B. J. Cook began his business career in Minnesota on an exceedingly humble scale, for many years was a merchant in Duluth, but is most widely known as the promoter and upbuilder of theatrical and amusement enterprises in Duluth, being secretary-treasurer of the New Grand Theater Company and the Cook Amusement Company, other members of which are Julius Cook and M. S. Cook.
B. J. Cook was born in Russian Poland in July, 1866, and came to America alone in 1884, at the age of eighteen. For a time he sold matches at St. Paul, Minnesota, also did railroad work at 75 cents a day, and on moving to Duluth invested a very modest capital in a retail clothing business. His business headquarters were on Lake avenue for ten years, and the following eight years he did business on an enlarged scale at 321 Superior street.
He entered the moving picture field in 1914, and in 1916 the New Grand Theater Company and Cook Amusement Company were formed.
In 1920 there occurred a consolidation of these two Duluth concerns under the name Duluth Theater Company, which owns four of the best moving picture theaters in the city and much other business property besides. Mr. Cook is a public spirited citizen, and has given freely of his time and resources to the upbuilding of the city. He served one term as fire commissioner. He is a Republican in politics. On October 12, 1916, he married Miss Lillian Coehn, of Minneapolis. They have two children, Isaac L. and Georgia Cook.