Posts Tagged ‘Brooklyn businesses’

Celebrating winter with old Brooklyn businesses

January 23, 2013

The Brooklyn Public Library has a wonderful digitized collection of late 19th century business cards from hundreds of shops and companies located in the teeming city of Brooklyn.


They’re whimsical and imaginative—and some honor the cold weather while advertising their goods, like J.V. Dubernell, tailor.

His shop was at 331 and 333 Fulton Avenue, and his suits sound kind of expensive for the era.


That’s some sled illustrated in this card, for this clothing store, which comes off like the L.L. Bean of the time. Check out these prices for trendy wool cloaks!


This sweet scene advertises the business of a paint dealer. Sumpter Street is in today’s Bedford-Stuyvesant, quite a bit away from the other businesses, which are located closer to downtown Brooklyn in what was the fashionable shopping area of the time.

Perhaps a paint store was not welcome on refined Fulton Street?

What happened to a Bed-Stuy dress form factory?

November 23, 2009

The Ellanam Adjustable Form Company made a name for itself with its “adjustable” dress form—a three-dimensional headless, limbless female mannequin used for sewing.

The breakthrough adjustable model, heavily advertised to housewives in the early 20th century, could be easily altered to accommodate clothes of any shape or size.

They must have been pretty novel; several of these dress forms command a decent amount of cash on online auction sites.

 But what happened to Ellanam? They seem to have vanished, and their former home at 378 Throop Avenue near Tompkins Park looks residential. Another reminder of Brooklyn’s days as a manufacturing hub.