|Interested in Hess's?|
You'll enjoy this book.
|Behind Hess's 1930s Art-Moderne facade were multiple|
buildings and the original hotel in which the store began in 1897
|Although Hess's was well-suited to the Lehigh Valley|
city of Allentown, it drove its buiness by making customers
feel as if they were shopping in a more sophisticated,
|Hess's was famous for its Christmas displays, (including Pip|
the Mouse), haute-couture fashion, and its overwhelming
flower shows that drew people from afar.
Hess Brothers (1897)
9th and Hamilton Streets
Hess's Bargain Basement • Fashion Fabrics • Art Needlework • Sewing Machines • Books • Hess's Patio Restaurant
Fine Jewelry • Fashion Jewelry • Fashion Watches • Handbags • Small Leather Goods • Gloves • Belts • Neckwear • Accessories • Hosiery • Cosmetics • Fashion Shoes • Blouses • Sweaters • Misses' Budget Sportswear • Candies • Stationery • Office Equipment • Oasis Snack Bar
Store for Men Men's Furnishings • Men's Sportswear • Men's Slacks • Men's Shoes • Young Men's Sportswear • Men's Clothing • Men's Outerwear • University Shop
Misses' Budget Dresses • Misses' Sportswear • Misses' Dresses • Women's World • Fashion Coats • Better Sportswear • Designer Jeans • Better Dresses • Social Occasion Dresses • French Room • Bridal Salon • Fur Salon
Second Floor Annex
Hess's Marketplace • Lamps • Pictures and Mirrors • Fine Art Gallery • Portrait Studio • Beauty Salon • Trimmers
Bodyfashions • Sleepfashions • Loungewear
Junior World Junior Sportswear • Junior Dresses • Junior Coats
Infants' Clothing • Infants' Accessories • Infants' Furniture • Toddlers' Clothing • Girls' Accessories • Big Girls' Clothing • Little Girls' Clothing • Boys' Accessories • Boy's Clothing
Sheets • Blankets • Bedspreads • Pillows • Towels • Bath Shop • China • Glassware • Silver • Gift Gallery • Hostess Shop • Hoffritz Shop • Cookware • Bakeware • Small Appliances • Floor Care • Personal Care Appliances • Notions
Living Room Furniture • Occasional Furniture • Dining Room Furniture • Bedroom Furniture • Bedding • Easy Living Furniture • Appliances • TV Sets • Stereos • Radios • Records • Sporting Goods • Luggage • Toys
Fifth Floor Annex
Community Room • Special Events • Toyland (Christmas) • Festival of Trees & Pip the Mouse
101 North Queen St.
|Palmer Park Mall|
136 Palmer Park Mall
2524 Schoenersville Rd.
3300 Lehigh Street
MacArthur Rd, Whitehall
Doylestown Shopping Center
Logan Valley Mall
Hess's was acquired by Crown American Realty Trust in 1979, and began to
swallow up many smaller department stores in the East and Middle south. The
store grew from 19 to 79 branches, but by 1990 was unprofitable. This
exhibit focuses on the original, independent, Allentown-based Hess's, so well-
loved and remembered by its former customers.
Coming in due course.
Thanks for adding Hess's.ReplyDelete
We used to travel from New Jersey to shop at the Hamilton Street store right up to the last Christmas Season that it was Hess's (1994), and for the 1 Christmas Season that it was Bon-Ton (1995).
There were many great stores around the nation, but Hess's had that extra magic that will stay with us in memory foreever.
Although many of our great downtown stores spent their final years as shells of their former selves, Hess's shined and sparkled right to the end.
hess also had a location in the SOUTH HILLS MALL IN POUGHKEEPSIE N.Y. IT WAS A GREAT STORE AND THE ONLY DECENT ONE BEFORE A GALLERIA OPENED WITH G.FOX, JORDAN MARSH LEHMERE JCPENNEY AND STEINBACH.Delete
Hess's "Main" (as the Hamilton St. store was called locally) was a jewel for the City of Allentown. The Patio was a fantastic restaurant and the service at the store was always really good. I always thought the merchandise at the Hamilton St. store was much nicer than that which was carried at the smaller branch stores. However, once The Bon-Ton took over, all of that ended when the store was closed; something The B-T was known to doing to all the stores they took over.ReplyDelete
There was also a store at West Manchester Mall in York, PA that opened in about 1981 and closed when the rest of the chain was shuttered.
