Location July 1942:
Ingber & Co.
Factory & Home Office: 2701 North Broad Street Philadelphia, PA
The US Trademaert in its early script form was first used in July, 1910 and was registered December 3, 1946 to Benjamin Ingber, whose facsimilie signature was reproduced in the trademark.
Ingber & Co. exhibited at the Second National Merchandise Fair, held July 23- August 3, 1923 at the Grand Central Palace, New York City. (New York Times May 3, 1923, page 9)
The New York Time, March 9, 1938 praised thriving American Manufacturers, Including Ingber & Co. in a full page ad on page 6. The "Made in America Industrial Exhibition" at Bloomingdales Department Store March 10-17 was "Designed to make more work for Americans by stimilating in consumers a fuller appreciation of the high quality of American-made products."
Ingber & Company is an example of the American Dream made real by one family's had labor and creativity. The company was established on 1903 by brothers Issac and David Ingber. It survived into the 1960's, so it spanned the bulk of the 20th Century! Connie Ingber, granddaughter of founder Issac W. Ingber and daughter of Issac's son Bernie graciously shared some of her memories.
"My grandfather was Issac W. (Willy) Ingber. He came to this country via New York, where he worked in a shirt waist factory. He then brought, one by one, his family to this country. He bought a factory in Philadelphia that made wallets. It was a loft on Market Street. Then I believe they purchased a factory across from the old Connie Mack Baseball Stadium. And then finally a factory in Kensington on H and Westmoreland St. (Note: Kensington is a neighborhood of North Philadelphia.)
My grandfather weathered the depression, but unfortunately in the 60's they could not compete with all the imports. Hard leather bags were the rage but all their machinery was geared for soft leather.
A point of interest is they made the pocketbooks for the movie Marjorie Morningstar starring Natalie Wood and Gene Kelly. They had no say on the bags and they really disliked them that when they were asked to make the handbags for the movie The Carpetbaggers, they turned it down.
They did however design the carpet bag used in the movie Around the World in 80 Days. I have this bag which I cherish."
David A. Ingber sat on the original 1935 National Authority for the Ladies Handbag Industry, one of 125 leaders of the industry from 70 firms. National Authority For The Ladies Handbag Industry . His son Benjamin was head designer until his death at age 49 12/1/1964, after which there was no designer at the firm. The company closed two years later. Benjamin's son, Jonathan Inger worked at the factory at H & Westmoreland in the summers of 1965 and 1966. Thanks for your input!
Easter styles for 1942 are introduced in the February 1942 Luggage & Leather Goods, page 42. Emphasis is on "Morale! . . . one of the most important words in our vocabulary today. What has it to do with the handbag department ? Plenty, we say! It's the gay novelties that lift many a spirit out of the doldrums. Handbags this season will play their part in adding color and life to even the most tailored costume."
"Combination knitting bag and purse in bright red felt. Also available in blue in a vibrant shade. Has a top handle and 14 inch frame. The purse section is attached to the outside of the bag and closes with an envelope flap. Retails $5. From Ingber & Co."
The same issue carries this news item on page 54.
Congratulations to Ingbers
"On January 7, 1942, the engagement was announced of Miss Selma Ingber, daughter of I. W. Ingber, to Dr. Milton Gelman. Dr. Gelman at the present time is connected with the Veteran's Hospital in Fargo, North Dakota. The couple expect to be married very shortly."
Ingber Increases Wages
"Ingber & Co., prominent handbag manufacturers of Philadelphia, have just put into effect a general increase in wages to all employees in their service a year or more." (February 1942 Luggage & Leather Goods, page 63)
Half page ad April 1942 "Luggage & Leather Goods," page 48
Page 55 of the same April 1942 issue "Handbag News" column:
Ingber Stresses Faille
"Outstanding in the group of fabric bags at Ingber & Co. are the failles to retail at $3, $5 and $7.50. Both tailored and soft styles are in the collection which is shown in black, brown, navy and such high shades as red, green and purple. These are recommended for Mother's Day promotion.
