CAMDEN, NEW JERSEY

HURLEY'S DEPARTMENT STORE
Broadway & Pine Street

HURLEY'S - 1943
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Founded in 1890, Hurley's Department Store was a fixture in the Camden and South Jersey retail business scene until 1956, when the Hurley family closed the business. 

The business, originally called Gately & Hurley, was originally located in the old Wildey Hall at 4th and Pine Streets. Founder William Leonard Hurley assumed sole ownership in 1904. By this time the company had located their flagship store on the south-west corner of Broadway and Pine Street. William Leonard Hurley passed away early in 1928. His son Jerome, along with brothers James V. and Harry A. Moran, carried the business forward.

In 1947, the store underwent a major renovation, as described in the newspaper article below. By that time, the Hurley chain had expanded to include a total of seven stores, including locations in East Camden, Penns Grove, Trenton, Millville, Wilmington DE, Pennsylvania, and elsewhere. 

Hurley's was noted for its personnel, many of whom worked fro the concern for decades. Harry A. Moran, who was general manager of the business in the 1930s and 1940s, retired in 1944 after 46 years with the firm. His brother James V. Moran also worked for Hurley's for over four decades.

Hurley's closed in 1956. While the business had suffered due to competition from other, larger stores, the closing was as much a product of a lack of a succession plan for the business.  The store's closing, however, was a portent of things to come later for Camden.        

Gately & Hurley

1890s

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Philadelphia Inquirer

August 20, 1896

Esterbrook Steel Pen Co.
Gately & Hurley
Toone & Hollinshed
Sitley & Son
Howland Croft
J.B. Van Sciver
William S. Scull
Anthony Kobus

John Campbell
William Leonard Hurley

Philadelphia Inquirer
July 15, 1902

Broadway - Spruce Street
Louisa Traubel - George Fields
Gately & Hurley Company
John Welsh - Levi Farnham
Joseph Nowrey - Arthur Stanley

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Hurley's

1918-1919
Camden City Directory Ad

Hurley's

1919 Camden High School Purple & Gold Yearbook Ad

Philadelphia Inquirer - October 7, 1921

Judge Frank T. Lloyd
Alban Eavenson
Belford G. Royal
Francis Ford Patterson Jr.
Charles H. Ellis
David Baird Sr.
L.A. Hawkes
Frank S. Van Hart
John Prentice
Burleigh B. Draper
A.C. Dorrance
William S. Darnell
C.W. Tomlinson
James V. Moran
Rev. Thomas J. Whelen
L.D. Johnson
Rev. Charles B. Dubell
Elmer Ellsworth Long

Mrs. A. Haines Lippincott

Mrs. W. Penn Corson
Mrs. Harry Pelouze
William E. Bennett

Eavenson & Levering

Hunt Pen Company

Esterbrook Pen Company

Broadway Trust Company

R.M. Hollinshed Company

Hurley Store

Church of the Holy Name

St. John's Episcopal Church

Munger & Long

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Camden Courier-Post - January 5, 1928

 VICTOR WINS THREE AND TIES FOR LEAD
Y.M.C.A. JOLTED TWICE; FREIHOFERS SET RECORD; HURLEY SURPRISES

With the end of the first-half race in the Industrial bowling tournament only one week off, Victor went into a tie for first place by sweeping all three games from Woodbury while Freihofer’s spanked Y.M.C.A pacesetters twice. Hurley Company took three from Warren Webster in the other match .

Freihofer’s set a new league record by rolling 928 in the third game. Krupp’s total score was 602 pins, an average better than 200. His high mark was 221. Miller, a teammate, rolled 203. Moyer, of Victor, twice rolled 202, while Simmons turned in a 210 for Warren Webster.

Camden Courier-Post - January 30, 1928

Camden Courier-Post
September 12, 1929

Camden Courier-Post * March 29, 1930

HURLEY GETS CONTRACT FOR POLICE UNIFORMS

Contract for new police uniforms was awarded yesterday to the Hurley store by the city commission, which heretofore had contracted with a Philadelphia firm.

Changes in the uniforms of several of the police departments are planned by Chief Lewis H. Stehr and Captain Arthur Colsey. Because many bus companies have adopted uniforms similar to those of the police for their drivers, the new uniforms for the mounted police will include blue coat, blue hat and khaki breeches. Police attached to the ambulance patrol will wear dark gray whipcord uniforms. Traffic. police and others will wear the regular blue uniform now in use.

