Infobox Defunct Company
company_name = Kaufmann's
fate = Renamed Macy's
successor = Macy's
foundation = 1871
defunct = 2006
location = Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
industry = Retail
key_people = Jacob Kaufmann, Isaac Kaufmann, and Edgar J. Kaufmann
products = Clothing, footwear, bedding, furniture, jewelry, beauty products and housewares
num_employees =
parent = Formerly May Department Stores
subsid =

Kaufmann's was an iconic department store that originated in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The store became a regional chain in the eastern United States, and was last owned by Federated Department Stores. At the hight of its carer it had some 59 stores in 5 states.

Formerly part of May Department Stores prior to that company's acquisition by Federated on Aug. 30, 2005, Kaufmann's operated as part of the Filene's organization in Boston, Massachusetts. [ [http://www.boston.com/business/globe/articles/2005/07/29/its_official_filenes_brand_will_be_gone/ It's official: Filene's brand will be gone - The Boston Globe ] ]

On Feb. 1, 2006, the Filene's/Kaufmann's organization was dissolved and the management of its stores was assumed by Macy's East and the new Macy's Midwest. On Sept 9, 2006, the Kaufmann's name was retired as Federated Department Stores converted the former May Company chains to the Macy's masthead. [ [http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/06252/720353-28.stm Party ushers out Kaufmann's and welcomes Macy's ] ] . But on August 12 the on the corner of Smithfield Street and 5 avenue A street sign was installed reading Kaufmann Way to remember the great Pittsburgh store. [ [http:http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/08225/903722-100.stm-- Bot generated title -->] ]


Kaufmann's, at one time, was one of seven department stores in downtown Pittsburgh that included Horne's; Gimbel Brothers; Boggs & Buhl; Kaufmann & Baer, founded by cousins of the original Kaufmann's; Rosenbaum's; and Frank & Seder's. cite news | first=Rick | last=Stouffer | title='Kaufmann's is gone,' analyst predicts | date=2005-03-01 | url =http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/s_308522.html | work =Pittsburgh Tribune-Review | accessdate = 2008-08-04 ]

Kaufmann's was founded in Pittsburgh in 1871 by Jacob and Isaac Kaufmann. In 1877, the brothers moved downtown to a location that became known as "The Big Store." [ [ Macy's to continue Christmas-shopping extravaganza] , Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, 2006-11-07]

May Company purchase, regional growth

With Edgar J. Kaufmann as president, the Kaufmann's chain was acquired by May Company in 1946. The chain operated in Pennsylvania, New York, Ohio and West Virginia. [ [http://www.fds.com/company/his_3.asp Macy's, Inc. History - Macy's, Inc ] ]

The chain dominated its local region, absorbing several other department stores including Strouss, based in Youngstown, Ohio, in 1986; Sibley's, based in Rochester, New York, in 1991 (which had merged with Hengerer's of Buffalo in 1981); May Company Ohio, based in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1992 (which had merged with O'Neil's in Akron, Ohio, in 1989); and remnants of McCurdy's stores of Rochester and Hess's of Allentown, Pennsylvania in 1995. [ [http://www.federated-fds.com/pressroom/macys/macysmidwest/about.asp?page=2 Macy's Midwest - Macy's Press Room ] ]

Gimbels/Horne's relationship

Ironically, Gimbels Brothers history in Pittsburgh had originated with their purchase of the Kaufmann & Baer department store in 1926, founded by a rival faction of the Kaufmann family.

In 1970, the entire Gimbels chain was purchased by the tobacco comglomerate BATUS. In 1986, after years of declining sales, BATUS announced that Gimbels was on the block. Unable to find a buyer for the entire chain, BATUS closed down the unprofitable Gimbels Pittsburgh division, selling or closing all locations. Some of the more attractive mall locations were taken over by Kaufmann's, which effectively caused the shuttering of the Gimbels Pittsburgh division.

