1391 Martine Ave. Scotch Plains, NJ 07076
Ph: 908-889-8800

Please note that on Saturday, December 16, the gymnasium will have limited availability due to other programs scheduled.  Please check with our member services desk at 908-889-8800 if you are looking for open gym time.  Thank you! 

Conversations with Authors: Louise Bamberger: Department Store Innovator and Philanthropist

Date: February 26, 2018Time: 11:15 am - 12:15 pm
Location:  Show map JCC of Central NJ
1391 Martine Avenue
Scotch Plains
Contact: Alison RivlinPhone: 908-889-8800 x260Email: arivlin@jccnj.org

Louis Bamberger (1855–1944) was the epitome of the merchant prince as public benefactor. Born in Baltimore, this son of German immigrants built his business — the great, glamorous L. Bamberger & Co. department store in Newark, N.J. — into the sixth-largest department store in the country. A multimillionaire by middle age, he joined the elite circle of German Jews who owned Macy’s, Bloomingdale’s, and Filene’s. Despite his vast wealth and local prominence, Bamberger was a reclusive figure who shunned the limelight, left no business records, and kept no diaries. He remained a bachelor and kept his private life and the rationale for his business decisions to himself.  Yet his achievements are manifold. He was a merchandising genius whose innovations, including newspaper and radio ads and brilliant use of window and in-store displays, established the culture of consumption in twentieth-century America. His generous giving, both within the Jewish community and beyond it, created institutions that still stand today: the Newark YM-YWHA, Beth Israel Hospital and the Newark Museum. Toward the end of his career, he financed and directed the creation of the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton, which led to a friendship with Albert Einstein.  Despite his significance as business innovator and philanthropist, historians of the great department stores have paid scant attention to Bamberger. This full-length biography will interest historians as well as general readers of Jewish history nationally, New Jerseyans fascinated by local history, and the Newarkers for whom Bamberger’s was a beloved local institution.

Price: $7, Member Price: Free
Stay for lunch - Price: $8, Senior Price: $4.25 • reservations are needed three days in advance; contact Alison Rivlin at 908-889-8800 x260 or arivlin@jccnj.org

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