Uniform Inspection will be held Monday to ascertain the department's needs.

Camden Courier-Post - October 26, 1931

HURLEY’S PLEDGES $100,000 BANK AID
Store Here Supports Depositors in Phila. Banks; Lauds Record

The Hurley Store yesterday pledged $100,000 credit to South Jersey depositors in any closed Philadelphia bank.

This pledge supporting the plan outlined by the Philadelphia Record, swells the total to more than $4,000,000. It was made through Harry A. Moran, general manager of the William L. Hurley Company.

Among the new credit pledges made by Philadelphia merchants and business interests are $500,000 by Stern & Co., and $250,000 by S. Kind &: Son.

The Record plan, as outlined last week, advocates issuance by the Pennsylvania State Banking Department of negotiable certificates of deposit to those whose funds are tied up in closed banks. A merchant, under the plan, would agree, on presentation of the certificate, to advance a credit of 50 percent of the sum estimated as the liquidating dividend to be paid by the closed bank.

Moran, in a letter to the Record wrote:

"Congratulations upon your conception of this timely help to so many of those who temporarily, at least, cannot call into use money urgently needed to provide seasonable requirements.

"Work, in the interest of the public welfare, that the Record is continually sponsoring of which the proposed release of bank funds is just one instance, shows the masses that your policies are decidedly in aid of the public welfare, particularly in these times of pressing need."

The plan was advanced to relieve distress among depositors of Philadelphia banks and at the same time speed up trade recovery. Accomplishment of the plan would make possible the creation of at least $10,000,000 of Christmas business for Philadelphia merchants, it is estimated.

Camden Courier-Post - June 9, 1933

STORES WILL JOIN IN BARGAIN PERIOD
Merchants' Association Announces Plans for Three-Day Event

A committee of the Merchants' Cooperative Association, headed by Harry A. Moran, secretary and manager of the the Hurley Store, has announced a three-day co-operative promotion which will be known as Camden's Co-operation Days. 

All merchants of this city have been invited to participate in the event which will be outlined in newspaper and radio announcements. City and store decorations and entertainment features which may include the personal appearances of stage, radio, sports and screen stars are being arranged.

The whole event has been arranged because of recent disclosures, resulting from investigation made by the local publishers proving that local industrial employment and business conditions have shown a decided upward trend in the city within the past several months.

The committee includes Charles Gates, Camden manager of Sears, Roebuck & Company; J. B. Van Sciver, Jr. of J. B. Van Sciver; C. A. McGrew, manager of J. C. Penney; Lester Abrahamson of Lester's; S. Savage of Western Auto Supply; William Rothman of Barrett's Tire Shop; Leonard R. Baker of Baker-Flick; Samuel Auerbach of Auerbach's; N. Futernick of Futernick's; Max Peck of the Fashion Shop; Simon Abrahamson of Simon's; Michael LaSala of DiJulio-LaSala; Joseph Murdock, manager of the Stanley Theatre; W. L. Tushingham, business manager, and F. J. Kinsella, advertising director of the Courier-Post newspapers.

Camden Courier-Post - June 28, 1933

PRE-INVENTORY SALE GIVES REAL BARGAINS
Hurley Store Offers Goods at Prices Considerably Lower Than Usual

With wholesale prices on raw materials and finished products mounting, the Hurley Store, at Broadway and Pine Street, is conducting a pre-inventory sale in which merchandise is offered at considerably lower than existing prices. 

"Higher prices are coming. Put your money in merchandise, at today's low prices, and make a sound investment in a perfect security," is the store's slogan, for the special sale.

Harry A. Moran, manager of the Hurley Store, said it has been its regular policy to hold the pre-inventory sale there at the end of June, when it takes place in the other stores of the Hurley group at the same time.

Our sole object," Moran said, "is to dispose of as much merchandise as possible so that our Summer inventory will be reduced to a minimum. This year, although we know replacement values on all merchandise in our pre-inventory clearance will be higher than that of our present stocks, we are following our regular custom. We have every reason to believe that we are thus performing a worthy service for old patrons and those who will wish to take advantage of these offerings for the first time."

Moran added that in the face of rising costs it is a noteworthy fact that retail stores, generally, continue to dispose of present stocks at prices based on actual cost rather than advance their retail price levels in keeping with present-day replacement values.

Camden Courier-Post - August 1, 1936

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Camden
Courier-Post

October 14, 1936

Camden
Courier-Post

January 1, 1938

This ad was part of a promotion where several local businesses donated gifts to the first baby born in Camden in 1938.