Later, on page 57, "Handbag News" column of the same April 1942 "Luggage & Leather Goods" included this announcement.
Selma Ingber Weds
"Mr. and Mrs. William Ingber announce the marriage of their daughter Selma to Dr. Milton Gellman. The wedding took place on March 15 at the home of the bride's parents in Philadelphia."
The industry confronted unique and dramatic changes as World War II geared up. As a founder of Ingber & Co., David Ingber shared his wisdom on business in the August 1942 Luggage & Leather Goods, page 48.
Good Will of Buyers is Manufacturer's Most Important Asset
"Good will is an insurance policy and an asset on which there is absolutely no income tax," says Dave Ingber, a senior member of the firm of Ingber & Co. Mr. Ingber applies this thought to his daily contact with buyers and finds that it pays great dividends in friendship and what's more in orders.
Many manufacturers blame all their troubles on Labor Unions. That too is a fallacy, according to this experienced merchant. Until a short time ago the manufacturer knew only how to make profit on labor. His main source of revenue was low-cost production. Why, it was even prevalent for a bag manufacturer to sell his goods first and then figure the cost of production. Fortunately a sounder basis of operation has 'been developed in the last ten years and the bag worker, manufacturer and the retailer are all profiting by the change.
Half page ad "Handbags and Fashion Accessories" February 1950, page 8
Ingber Florentine Filigree
M. Hausman & Sons Inc., a New York maker of linings, Salutes Ingber's 50's Anniversary in Business 1903-1953
July 1954 Handbags & Accessories, page 6
May 1955 Handbags & Accessories Travel Bag article, page 14
This unique navy wool handbag is an example of Inber's creativity. The safety pin handbag has a surreal look and makes this a hot collectible. Measures 12 x 12". The gold pin is 12" long. Sold online in 2002 for a mere $51.
The October 1955 "Handbags & Accessories" features an extensive collection of bags for The Holidays and these words of guidance for buyers looking for enticing possibilities.
Show novelties and classics for Christmas
MATERIALS: look for fur, the real thing and imitations thereof processed cowhide elegant calf, rich suede
"KING SIZED foldover clutch is of luxurious O'llegro, a combination of Orion and Dynel. Bag has a highly polished brass frame and is satin lined. Prom Ingber"
"Handbags & Accessories" October 1955, page 17
Accessory market round-up
"Brightly colored wool travel bags, with zip tops and calf handles have interesting striped linings. These are at Ingber. There are several good shapes in black, nude, brown or white O'llegro. Another facet of this line includes satin, velvet, or faille foldover clutches lined in satin, and trimmed with large hand set stones that exactly match their color" "Handbags & Accessories" October 1955, page 52.
Bags for Spring 1956 were presented on January 3, 1956 by agreement as a member of the National Authority for the Ladies Handbag Industry. 1956NationalAuthorityMembers
Examples from 10 prominant makers illustrated the article "New textures give new faces to casual bags for fall" on pages 14-15 of the August 1956 issue of "Handbags & Accessories." Ingber's contribution:
CALF in matching or contrasting colors trims enorŽmous pouch of colored felt. Satchel, calf tabbed and handled, is available in brown and blaclc tweed or solid colored flannel. Ingber, 347 5th Ave.
B00370: Ingber Black Satin oval handbag with pin-tucked detailing. The lid is fitted with an oval mirror in excellent condition. The black satin interior is pristine. The outside shows some age with edge wear on the lid and bottom and some discoloration and lightening. Measures 6 1/4 x 3 1/4 x 6 1/4".
Valued at $35 and available at The Bag Lady Emporium
Cruise Wear Varies For Day and Evening
SATIN flat envelope is enhanced with a round jewel lock. It has amazingly large interior. 24 Kt. gold jersey is magnificent in soft draping, dropped jewel frame and knob closing Ingber Inc., 347 Fifth Ave.