In 1958 I was on a bus to Richmond, Virginia. The bus made several stops and picked up additional passengers and at one stop a lady of about mid thirty years of age got on and asked if she could share my seat. As we talked, she asked me where I was from and I said Allentown, PA to which she replied "ohh, that's where that lovely little ole Hess Brothers is".ReplyDelete
My Grandparents used to drive up from Bucks county to shop at Hess's. Sure the merchandise was great but my Grandfather liked it becasue it had a restraunt with a cocktail lounge!!!ReplyDelete
For years Hess's was the anchor store, along with Sears and later Pomeroy's at the Coventry Mall in Pottstown, PA. Before it was even a 'mall' but an open air shopping plaza.ReplyDelete
Thanks for sharing these photos. As a child in the 1970's it was a big, BIG deal when we made our annual pilgrimage from Easton to Allentown to visit Santa at "the big Hess's". The line was always long and tested Dad's patience year after year. Afterward we'd have a treat at the Patio restaurant.ReplyDelete
Hess’s was a Big Big Deal! Nothing in retail anywhere this side of Heaven will ever compare to this store . Pure magic.Delete
Their logo with the blue green and red "hess's" was all over the white shopping bag and gift boxes in tiny lettering. Seeing the logo on this website reminds me of Christmas! Our Zollinger Harnid's at the Wyoming Valley Mall became a Hess's, and that raised my curiosity so, we discovered the flowershows at their flagship store, and traveled by car to see them as often as possible over the years. Truly a wonderful memory this website has awakenend within me, thank you dear. Yours in the Love of Christ, Mrs. Walter J. KatsellasReplyDelete
Dear Mrs. Katsellas!ReplyDelete
Thank you for your kind words and for the blessing, which is so very appreciated.
I am always happy to hear of the positive feelings this site evokes in people, and for that alone it is worth any effort I put into it.
I am so glad that you shared your memories with so many people in this way; God bless you too!
My father was a principle in an architectural woodwork and store fixture firm called "Storecrafters" and located in Houston TX. The comany was founded right after WWII by brothers Charles and Robert Cohen, and my father joined them soon after. In 1957 and 1958, Mr. Max Hess had the Hamilton street store completed remodeled, and selected Storecrafters to design and construct the project. Robert Cohen designed eadch element of the store, and my father, as head of installation for Storecrafters, spent two years on the project. My sister and mother and I spent the summers of 57 & 58 in Allentown with my dad, living in a lovely Victorian style farm house just outside of town. Each Friday, mother would dress us up and take us to have lunch with our father at the Hess' "Patio" restaurant in the basement. I still have the menu from the Patio .. lobster was $1.75! The store turned out beautifully, and was a serious accomplishment for the company and a great couple of summers for us Texas kids!ReplyDelete
Great post. I was blogging and needed to gather more information on Hess's Patio. Your blog came right up and it was great information (and nostalgic!) I'll link to this page!ReplyDelete
After I graduated from High School I worked at Hess Brothers,as it was know as,We were only allowed to wear Black dresses no pants then eventually Navy Blue.All the buyers wore a fresh flower on there lapels.For all employees on your birthday you were treated to the patio Restaurant for a dinner and an amazing piece of the Famous Strawberry pie,UMMMMMMM,while the fashion show was going on all throughout the restaurant.Oh as a young girl of 18 how I wanted to be one of those models.ReplyDelete
My mom was a Hess model in the late 40s till the late 50s. I love seeing her photos, modeling the latest fashions from Hess.Delete
Hess's was my mother's favorite store in the 1950's. Her wedding dress, which was purchased in '54 is such an extraordinary example of '50's haute-couture. 58 years later, it still looks new, stunning in it's simple elegance...a dress that Grace Kelly would have been pleased to wear. She loves to tell how she picked it out, on her own, during her lunch hour. She payed a whopping $55.00 and the price included a free portrait! Would love to know who the designer was. The dress has only Hess's tags.ReplyDelete
I hope you do not mind that I linked to your blog about the store from my blog -http://ziaclara.wordpress.com/2012/09/23/going-home/. I grew up going there all the time over 20 years!ReplyDelete
I hoping someone on here will be able to help me with something. I was at an estate sale and purchased two Hess's gift boxes. One is a typical white box with the blue green and red 'Hess's' lettering. The other is a mint green colored box with 'Hess's Brothers' written on it and cartoon pictures of Indian men. You can tell they are old and valuable. I have been searching non stop for 2 weeks for a similiar box and can't find anything. I have asked several people that have been around longer than me and they have not seen it either. I would like to sell them but I am not sure how much they are worth or where to sell them. Any ideas????ReplyDelete
Hess Brother's is the older box, they shortened the name in the 60's I believe. If you do some reasearch I believe the mint green is a Christmas box that was lrinted in limited editionDelete
