With so few family businesses lasting through three generations, Bridgewater Jewelers, in its fifth generation, is an amazing exception. Started in 1883 by James Goslin Bridgewater, Bridgewater Jewelers has withstood the test of time to become the oldest family owned and operated jewelry store in the nation. Focused on the needs of their customers, superior business ethics, quality and fairness, Bridgewaters has a strong and loyal following.
I’m one of those loyal customers. I met Mary Bridgewater Lenoff, the current owner, many years ago when we worked together at a local association. I didn’t know much about her family business at the time, but have come to know more over the years. I’ve read the history on the website, but experiencing the shop and what it stands for is what made me a loyal customer.
Upon entering Bridgewaters, located in one of the oldest buildings in Old New Castle, I see pictures of the family proudly displayed. And often, I’m greeted by Mary herself. For Mary, the shop is a labor of love passed down from her father in 2003 and that is evident in the way she treats me as a customer. Mary asks how she can help and then listens, asking questions to understand what you want and need. She provides guidance and creative ideas and works within your budget. I love how she has expanded the store’s offerings to include engraving – my husband loved the engraved glasses for his 50th birthday!
Shop small, shop local. But mostly, shop where they treat you as their most important customer every time you open the door. Share your story on Bridgewaters Facebook page!