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Articles by charbeson:

An Auerbach Family Christmas

December 26, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

During the holiday season, Beatrice Fox Auerbach sent out Christmas cards as was the custom at the time, a practice that is widely continued to this day. In our collection of Fox materials, we have a scrapbook that contains the Christmas cards she sent to friends and associates between 1929 and 1966. All of the…
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Christmas at Fox’s

December 19, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

Beatrice Fox Auerbach may have been Jewish, but she was also an exceptionally adept businesswoman and, as such, catered to her mostly-Christian clientèle by turning her store into a virtual wonderland every Christmas season. The children’s department was transformed into Toyland, much to the delight of children all over Connecticut. And, of course, Santa Claus…
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Look Who’s in the News!

December 15, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

As a premier in Hartford’s world of retailing, G. Fox & Co., and those at its helm, frequently made headlines. Many of these stories have been preserved in scrapbooks of newspaper clippings. In most cases, clippings concerning the store were kept in separate scrapbooks from those concerning the family, but there is some overlap. A…
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The Tobé Award

December 12, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

In 1947, the same year that G. Fox & Co. celebrated its centennial, Beatrice Fox Auerbach was honored with one of retail’s most prestigious awards. At the 13th Annual Tobé Bosses Dinner, the fifth annual Tobé Award for Distinguished Contribution to American Retailing was bestowed upon Mrs. Auerbach “for demonstrating that a department store can…
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Richard Koopman Joins the Fox Family

December 8, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

On June 21, 1940, Richard Koopman became a member of the Fox/Auerbach family when he married Beatrice Fox Auerbach’s daughter, Georgette Auerbach. Two years later, on October 18, 1942, he enlisted in the U.S. Air Corps. In 1946, after being discharged from the service, Richard Koopman became a member of another Fox family when he…
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“Once Upon a Time…”

December 5, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

As I mentioned several months ago in my special “Happy Birthday, Beatrice” post, Beatrice Fox Auerbach often received birthday gifts from her employees. For her birthday in 1945, the employees from one of her departments presented Mrs. Auerbach with a book titled “Once Upon a Time…” that presents a minimalist’s version of her life story…
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The Fox Way: Honesty, Courtesy, Service

December 1, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

As a store, G. Fox & Co. thrived for well over a century and outlasted all other department stores in downtown Hartford. Part of the reason for its enduring success has to do with Gerson Fox’s business philosophy, expressed best in his motto: “Honesty, Courtesy, Service.” This philosophy, and the principles it shaped, determined the…
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Thanksgiving at Fox’s

November 29, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

Thanksgiving is generally a time for reflecting, with a sense of gratefulness, upon the good in life. For Beatrice Fox Auerbach, Thanksgiving was often a time to express her appreciation to her staff for their loyalty and hard work throughout the year. One example of this expression is seen in an issue of the employee…
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The “Scary” Side of the Store

October 31, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

Happy Halloween, everybody! It looks like the G. Fox building once had a few bats in its belfry! (Not really, of course! Mrs. Auerbach wouldn’t stand for it!) Since there really isn’t anything Halloween-related in the G. Fox & Co. materials in our collection, I thought I would take this opportunity to write about the…
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Service Bureau for Women’s Organizations

October 24, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

Today, October 24th, is United Nations Day and when I think about the United Nations, I always think about Eleanor Roosevelt because she was chairperson of the UN’s Commission on Human Rights. However, instead of writing yet another entry about Eleanor Roosevelt’s connection to this collection of G. Fox materials, I thought I would discuss…
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Moses Fox Club

October 17, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

Because last week I wrote about the employee newsletter, Go-Getter, I thought it appropriate to quote from one of the early Go-Getters regarding the founding of the Moses Fox Club. The following excerpt is from the February 9, 1940 edition of the Go-Getter. Moses Fox Club Formed at Annual Dinner for Twenty-Five Year Employees At…
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The Go-Getter, Fox’s Employee Newsletter

October 10, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

G. Fox & Co. published and distributed a weekly newsletter to G. Fox employees called the Go-Getter. While our collection does not contain a complete set of the newsletters, we do have quite a few of them. The first issue we have is Volume II, Number 16, dated July 14, 1933 and the last issue…
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“My Holiday, 1949”

September 19, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

During each of her trips abroad, at least those taken in the latter part of her life, Mrs. Auerbach wrote detailed letters to her family to keep them informed about her activities. After each trip, these letters were typed and the pages bound to create books commemorating her experiences. The collection contains volumes from three…
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Connecticut Room Menus

