B. Altman’s Skunk Coat: Only $395

For the sophisticated New York City woman circa 1941: her very own “greatcoat” made from dyed or natural skunk. The copy says, “A ‘good investment’ fur…a Christmas gift that will make her eyes sparkle!”

This ad ran in the December 9, 1941 edition of The New York Times:

skunkcoatad skunkcoatad2

MU 9-7000, for Murray Hill

B. Altman and Company was one of New York’s most fashionable department stores, starting out on Third Avenue and 10th Street in 1865, then moving to Ladies Mile on 19th Street and Sixth Avenue in the late 1800s. In 1906, Altman’s opened its famous block-long flagship building at Fifth Avenue and 34th Street. 

baltmans

When department stores all over the city fell out of favor, so did B. Altman. It closed in 1989; the Fifth Avenue store is now CUNY’s Graduate Center.

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8 Responses to “B. Altman’s Skunk Coat: Only $395”

  1. irene Says:

    I believe I have this coat from that store. It is in mint condition. What would it be worth today? Thanks, Irene

  2. wildnewyork Says:

    I have no idea. Anyone know?

  3. Shopping along Ladies’ Mile: then and now « Ephemeral New York Says:

    […] district between 14th and 23rd Streets on Sixth Avenue that also featured retail giants such as B. Altman’s, McCreery’s, the Simpson Crawford Company, and the Hugh O’Neill […]

  4. Connie Says:

    I just took my Mother’s 65 year old skunk coat to a furrier in Portland today and he said her coat (verysimilar to the picture) would be worth $1000.

  5. Christmas Star; Lightning Lore and other interesting stuff « Blog Archive « Head Bread by Nunitak Says:

    […] 1941 Skunk Fur Coat […]

  6. jan Says:

    I have one of these vintage all black skunk coats too. It has a very unique
    clasp at top; and is 3/4 length walking coat. Very pretty shiny black. I would
    now think of selling it. Got mine in Portland,ore.

  7. Caro Says:

    When I was a little girl B. Altman shopping bags were so pretty: violets on a white fiels with the logo in the center.

  8. trilby1895 Says:

    I continue to mourn the closing of that fabulous, in every way, department store. At least they have not removed those beautiful, wrought-iron Art Nouveau window canopies. Also, on the 33rd St. side of the building, the “port” at which wealthy customers’ carriages awaited their return from shopping. I was told that, close by the 5th Avenue entrance, was a currently boarded-up feature – a fountain or something equally as elegant. I wonder if it’s still there.

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