B. Gertz & Co., Jamaica, Queens, New York



Gertz - Where Long Island Shops 



The store, a fixture in Jamaica, Queens,
 was remodeled and expanded in 1947 - 
and illustrated in this somewhat
exaggerated fashion.


Gertz Long Island (1911)
162-10 Jamaica Avenue
Queens, New York

JAmaica 6-6800






Street Floor
Fine Jewelry and Diamonds, Dept. 245 • Silverware, Dept. 350 • Costume Jewelry, Dept. 240 • Handbags, Dept. 250 • Leather Goods, Dept. 254 • Fashion Accessories, Dept. 224 • Gloves, Dept. 230 • Hosiery, Dept. 260 • Clipper Bar, Dept. 216 • Hat Bar, Dept. 201 • Street Floor Shoes, Dept. 410 • Blouse Bar, Dept. 156 • Street Floor Sportswear, Dept. 146 • Cosmetics, Dept.300 • Notions, Dept. 310 • Drugs, Dept. 305 • Stationery, Dept 325 • Commercial Stationery and Office Supplies, Dept. 320 • Cameras, Dept. 328 • Books, Dept. 340 • Candy, Dept. 800 • Gourmet Foods, Dept. 810 • Snack Bar
Gertz Men's Shop Men's Hosiery, Dept. 411 • Men's Underwear, Dept. 411 • Men's Gifts, Dept. 412 • Men's Pajamas, Dept. 413vMen's Dress Shirts, Dept. 415 • Men's Ties, Dept. 414 • Men's Shoes, Dept. 460 • Men's Hats, Dept. 450 • Men's Sportswear, Dept. 430 • Men's Slacks, Dept. 431 • Men's Sport Coats, Dept. 432 • Men's Suits, Dept. 400 • Men's Outerwear, Dept. 433 • Boys' Shop, Dept. 440

Second Floor
Lingerie Shop, Dept. 270 • Negligees, Dept. 273 • Loungewear Shop, Dept. 290 • Nightwear Shop, Dept. 275 • Corsets, Dept. 280 • Cotton Shop, Dept. 193 • Surgical Department, Dept. 330 • Infants' Shop, Dept. 186 • Toddlers' Shop, Dept. 180 • Children's Sleepwear, Dept. 182 • Children's Shoes, Dept. 220 • Little Boys' 4 to 7, Dept. 181 • Little Girls' 4 to 6X, Dept. 170 • Big Girls' 7 to 14, Dept. 171 • Hi-Gal Shop, Dept. 183 • Long Island Room Restaurant

Third Floor
Shoe Salon, Dept. 212 • Casual Shoes, Dept. 219 • Millinery, Dept. 200 • Wigs, Dept. 200 • Sportswear, Dept. 140 • Seaside Shop, Dept. 143 • Blouses, Dept. 155 • Sweaters, Dept. 141 • Inexpensive Dresses, Dept. 138 • Boulevard Shop, Dept. 137 • Daytime Dresses, Dept. 190 • Women's World, Dept. 130 • Misses' Moderate Priced Dresses, Dept. 128 • Career Dresses, Dept. 125 • Suburban Coats, Dept. 111 • Misses' Raincoats, Dept. 113 • Cosmopolitan Shop, Dept. 135 • Pacesetter Sportswear, Dept. 159 • Moderate Price Pacesetter Shop, Dept. 128 • Pacesetter Dresses, Dept. 134 • Young Elegant Shop, Dept. 132 • The Gold Room, Dept. 133 • Coat Salon, Dept. 114 • Suits, Dept. 117
 • Fur Salon, Dept. 120 • Bridal Salon
Junior Colony Junior Sportswear, Dept. 145 • Junior Dresses, Dept. 165, 168 • Young Juniors, Dept. 175 • Junior Viewpoint, Dept. 147

Fourth Floor
Housewares, Dept 670 • Small Electrics, Dept. 671 • Appliances, Dept. 710 • Television, Dept. 775 • Sound Center, Dept. 770 • Radio, Dept. 771 • Records, Dept. 779 • Floor Cae, Dept. 720 • Luggage, Dept. 810 • Sporting Goods, Dept. 824 • Barbeque Shop, Dept. 677 • Outdoor Furniture, Dept. 822 • Toyland, Dept. 830

Fifth Floor
Curtains, Dept. 632 • Draperies, Dept. 631 • Decorator Pillows, Dept. 632 • Living Room Furniture, Dept. 605 • Bedroom and Dining Room Furniture, Dept. 608 • Occasional Furniture, Dept. 612 • Dual Sleep, Dept 618
 • Bedding, Dept. 619 • Floor Coverings, Dept. 620 • Summer Furniture, Dept. 673 • Pictures and Mirrors, Dept. 661

Sixth Floor
China, Dept. 650 • Glassware, Dept. 651 • Lamps, Dept. 640 • Trim-A-Tree Shop, Dept. 835 • Linens, Dept. 550 • Sheets, Dept. 560 • Pillows, Dept. 560 • Comforters, D-570 • Bath Shop, Dept. 552

Seventh Floor
Personnel Office • Executive Offices

(400,000 sq. ft.)





