Wednesday, June 24, 2009
The Alex Loeb's we grew up with on 5th street.
Loeb's Department Store is a historic specialty boutique department store in Meridian that has remained in the same family for four generations.
The founder, Alex Loeb, was to become a leading merchant in Meridian. He was born in Germany, married Mollie Threefoot, and moved to Meridian from Columbus, Mississippi. He opened his store in Meridian in 1887, selling fine men’s clothing — and only later added womens' and childrens' apparel. The store opened on Johnson Street, and was later moved to a new location on 5th Street.
During Meridian's "golden age" in the early 20th century, it was said that respectable railroad workers would only wear clothes from the Alex Loeb store. The well-dressed Loeb was a colorful character known for his white moustache, ever-present cigar, and hospitable personality; he would personally welcome each customer as he or she entered the store.
During the early 1900s, Loeb's was operated by Alexander M. Loeb's son, A. Marshall Loeb, who graduated from Harvard with an A.B. degree in 1911. The business was eventually passed to A. Marshall Loeb's son, Robert S. Loeb Sr., and his brother Alex Loeb after their graduation from Washington and Lee University in 1939. They also acquired the Marks-Rothenberg Co. department store on 6th Street, and throughout the late 1970s and early 1980s maintained Loeb's as the premier clothier in Mississippi. During the 1980's economic boom, Marks-Rothenberg store was sold to Zale's.
The current Loeb's Inc. is now run by Robert S. Loeb Jr., and continues business today on Front Street in Downtown Meridian.
Loeb's today on Front Street.