Camden Courier-Post * February 16, 1938

MORAN AT 72 OBSERVES BIRTHDAY BY WORKING

James V. Moran, vice president of the chain of Hurley stores, yesterday 
quietly observed his 72nd birthday anniversary.
Many friends of "J. V.," his business associates and others, joined in extending felicitations.

"I don't work too hard and I find time for relaxation," said Moran. "I have 
reduced my waistline by careful eating and I never felt better in my life."

Moran put in his usual full day in his office at the W. L. Hurley store, 
Broadway and Pine street.

Camden Courier-Post * October 6, 1947

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Intersection of North 27th Street & Federal Street, as seen from Baird Boulevard
April 30, 1953
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You really do have to click on the image and see this one enlarged to appreciate it. See the billboard for Hurley's East Camden store in the background, not to mention the rows and rows of tulips on Baird Boulevard! When those who were there said Camden was beautiful, this picture shows they were not kidding! If this only this one had been in color!!!!!

Thanks to Curtis Parrish for furnishing this picture.

Hurley's store brought luxury to Camden

By HAROLD T. NEDD
Courier-Post Staff

By Ron Karafin, Courier-Post

Hurley's store stood at Broadway and Pine in the 1940's and 50's.


The retail stores that gave Broadway in downtown Camden City its luster five decades ago can be found in the pages of the biography of Chuck Doyle's grandfather.

The book on the life of retail magnate William Leonard Hurley depicts a bustling shopping strip near a Waterfront that in the 1940s spawned industries that had an impact on the world.

And the two-story Hurley department store at Broadway and Pine stood as a once-proud symbol of a thriving industrial city.

"The store took up half the block," said Doyle, 71, whose mother, Berenice, was one of Hurley's four daughters. "It was a full-scale department store with jewelry, appliances, rugs and beddings. And my grandfather was well regarded as being a very honest business man."

Pedestrian traffic used to be shoulder to shoulder along the corridor of shops and various ethnic restaurants. Two large theaters with live performances from the likes of Abbott and Costello helped draw shoppers to the strip. And the Hurley's store was one of seven or eight department stores at the center of the activity.

"I never saw an empty store when I used to walk down there after school," said Robert Doyle, 69, Chuck's younger brother who lives in Haddonfield. "It was like what downtown Philly is today."

As industries like Campbell Soup, the manufacturer of condensed canned soup, thrived, so did the Hurley store, which one former customer described as a smaller version of the now-defunct Lit Brothers department store in downtown Philadelphia.

Chuck Doyle believes his grandfather's success as a retailer in Camden hinged on two things: he was the first merchant to introduce credit at his stores, sending salesmen into the country with vanloads of merchandise to sell to women who didn't have transportation to get to town.

And if there was "anything wrong with something you bought from his store, you could always return it and he would take care of it," said Doyle, a retired salesman from Audubon who worked in the store growing up.

Marie DelRoccili, 66, of Cherry Hill, remembers the store from the days growing up in the neighborhood around 4th and Cherry Street, a less than five-minute walk from the Hurley's store.

•"When we needed something special...like an Easter outfit...that's where we went," said DelRoccili, referring to the many Friday night shopping outings with her younger sister Rose Giuffre. "They (Hurley's) had a better quality of merchandise."

•The store remained popular until it closed in 1956. It succumbed to competition from larger stores that moved to the suburbs, Doyle said. At the same time, the city's economy was fizzling: companies like the shipyard shut down, jobs left by the tens of thousands and despair moved into neighborhoods where their employees once lived.

•The city's population would drop from its peak of 125,000 in the 1950s to an estimated 87,000 today, marking an exodus to the suburbs.

• "A combination of things eventually led to the store's demise," said Chuck Doyle. "And while there was an attempt to get the store to the suburbs, provisions weren't made within the family for succession. There was no leadership left in the family."

As depicted in the Camden Courier-Post on October 7, 1947

Broadway, looking north at the intersection of Spruce Street, September 18, 1951

The vertical HURLEY'S sign can be seen on left side of the street. Collins, at far left, was at that location from the 1930s through the 1960s. The "STERN" building was originally the H. Pinsky & Son Co. 

Broadway, looking south at the intersection of Pine Street, September 18, 1951

Of the buildings easily seen in this photo, only the "New York Fur Factory 
FURRIERS" building still stands in 2005.

The vacant Hurley building on fire - March 27, 1977

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