September 12, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

Archives are full of surprises and there’s nothing quite like the thrill of finding a hidden gem! While searching through the library’s ephemera collection to answer a reference question on an unrelated topic, a box of advertisements caught my eye because the label had G. Fox & Co. on it. Unbeknownst to me, the library…
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Georgette and Dorothy: Humanitarians

September 5, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

Last week, I wrote about Beatrice Fox Auerbach’s two daughters, Georgette and Dorothy, but this week I want to focus on one aspect of her daughters’ lives: their humanitarianism. Georgette and Dorothy were both deeply committed to serving their community, a trait most likely inherited from their mother. In fact, they worked with their mother…
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Beatrice’s Girls

August 29, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

Of all of her many accomplishments (and there is quite the lengthy list), Beatrice Fox Auerbach was probably most proud of her role as a mother and, later, grandmother. Mrs. Auerbach had two daughters, Georgette and Dorothy. Georgette was born on May 14, 1916 when the family was still living in Salt Lake City, Utah…
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Theresa Stern Fox and her Eyeglasses

August 22, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

Theresa Stern Fox was the wife of Moses Fox and mother of Beatrice and Fannie. In my opinion, the neatest thing we have that belonged to Theresa is her eyeglass prescription along with a pair of her old lenses. I don’t know how historically significant this item may be, but I think it’s still incredibly…
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Moses Fox’s Household Expenses

August 15, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

Beatrice Fox Auerbach’s father, Moses Fox, became president of G. Fox & Co. upon the death of his father, Gerson Fox. Like his father before him, Moses Fox was a pillar in the Hartford community. Very few materials concerning his private life have made it into our collection, probably because he was an extremely private…
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The Ephemeral Side of Fox’s

August 8, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

Ephemeral is not generally a word that comes to mind when thinking about G. Fox & Co.; afterall the store was in operation until a few months after its 145 anniversary! Fox’s was a Hartford institution. And yet, despite the fact that the store was a fixture in downtown Hartford for such a long time…
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Auerfarm is Now Our Farm

August 1, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

In July 1925, George Auerbach, Beatrice Fox Auerbach’s husband, purchased a 220-acre farm property on West Simsbury Road in Bloomfield. After his death in 1927, Mrs. Auerbach took charge of the farm. Under her leadership, the farm thrived. Mrs. Auerbach even received accolades for her award-winning Guernsey cows! The milk and eggs produced on the…
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Mrs. Auerbach, Dog Lover

July 25, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

As an animal lover myself, I was especially delighted to learn that Beatrice Fox Auerbach was one as well, especially when it came to dogs! I discovered various references to different dogs who were in the Auerbach household interspersed throughout the collection. One of my favorites is the American Kennel Club Registration Certificate for Mrs….
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Gerson puts the ‘G’ in G. Fox & Company

July 18, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

I would be remiss if I didn’t spend at least one entry talking about the man who started it all, Gerson Fox. I hope I don’t bore you by sharing a little of his history here before I talk about one of my favorite items in the entire collection, Gerson’s account book. Gerson Fox was…
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“My dear Friend”

July 11, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

Last week, I wrote about the friendship between Beatrice Fox Auerbach and Eleanor Roosevelt, as evidenced through their correspondence. I thought it might be fun this week to include a sample letter from the collection. Here are the scanned images of a letter Mrs. Roosevelt wrote to Mrs. Auerbach on June 17, 1960: If you…
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Happy Birthday, Beatrice!

July 7, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

Beatrice Fox Auerbach was born on July 7, 1887, which means today is her 120th birthday! I’ve been racking my brain trying to think of an appropriate (and fun!) way to commemorate the occasion. I started wondering how she had celebrated her birthdays and realized that the collection doesn’t really offer any glimpses into that…
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Hartford’s “First Lady” and the First Lady of the World

July 4, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

In many articles I’ve read about Beatrice Fox Auerbach, she has been nicknamed Hartford’s “First Lady,” probably because of her positive impact on its community. For similar reasons, Eleanor Roosevelt has been dubbed the “First Lady of the World.” And between 1946 and 1962 these two “First Ladies” corresponded with one another. Their early correspondence…
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G. Fox Oral History Project

June 27, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

One of my favorite parts of the G. Fox collection is the Oral History Project that is currently being completed by oral historians Bruce Stave and Sondra Astor Stave, pictured here. They have been interviewing former employees of G. Fox & Co. as well as some of the descendants of Beatrice Fox Auerbach. The final…
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G. Fox & Co. Collection Highlights

June 20, 2007 · Collections, Manuscripts

In January, I began processing a collection of G. Fox & Co. materials, including both company records and family papers. It’s a rather large collection so once a week for the next several weeks, I’m going to be highlighting a different part. I’d like to begin this week, though, with a brief overview of the…
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