Flushing
Roosevelt Avenue
November, 1951

240,000 sq. ft.


Hicksville
Mid-Island Plaza
October, 1956
325,000 sq. ft.
The Garden Restaurant


Bay Shore
Gardiner Manor Shopping Center
October, 1962


Massapequa
Sunrise Mall
August, 1973

Gertz also took over Wanamaker's Great Neck store,
and some Stern's stores on Long Island.
Coming in due course.


95 comments:

  1. Thank you so much for bringing this little gem to your museum...a Queens and Long Island legend...I feel that I grew up in Gertz. Although Jamaica was not a very safe place in the 70's the Flushing store really was the place to go. All the other Long Island stores were also very nice and people today still have fond memories. Again, thanks for adding Gertz.

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  2. Bruce
    Gertz in Flushing was in fact walking distance from Shea Stadium (now a much better CitiField) and the 1964/65 World's Fair. While the GE exhibit was my favorite...the Bell Telephone was also excellent....just the other day I was talking about the two memorable exhibits I saw there: 1)a phone with no wires 2)a phone with a screen so you can see the person you are talking with. Demonstrations and all! Can you imagine a phone with photos? Can you imagine a phone without wires? What next a rotary free phone with maybe push buttons? Oh the joys of the sixties! And in the future you would use that wireless phone to call Gertz and order some new clothes! Well not everything can come true (I guess you will have to call Macy's instead).
    Hey did the World's Fair also have "Its a small world"?

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  3. I thought Stern's first came to Long Island when Allied Stores converted Gertz to Stern's.

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  4. "It's a Small World" was indeed the Pepsi-Cola exhibit, and it was first presented at the New york World's Fair. My dad really wanted to go in there, because "I heard it would be real nice for the kids." He himself enjoyed it and shortly before he passed away in 2009, we digitized his 8mm films - he took a lot of footage inside there.

    Here are some other memories . . . in 1962 we took a trip (I was 3) from Detroit to Nova Scotia, and returned via New York and Washington. I was too young to go into museums, so my mom sat with me in Central Park and I fed pigeons, and made friends with people, one of whom worked for View-Master and later sent free view-master reels to me at home. In '64, while visiting the Fair, we went (again) to Coney Island, Staten Island, and shopped at Macy's & Gimbels.

    Two weeks ago, I rode the wooden escalator in Macy's and a tear came to my eye-at least this time I didn't have to worry that the "comb" at the bottom of the escalator woud rip up my little foot as I did 47 years ago. We had lunch at a lunch counter in the basement, and through the research I did for this site, I found out it was called the "Dutch Treat."

    Bruce

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  5. Randy:
    No, Stern's had a unique store in East Hampton, before they moved out of Manhattan and focused on New Jersey. I believe that it later became Gertz; many of these stores shuffled back and forth at the whim of Allied.

    On my recent trip to New York, we walked through Bryant Park, and I looked at the hugely unattractive slope-sided building that replaced Stern's; I wondered what it might have been like to have an excellent and popular department store at that site, rather than a static office building, one whose architecture, at that, seems out of context with the streets around it.

    Bruce

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  6. That sloped-sided building might be the Grace Building. As a result of that building going up, Bryant Park was cleaned up (oh it was a drug infested mess)! So probably in this case it was a good thing that the stern's building came down. But when Stern's left, too bad Gertz didn;t move in.

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  7. I remember as a kid taking the bus to Roosevelt Avenue with my Mom. We went into Gertz and she bought my Dad a Father's Day gift. She carried that gift all the way home on the bus and walk to our house. The gift: golf clubs and golf bag! That must have been some sight. We probably had lunch at the Hurdy-Gurdy down the street on Roosevelt Avenue near Main Street. I believe Mom got her driver's license soon after!!!

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  8. I always wondered why the Gertz in Flushing had a sloped first floor? If you walked into the east Roosevelt entrance it would slope downward toward the west Roosevelt entrance. The back half of the store (men's clothing) was down steps and the west side had about one or two steps down, while the east side had about six or more steps. The back half of the store was straight. The escalators were at that level and went up to the upper floors or down to the "lower level". I don't believe that situation occurred on the other floors. I know Roosevelt Avenue was somewhat of a hill, but why the inside of the store? A mystery I never uncovered. I wonder if the building is the same today???????

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  9. the best was Gertz Book Club where kids would get a book each birthday/received Hardy Boys!

