Finding aid for the Richman Brothers Company Records


Repository: Western Reserve Historical Society
Creator: Richman Brothers Company
Title: Richman Brothers Company Records
Dates: 1924-1992
Extent: 0.80 linear feet (2 containers)
Abstract: The Richman Brothers Company began in Cleveland, Ohio, when Henry Richman, a Jewish immigrant from Bavaria, and his partner, Joseph Lehman, moved their men's clothing manufacturing business, the Lehman-Richman Company, from Portsmouth, Ohio, to Cleveland in 1879. Following the depression of 1893, Lehman retired, and in 1904, Henry Richman turned over the business to his sons; Nathan, Charles, and Henry, Jr., and the business became the Richman Brothers Company. The first retail store was established in Cincinnati in 1906, followed a year later by stores in Cleveland and Louisville, Kentucky. Moving away from reliance on outside piecework, the Cleveland plant at 1600 E. 55 St. was built in 1916. The company incorporated in 1919. Throughout the 1920s-1930s, Richman Brothers continued to open new retail stores. After the deaths of the three Richman Brothers, the company was headed by Frank C. Lewman, and later by George H. Richman, until 1970, when Donald J. Gerstenberger became president and CEO. Expansion continued throughout the 1940s-1950s, despite problems with the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America which attempted to unionize Richman Brothers. It remained a non-union shop throughout its existence. In 1969, Richman Brothers became a subsidiary of F.W. Woolworth Company. In 1986, corporate headquarters was moved to Massachusetts, and in 1990, its Cleveland manufacturing plant was closed. By December 1992, Richman Brothers Company had been completely liquidated. The collection consists of legal documents including leases and escrow papers, shareholders reports, issues of two company-published employee magazines, Chain Reaction (1967-1984) and Common Thread (1985-1987), newspaper clippings, and miscellaneous documents.
MS Number MS 4664
Location: closed stacks
Language: The records are in English