Independents

Connecticut Jewelry Store To Close After 108 Years

IndependentsApr 20, 2021

Connecticut Jewelry Store To Close After 108 Years

Friedrich Jewelers owners Doug and Jacki Friedrich are ready for retirement.

Friedrich Jewelers owners Jacki (left) and Doug Friedrich are pictured here with designer Becky Penta. The store is closing as the owners head into retirement.
Vernon, Conn.—Family-owned Friedrich Jewelers is closing after 108 years.

Fourth-generation owners Doug and Jacki Friedrich are ready to close their Vernon, Connecticut store, retiring to spend time with their grandson and embark on some new travels.

Though the pandemic made for rough waters, business rebounded quickly, and the jeweler is happy to end its century-long journey on a high note.

“Since 1913, you have honored Friedrich Jewelers by including us in your celebrations of life and love,”  the owners said in a press release about the closure.

“Over the last 108 years, our customers have appreciated our commitment to exceptional quality, dependability, value, and services passed down through four generations. These are the driving forces behind our business, and we believe they show through in all we do. 

“Although bittersweet, the time has come for us to bring this journey to an end. We welcome our new adventure, retirement.”

The jeweler has helped generations of families celebrate life’s milestones, and that is what Doug and Jacki said they will miss the most.

Doug, a bench jeweler and designer, is descended from a long line of watchmakers and jewelers.

His great-grandfather, Gustav Friedrich, opened the family jewelry store on Ward Street in nearby Rockville, Connecticut in 1913.

In 1936, his son, Herbert, took over the business. 

Herbert and his wife Ursula raised their twin sons, Robert and Herbert Jr., and daughter Dorothy in the apartment just above the store.

His sons looked to follow in their father’s footsteps, so Herbert Sr. bought the former Ronalter Jewelry Store in nearby Stafford Springs, Connecticut in 1947. 

By 1950, Robert was running the store. Robert’s daughter Brenda later ran that store, though it closed in 2015. 

 Related stories will be right here … 

Herbert’s other son, Herbert Jr., took over the Ward Street Friedrich Jewelers store in 1957. His son, Doug, joined him there in 1978.

In 1989, Doug and Jacki bought the Ward Street store, moving it to its current location in Vernon in 1993.

The husband-and-wife team have run it until present day with the help of “a small but mighty staff,” including designer Becky Penta, who joined the store at age 18 and has been there for more than 25 years.

The store’s going-out-of-business sale began Monday and will continue until everything is sold.

For more information, visit the Friedrich Jewelers website.
Lenore Fedowis the associate editor, news at National Jeweler, covering the retail beat and the business side of jewelry.

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