In the late 1800’s four brothers, William, Vincent, Joe, and Erminio went to trade school in Italy that taught the tile, marble, terrazzo, and mosaic trade. That's how the Vedovato family got started in the tile business. Once they finished school, deteriorating economic conditions in Italy force the brothers to look elsewhere to make a living. Off they went to Germany and settled in the city of Aachen to started a tile business. The business was doing well and the two oldest brothers William & Vincent decided to take a vacation and chose New York City. Little did they realize that their vacation would change the course of their lives. When they arrived in the big city, they noticed very little tile being used and a ton of building going on. They foresaw problems brewing with the Germany Government so they decided to sell everything and setup shop in New York. A storefront at the end of 116th street was available which was perfect since it was close to the East River. That made it very easy to receive shipments of tile by boat. The original company was named Acme Tile & Marble and run by William and Vincent. In June of 1910 Vedovato Bros was formed and run by Joe and Erminio. Acme sold the material and Vedovato Bros, supplied the labor, and fabricated the mosaics for flooring.
Things were going well until 1914 when the First World War began and then in 1918 with the onset of Spanish Flu Pandemic. It put a major strain on the business and the flu claimed the life of Vincent. Once the war ended in came the roaring 20's and business was booming. The Bronx wilderness was being developed and apartment house after apartment house was being built. Since Vedovato Brothers was well established tile was fling out the doors. In the mid 1920’s William, the oldest brother, decided to cash out and return home to Italy to take care of his aging parents and tend the family farm. Joe and Ermino both decided to part ways. Ermino not wanting any partners bought out Joe who then started his own contracting business. In 1930 Ermino incorporated Vedovato Brothers and his oldest son Leon joined the business. The next 12 years were a struggle due to the stock market crash, the great depression, and World War II. During the war Vedovato Brothers was forced to close but setup a machine shop to make nuts and bolts he aid in the war effort.
Leon on the far left and Ermino on the far right.
Once the war ended Vedovato Brothers reopened. Occupied Japan was being rebuild by the US government and one of the industries they concentrated on was tile. As a result Vedovato Brothers began importing tile from Japan. Once you start to import tile you need big warehouse to store it, so the company rented a warehouse in the Bronx. It didn't take long for the warehouse to fill up. After a couple of years, the owner sold the building and needed to move all the inventory out within one year. With Ermino as a sounding board, Leon and son Dick, who had joined the business, decided to build a warehouse on property they owned in Scarsdale. They finished the building in record speed but half way during the build they decided to make it a store as well.
On March 1st 1960 the store officially open. Grand Father Ermino now in his 80's was proud to see his son and grandson expand the family business. Unfortunately, he passed away later that year. A couple of years had passed the new business was doing well and a ton of new tile in new sizes and colors was now being imported. Tragedy struck again with the sudden passing of Leon at 50 years old. This was a major set back for the family. Lena, Leon's wife, who was always active in the business, would take on a much bigger roll. She brought in her brother Tony Vaccaro to run Westchester Tile while Dick took over at Vedovato Brothers. Lena realized that all the new tile they were importing was hard to sell since people couldn't visualize what it looked like installed. Lena, Tony and Dick put their heads together and decided to build a space that showed full size bathrooms with their tile installed. In 1968 they opened one of the first tile showrooms in New York.
Now the stage was set and Westchester Tile was slowly becoming a force in the industry. Dick's cousin Bobby Vaccaro and younger brother Larry join the company in the 1970's. Both Larry and Bobby took turns managing Vedovato Brothers as Dick, Tony and Lena operated Westchester Tile. Both companies were doing well so Lena decided to retire in the early 1980's leaving her sons Dick and Larry in charge. The next twenty years the two brothers with the help of Uncle Tony and cousin Bobby pushed the business to heights they never imagined possible. In the mid 1980's Tony's daughter Suzanne and Dick's son Leon entered the business and would build on the legacy set by the previous generations.
The next 30 years would see Larry, Tony, Bobby and finally Dick retire turning the reins over to the 4th generation. Even though Vedovato Brothers closed in 2015 Westchester Tile will carry the 110 year legacy well into the future. With new ideas and new technology, the 4th generation strives to provided the best customer service and bring you the latest's designs and trends in the tile industry. Along with that comes high quality products and excellent pricing you come to expect from Westchester Tile & Marble Corp..