Does anyone know where I can get hold of a Hess's Patio waitress uniform?ReplyDelete
Does anyone recall the brand brand names of the chocolates sold in the candy department? If I recall there were two popular brands.ReplyDelete
Bon Ton was mad stupid for closing the 9th and Hamilton location. They still has the Hess patios and the Hess tourists would have still visited that storeReplyDelete
Used to model in the Patio back in the 80's.. great job, loved the clothes and the co workers!!!!ReplyDelete
I remember, during the 1960's, the addition of the parking garage with the spiral ramp. The double glass doors that separated the garage from the fourth floor with the ramp leading down to the fourth floor. Being aged six during 1960 I do not remember entering the store through the street level doors, but I certainly remember going down that ramp and looking out over the fourth floor after passing through the entry doors. Thanks to all who helped conjured memories about the Patio restaurant. I had forgotten all about it. Yes, it was special.ReplyDelete
I grew up in Allentown just blocks from the Hess family home. When.I was little I would drive by the gates on the driveway and taunt the dogs. I remember my relative who worked on the travel department, so sad when that accident happened. I was visiting her often as a child, a wonderful ear, a wonderful friend whi helped a small boy who always felt lost living in Allentown. She was my inspiration,I miss her. Patio lunch with my mom as a child, when the parking deck open wow, the gingerbread faux house on the top floor in the kids department, the candy shop on the ground floor. Those wonderful clear pops from switzerland. MemoriesReplyDelete
What accident are you referring to?Delete
When i started at hess's in about 1981 there were i believe 32( might have been 24) total stores with no plan to develope more because the people in charge at that time saw the wisdom of keeping things moderately small. and when asked in my orientaton about the longevity of Hess's in the future we were told as long as we do not do what WT Grants and JJ newburry did (which was get too big too fast to be an asset) we would remain a solid and strong part of the Communities we were established in .... less than 10 years later they lost that battle through overly rapid expansion. what a shame .ReplyDelete
Clayton L Young
Hess's Last in house watchmaker circa 1982
Thank you for your post and message. We all need prayers, so I appreciate it a great deal. I will reciprocate!ReplyDelete
We moved to Allentown from Reading when I was in 3rd Grade and I am now 67 yrs. old. I saw the best of downtown Allentown and of Hess Brothers. We lived on the South Mountain and from our house we had a fabulous view of downtown and right in the center of our view was Hess Brothers. We would watch the sign at night as each letter flashed and then finally the whole sign was lit. We had a great view. I got to know Hess's very well. My sister and I would meet my mom downtown very often after school. We especially loved it during the Christmas Holiday season. Hamilton St. was radiant and Hess Brothers stood proud and tall.ReplyDelete
What a great store and with it great memories. I remember climbing 5 sets of stairs during one the the clearance sales on Monday while I was 6 months pregnant. I purchased 2 beautiful glass lamps that day plus a fabulous Oriental rug. That was years after high school, but Hess's was still going strong. It was a sad day to see it go. There will never be another store like it. The sales were great and the Patio food to die for. Those memories will stay with me till the day I die. Bless all associated with the store.
Can anyone tell me the year The Patio closed?ReplyDelete
There was a Hess's at the Uniontown Mall in Uniontown, Pennsylvania. The space is was later occupied by Roomful Express, but is now Tele-Tech.ReplyDelete
I was a waitress at the patio for about 2 years, we were aloud to have what ever we wanted and at the end of the night take desserts home for free! No wonder they went out of business! Oh how I wish I would have saved my uniform. My grandmother lived down the street from the main store and we used to eat at the counter grill and the patio (along with the cafe's at Lehs and Zollingers) all the time. I remember getting served and serving diner in their little stove or frig!ReplyDelete
Such a great memory!!!Delete
How come nobody's mentioning Max Hess and his son Tommy, who was seen as a young prince?ReplyDelete
Thank you for this beautiful tribute to a very special place that was more than just a department store. It was the crown jewel of downtown Allentown. Hess's Patio Restaurant was a uniquely festive experience that one could enjoy anytime they visited the store.ReplyDelete
Hess's was very special because of the hard working associates that pooled their talents and offered the kind of strength in character that made the store exciting,warm,and gracious.
It was the small things we cherished. Do you remember the scent of warm filling and gravy that permeated the air as one would walk through the basement near the Patio Restaurant.Those fabulous cream puffs,strawberry pies and warm turkey dinners always made us feel full but satisfied.
