Monday, June 8, 2015

Ted Jacobs (1921 – 2015)

Courtesy of the Chronicle-Telegram
The Downtown Lorain Store
I would certainly be remiss if I didn't mention the passing of Ted Jacobs, Lorain's legendary women's clothing store owner on this blog. He died Sunday evening, May 31, 2015 at the age of 93.

There are several wonderful online tributes to the man on both the Morning Journal website, as well as that of the Chronicle-Telegram's (here).

Ted Jacobs opened his first store in Downtown Lorain in March 1950. An outlet at Midway Mall was added in 1966, and another branch opened at Great Northern Mall in 1976.

Over the course of four decades, his namesake specialty fashion stores were an important stop on the shopping trips of countless women.  The quality merchandise and superlative, personal customer service were the reasons for the success and amazing longevity of the Downtown Lorain store.

I wish to extend my heartfelt condolences to his family.

Looking through the Lorain Journals from the time when that very first store opened reveals that Ted Jacobs was very creative when it came to marketing his business. Since his name was going to be on his stores, a very distinctive signature logo was developed that included the store's location.
The marketing around the opening of the flagship store was very unique. About a week before the store opened, a small teaser ad (below) appeared on multiple pages of the March 8, 1950 Lorain Journal.

A second teaser ad touting the store's upcoming opening appeared in the Journal on Monday, March 13 (below).
Then, on March 14, 1950 a large ad promoted an Open House at the new store.
Finally, on March 15, 1950 (the eve of the store's opening), a large Journal ad explained the thought and philosophy behind the new store (below). Part of the copy read, "Tomorrow's the day... your day... to see for the first time a store beautifully planned, delightfully modern designed as a background for the smartest fashions we could select in America's leading markets.
"Here is a store whose merchandise carries the hallmark of beauty, fashion and quality with common-sense price tags."
The store opened on March 16, 1950 and the first of many distinctive Ted Jacobs ads appeared in the pages of the Lorain Journal that day.
March 16, 1950 ad
Here are a few other ads from those early days.

March 19, 1950 ad
March 22, 1950 ad
Like I mentioned, the Ted Jacobs stores were on the list of places to shop for countless women – including my wife and my mother.
My wife remembers buying a dress at Ted Jacobs to wear at her sister's wedding. And my mother shopped there for many years, often squeezing in a visit on a Saturday morning when we were already downtown for our weekly trumpet lessons.
My mother remembers Ted Jacob's parrot well. "You'd go in there and he'd be sitting on a perch," she said. "He'd talk to you. You could hold a conversation with him."
Courtesy Morning Journal


Anonymous said...

I remember countless times going with grandma and mom to Ted Jacobs I spend all my time chatting with the parrot.

Anonymous said...

I still have items from ted Jacobs, nice article.