since the git go. When I told him I was coming into the city and would like to drop by to just say hello, he extended it to a tour of Metropolitan Life's Museum and Boardroom. An offer I could not refuse.....

Friday January 18th was one cold day in the big apple, but perfect for a walk from Penn Station over to and down Fifth Ave to # 1 Madison Square and what was once the tallest building in New York.



The View From Madison Square Park

As I looked up at it I could not help but think of the photo I have of "Big John Hegeman" on top of the tower in the early 1900's, when it was just skeleton, dazzling the crowd and showing off with his rivet gun driving home the ceremonial last rivet.





I was a little early and Dan had a few things to finish up, so he turned me over to George Steele to kick things off. Then George took me right in to meet..........


"The Big Boss"


Still Keeping His Eye On The







On the left of J. F Knapp is Frederick H. Ecker who was with the company 80 Years ! That's Right 80 Years.

On the right is John Hegeman who succeeded J. F. in 1891.


Dan soon joined us and we continued on into the museum which was also fascinating . Among the neat things I got to see up close was "The Leather Box"

that first held the original assets of the company. It would take a Knapp shoe factory plus to make a leather box big enough to hold todays two trillion in assets! Big John's rivet gun was there along with a larger than life statue of Mr. Knapp. All in all a very enjoyable morning. I learned a lot about the company and it was a nice way to get further insight into J. F. Knapp's world.

Thank you Mr. Dan May


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