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  10. Gertz was a nice store in Flushing i liked their bargain basement. Shopping was great years ago in Flushing also Gertz being next door to Alexanders. Up a few blocks on Kissena Blvd was Korvettes. You had a good variety of stores there.

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  11. I recall that Gertz had a great electronics dept on the fourth floor. They also had a book dept and record dept up there. Something for everyone.

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  12. I would love to see a floor by floor store directory for the Flushing store??????

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  13. Gertz was the perfect suburban middle of the road department store. it is still missed by all.

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  14. My grandmother, Florence Schreiber, worked in the Gold Room in the Hicksville Gertz selling gowns. I wrote a little about her on my blog a while ago at http://randhoppe.com/2010/07/the-gold-room/.

    A friend once told me about the Christmas display at the Jamaica Gertz. It'd be wonderful to see photo of that display, especially the Gulliver's Travels piece. Anyone?

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  15. where can i get that ice creme gertz in jamaica solded in the basement level

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  16. That ice cream was called Frozen Custard, i believe, and you could get it with chocolate or strawberry syrup. My mother used to bring me and my brother there for a treat sometimes. I remember the "gourmet" food department in Gertz, just a corner of the store near the frozen custard stand--it sold "delicacies" like "chocolate covered ants! Yikes!

    Gertz had a wonderful Christmas display, too--at least it was wonderful by the standards of the times; I'm sure it would seem pathetic to toeay's kids.

    Helen

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  17. Does anyone remember the resturant and the great seafood dish "snug harbor" also the lunch counter in the basement....my favorite was the hot turkey and french fries w/brown gravy... As a buyer for Gertz I helped to open the Sterns stores when Gertz closed down...still have my executive training manual

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  18. Thank you for posting. Can you please tell me the name of that restaurant and the floor on which it was located?

    Did the lunch counter in the basement have a specific name?

    I would like this information so that I can keep that directory accurate and comprehensive.

    Bruce

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  19. I believe that the resturant was called snug harbor and it had a sort of tea room atmosphere...it was pretty popular with employees from the health department on Parsons Blvd... and my Mom and I ate there from the time I was little, long before I became a Buyer for Gertz .... I am not sure that the lunch counter in the basement had a name but it was located on the other side of the "budget " womens clothing... If I can find out the name of it or any memorabelia I will be happy to let you know...

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  20. Do you know what floor "Snug Harbor" was on? Thanks for your input . . . many people have fond memories of Gertz, even my first-year architecture professor at the University of Detroit!

    Bruce

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  21. Bruce,
    What a wonderful site you've put together. You mention the wooden escalators in Macy's NYC and I always show them to people I travel to NYC with. I believe they are some of the last in existance. I grew up in Philadelphia and enjoyed your notes about my city. There was another store named Snellenbergs, one block away from Wanamakers. I believe I have some info on it and will forward to you. It was on par with Strawbridge's. Lit Brothers was the discount store, Wanamaker's the upscale store with an incredible toy department before the toy discounters arrived. In the 1960's they had a monorail suspended from the ceiling that kids could ride. Today Wanamaker's is a shadow of it's former self, now Macy;s, but with only 3 of it's 9 selling floors open. Keep up the great work....Martinscq@yahoo.com

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  22. Gertz was just the perfect mid century place...a wonderful memory of a long gone era

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  23. Does anyone have any info on the froste malts they sold in the Hicksville store?

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  24. I grew up with Gertz Department Store in Jamaica and after my Army days, worked in the Flushing Store as a Display Decorator in the early 1970's. I remember my mother use to take me to the Frozen Custard counter on the Main Floor in the back behind Notions Dept in Jamaica. I remember my cousin taking me to Gertz Jamaica on the Q6 to see Santa there in the early 1950's standing in line waiting in long lines with kids. My dad was a real estate broker in Jamaica and knew one of the Gertz brothers well. Harry Gertz had a heart attack in my dad's car and he rushed him over to Jamaica Hospital that day. He saved his life. My dad was showing Mr. Gertz property for a new branch store to be built outside the Jamaica area. I think this was the 1940's. We use to eat on special occasions in the Long Island Room, that very elegant place on the 2nd floor. I remember the Enchanted Village of St Nick on the 6th floor so very well. Saw it thousands of times throughout the years growing up. I remember one Christmas Gertz had Petunia, the talking purple Cow, it was a big hit with us kids. It was the most beautiful Christmas Village I ever saw as a kid. I smell of Christmas twigs and evergreen was always in the air at Gertz during the holidays. Gertz was Christmas in Jamaica. But I saw the handwriting on the wall when they started to close up the Jamaica store. One by one, starting from the sixth floor, they closed up the levels each month. I knew the store was dying. I was so sad to see Gertz close. It was my family store. My grandmother use to shop there back in the 1920's when Ben Gertz first opened in Jamaica as a general store. Any Gertz customers that remember all this, I would love to hear from you. Lazzaro's.com

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  25. Is there anyone out there who was a member of the Gertz Teen Board 1964 - 1965? We did informal modeling in the store and then had runway fashion shows in each of the stores. I remember the folk group "The Witches of Wellfleet".

