Bond Stores Inc. became the largest retail chain of men's clothing in the United States, best known for selling two-pant suits. In 1933, company president Barney S. Ruben moved the manufacturing center of Bond Clothes from New Brunswick, NJ to Rochester, where he spent his youth and got his start in the clothing industry with Fashion Park. By 1936, Bond Clothes had outgrown its factory in Rochester, prompting a trade with Levy Brothers & Adler-Rochester, Inc. for their larger, more modern facility. Still more growth forced the company to add an annex to that building, and by 1938 Bond Clothes had become the largest employer of textile workers in Rochester, employing over 2,500 people.
In 1945, an even larger facility was built on North Goodman St., and Barney Ruben predicted Bond Stores Inc. would be the largest clothing manufacturer with the largest factory in the world, employing thousands more workers. Unfortunately, by the late 1940s, the clothing industry in Rochester was beginning a steady decline, as manufacturers were starting to move to other parts of the country, where labor was cheaper. As a result, employment in the clothing industry dropped dramatically, and Bond Clothes was never able to fully occupy this vast new building. After nine years, the facility was sold to General Dynamics Corp. and Bond Clothes returned to its previous factory. Despite the growing decline in employment and manufacturing, Bond Stores Inc. was able to remain in Rochester until 1979, when the factory was finally closed.
In the 1940’s, the company used its famous block-long Times Square billboard to advertise – it contained a five-story-tall waterfall, with real water coursing through!!
Common Stock, issued in the 1940’s through the 1960’s
Printed by the American Bank Note Company
8” (h) x 12” (w)
This certificate has vertical fold lines, punch hole cancels in the signature areas and body, stray staple holes and markings.