Your BottomLine Text Version

SeaComm Business Newsletter

2nd Edition 2022

BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT: 1844 House, An American Bistro

Nestled amongst the rolling hills of the North Country is the 1844 House, a fine-dining establishment where hospitality, a relaxed atmosphere and locally sourced ingredients are the focus. The roots of 1844 House stretch back more than 178 years, when it was originally built as a farmhand’s house in 1844. Since then, it has served in many capacities, including general store, community hall, and now a cherished farm-to-table restaurant. In the fall of 2021, it was in danger of coming to an end, as the restaurant owners, Brian and Jenny Walker had plans to relocate. To the communities’ delight, Niles & Sons Real Property Holdings, a father and son(s) company comprised of Terry, Ryan, and Graham Niles, decided to venture into the restaurant business and purchase the beloved restaurant.

The team at Niles and Sons knew the importance of 1844 House to the region. “The biggest thing that I’ve learned is the value of a good restaurant to the local community and how much they want that,” states Ryan. After finalizing the purchase of 1844 House, the decision was made to keep the structure and ambience as it was. “If it’s not broke, don’t fix it”, said Terry. Their goal, per Terry, is to “provide top notch, excellent service to all people who walk in the door.” The 1844 House has a dedicated team of staff consisting of about 20 individuals, the majority of which have stayed on through the transition.

As one of the last true scratch kitchens in the North Country, the team at 1844 House pride themselves on serving dishes made from fresh, local ingredients. The restaurant utilizes several small gardens on the property for produce, and they obtain beef, chicken and other meats from local farmers. In addition, Terry provides local honey from his bee farm, which is used in several dishes. With the restaurant having access to a variety of fresh produce and meat, Ryan stated, “We have not raised prices at all. We’re focused on giving the North Country community a high quality experience while being able to maintain current prices, even during this difficult time.”

When asked about the challenges of operating a restaurant during the ongoing pandemic, Ryan stated it has been “a good time to learn more about the restaurant business when things are a little bit slower and grow as we come out of COVID.” This has proven to be a great decision for them, as they are continuing to grow and have a fresh approach for the future. The team at 1844 House is constantly working hard to be innovative and implement fresh ideas as a way to attract new customers and provide an unforgettable dining experience. As the 1844 House team looks ahead, Terry states they are planning to re-open the Red barn located on the property, in June 2022. The barn will be available for various special events such as wedding receptions, class reunions, company gatherings, retirement parties, and other festivities. They are also planning more events for 1844 House patrons, including a Thursday night barn experience with live music, as well as “smoked night” where guests will have the opportunity to try a variety of barbecue smoked meats.

The menu at 1844 House features multiple courses, including a soup, salad, main entrée, dessert - and even a complimentary amuse-bouche to awaken the palate. Each week, the manager and executive chef select a new special to impress their patrons with. According to Ryan, one of the most popular dishes remains the filet, “a premium cut of beef that you can cut with a fork.” As for the drink of choice, wine is the go-to selection for most customers who enjoy pairing their beverage with one of the many entrée options.

When it comes to their experience working with SeaComm, Ryan states, “SeaComm has been very supportive throughout the process of acquiring and developing our new business venture.”

To enjoy this unique dining experience for yourself, visit 1844 House located at 6885 US-11, Potsdam, NY. Reservations are highly recommended. To reserve a table, contact 1844 House through phone or email.

Phone: 315-268-1844
Hours: Wednesday-Saturday; 4:30 – 9:00 PM

Manager's Notebook

Low-Cost Tech Solutions for Your Business

A dollar saved is a dollar earned, and for small businesses, healthy finances can determine success or failure.

While companies strive to keep costs low, software and technology expenses can add up quickly. Fortunately, you can find free solutions that often work as well as paid options.

If you pick up an Office Suite for your team, you may pay $10 or more per user each month. Not into subscription costs? You could buy stand-alone software, but that may set you back $250 or more. Or, you could use LibreOffice, a free open-source office suite that works on Mac, Windows and Linux, providing free alternatives for Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and other tools. You can also use the free Linux operating systems to replace Microsoft Windows and Mac OS completely.

An image is worth a thousand words. When writing blogs or putting together sales materials, you may need pictures. There are plenty of stock photo websites, but with many, rights to the photos will set you back some bucks. With Pixabay and Unsplash (among others), you can find images that are free for commercial use. Just make sure you check individual licenses. Need to touch up photos? Photoshop sets you back a few hundred dollars. Or you can use GIMP for free.

Many businesses now use Dropbox and other services to store and share files. These services get pricey, often starting at $10 or more per month. Over a few years, you'll quickly shell out hundreds in fees. However, you can buy a lifetime membership from a service like pCloud for less than $200, or pay just $4.99 a month.

Do a bit of searching and you will find plenty of other free or low-cost alternatives. Just make sure you check out customer and professional reviews first to ensure they are up to the task.

"Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes, including you." - Anne Lamott, writer

Building an Effective Hybrid Work Culture

Looking to attract the best talent? Want to stop employees from leaving? If so, consider hybrid and remote work options. GoodHire conducted a survey that found nearly 70 percent of workers prefer working remotely rather than on premises. And 45 percent said they would look for a new job or quit if forced to return to the office.

Still, a University of Chicago study found that nearly half of companies offered no remote work options. That's great news for businesses that can and will offer such options. With some firms axing remote arrangements, other organizations stand a good chance of attracting talent.

So how do you build a work culture that supports remote/hybrid work? First, you will need to prioritize, and with remote work, communication proves vital. Leaders must make expectations clear. Focusing on results and figuring out effective metrics is also wise.

Onboarding gets folks on the same page and is especially important with remote workers. If someone in the office feels lost or out of touch, they can simply ask a co-worker a cubicle over. Not so easy for remote workers, but effective onboarding lays a foundation. Transparency is also vital and builds trust. Employees who know what's going on may suffer less anxiety, thus staying focused and productive.

With hybrid models, workers still come in regularly. Maybe once a week, perhaps once a month. Either way, make the trip as fun as possible. Buy the team lunch, be encouraging and upbeat. Get to know your staff. Ideally, employees will want to come in and see the day more as a retreat than a burden.

And make sure you reach out to employees one-on-one regularly. You might offer kudos for a project well-done or send happy holiday wishes, for example. A bit of kindness goes a long way -- even online.

Quick Tip:

To boost your productivity at work, focus on one task at a time, take regular breaks, time-block your schedule and try to limit interruptions.

Check out more business tips at

Cybersecurity Threats Cost Billions Per Year

Amid a tense global geopolitical environment, experts warn that the United States could face severe cyber attacks. Computers and the internet offer convenience, making it easier to find information, coordinate large organizations and more. Yet the increasingly interconnected web also raises risks and makes organizations and entire nations more vulnerable to attacks.

In total, these attacks cost many billions of dollars per year. IBM reports that the average data breach, which occurs when someone steals sensitive data, cost $4.24 million in 2021, up from $3.86 million in 2020. Sum Logic found that general cyberattacks cost $133,000 in 2020. Some organizations argue that the total annual cost of cybercrimes could exceed a trillion dollars.

Countless pieces of infrastructure rely on the internet and connected hardware and software. Hospitals, for example, use devices and networks to store medical records and coordinate care, such as dispatching ambulances or assigning patients to medical providers. Cyberattacks on hospitals could prevent patients from receiving timely and appropriate treatment or expose their private information.

Meanwhile, Colonial Pipeline shut down a fuel pipeline after an attack, causing gas prices to spike and forcing Americans to pay more at the pump. The company also forked over $5 million in ransom. Investigators later recovered some of the ransom money, but experts believe that the total costs exceeded tens of millions of dollars.

Authorities may also slap companies with fines. Equifax paid at least $575 million for its 2017 breach, while U.K. authorities hit Marriott with more than $20 million in penalties. Target likewise paid $18.5 million. Add it all up, and multi-billion or even trillion-dollar price tags are completely plausible.


Main Office

30 Stearns Street
Massena, NY 13662

Malone Branch

3349 Route 11
Malone, NY 12953

Potsdam Branch

6 Sisson Street
Potsdam, NY 13676

Canton Branch

101 East Main Street
Canton, NY 13617

Ogdensburg Branch

3001 Ford Street Extension
Ogdensburg, NY 13669

Plattsburgh Branch

139 Smithfield Blvd
Plattsburgh, NY 12901

South Burlington Branch

1680 Shelburne Rd
So. Burlington, VT 05401

Essex Branch

125 Carmichael Street
Essex, VT 05452

Watertown Branch

605 Coffeen Street
Watertown, NY 13601

Branch Managers

Joanne Langdon

30 Stearns St. Branch Manager

Christine Marshall

Malone Branch Manager

Barbara Bessette

Canton Branch Manager

Ashley Allen

Ogdensburg Branch Manager

Danielle Uppstrom

Potsdam Branch Manager

Yvonne Alterie

AVP Regional Manager/Plattsburgh Branch Manager

Leslie Bush

Watertown Branch Manager

Joseph Feltz

Essex Branch Manager

Larry Bridglal

South Burlington Branch Manager

Business Development

Jerry Manor

Business Development Manager

Craig Chevalier

Member Business Loan Manager

Christina Smutz

Member Business Loan Officer

315-764-0566 / 800-764-0566

Let us Spotlight your business!

We are proud of our business members and want to share your story! Contact Jerry Manor for more information. Call (315) 764-0566 or toll-free (800) 764-0566 or email


30 Stearns St
Massena, NY 13662

*This publication does not constitute legal, accounting or other profesional advice. Although it is intended to be accurate, neither the publisher nor any other party assumes liability for loss or damage due to reliance on this material.