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  26. My favorite place to go as a kid especially at Christmas,with their beautiful displays. Their front window had me staring and not moving until mom said the bus is here. As a grown up I loved shopping there and on my lunch hour i would run from office to have a hot dog and a frozen custard. That would make my day.

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  27. Frank Lazzaro what is your full email address
    In reply to your comment

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  28. My sisters and I fondly remember the parfaits we'd get at the snack bar at the Gertz in Hicksville, vanilla frozen custard with either chocolate or strawberry syrup.

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  29. Re: East Hampon. The department store was arrayed across a series of barns, connected by pathways. It opened as Gertz Long Island, and was only later converted by Allied to their Stern's fascia.

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  30. Someone circulated an email in my office today. Most of us work at home so the occassional "mass" emails we receive are always a nice touch. The email was about nastalgia and so many memories flooded my mind. I thought of the early 60's when I would go shopping with my mother. We would always stop at Woolworths for something. I can still smell the combination of popcorn, nuts and candy the minute we entered the store. My mother would always go to Gertz too, and before we left the store to head home, we always stopped for a hot fudge sundae made with that wonderfully delicious frozen custard. Times were good then. I'm a "baby boomer" and the next generation missed out some of the best things in life. Back then, I did not realize how much life would change and I don't know of anything today that can compare to the quality of life growing up in the 60's. A.J.

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    1. Could nt agree more

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  31. Well said, and I wholeheartedly agree!

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  32. I always remember Gertz at Christmas and the winter wonderland in the toy dept. I had 3 sisters and every Christmas my mom would take us there, this was a special trip after we saw Santa we would meet our dad and go for dinner, Thanks for the memories

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  33. Gertz had a small branch store in Great Neck in an odd shaped shopping plaza. It was not a large store, but it had a nice selection and good service. If you wanted a larger selection you could travel to Flushing, Douglaston or Hicksville. The architecture of the building was odd (it had been a different store earlier in its history), but it still had a certain charm.

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  34. My uncle, Gene Brown, worked at the Flushing store as a personnel manager in the 50's to early 60's. I do remember the series of steps and ramps on the main floor...it was very unique. A great store, and across the street from the main entrance was a kind of arcade that delivered one to the next block with great New York style Chow Mein in a nice Chinese restaurant,

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  35. The East Hampton branch did have a unique history.
    That store started as a summer only branch of Stern Brother's (back when Stern's was a far more upscale and innovative retailer). After Stern's closed it's Manhattan flagship, the location became a year round branch of Gertz. In the early 1980's Gertz started construction on a larger branch in Hampton Bays. However in 1983 Allied Stores folded it's Gertz division into Stern's, and the East Hampton location once again became Stern's (this time open year round), the planned Hampton Bays location opened as a Stern's, and both locations remained through the late 1980's.
    At that point Stern's closed the small multi- building East Hampton location and focused on the Hampton Bays store. The 50,000 square foot Hamptons Bays store remains today as a Macy's.

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  36. To Gene Brown's family member: Yes Gertz had a ramp and stairs system on the first floor...I was never able to figure out why this was. When you went thru the Arcade across from the store(the other side was a City parking area...the great Chow mein restaurant was Tai Tung...the food there was EXCELLENT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  37. I remember very vividly seeing roger Maris at Gertz in 1961,the year he broke the Home Run record

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  38. BAK...all the Gertz stores were converted to Stern's once Allied started to consolidate divisions in the late 70s/early 80s. Prior to that, all ads read "available at Stern's/Gertz"...by 1980, it was all Stern's

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  39. I remember working in the Gertz Flushing store as a stock-boy one summer, I was maybe 16 or 17. I had no idea what I was doing. I worked in the ladies clothing department,although I had little knowledge of the likes, dislikes nor nature of women at all. I worked for a very cultured small woman of Italian extraction who was very stylish and very nice to me, innocent little Jewish boy that I was. This was in perhaps, 1965; I would be surprised if she were alive today.
    In a fit of nostalgia preceding this note, yesterday I went to Google Maps and looked at the street view of what was Gertz Flushing....It's now a Macy's: the entire face of the store cold and austere. The Woolworth's on the corner of Roosevelt and Main is now a Caldor. The old Giunta Pizza Parlor where we used to play hookey from Hebrew School is now a Starbucks.
    I guess now there is Asian boy working in the ladies clothing department at Macy's who is cutting class at the Starbucks.
    The more things change, the more they stay the same is an old French saying, but nonetheless, I miss Gertz and there is a certain poignancy missing from Flushing now, perhaps never to be regained.....

