Did You Know? from MetroBlogs

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MB_didyouknow-thumb.jpgWhen you think of Abercrombie & Fitch, the image of a dimly lit mall store with blasted music and lots and lots of plaid comes to mind, filled to the brim with hormonal teenagers trying to fit in. But, did you know that A&F started on South Street as a lower Manhattan outdoor sporting store? The brand began with David Abercrombie’s vision of becoming the premier hunting and fishing store in Manhattan. Some of his prominent clients were Teddy Roosevelt, Charles Lindbergh, Amelia Earhart, Greta Garbo, Katharine Hepburn, Clark Gable, and John Steinbeck. Ernest Hemmingway also shopped there, and it is rumored that he purchased a gun at A&F that he would eventually use to commit suicide.

A client named Ezra Fitch eventually bought in, and the partnership did not go well, mainly because Abercrombie wanted to stick with the outdoor goods that made them popular and Fitch wanted to diversify and grow. So Fitch ultimately purchased Abercrombie’s shares and became the sole owner. While the brand continued to grow and gain prominence for a while, it fell into disrepair and would all but disappear by the 1970s. It was purchased in 1988 by Limited Brands and converted to a trendy clothier, and has been a retailing powerhouse ever since.

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