Business: The Claypool Shop of L.Strauss & Co.
Year of this Advertisement: 1920
Address: 116 W. Washington Street
What they did: Sold ladies’ hats
Years of operation: c. 1917 – 1920 (under the ownership of L. Strauss; the business was later sold to the E.O. Langen Company who expanded the business to include other ladies’ accessories)
Notable: The Claypool Shop of L. Strauss & Co. was Strauss’ first foray into women’s fashion. Before opening the Claypool Shop, Strauss dealt exclusively in men’s clothing.
Additionally: Do you remember visiting a store that specialized in ladies’ hats like the Claypool Shop?
And, borrowing from Paul Harvey—here is more than the “rest of the story” —some accurate, some sketchy but to start from dimly remembered late 40’s there was a pricey “made to order” sold in homes brand of women’s clohing called Utah Tailoring Mills. Logic tells me it must have been in Utah–but all I know personally is that the salesman for north and central Indiana was a great guy (name will come to me) who was a friend of my friend in Marion. He carried a “sample” line, priced even then in several $100 up, which amazingly was my exact size! When a season was ending, he would let me and assembled friends “try on” and buy at sample size. That is how I happen to be wearing a 3 piece suit with matching hat in my photo interviewing Harry S. Truman–framed in my political bath room.
So from here, comes the name and distantly remembered face of Edward Claypool–without being sure how I remember this I somehow link him to those late 40’s memories when Utah was fading from the market place–I was married in 51 and I remember my new husband taking me to buy from that spring collection, at a “bargain” price, saying nothing until we were in the car and as I bubbled about the bargain asking in a concerned voice “Do You ALWAYS pay that much for clothes?”
Now we are in early to mid 50’s and my home away from home was the Claypool Hotel (similar names purely coincidental as I remember” and Edward Claypool (wife’s name forgotten) actually opened a downtown retail shop named Claypools–which I somehw dimly think was on the ground floor of Illinois side of Claypool. I shopped there, knew him and wife and I even think they lived in the apt. bldg. at 49th and Penn, nw side of street?
There were certain very upscale, fashionable downtown shops—elitist and pricey Hillmans on second floor of a baroque towered bldg. nw corner of Ohio and Penn, with lacquered haired 60-ish sales lady, absolutely queen bee Raymond Cooper’s on Monument Circle–(I passed it daily on my beat as $36 per week reporter wistfully wishing for the day I could afford a Raymond Cooper, even on sale. Eventually I did–and cleaning out my upstairs closet in my home of 60 years last week I FOUND a dress from RC. Later he moved to College at 62nd st. but it was never the same. The other upscale fashion mecca was Davidson’s Indiana Fur, when it was on W. Washington along with fabulous lamp store (name will come to me) and later a pioneer in newly opened Glendale.
But back to Claypool–I do remember when he moved from free standing location (as I said I think in Claypool) to a floor at Strauss–I was a regular shopper there and have accurate member of exact layout of shop-=no memory of when it closed. I welcome any fill ins or corrections.
PS OOOPS How could I forget local opening of Monument Center store of legendary Peck & Peck. I still have photos of a dress I bought there that endured at festive events over years==and led to one memorable romance! Scott Fitzgerald fans may remember his lament in his later booze to bankrupt years, bewailing the extravagance of his college age daughter (Scotty I think?) and the endless “bills from Peck and Peck and peck and peck….” The way he wrote it evoked mind picture of flocks of birds pecking and pecking th $$$ signs. It opened, endured and then somehow disappeared–maybe ashamed to be a neighbor of later JC Penney invasion of Circle?