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  40. Bruce-as I mentioned in the Stern's page, the Flushing store has a sloped floor at the main level because prior to Allied purchasing the building it was a NYC Bus Depot with ramps. This was well known in the Stern's buying office because we had to always design the fixtures for ladies accessories and handbags to accomodate the slope. We constantly had to repair caselines in Cosmetics from Stockboys rolling hand carts down the slope and crashing through the glass cases at the end of the main aisle. The restaurant in the basement was called The Long Island Room, as all the Allied stores restaurants in the LI locations were called for Gertz/Stern's. I remember installing the Bauhaus lettered signs for those restaurants 30 years ago. Chris

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  41. Dear Chris:

    Thanks again for your information. I plan on contacting you for information, but I have been working at a new, menial job which takes up a lot of time, so I have been delayed.

    I do appreciate your comments and wealth of knowledge about these stores!

    Bruce

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  42. I worked as a store detective in the Flushing store, but was trained in the Jamaica store. That was agonizing because at the time Gertz Jamaica had like 9 floors.
    Last time I was up on Jamaica Avenue, the Conway store had occupied the old Gertz's ground floor.

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  43. I worked at Gertz,Jamaica store from 1962-1967 as the S.I.M.; Selective Inventory Management Supervisor. I loved my job and the people I worked with. We use to go to lunch at a small deli just outside the employee's door. In fact last year a Gertz former buyer called me at home and we chatted for about 15 minutes. It was great hearing from him after over 40 years. I'm now in Florida and he is in California. Also, found out that my former supervisor, Roy Pologe is in the New England area.

    I met my husband at Gertz who went to Stern's as a Buyer. Unfortunately, Joe Montrone passed away in 1985 after he worked his way up to President/CEO of Robinson's of Florida.

    The plus side is that I married a wonderful man and had two additional sons. I have so many wonderful memories of Gertz, Jamaica.

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  44. Thanks for your memories . . .

    It would seem, that the stores celebrated on this site, like Gertz, gave people more than just merchandise, and the opportunity for an outing. They also provided friendships, and in many cases like yours, also provided the opportunity to have love and companionship, too. More than just memories, I'd suggest.

    Like you, I suffered the loss of a spouse, and had to summon (or develop) the courage to join life again and seek happiness. You are to be congratulated for doing the same!

    Bruce

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  45. Yes, I went to Jamaica High School from 1949 to 1951 and would sometimes meet my mom after school for a trip to Gertz, that's where my two brothers and I would get out school shoes and other clothing...Outside there was a man with a hot-dog stand and orange drink, and we'd each have one of those, what a treat, and only 10 cents for the hot dog, many fond memories.....

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  46. I remember the lovely Christmas village that Gertz would assemble in its Jamaica store in the 60's, and I also joined some sort of teen-age girl fashion club for a week or so when I was around 13 back in 1967...I can't remember exactly. My mother worked in the woman's dept. in Gertz in Jamaica for many years.

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  47. Your post is closer to my time at Gertz. I, too, went to Jamaica High - 1949-1953 and we had many happy shopping trips to Gertz with my mother. I started working at Kitty Kelly Shoe Store, which was across the street, in 1951 or 1952 and could always go over to Gertz after I got my pay check!! Don't know whether we might know each other or not. Do you remember the Asendorf twins - that's how most of our friends knew us. My sister and I had done some modelling at Gertz in the teen department.

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  48. Bruce, this is awesome. I can't believe how many people have the same shared memories. The absolute best Frozen Custard. We always got a frozen custard with chocolate syrup at the Jamaica store, then ran out to catch the bus. The city buses all stopped along the one side of Gertz. I've talked about that frozen custard for over 40 years.

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  49. The Great Neck store had originally been a branch of John Wanamaker, opened in 1951, back when Wanamaker's had a big store in New York (where K-Mart is now, on Astor Place). There were 2 suburban NY branches, Great Neck and Yonkers. Great Neck was sold to Stern's in 1955, becoming a Gertz in 1961. It closed in 1979. It's now a Waldbaum's supermarket.

    The Hicksville store was unique for suburban stores in that it was 5 selling floors, not the typical 2 or 3 floors. Mid-Island Plaza was an outdoor mall and the height of the Gertz building caused the mall to be quite windy. Colorful plastic wind panels were erected to cut down on the wind gusts. It's been a few years since I've been out there, but both the Flushing and the Hicksville stores still had much of their mid-century vibe.

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  50. To all those who questioned the odd levels of the first floor of the Flushing branch of Gertz: The building was originally a bus terminal!! That is why all the Northeast Queens busses now start/stop in the concentrated area of Roosevelt Ave and Main Street. For some reason, the bus terminal was turned into a department store.

