Hyman Drutz came to Saranac Lake to "cure" and founded three groceries: the Star Market, the Economy Market, and the Drutz Super Market. The latter was at 4 Bloomingdale Avenue, and was run by the whole Drutz family, including Sol and Joe Drutz; the name was changed to Drutz's Fine Food about 1956.
Adirondack Daily Enterprise, August 25, 1966
Drutz Store to Close After 40-Year Span
As of the close of business on September 3, an old Saranac Lake landmark will he no more. At that time the Drutz Market, after just 40 years of existence in one form or another, will close its doors, finally and definitively.
A few days before that, next Monday, August 29, Joseph, Drutz, now sole owner of the business, will start a new job as warehousing superintendent of the American Management Association. He will be in charge of all shipping and receiving in the AMA's expanding Saranac Lake operation.
For the last few days Mrs. Beatrice Drutz will carry on the store's closing activities.
Joe's father, Hyman Drutz, founded the business in the fall of 1926, with the original store in the Murphy Block near the firehouse. The elder Drutz had come to Saranac Lake a few years before that as a private patient. At one time, the Drutz family had three stores, the original one in the Murphy Block being called Star Market. Another store called Economy Market was then opened on Broadway where the Bryant Market is now located, and a third, the Cut-Rate Market, was opened on River Street near where the Mainline Garage is now situated. In 1937, Mr. Drutz consolidated the three stores as Drutz Market where the store is today.
Mr. Drutz died in 1941 and his widow , Mrs. Annie Drutz, and her elder son Sol became co-owners and equal partners in the business. In 1960 Mrs. Drutz and Joseph bought out Sol's ownership when he moved to New York City. When Mrs. Drutz moved to Forest Hills in New York City three years later, Joseph became the sole owner of the store.
A 1937 graduate of the Saranac Lake High School, Joseph attended the University of Wisconsin for two years. In 1942 he joined the U. S. Air Force, received his commission as a navigator in 1944, and then went overseas. In November 1944, the plane of which he was navigator was shot down, and he became a Prisoner of War. In the Stalag Luft Eins on the Baltic sea until the German capitulation in May 1945.
Joseph Drutz has served three terms as a member of the village board, was president of the Chamber of Commerce, a member of the board of the General Hospital a member of Rotary, and Franklin County Democratic chairman in 1954-55. He was also a past exalted ruler of the Elks Club.
Lake Placid News, April 12, 1935
Second Tarantula Found In Saranac Lake Store
A lady tarantula, dreaded spider of the tropics, chose a Saranac Lake meat market as the ideal spot to hatch her young.
The discovery was made last week at the Star Market, owned by Sol Drutz. First indication of the spider's presence was when Mr. Drutz' mother, Mrs. Annie Drutz, began "cutting down" a large bunch of bananas.
The tarantula apparently resented the intrusion on her egg-hatching activities. With the tarantula equivalent of a savage growl, she leered at Mrs. Drutz.
The latter had no desire to further the argument. Dropping the bananas to the floor, she issued a general plea for help that was heard by Malcolm Brown, clerk in the store, and former resident of a southern state where the poisonous black spiders are every-day affairs.
Seizing a nearby insecticide "gun" Mr. Brown splattered a generous portion of the contents over the tarantula's black, hair-covered frame. Overcome by the fumes, the spider became groggy, and warily prodded by the broad end of a broom, the bug released its hold from the banana stalk and dropped to the floor, where it was captured in a fruit jar.
Dutz said it was the second time one of his stores has been used by tarantulas as a final resting place. The first time, Mr. Drutz told, was approximately two years ago. Unlike the present instance, all concerned weren't so fortunate.
An employe of the store, Miss Margaret Duquette, Mr. Drutz said, was bitten by the spider, and required extensive medical treatment before she recovered.
One of the most unique aspects of the capture, Mr. Drutz pointed out, as he regarded the imprisoned spider, was the tiny balls of eggs attached to the insect's stomach by a thin strand of what unknowing Northerner's would term "spider's web."