The warm memories will always reside in our hearts.Those of us that spent any time at Hess's know how special and unique those memories are.
Thank you and God Bless.
You're very welcome and thanks for sharing your memories. Have you seen the DVD about Hess's? It is entitled "Hess's: Hollywood and Hamilton" and is readily available - I'd recommend it to those who knew the store, and to any of who have an interest in it.ReplyDelete
Prior to Hess's closing, I was fortunate to be able to purchase one of the magnificent crystal chandeliers that lines the aisles on the Second Floor near the French Room and the Fur Salon. It is not one of the huge ones that hung throughout the first floor, but rather a 20 light smaller version of the chandelier. I cannot believe the craftsmanship and quality of this piece.ReplyDelete
It's been almost 20 years and I still miss downtown Hess's in a big way. I'm 44 now and some of my earliest childhood memories involve the simply ridiculous way they decked out the toy dept. (4th floor?) every year for X-mas - kids today have NO idea...for a kid, it was almost total sensory overload. Sigh, what memories...ReplyDelete
As I got a bit older, I couldn't wait to get up to the 5th floor - their electronics department was second-to-none. I know they were one of the first stores in the Valley to sell CD players back in the 80's and they really used to sell some esoteric stuff up there. And I don't think anyone has mentioned their return policy - my family once returned a fairly pricey TV that had broken after about a year but they had lost the receipt. No worries, we got a new TV, no questions asked! They even sent someone to our house to swap sets. I will never forget that. Yeah, the building on Hamilton was in pretty bad shape in the early 90's but this store had a SOUL and should have been saved. Period.
ps. I would probably give a year off my life to get one more Vanila milkshake from the Patio - haven't had once that remotely compares since. The fact that they regularly operated the Patio restaurant AT A LOSS just to please their customers speaks volumes about what we've lost in retail-world. We'll never see the likes again...
my parents use to take me to hesses departmint store one day i was in the deparent mint store there was this lady she was in my way i tryed to run away from her but i hit my head on a cashregaster in the depsrtment store there were no abulances then so i had to be taken to the hospitial by a police care sirens and all my poor brother was crying on the escalator he thought i was gons die there was no medicial staf in the deparent mint stor at the time of this happing i was alittle girl when this happend my happy memery of this department store was when i had lunch at the patio every time i had a sandwitch soda and gerkins pickles and the pretty ladies when thed model there clothes when i first came to hesses deparent ment store there was a lectronic clown in hessas it scared me i cryed and told mom and dad i am scared and i wanto go home so some screy moments happy momentsReplyDelete
I loved Hess's I live in Allentown all my life ,nothing ever could come close to hess's the perfume mist when you enter the store the pet store I bought my 2 cats there .great meals no matter how long the line was you were never rush the color sugar on the tables .always order hot tea so I could use the sugar lol.when you got a gift and the box was from hess's no matter what it was it was special because it came from hess's .the ladies room had a small size booth for little girls so cute it was always special at hess's miss it.ReplyDelete
in 1958, my mom worked in cosmetics (Jean Pierre) a new line out from France/NYC..then Max came into the store one day, took one look at my mom and asked why aren't you modeling, which she eventually did right soon after and as a kid i would come into see her in the Patio and she'd be modeling an outfit, describing to the patio customers, etc..and all the while I'd be tuggin on her dress asking when was she coming home...ReplyDelete
Part of my childhood I will never forget. Every year at Christmas time my parent's always made sure they took us to Hess's to see the toy shop and Santa Claus. Also went to the patio for supper around the Holidays every year. No store will ever compare to the memories I have of Hess's. Would not change when I grew up for the world.ReplyDelete
Does anyone know when Hess was added to the Capital City Mall in Camp Hill, Pennsylvani?ReplyDelete
Wikipedia indicates 1979, but I do not see it listed above under Hess's History.
The above list may not be absolutely complete; generally my policy with regard to this site is to indicate stores built by the owner-occupier. If they took over someone else's location, it would probably be found under the original store's name. Also, after 1980, limitations preclude me from listing the multitude of stores opened as these companies merged, changed hands, spread out - and then went out of business. When I get around to writing a history for each store, I should be able to include their ultimate disposition.ReplyDelete
We'll have to leave it up to someone locally to provide further information in the form of a comment.
