Do you remember this plaque at Rosbergs department store?
Mary (Mindel) and Jacob Wolfe Rosberg founded what would become known as the largest and friendliest department store in Niagara Falls. The Rosbergs emigrated from Poland to Toronto, Canada in 1913. The family including four children farmed for a time before reportedly selling their cow at Kensington Market and moving on to Niagara to peddle clothes to workers at the Queenston hydroelectric project. In 1918 the Rosberg’s opened a men’s wear business in Niagara Falls that would grow over the next 70 years to include numerous departments and businesses all housed in one massive three story complex. At Rosbergs department store three generations of the Rosberg family subsequently served the communities of Niagara Falls who worked and shopped there. At the department store’s peak a second branch was opened in Welland, Ontario. Don Carrol was the last family member to run Rosbergs, having spent nearly his entire life involved with its operation in some way. The department store era ended as shopping malls grew in popularity and Rosbergs closed as a result of this in 1988. The building sat dormant until it was consumed by fire in 2009. A park dedicated to the Rosberg family now lies at the corner of Erie and Queen Streets just south of where the store once stood.
See more artefacts about the Rosbergs in the Niagara Falls Museums Collection
Find out more about the Rosbergs and Niagara Falls’ Jewish community from Ontario Jewish Archives
Replay: Thomas Barnett and Niagara’s Early Museum History
Museum Kids: Ancient Egypt and Niagara Falls
Niagara Falls Underground Railroad Heritage Centre Tour
History & Archeology @ the eXchange