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  51. After realizing that a career in microbiology was not what he wanted, my dad got a job as the toy buyer for Gertz sometime in the 50's. It's a story I remember him telling us as kids, since it was his first job leading up to a successful entrepreneurial career. He always told us about his biggest "miss" in anticipating what the kids wanted. He had purchased a load of surplus gas masks because the boys seemed to be snatching up any military-related toys so fast. They ended up practically giving them away.

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  52. I recently came across a book my Dad gave me and the bookplate reads:

    There is no Frigate like a Book to bear us Lands away
    It has a large schooner on it in the middle and on the bottom has a line for a name, says Happy Birthday and underneath it in block letters it says:
    GERTZ DEBETTE CLUB

    I was wondering if this Club sounded familiar to anyone?

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    1. That was the teen girls birthday book club. As a member you received a birthday card that you brought into the store so that you pick up your neatly wrapped book. They also had fashion shows that you could model in right in the Jr. Dept.

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  53. I grew up in Queens, NY from 1975-84 and I went to Gertz a couple of times on Jamaica Ave. with my mother and grandmother. My memories of shopping on Jamaica Ave. still linger despite the passing of time.

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  54. During the Easter vacation break in 1959-61, I was a H.S. girl at a catholic h.s. in Brooklyn. A few of my friends and I went to Charm school at Gertz in Jamaica one of those years. We wore our Easter outfits. I had a navy blue duster with a polka lining on the inside and a matching polka dot dress. I still have the pix of us! We learned about makeup and dressing for all occasions. We modeled our own Easter outfits. I still remember this horrible lipstick we were given as a freebie. "Coty 24 something." What fun. However, i was never a Gertz shopper. Strictly an A & S girl.

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  55. Does anyone remember the Modeling "contests," or tryouts that Gertz in Jamaica held annually at a local theater? Groups of teen & pre-teen girls would walk in front of a group of judges and those who were touched on the arm or hand could come back for a second round. I know that young girls would get very excited about that. I assume the winners would model in the Gertz store.

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  56. Oh my!!!
    Do I ever have memories of Gertz:
    First as a little girl, going there with my Mom (after riding the B53 into Jamaica), with an occasional treat lunch in The Long Island Room. (Oh so 'FANCY' to my little girl eyes!)And seeing 'The Enchanted Village', every yearas we did our Christmas shopping.
    Then as an employee; right out of high school; when I got a job, upstairs, in the sign shop and doing hand lettering! What good days they were...

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  57. I was on the Gertz Teen Board in Jamaica, NY in the late 1960s and my picture was in the Long Island Press. It came out nice and I still have the photo/article.

    Although they got my high school wrong: I went to Dominican but they put me down as having gone to Mary Lewis.

    Anyway, it was a nice experience

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  58. remember going with my mother downtown NYC and standing on line watching the nativity through the window also the old elevators with the funny and polite elevator driver. Im now 44 and wish it was here....Jose M

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  59. My mother used to walk 2 miles to Mid Island Plaza with kids in tow in the early 60's. After shopping at Gertz, we always stopped at the snack counter by the back door and had a parfait. The were chocolate or strawberry and served in a like beer draft glass and you ate it with a long spoon. Cost about 10 cents.Hmm Hmm.

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  60. We lived off Kissena Blvd. between Jamaica and Flushing. The Q25/34 took us to either Gertz. My mom worked in children's clothing in the basement of the Jamaica store. I remember John's bargain Store nearby on Jamaica Ave. We were never allowed to shop there. LOL I remember the picketers always out front-"Don't Buy Judy Bond Blouses". I always thought I would-once I had money. On the side street where employees had to go in was a pet shop that always had chicks in the window at Easter time. My first job was in the jewelry dept. in Woolworth's in Flushing. I could go on and on-Thanks for the memories..............

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  61. i remember the christmas venue they had. It was awesome. The one in Jamaica.

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  62. I miss the good old days. Gertz was great. My mom bought all my clothes there. sigh.

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  63. I worked at Gertz during my high school senior year until I graduated from Queens College. Those were wonderful 5 years where I was hired in the bargain basement store for the holiday season. I was later moved up to the first floor hosiery department where I helped launch panty hose. I learned about the finer things in retail and developed a real passion for those pretty ladies who got to sell cosmetics. Many years later I reentered retail and worked at Estee Lauder for 20 years. Those ladies with all those wonderful jars of cream still linger in my thoughts

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  64. I worked at The Long Island Press in Jamaica in the early 70's and used to go to Gertz during lunch. I loved it too. It was a Christmas Winter Wonderland. I have moved to Alabama and have been here for 36 years, and there is nothing to compare to Gertz, even though we are living in 2013. Did anyone work at The Long Island Press? I have a friend that worked there with me, and I have lost touch with - Pat Smith - that I'd love to hear from. I've tried facebook and EVERYTHING-but her name is very popular and I didn't get very far. Violet Hofer Apostolou Email: zitta53@msn.com

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  65. My mom worked at Gertz Jamaica from 1969 to the early 80s. She later retired to Ridge NY and lived a short distance from her old supervisor. Thank you for posting info on Gertz.