In October 1986, May Company acquired Joseph Horne Co., as part of their merger with Associated Dry Goods. Due to anti-trust concerns and legal action by the City of Pittsburgh, Horne's was promptly sold in December 1986 to a local investor group. After several years of private ownership, it was announced that Dillards would buy the chain to combine it with the Dillard/DeBartolo co-owned Higbee's stores based in Cleveland. The deal collapsed and was not completed. The Joseph Horne Co. was sold off in parts, with Dillard's acquiring its five Ohio stores in 1992 and Federated Department Stores's Lazarus division acquiring its remaining nine Pennsylvania stores in 1995. Federated eventually merged all its divisions (including the former Joseph Horne/Lazarus locations) into Macy's.

21st century

In 2002, the store's Pittsburgh business headquarters was closed, and its back-office operations were consolidated into Filene's. [ [http://www.bizjournals.com/pittsburgh/stories/2002/05/13/story3.html Loss of Kaufmann's HQ wounds Downtown emotionally, economically - Pittsburgh Business Times: ] ]

On Sept. 9, 2006, Kaufmann's ceased to exist as the Macy's nameplate replaced the historical name.

Flagship Store

The Flagship store in downtown Pittsburgh was built in 1887 and became known as the big store. It underwent several remolding processes before receiving its current look. The Building was the Largest department store in Pittsburgh spanning 11 stories, 650,000 square feet of selling space and covering the entire block. Kaufmann's started several holiday traditions that were carried on after it was taken over such as animated Christmas windows and Santa Land. Although Macy's has taken over several signs remain in the parking garage and on the building itself that still read Kaufmann's.

Kaufmann's Clock

‎The flagship store in downtown Pittsburgh (also known as "The Big Store") has a large clock at one corner of the building (at Smithfield Street and Fifth Avenue). This clock became a popular meeting place, and prompted the coining of the phrase "Meet me under Kaufmann's clock." The clock has become a local icon, and is often featured in print materials about the city.

In 2006, "USA Today" ran an article about the regional chains being merged into Macy's, and the piece featured memories from Pittsburghers about the store and the clock: "As girls in their best dresses and Mary Jane shoes, they rode streetcars downtown to the 11-story Kaufmann's department store here. Jean Wenner, 81 [in 2006] , and her friends grew up on Kaufmann's, meeting under the store's ornate clock, lunching at the Tic Toc restaurant and bringing their own children to the Secret Santa." [http://www.usatoday.com/money/industries/retail/2006-06-08-macys-shopping_x.htm] :

Celebrate The Seasons

Kaufmann's hosted the first 25 years of the Pittsburgh Celebrate the Season Parade Christmas Parade which has started in 1980 the parade has ran two hours each year feom 9am to 11am. When Kaufmann's closed Macy's took over hosting duties.

Left Over Kaufmann's

Although Kaufmann's has closed some signs are left over from the Kaufmann's days. There are several plaques left on the flagship store that still read Kaufmann's including the name above the Macy's sign to mark the original store entrance. In the parking garage several signs also read Kaufmann's and have not been taken down. Also there is a sign left over at the Waterfront shopping center. There are also signs left over from other stores that Macy's has taken over it may show that Macy's has respect for traditions that that towns have such as local stores.

Local Pop Culture

*The phrase "Meet Me Under Kaufmann's Clock" became famous in Pittsburgh, as the meeting place for anyone shopping downtown. Shoppers would meet under Kaufmann's historic clock located at 5th Avenue and Smithfield Street.
*The phrase "Does Hornes tell Kaufmann's its business?" was once used in Western Pennsylvania as a put-off to inquiring people, the implication being that a company does not give information out to its competitors.


Edgar Kaufmann was notable for commissioning Frank Lloyd Wright to design his home in Mill Run, Pennsylvania; that home, Fallingwater, became one of the most famous houses of the 20th century. [ [http://www.bluffton.edu/~sullivanm/wrightpa/kaufmann.html Images of Edgar J. Kaufmann House, (Fallingwater) by Frank Lloyd Wright ] ]

