Brooklyn History Photo of the Week: Abraham & Straus Window Display

Abraham & Straus, ca.1895, v1972.1.611; Early Brooklyn and Long Island photograph collection, ARC.201; Brooklyn Historical Society.

The end of November also marks the beginning of the holiday window displays in New York. This photograph captures an elaborate window display, which appears to be made entirely out of handkerchiefs, at Abraham & Straus department store. The ornate building, located at 422 Fulton Street, became the flagship location of A&S in 1885, and is now a Macy’s store. The three-story arch that once formed the entrance to the building has since been filled in, but other original Art Deco details are still visible.

In addition to this photograph, we have an archival collection about the Abraham & Strauss from 1865 to 1995. The majority of the items date from 1964 and 1965 and were compiled by Abraham & Straus employee Juli Daves in preparation for the store’s centennial celebration. These items include newsletters, a history of Abraham & Straus, news clippings, and correspondence between Juli Daves and Mrs. Kenn Stryker-Rodda, Archivist at the Long Island Historical Society (later the Brooklyn Historical Society), regarding research for the centennial. Other materials in the collection include store directories, souvenir shopping bags, employee newsletters, various printed ephemera, and a catalog dating from 1886, when the store was known as Wechsler & Abraham.

About Emily Reynolds

I'm the Photographic Collection Assistant at BHS.
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2 Responses to Brooklyn History Photo of the Week: Abraham & Straus Window Display

  1. I would greatly enjoy seeing the collection of A&S memorabilia. Where is the collection maintained? isthe collection open to the public.

    A&S holds a very special place in my heart.

    Thank you.
    Mary Ellen Resch

  2. Susan Makov says:

    My parents Boris Makov, and Ruth Stein were both window designers for A&S, as well as Lord & Taylors and Saks in the 1950’s. I have no images of their windows, but do have images from inside the stores. I would love to know if there is anything by them in your archive.

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