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  66. I recently traveled to Flushing Queens for a good Chinese meal at one of the many Chinese restaurants on Main Street. After dinner, we walked the area and found ourselves on Roosevelt Avenue. Although its been over 30 years since I was last there, I went into the Macy's (formally Stern's formally Gertz) and although it looked remodeled and very lovely the first floor still slops and it still feel like Gertz...oh the memories!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  67. I remember going to Gertz with my mom. It's where she brought her living room & dining room. My son Jason still has the hutch which is over 40 years old. No one makes furniture like that any more

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  68. I also worked part time in Gertz Flushing during the early 70s, in jr sportswear....great place! My then boyfriend's Aunt Gladys worked in the coffee shop in the basement.

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  69. I love all the happy Gertz memories. My mother worked at Gertz during the seventies. She did not drive so I would pick her up on the nights she worked late. On three occasions I was mugged right outside the store waiting for my mother to get out of work.

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  70. I dated the assistant to the master design builder who installed the Christmas Village at Gertz during the early 70's. He was brought over here from Germany - I believe his name was Hans. When the village was being prepared for the Christmas display I would be able to visit the set and see the progress being made. One year there were zillions of gold glitter stars - so many left over that my boyfriend gave me a few and I put the om my bedroom ceiling.

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  71. My first memory of Gertz was around the age of 3. My mother worked as a bathing suit fitter and she would bring me to work. I remember pushing a train on the carpet and then seeing a pair of wing tips, at which point my Mom had to explain why I was there !
    She worked there till it closed, and had many other memories. Christmas village was great, but it was the train displays that got my real attention.
    Glad I don't have access to those parfaits, I'd weigh a ton !

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  72. Yes ,that frozen custard found on the 1st floor (by Archer ave entrance) - back then was the treat we as children would receive if we were good in the store. I remember all of us standing their with our coats on trying to balance the packages and everything, and eating. Knapkins were always an issue of coarse.Funny how its like yesterday.

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  73. if anyone knows of a young girl who worked in the notions dept between 1956-1960, her last name may have been(SMITH) please contact me a t 814 938-2322

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  74. I read a number of the Posts but my memory goes back to 1940, when Gertz Jamaica. She would drag me along in a leash - all kids were on leashes then and to go through 6 floors was maddening. Oh yes, the elevator operators were women! Sometimes a few guys. One final thing, Gertz Jamaica was the birth of UPS I believe? I remember the brown trucks delivering the parcels to our home for FREE!

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  75. In the late '60's I worked in the flushing Gertz in the basement receiving department. My job was to put the price tags on the merchandise as we opened the received boxes. My manager was Artie Andrews who later went on to be the store manager. I else to become night supervisor, which meant I got to write in a red pencil and go to lock the department doors when I left at night. No raise, tho! I was making $1.70 an hour. This was my mother's favorite store, after Bloomies and I got a 10% discount.

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  76. I grew up in South Ozone Park, and I believe that besides going to the city for a Macy's run all the clothes I ever owned as a child up to age 14 were purchased at the Jamaica Gertz store. I knew every inch of that store....Wow good memories

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  77. Hi BAK. This is the first time visiting TDSM. I've been enjoying reading all of the comments. I was raised 2 blocks away from Roosevelt Ave. and Main st. in Flushing and left in 1976. I actually came here in search of any videos or even old pics of The Winter Wonderland display that Gertz would put up every year. Those were truly wonderful times for many of us. If anyone can direct me to any I would greatly appreciate it. Meanwhile if any of you are not aware, on FB there is a group (of which I'm a member) called Did you grow up in Flushing N.Y. where you can share old memories and maybe find some old friends. It may also have much to add to TDSM. It would be my pleasure to introduce you to them, if they don't already know you. Happy Holidays to you all!

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  78. Thanks, I would love to see it. I will be putting up the Christmas exhibit again, and I think that there is a newspaper ad in there showing their Christmas "Winter Wonderland" display.
    Thanks, Bruce

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  79. Hi Bruce, my name is Mandy. That would be wonderful as it seems The Gertz WW display seems to be further in the past than I anticipated. Please feel free to friend me on FB. I'm probably the last person to join your site. Looking forward to the display.

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  80. I remember that Gertz in Flushing had a candy counter that had a hazelnut shaped wafer filled with chocolate hazelnut filling. Does anyone remember this item and if I can find anywhere else? Most of the other candies I am able to find at specialty shops except this one.