My dad worked there for over 30 years he was a. VP started. As a stock boy Max Hess bought him a car my.parents went to many parties at his house Max was quite eccentric my dad used to eat lunch every day at the patio all the executives. Did they sat at what was called the rountable for free wasn't. Optional. I used to go there with my mom to eat alot clown Sundays kids meals where brought to the table in a small oven the sugar was red white blue. Crystals like shards of glass. Used to eat the sugar candy sold was Godiva Russel stovers Barton's. My dad was Marvin Karll he still around he's 81 my mom Inge passed in 2006 after Hess closed he ran appeals jewelrs with Kitty appellant till it. Closed he still works a few days a week at Beverly palm jewelers on Willam Penn highway Palmer township pa I met manyReplyDelete
Movie stars athletes etc over the years at Jesse's them where the days the service there was awesome always plenty of workers to help you. You don't get that service anymore anywhere the customers came first and they where always right Gerald karll
I saw a picture of Hess Bros that says it was from 1915, it was a 5 story building with a couple 3 story buildings on either side of it, it doesn't show 9th St. What happen to the 3 story buildings to the left (west) and was 9th St there?? G.Schneck AllentownReplyDelete
My husband and I purchased a home in Allentown that was built in the 1880's and while doing some renovating we found a prize ticket from Hess Bros. It is dated 1897, the year the store was founded, and it says "Prize Guessing Contest-For a large beautiful dressed doll". The card is not in the greatest shape but I thought it might be of interest to someone. Anyone know of anybody that might interested in adding something like this to their collection? I can be reached at email@example.com. Thanks!ReplyDelete
I worked for Hess's from 1983 to 1986 and also grew up about 10 miles from the Nittany Mall in State College. This was a Crown Mall but Hess's was NOT an original tenant, Penn Traffic was. Hess's didn't have a store in the Nittany Mall until it purchased Penn Traffic in 1982. I actually had my initial job interview at the Nittany Mall store in early 1983 just after it was converted from Penn Traffic. As part of our training we had to learn about the history of the store. With the exception of the Lancaster store, all of Hess's original expansion took place in the Lehigh Valley with Palmer Park, Westgate, South and North being the original branch stores.ReplyDelete
While cleaning out a closet I found a 14 oz. container of Hess's Baby Powder. The price indicated it was 99 cents. I would hate to toss it out as it is indeed a relic....Is there a physical site in the Lehigh Valley where such collectables/exhibits are kept?ReplyDelete
Please check your local (Allentown) historical society or museum. They often collect artifacts like these.ReplyDelete
I grew up in Hellertown (born 1942, left 1960). Going to Hess Brothers was always a big occasion, and in the Christmas season it was just amazing. In the 1950s we had frequent streetcars running from Hellertown via Bethlehem to Allentown, as well as less frequent ones that took a direct route through meadows and woods. Hess's used to have sales with selected items at incredible prices, like a TV for $2. Of course there were only a few of any such item, so people would camp out on the sidewalk the day before. A friend of mine who worked as a buyer in housewares told me that to prevent bloodshed, a manager would come out a bit before opening time and work his way down the lineup, letting each person choose the sale item that he or she wanted, one per person, until they were all gone. That way people did not have to kill themselves or others to get what they were after. I also recall that my friend hired a woman to advertise the then novel Melitta coffee pots and filters by handing out coffee to people as they came off the escalator. He hired her for a month, but the pots kept selling so she was there for years and years, long after my friend had left. She loved her job and gave my buddy a big hug whenever he came back. Wonderful store, wonderful memories.ReplyDelete
Hello to all Hess's fans!!! I was employed by Hess's in 1981 working in various stores, Palmer Mall, Allentown, Frackville, Westgate and Johnstown. I have a relic from the Westgate store, "Westgate Cooks". It is a compilation of recipes from the Westgate coworkers. Unfortunately, many of these valued co-workers are no longer with us. I am looking for somewhere to store this treasure and preserve it for the future. Any suggestions? Thanks!!ReplyDelete
Does anyone know which 10 Hess's stores were sold to May Department Stores?ReplyDelete
Allentown needs another classic store. Does anyone know where they serve the strawberry pie? In or around Allentown i've been craving them really bad just researching about hess's .ReplyDelete
There can never be another retail magic period again in this earth’s timeline. We went through it. Now, it is a memory. Proof of what happens when high speed intelligence takes over a civilization . But, that’s the way it goes.Delete