ee also

*List of defunct department stores of the United States

Former Locations

New York

*Binghamton MSA/Johnson City - Oakdale Mall "(opened 2000 on site of former Montgomery Ward; now Macy's)" convert|140000|sqft|m2
*Buffalo MSA/Hamburg Township - McKinley Mall (2 locations) "(main store opened 1989 as Sibley's)" main store convert|87816|sqft|m2|abbr=on., the home store "(home store building opened 1988 as L.L. Berger's)" convert|30718|sqft|m2|abbr=on.
*Buffalo MSA/Amherst - Boulevard Mall (2 locations) "(opened 1983 as Hengerer's- originally a Sattler's location)" women's-juniors-kids store/customer service/home store/executive offices convert|179000|sqft|m2|abbr=on., the men's store "(the men's store building originally opened as Jenss)" convert|40000|sqft|m2|abbr=on.
*Buffalo MSA/Cheektowaga - Walden Galleria "(opened 1988 as Sibley's, additional convert|35000|sqft|m2|abbr=on added in 1992)" convert|175000|sqft|m2, the home store "(former home store building mothballed for 2008 remodeling)" convert|15000|sqft|m2|abbr=on
*Buffalo MSA/Williamsville - Eastern Hills Mall "(opened 1971 as Hengerer's)" convert|129824|sqft|m2|abbr=on.
*Elmira MSA MSA/Horseheads - Arnot Mall "(former Hess's location, opened 1995)" convert|119835|sqft|m2|abbr=on.
*Rochester - The Mall at Greece Ridge (2 locations) "(Kaufmann's had two locations in this mall because it was formed from the 1995 merger of two malls which each had a store. The Kaufmann's in Long Ridge Mall was a former McCurdy's; the one in Greece Towne Mall was a former Sibley's and became a Bon-Ton after the merger. A Kaufmann's Home Store opened in 1998 in the former B. Forman's location.)" one convert|114670|sqft|m2|abbr=on., the other convert|41970|sqft|m2|abbr=on.
*Rochester - The Marketplace Mall "(opened 1982 as Sibley's)" convert|145117|sqft|m2|abbr=on
*Rochester - Medley Centre "(formerly Irondequoit Mall)" "(opened 1990)" convert|127068|sqft|m2|abbr=on.
*Rochester MSA/Victor - Eastview Mall "(opened 1971 as Sibley's)" convert|168000|sqft|m2|abbr=on.
*Syracuse - Carousel Center "(opened 1990)" convert|165000|sqft|m2|abbr=on.
*Syracuse MSA/Clay - Great Northern Mall "(opened 1989 as Sibley's)" convert|85000|sqft|m2
*Syracuse MSA/De Witt - Shoppingtown Mall "(opened 1993)" 120,400 sq ft.)
*Utica-Rome MSA MSA/New Hartford - Sangertown Square "(former Hess's locations, opened 1995)" 140,000


*Akron - Chapel Hill Mall "(open 1967 as O'Neil's)"
*Akron - Summit Mall "(opened 1965 as O'Neil's)"
*Akron - Rolling Acres Mall "(opened 1978 as O'Neil's)"
*Akron MSA/Stow - Stow-Kent Shopping Center "(opened 1965 as O'Neil's)"
*Canton - Canton Centre Mall "(formerly Mellet Mall)" "(opened 1968 as O'Neil's)"
*Canton MSA/North Canton - Westfield Belden Village "(formerly Belden Village Mall)" "(opened 1971 as O'Neil's)"
*Cleveland MSA/Elyria - Westfield Midway "(formerly Midway Mall)" "(opened 1990 as May Company)" convert|103974|sqft|m2|abbr=on.
*Cleveland MSA/Mentor - Great Lakes Mall "(opened 1964 as May Company)" convert|189198|sqft|m2|abbr=on.
*Cleveland MSA/North Olmsted - Westfield Great Northern "(formerly Great Northern Mall)" "(opened 1965 as May Company)"
*Cleveland MSA/North Randall - Randall Park Mall "(opened 1976 as May Company)"
*Cleveland MSA/Parma - Parmatown Mall "(opened 1960 as May Company)" convert|299240|sqft|m2|abbr=on.
*Cleveland MSA/Richmond Heights - Richmond Town Square "(opened 1998)" convert|165000|sqft|m2|abbr=on.
*Cleveland MSA/Strongsville - Westfield SouthPark "(formerly SouthPark Center)" "(opened 1996)"
*Cleveland MSA/University Heights - University Square "(opened 2002, replacing 1956 May Company)"
*Columbus - Columbus City Center "(opened 2003 in former Marshall Field's location)"
*Columbus - Eastland Mall "(opened November, 2005; closed March, 2006 and reopened as Macy's April, 2006)"
*Columbus - Polaris Fashion Place "(opened 2001)"
*Columbus MSA/Dublin - The Mall at Tuttle Crossing "(opened 2003 in former Marshall Field's location)"
*Mansfield MSA/Ontario - Westfield Richland "(formerly Richland Mall)" "(opened 1969 as O'Neil's)"
*Sandusky - Sandusky Mall "(opened 1979 as May Company)"
*Youngstown-Warren MSA/Boardman - Southern Park Mall "(opened 1970 as Strouss)" convert|186000|sqft|m2|abbr=on
*Youngstown-Warren MSA/Niles - Eastwood Mall "(opened 1969 as Strouss)" convert|158000|sqft|m2|abbr=on
*Weirton, West Virginia MSA/Steubenville - Fort Steuben Mall "(opened 1974)"
*Wheeling, West Virginia MSA/St. Clairsville - Ohio Valley Mall "(opened 1979)"