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  81. Thanks, folks. I've often thought of the beautiful Christmas display in the Jamaica store....I remember it being such a treat to go, as I thought of it as a child, "way out in Jamaica" during the 1960s (we lived in Woodhaven). The ride on the B56 bus (or on the elevated Jamaica line) always meant shopping....a trip to Paterson Silks, a stop in Mays, and a walk into Gertz (Macy's was a little too rich for our pocketbook...we DID shop in John's Bargain Store). Lunch was usually a stop in Nedicks for a hot dog and orange drink, maybe a hamburger at Tad's Steaks, or a hot knish for the ride home on cold winter's day. Thanks for the memory.

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  82. Bruce, indeed the basement snack bar of Macy's was called Dutch Treat. My grandmother took me to Macy's many times in the 50's...never venturing far from the budget fabric department that had an entrance right from the subway.

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  83. There will never be another Gertz, like the one in Jamaica. Met Santa there in the early 1950's with petunia the talking cow. Also visited the Enchanted Village on the sixth floor with my mother. I use to love toyland on the 4th floor. and above all, Jamaica Days. Rest in peace Gertz Department Store. FrankLazzaro.com

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  84. I also remember the charm school at Gertz and the birthday book club. Gertz would send you a postcard for your birthday and you would redeem it for a free book. They had a drawer full of books and you could pick any one, girls got Nancy Drew or the Bobsey Twins, boys the Hardy Boys. But loved eating lunch in the bargain basement in Flushing and with 6 floors Jamaica was tremendous.

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  85. The flagship store in Jamaica was quite the place and a true copetitor to Macy's Jamaica. It's too bad that greedy realtors and frighened/anxious/not too smart people made Jamaica into a less than desirable place to shop in the late 60's- early 70's. Although my parents were able to take my sister and I to the mall (Green Acres) there were a lot of people that did not have this choice. Gertz like so many things and people was a victim of the ignorance of the 60's.

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  86. Santa Land in Gertz Jamaica was the best! Have the old home videos of it!

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  87. The one in Great Neck was originally a Wanamakers department store.

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  88. Just celebrated my 53rd Birthday and every year since I was VERY young I remember waiting for the end of June to receive the Book Birthday Club Card for my July Birthday. I lived within a couple of miles of the Hicksville LI NY Store and so loved taking my time going through the choices. I still don't know "why" it was books that they chose to give you since that store was small and didn't sell anything but clothes mostly. I didn't care then and I'm just curious now and happy that I have such a great childhood memory. If anyone knows why please let me know. Thanks

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  89. Without a doubt my fondest memories of childhood were of Gertz in the 60s. My grandmother took us there every Saturday we visited her, which was very often. We ate on the 2nd floor in the Long Island Room and always had the Chuck Wagon Special burger fries coke and ice cream cone. Remember the 4th floor toys and records got my first Jimi Hendrix album there. Books were on the 6th floor my sister and I loved to read. My Grandmother lived to 103 and passed away in 2008 long after Gertz had left. One day I was taking her to Mary Immaculate hospital about 2000 she remarked," this is not our Avenue anymore. I said no Nana its very different now. I still live in Jamaica and drive past the old Gertz building,Conway now,and just think back. Oh I forgot The Enchanted Village at Xmass what a sight for kids of those times.

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  90. My mother-in-law worked in the Jamaica Long Island Room restaurant as a waitress. At that time the buyer of White Goods (fridges, etc.) and TV's was Joe Augello. The hostess took a phone call at the desk in which someone was asking to speak to Joe Augello and to please bring him to the phone. The hostess asked my mother-in law to "...get Joe Augello". She dutifully went into the kitchen and "got Joe a jello" and brought it to Joe's table, Confusion reigned until it was made clear that the hostess wanted her to Get Joe Augello and bring him to the phone and not to "get Joe a jello".

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  91. That is a great story. It's the sort of stuff I look for when writing a book about one of these stores. I bet Gertz was chock-full of them! Thanks for sharing that gem!
    - Bruce

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  92. My uncle Jim Astwood owned Astwood Travel which was located in Gertz Jamacia from the early 1960's until it was moved to the Flushing location. As a kid when we would visit in NY we would always go to his office. We had portraits taken at the portrait studio and lunch in the Long Island Room. Every year my brother and I had our picture taken with Santa and I remember the beautiful Christmas display. My Uncle moved to Fl in 2000, and passed away in 2010. If anyone who reads this, remembers Jim Astwood or my Grandmother, Marie Astwood who was frequently in Gertz, please email me. mabk4mk@msn.com. I would love to hear your memories of Gertz and my family members.

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  93. I would love to see a video of the Christmas Village back in the 60's, as those wonderful memories are still pulling at my heartstrings. Like so many of you, I wish I could go back in time and revisit such a special store- Christmas at Gertz in Jamaica. I used to go there every Saturday with my mother to take my dance lesson located a block from Mays. We took the Jamaica bus where we waited for it right in front of Gertz. Mom used to shop at the bargin basement and I remember looking forward to Saturdays.

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