My hub and I were driving through the city last week to see the current additions and renovations that were made. While I am in awe as to how downtown has improved, I still miss seeing Hess's. I was born and raised in Allentown. The 1950s and 60s were the most wonderful time of all in this town. I was a sales clerk for several depts. at the downtown store in 1968-69. I loved the quality clothes and other merchandise the store offered. It was a great place to work, too. I didn't mind that I was permitted only to wear black and navy blue. They were and still are classy colors imo, and we could accessorize! I use to have lunch at the 1st floor grill. Great food. Nothing can ever compare to Hess's or probably ever will. With the huge chandeliers, marble, mirrors and other decor, it was a very special place to shop. I am so grateful that I was able to enjoy the experience of having such a great store in my town.ReplyDelete
We have purchased a barber pole from the estate of a man who worked at Hess's as an electrician. Pole came from the barber shop, on the second floor annex. It was either bought or given to him, some time in the 60's or 70's. Pole is 6' tall, red cast base, red, white and blue middle section with a glass top. We have been trying to find more information on pole and barber shop. Does anybody know anything about Hess's barber shop or have pictures of it? Hope someone can help!ReplyDelete
My mother-in-law and her best friend used to travel up to Hess's from Lower Bucks County at least a couple of times a year for the special "Hess's experience." Wish I had had the opportunity to tag along.ReplyDelete
There was 1 at FSK mall in Frederick, MD that closed around 91. It was torn down and rebuilt as a Hecht's, which was then bought by Macy's in 05 or 06. I was too young to really know for myself, but Hess always seemed out of place in Maryland.ReplyDelete
We had a Hess's here in Uniontown, PA on the the far back side of our bigger mall some 25 years ago. I was a young boy at the time and I can remember one of my Uncles, who was a local pianist and singer, was contacted by Hess's and the mall to perform live out in the main hall in front of the store. Hess's had used the closed up storefronts around them to decorate their windows with their logo for the promotion. Nowadays we have a telemarketing firm taking up residence in the old Hess's store that's effectively closed off from the rest of the mall. The rear facade of the store outside remains the same though (minus the logo obviously) and it always reminds me of those times when I drive by it.ReplyDelete
In answer to the question about Max and Prince Tommy Hess, Tommy was a student of mine at the Perkiomen School in Pennsburg, about 20 miles from Allentown. Tommy was a down-to-earth young man, with a great personality. You would never know that he came "from money." I think he graduated from Perkiomen in the late 60s. Max Hess was well-known for the lavish parties he threw at his estate. One year he had his guests picked up by a heliocopter. Unfortunately, during one of the "deliveries," the heliocopter crashed..ReplyDelete
Thank you for the kind wordsDelete
Tom along with a guy name Bob work for my Dad on his parking lot (park and Shop) on 8th st next to the Hi FI pizza shop.during the summer months on college break! My father said they were great guys!Delete
Does anyone know when Hess Brothers became just Hess's?ReplyDelete
I was a buyer at Hess's for almost 16 years. Many fond memories of the store, my co-workers and the excitement of the sales. If I remember correctly, keeping the main store open would have cost millions in renovations and getting it up to modern day code. I really regret not buying one of the smaller chandeliers when they sold them for $300. A lot of us are still in touch and we have BIG reunions in Emmaus every year or so. The first reunion was attended by about 200 former employees. Much fun catching up.ReplyDelete
A reunion would be fun to attend. I was a buyer in 1990, then moved into management and went to Tennessee and Kentucky. Those were the days!!! Post news of reunions of the Facebook page...Delete
Hess's warmed our hearts. It truly was a wonderful experience that (along with H.Leh & Co.& Zollinger Harnid & Co.) brought happiness to the heart.Those of us that did not grow up there but happened to visit downtown while attending college in the Lehigh Valley were treated to something very comforting.It must have been a great place to grow up,having access to such a great place. Hess's downtown was a place where you were made to feel at home.Between the cream puffs that topped off our magnificent meals and the fine strawberry pie,you couldn't ask for more. We take our hats off to Max Hess and all of the associated people of Hess's that made the store a joy to hold in our hearts.Many thanks to our most gracious host here at this very special place. Warm regards & God Bless !ReplyDelete
Thank you for your contribution, and God bless you too!ReplyDelete
During this wonderful Holiday time 2015,please let me direct your attention to a special feature that was apparently posted by the local Lehigh Valley PBS affiliate,WLVT,Channel 39....HOLLYWOOD ON HAMILTON,THE HESS'S DOCUMENTARY ! Contained within are many old friends that were co-workers that explain what the Hess's mystique is all about ! It's a wonderfully produced piece that allows people to relive their memories and introduce new generations to the great department store traditions ! Be sure to enjoy the stories of MOVIE STAR VISITATIONS,HESS'S WORLD FAMOUS PATIO RESTAURANT, THE FRENCH ROOM,THE MODELS,THE HESS'S FLOWER SHOW,AND THE WORLD'S FIRST TALKING ELEVATORS IN A DEPARTMENT STORE ! (Perhaps our wonderful moderator/site owner could put a link on the front page..the documentary is on youtube.) Warm Wishes,Happy Holidays To All !
