Harry’s Department Store/Aufrecht Insurance & Real Estate
“It’s Harry’s Department Store for the Greatest Values” Graham & Metropolitan Avenues
I’ve spent more time staring at this image in particular than almost any other sign I’ve documented. It is not for any other reason than the four foot by six foot reproduction that hung at the WAH Center Exhibition in 2000 hangs in my office in my country home. I’ve often wondered who the man on the left was and where the large woman with the teal colored sweat suit was going. At first, I didn’t even realize there was a man on the left since the slide positive was scanned initially in the cardboard frame in which it is housed, which cuts almost a millimeter of information from the image, thus cropping it slightly. When the positive was removed from the cardboard sleeve to be scanned for this large-scale reproduction, suddenly the man in the short-sleeved polo shirt and grey slacks appeared.
Department store owner, Harry also has been a mystery to me. There doesn’t seem to be any mention of Harry’s Department Store in any of the online archives I’ve searched. Kevin Walsh conveniently provided a link to the wedding announcement of Jacob M. Aufrecht that was scanned and uploaded by Tom Tryniski, in an extensive online archive he calls Old Fulton NY Post Cards. Normally this wedding announcement, which states the usual familial and temporal information would seem quite unremarkable:
Berger – Aufrecht
Miss Elise Berger, daughter of Mr. & Mrs. Emanuel Berger of 660 West 180th st., Manhattan, and Jacob M. Aufrecht, son of Mr. and Mrs. Marcus Aufrecht of 551 East 53d st., Brooklyn, will be married at the Hotel Astor on Sunday evening Oct 27, by Rabbi Alexander Lyons of the Eighth Avenue Temple.
The bride will be attended by Miss Helen Welkersheimer. Max Abrams of Brooklyn will be the best man. Following a motor trip to Canada, the couple will reside at 551 East 53d st., Flatbush. Miss Berger is a graduate of Columbia University. Mr. Aufrecht is engaged in the real estate business. – The Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Sunday October 10, 1929
Totally mundane in its details, this wedding announcement would never have struck a chord until I noticed the date that the bride and groom were to be wed. The Thursday afternoon before their wedding is known as Black Thursday (Black Friday in Europe due to the time difference). The Monday & Tuesday after their wedding are remembered as “Black” days as well. One could only wonder if the newlyweds ever went on their Canadian road-trip after a nuptial weekend that landed smack in the middle of the Stock Market Crash of 1929, precipitating the Great Depression. As I write this on a similar weekend, Standard & Poors downgraded the United States was from a Triple A to an AA+ credit rating. Life goes on. Doesn’t it? – Taken from The Fading Ads of NYC (History Press, 2011) © Frank H. Jump
Yes. Life does go on. Obama saved our asses. Let’s watch Trump drill them back into the ground.