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HISTORY LIVES: Hornberger’s Bakery


Hornberger’s Bakery. In 1956, George Hornberger sold a bakery in Northeast Philadelphia and moved his family to Doylestown. His bakery in the Mayfair section had been in operation since 1923.

Before Hornberger bought the storefront property on East State Street and opened Hornberger’s Doylestown Bakery in 1956, it was Heinle’s Bakery.

Hornberger opened a second store in the Doylestown Shopping Center in 1959 and, on opening day, gave away 3,500 ice cream cones. Over the years, Hornberger would give free treats to the children in costume on Halloween and free samples of hot-cross buns during Lent.

He expanded his business to include contracts with restaurants and supermarkets such as Acme and A&P, and in 1978 he bought the former Yeakel bakeries in Perkasie and Lansdale.

His son, George V. Hornberger, took over the business in 1979 when his father retired and moved to Florida. George V. had learned the baking business at an early age and went to a baking school that specialized in cake decorating.

In 1981, he expanded his presence on State Street by turning an adjoining hair salon into a cafe/restaurant where customers could enjoy sandwiches and pastries from next door. His staff was reduced by 50% in 1994 because the supermarkets to which he had supplied baked goods moved to on-site bakeries.

The Doylestown Shopping Center location closed in 1994 for financial reasons, and the downtown location abruptly closed in 1998.

Sweet Persuasions, another bakery, took its place for a few years; and today, Coach’s Steak & Hoagie House occupies the space.

However, a niece of George Hornberger continues the 100-year family tradition of tasty baked treats and beautiful wedding cakes at a location in Bensalem.

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