Here is the link to that WONDERFUL video mentioned above. I wish I had the opportunity to visit this store at one time in my life, as well as many others before all the re-branding and re-organizing and removal of many famous nameplates. It really seemed to have been a special place, much like my local G. Fox was to me. https://youtu.be/EtnsSgR0jEwReplyDelete
My brother and I were remembering the cornstarch licorice fingers my Mom would buys us when we shopped at Hess's. OMG if I could get my hands on them again..they were so delicious! I remember watching on TV the beautiful fashion shows and wanting to be a model. My cousin was a buyer for Hess's, and we were so proud of her and who she worked for. Does anyone remember when walking into the store, there was perfume that sprayed the air? Couldn't get enough of smelling good! That store was so high class. Even though my family still lives in the valley and I moved to Texas, I will always have fond memories of that store!ReplyDelete
Please tell me what the sale that was held twice a year called. People would almost kill one another getting in. It was truly an event.ReplyDelete
There wasn't there rummage sale?Delete
Was it there rummage salesDelete
Please tell me what the sale that was held twice a year called. People would almost kill one another getting in. It was truly an event.ReplyDelete
Hesss clean up! I got 15 shirts for 70 cents including my employee discount.😀Delete
It was called Clean up!ReplyDelete
Regarding the earlier inquiry as to why the name was changed to Hess's, I believe that happened shortly after Hess Brother's was sold to Berman Brothers in the late 60's.ReplyDelete
My Name is Lisa and I'm an editor for PBS39 in Bethlehem. I was wondering if I could get permission to use one photo of yours in our show concerning MacArthur Rd and it's history. The photo I'd like to use is of Hess's (north/south). If so, we would give you a credit in our show.
Lisa, Can you provide me with a link to you MacArthur road history show that you did? Frank Tamburelli.Delete
My grandmother was a waitress at the Hess's Patio in Allentown for 25-30 years. I loved going to eat there when the models would walk around in fancy clothes, and the kids' meals would come out in toy ovens or refrigerators. I also liked her uniform, which had a pattern on it like the Hess's boxes.ReplyDelete
My mother worked at Hess Brothers, in the late 1950s,early 1960s, first as buyer for Better Dresses, and then as buyer for the French Room, traveling to Paris for Fashion Week. My brother and I often had lunch at the Patio Restaurant and loved the fashion shows. My mother was very good at her job, but it was extremely difficult to work for Max Hess. She went on to manage another women's shop, Nan Carlby.ReplyDelete
I worked with a really wonderful lady in Houston who, if I remember right, was a member of the Hess family which owned the original store. She sometimes told me stories about her memories of their storefront including having real farm animals in the display window at Christmas. Her name was "Boots" and I'm not sure where she is today, but she was greatly skilled at customer service (sales and support), and had the personality of a real queen. I miss her.ReplyDelete
My grandmother told me that we were distantly related to someone who married a member of the Hess Department Store family. I wish I knew more as I am now writing about family history. I believe the connection is to someone from the More side of the family. They lived in PA.ReplyDelete
I worked at the main branch in the petite department which was between the designer shop and the fur department........amazing. I was 18.ReplyDelete
Looking for photos of the Hess models circa 1987 1988 1989. My daughter was aReplyDelete
model in that period.
I would love if someone would make a Hess's cook book. In college we use to go to the Oasis snack bar, I am so hungry for a Mexican cheese burger! All the food was good! I would love recipe's, Loved the Chocolate mouse, Manhattan Clam Chowder - You could always count on no mater what you ordered it was going to taste FABULOUS!!! So who ever has the recipe's- PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE MAKE A COOK BOOK FOR ME TO PURCHASE!ReplyDelete
I was fortunate enough to start my retailing career at Hess's Scranton store. Went through training in Allentown and then to the new Scranton store for pre opening set up during final construction. It was Hess's seventh branch about 1975. I became the furniture department manager in Scranton, then promoted to assistant buyer in upholstery, then promoted to Mattress and Sleep sofa buyer at the flagship store in Allentown. I continued at Hess's for a few years then moved on to Gimbels in Philadelphia as the mattress and sleep sofa buyer about 1979. It certainly was a great experience. After about 4 or 5 years at Hess's they had expanded to 21 stores when I left in 79. At the time of their closing in the 90's I believe they had 85 locations. Sad to see these great stores gone forever.ReplyDelete
Great video history of Hess's. Hess's Hollywood on Hamilton.