*Altoona - Logan Valley Mall "(former Hess's location, opened 1995)"
*Erie - Millcreek Mall "(opened 1975)" convert|160203|sqft|m2|abbr=on.
*Pittsburgh - Smithfield Street at Fifth Avenue (flagship) "(current location built in 1913)"
*Pittsburgh - Ross Park Mall "(opened 1986)"
*Pittsburgh - South Hills Village "(former Gimbels location, opened 1987, closed March 2006, now Boscov's)"
*Pittsburgh - The Mall at Robinson "(opened 1998)"
*Pittsburgh - The Waterfront "(opened 2003)"
*Pittsburgh MSA/Greensburg - Westmoreland Mall "(opened 1976)"
*Pittsburgh MSA/Monaca - Beaver Valley Mall "(former Gimbels location, opened 1987)" convert|204770|sqft|m2|abbr=on.
*Pittsburgh MSA/Monroeville - Miracle Mile Shopping Center "(opened early 1960s, became car dealership 1986, demolished 2003, now Lowe's Home Improvement Warehouse)
*Pittsburgh MSA/Monroeville - Monroeville Mall "(former Gimbels location, opened 1987, closed March 2006, now Boscov's)"
*Pittsburgh MSA/Mount Lebanon- Freestanding (opened 1964, closed 1986, location now The Galleria of Mt. Lebanon)
*Pittsburgh MSA/Tarentum - The Galleria at Pittsburgh Mills "(opened 2005)" convert|164958|sqft|m2|abbr=on.
*Pittsburgh MSA/Washington - Washington Crown Center "(opened 1999)" convert|140095|sqft|m2|abbr=on.
*Pittsburgh MSA/West Mifflin - Century III Mall (2 locations) "(opened 1979, furniture gallery opened 2001)"
*Scranton-Wilkes-Barre MSA/Scranton - Viewmont Mall "(former Hess's location, opened 1995)" convert|139801|sqft|m2|abbr=on.
*Scranton-Wilkes-Barre MSA/Wilkes-Barre - Wyoming Valley Mall (2 locations) "(former Hess's location, opened 1995)" Men and Home Store convert|50354|sqft|m2|abbr=on.; Women's and Children's store convert|96207|sqft|m2|abbr=on.
*State College - Nittany Mall "(opened 1999)" convert|94766|sqft|m2|abbr=on.
*Williamsport - Lycoming Mall "(former Hess's location, opened 1995)" convert|119738|sqft|m2|abbr=on.
*Hermitage/Youngstown-Warren, OH MSA - Shenango Valley Mall "(opened as Strouss, 1976)" convert|106000|sqft|m2|abbr=on

West Virginia

*Charleston, West Virginia - Charleston Town Center "(opened 1983)"


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