Merritt Schaefer & Brown Records
An Inventory of the Collection
Merritt Schaefer & Brown was a men's clothier that was started by Frank Merritt, A. O. Schaefer, Walter Finis Brown and Verno Blomquist in Austin, Texas in 1941. The original store location was 611 Congress Avenue. They carried medium-priced to high-end brand name men's apparel. During World War II they also sold military uniforms to bomber pilots. In 1956, the store was sold to Hart Schaffner & Marx, a national men's clothing maker. In 1992, HSSI, Inc., the company's retail store division took over. Over the years the store expanded to have satellite stores in area malls that all eventually closed because of financial difficulties. The last remaining store in downtown Austin store closed in 1995 after the Chicago company, The Hastings Group, that bought out the store in 1994 filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.
This small (14 item) collection contains correspondence, programs, newspaper clippings and photographs that document the opening and closing of Merritt Schaefer & Brown. The eight black and white photographs document the opening ceremonies of the store in 1941 and feature then-Austin mayor Tom Miller and Lyndon B. Johnson as well as the owners of Merritt Schaefer Brown and their wives.
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The Austin History Center (AHC) is the owner of the physical materials in the AHC collections and makes available reproductions for research, publication, and other uses. Written permission must be obtained from the AHC before any publication use. The AHC does not necessarily hold copyright to all of the materials in the collections. In some cases, permission for use may require seeking additional authorization from the copyright owners. Consult repository for more details.
Donated by a family member of Walter Brown.
Merritt Schaefer & Brown Records (AR.2004.029). Austin History Center, Austin Public Library, Texas.
Donor #: DO/2004/121
Donation Date: 2004
Finding aid created and encoded by Molly Hults/2010.
Detailed Description of the Collection