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Welcome to STop, the Seattle Times Opinion blog where our editorial writers and editors share their evolving thoughts on a variety of issues. STop is a place where opinion writers and readers can exchange views and readers can learn more about how editorial positions are formed.

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September 15, 2004

Bye-bye Bon Marche

“Bon-Macy’s” lasted only a year and a half. Good riddance, because it was a shotgun marriage, a steak-and-jelly sandwich of a name.

At the beginning of 2005, it is to be just Macy’s.

Well, “Macy’s” is an old, proud name, but it means nothing to me, because I grew up in Seattle, not New York.

The Bon Marché had a colorful history. The key entrepreneur in its growth was a woman, Josephine Nordhoff. She and her husband started the Bon as a little store in 1890, and she took it over when he died in 1899.

At a time when women didn’t have the right to vote -- but did have the right to contract, own property and otherwise engage in business -- Josephine Nordhoff created one of Seattle's two dominant department stores.

The day she died, in 1920, all the big downtown retailers closed in her honor.

I’ll get used to Macy’s, just as I got used to Bank of America instead of Seafirst. But it’s not the same.

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Posted by Bruce Ramsey at September 15, 2004 01:04 PM



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