|Department Stores Index|
October 13, 1912 - The Greater Store Will Soon Be Yours
In 1892, Louis Bamberger bought the Hill & Craig Department store on the corner of Halsey & Market Streets. He teamed up with his two brothers-in-law, Felix Fuld and Louis M. Frank to form L. Bamberger and Company. Mr. Bamberger had his sales people trained to treat all customers with great respect. The Washington Street store was built in 1912. In 1924 the store employed 2,800 people who enjoyed benefits, pension plans and other incentives. The annual sales for 1928 totaled $38,000,000, ranking it fourth in the country among department stores. The store was sold to R. H. Macy in 1929.
From "New Jersey; Life, Industries and Resources of a Great State:1926"
Back in 1893, in the midst of one of the greatest business depressions this country has ever experienced, three men came to Newark and started a small business on Market Street. They had faith in the city and a real vision of its future. That Louis Bamberger and Felix Fuld, the surviving partners, were amply justified in that faith, is apparent from the fact that few department stores in the country exceed the volume of business which L. Bamberger & Co. transacts in a year.
The company has just completed an annex to its building, costing $13,000,000 and providing over 1,000,000 square feet of floor space. The new section, the frame of which contains 11,000 tons of steel, extends four stories below ground and 14 above, and the foundations will sustain 16 additional stories when required. The extensive area underground enables the store to receive and deliver merchandise without blocking adjacent streets with its fleet of trucks. Elevators 35 feet long carry trucks to and from the basement where the platforms are located.
Beauty has been combined with utility and 35 kinds of imported and domestic marbles have been used, besides rare woods, bronze and other fine metals. Self-leveling express elevators travel at the rate of 600 feet per minute. The store contains an ice cream factory with a daily capacity of 600 gallons and an electrically equipped daylight bakery. There will ultimately be a candy factory, a complete two story house, an auditorium and other special features.
L. Bamberger & Company has always been interested in civic progress and co-operates in many civic enterprises. An example of this is found in the Bamberger Music Scholarships, which provide the youth of Newark's High Schools with an incentive for earnest effort and the development of character. As a progressive aid to popular education it has placed radio receiving sets in the public schools.
In February, 1922, the company's radio station WOR, was established and it is now recognized as one of the most efficient stations in the East, with a radius which extends around the world. It has aimed to serve especially the cultural interests of the entire metropolitan area.
The company publishes Charm, a magazine devoted to home and cultural interests, which is sent monthly to more than 80,000 readers over the state.
Education is regarded as a vital factor in the conduct of the business and there is an extension division of Rutgers University in the store, through which courses in many subjects are given for the benefit of employees. Other features for their benefit include a library, a fully equipped health department, a social service department, rest rooms and cafeteria.
The Co-workers Association, to which the co-workers pay 4% of one week's salary once a month, provides two-thirds salary to any co-worker while absent because of illness. A house magazine, "Counter Currents," devoted exclusively to co-workers' interests, is printed and sold to co-workers at two cents a copy. Season tickets for symphony concerts are distributed free to the Bamberger Music Club, composed of co-workers.
A complete lecture service, dealing with merchandise demonstration, clothing information, dressmaking and fabrics, home making, camp and personnel, is available free-of-charge to interested organizations throughout New Jersey. The Bamberger Institute offers to the public an annual course in dressmaking and designing.
The store in all its appointments is thoroughly modern and the scope and quality of its merchandise place it in the front rank among the great department stores of the United States. Its telephone shopping service is one of the outstanding features that have Contributed to its prosperity . Its basement store occupies the impressive area of two good-sized city blocks.
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