I have men’s suits with the Hess’s label inside them. Are they worth anything?ReplyDelete
My Gram would alternate bring her grandchildren to Hess's in Allentown. We woudl drive from Randolph NJ. Always got a new outfit, we would eat at the patio and enjoy the fashion show. I still have the empty Hess box that contained cashews. Every Christmas we had Hess boxes under the Christmas tree (often reused). After we would finish at Hess's Gram finished off the trip at Dorney Park.Blessed to have such great memories..ReplyDelete
I still have a wrought iron glass top table and 4 chairs that I seem to think I got at Hess's about 60 years ago. I could be wrong but I can't think of any other place I would have bought.ReplyDelete
Hess' 1950, I remember sooo well. My mother would take my brother and I, just to walk into all those beautiful chandeliers and the perfume department, ohhh the memories, especially one not sure what year) but they had a huge stuffed cow on the 5 th floor. Not sure of the floor but I was in awe. Whether it was stuffed or artificial, I will never forget that. Being around 10 in the 50's we visited Hess' many times, do not remember buying much but always had at least a dessert at the Patio after waiting in line and passing by that beautifully filled glass dessert display that always invisioned their famous strawberry pie, of which I have the original recipe for, if any one would like it, my e-mail is firstname.lastname@example.org, I could go on and on thru the sixties when I took my own children there and then there was 1995 when dear dear father of 85 years old and I visited it when it was The Bon Ton and going out of business. Store was practically empty, when we first entered, I could not hold the tears back, it was so devastating, so so saad to see such an ICON gone to pot. To this day my heart is saddened by that memory but I on a good note I purchased some beautiful Hess's Christmas glasses in tall size and the shorter ones. My father passed away in 1999, just to be with him on that day and to experience for both of us our heartfelt sadness, I will never forget, but the time we spent together that dayReplyDelete
was one of the most heartwarming days of my life. Jane Reichenbach
Thank you, Jane - what lovely memories and God bless your dear dad. I appreciate that you are kind enough to share these with many people.Delete
Anyonne remember Ms Ann? I believe you was in charge of models?ReplyDelete
I thought I posted this before but don't see now. Does anyone remember Ms Ann...I believe she was in charge of models. I met her elsewhere...can't remember where. ThanksReplyDelete
Renee Christ was in charge of the models when I worked there in the mid to late 70's. Her husband Dan Christ was the furniture Decorator. I was the mattress buyer in late 70's.Delete
Hello y'all, for me Hesss department store was a HUGE part of Christmas for me as a kid. Definitely something magical about that place especially around the holidays. My late Aunt worked there 40 plus years. I have all kinds of memorabilia from that place, I have patio menus, pens, jackets heck I even have an umbrella from the patio tables, nice big canopy with the various colored Hess symbols across the entire piece....ahhh great memoriesReplyDelete
Anyone interested in buying a original piece of furniture sold in Hess dept store Allentown it is a antique. I love this piece I bought it from a couple that purchased a home in the West end of Allentown Pa about almost 6 years ago they said it came with the house I am currently changing my decor.ReplyDelete
Does anybody know the significance of the red blue and green used in the branding?ReplyDelete
I have one of the metal nameplates from the main store and always curious about the colors.
I was told by the daughter of an old executive from the store that Max Hess was at her parent's house for dinner and the saw the three colors of red, green and blue on their set of china and liked the three colors together. He adopted the colors for the store's logo.Delete
Does anyone know the value of the smaller chandeliers from the main store? My mother was a long term employee and purchased three of them. Two were for friends and she kept one for her house.ReplyDelete
Hess’s used to sell a sugar candy at Christmas time that I can’t find. Does anyone have any idea what it was?ReplyDelete
Does anyone remember the Hess's Christmas special on TV that focused on their animated dolls?ReplyDelete
I still have a Lionel train set purchased at the toy department and delivered via a Hess’s delivery truck. I still remember the day it came just before Christmas in the early 60’s.ReplyDelete
Does anyone recall fashion shows sponsored by Hess's that were held on-board Lehigh Valley Railroad passenger trains en-route to New York City?ReplyDelete
Does anyone out there remember the Hess Brothers-sponsored fashion shows that were held on board Lehigh Valley Railroad passenger trainsReplyDelete
en route route to New York City in the 1950's?
Does anyone recall the fashion shows Hess's held on-board Lehigh Valley Railroad passenger trains in the 1950's?ReplyDelete