York Widow Continues Watch & Clock Store
In 1843 the business community was a man’s world. Widows sometimes continued on in their late husband’s occupation in fields like tavern keeping.
Occasionally a widow would successfully carry on another type of business. One of the most noted examples is Rebecca Lukens of Coatesville, who started running the family steel company when her husband died in 1825. It eventually became one of the leading steel manufactures in the United States.
A little later, in York County, Harriet Cook continued her husband’s clock, watch and jewelry store. She inserted the following continuing ad in the 1843 York Republican:
WOULD respectfully inform her friends and the public in general that she has taken into partnership with her MR. FRANCIS POLACK and that the old establishment will be in the future continued in the name of HARRIET COOK & CO.
They have now on hand a large and elegant assortment of
Clocks, Time Pieces & Watches,
of every variety of prices and pattern, together with a choice assortment of Jewelry of the latest fashion just from Philadelphia, embracing
Breast Pins, Ear Rings, Finger Rings, Thimbles, Spectacles, and Silver Spoons of all kinds, and everything in their line.
Watches & clocks,
Promptly repaired and warranted at prices to suit the times.
The public are respectfully invited to call at their establishment in South George Street, opposite China Hall, and examine for themselves. DON’T MISTAKE THE SHOP–THE OLD STAND OF F. B. COOK, DECEASED, the second Clock and Watch establishment from Hartman’s Corner.
Mrs. Cook’s firm must have met with some success since she was taking in a partner. Pollack’s Jewelry, perhaps a successor to the business, was a fixture in downtown York well into the 20th century.
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