Made in New London
Reuter Family Collection
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Mold, Cigar
Large wooden press with two parallel feet as a base. Body consists of a wooden uprights that sit on the feet, a horizontal piece near the top of the frame has a large metal screw that runs through the center, the end of the screw is attached to another board that is parallel with the feet. When the screw is tightened, the board presses on the individual cigar molds. Inside the frame sits 13 rectangular two-part torpedo shaped cigar molds. A newspaper article about the Reuter Cigar shop is glued to one upright, but has been mostly torn away.

VE Exhibit Label 1:
Fred Reuter started a cigar factory in New London in 1898 across the street from the Grand Opera House. He ran the business for 60 years in various locations. Fred learned to make cigars from his brother, Charles, who also owned a cigar factory in New London. Fred claimed in a 1958 interview that at one time there were 800 cigar making plants in Wisconsin. Most of these plants were small, family-operated shops where cigars were rolled and sold immediately.

A cigar mold creates the shape of the cigar. Tobacco, wrapped in binding leaves is put in the wood molds, the molds are put in the press and tightened. Once the shape is solid enough, the tobacco is taken out of the molds and the final wrapper leaf is applied.
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Cigar PressCigar Press