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December 09, 1962 - Image 12

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1962-12-09

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

ADVERTISING SECTION'

THE MICHIGAN DAILY SUNDAY, DECEMBER 9. 1962

EIGHT PAGES

.iiILPHT P iVGEkN

F

GIFTS otF UN.o
r '
{ -a l+
{ ..........4...
. h.. ';.k.r: 5^ri;.Ir."^t. i n : '.
GA ES
for young and old-
indoors and out
[Q DARTS y4P
l CHESS FA
L PUZZLES ..
TAKRAW .
[] CRIBBAGEN
Q PING PONG
Q JARTS
to list a few
ATHLETIC EQUIPMENT
for all sports
o& LQGOLF
QTENNIS
.:: QHOCKEY
E QFOOTBALL
F1 SKATING
BASKETBALL
QISKIING

"MICHIGAN" APPAREL
for the folks back home ]
[SWEAT SHIRTS
0 JACKETS {
'M' BLANKETS
L NITEES
KIDS' SUITS
LI GFT. SCARFS r
L KIDS 'M' SWEATERS
A COMPLETE CHRISTMAS SHOP
Open Monday and Friday Nights This Week

FAMILY TRADITION:
Wagner Examines Changes in Students and Styles

The history of State Street is
not just the story of the bricks
and neon signs that came and
went. The real State Street is the
story of the men and families that
built it.
The founder of one of these
historic families was William Wag-
ner, who emigrated from Stutt-
gart in 1840 and settled on a farm
near Ann Arbor.
In 1848 he founded a tailoring-
clothing store on Main Street
which was to be heralded 100
years later as the oldest clothing
store in Michigan under the same
ownership.
Wagner's clothing store kept up
with the newest fads in clothing
and used to tour the upper part
of the state to sell and fit clothing
for the professional men in the
small towns.
In 1887 his son Charles came
into the business.
Modern
They pioneered in merchandise,
selling the first fety bike west
of Buffalo. (The safety bike was
the "big wheeler" that dominated
the scenes before the auto.)
It was a tradition for the family
to keep abreast of the times.
Charles was an agent for the Win-
ton auto. His son, Paul, '16E, the
present owner of Wagners, intro-
duced the first open-selling display
cases to the State Street store in
1939.
Before this all merchandise in
Ann Arbor had been kept in boxes
on shelves.
(During this period they sold
everything for the men from carv-
ing sets to cutaways, blue jeans
and neckties to branding irons.)

The major change that the store
has had to face came around the
time they moved from Main Street
to the campus area, in 1904. In-
dustrialization was just hitting the
Midwest and with it came the
ready-made garments. They were
a big change from the tailor-made
suits that Wagner's had originally
offered and they brought their
own problems. Problems such as
how to fit the changing student
and how to keep up with the
newest fads.
The student has really changed
too. In the last 30 years the aver-
age size in a man's suit has gone
from a "37 regular" to a "40 long."
Paul Wagner notes the great im-
provement in the fitting charac-
teristics of ready-made clothing.
This effort includes a greater va-
riety of sizes and the creation of
odd-sizes to fill in the gaps be-
tween the even ones.
Frosh Caps
Keeping up with the fads of the
early University students was a
more challenging job. Providing
all the new freshman with their
"Frosh Pots" was a job with the
increasing enrollment.
The interesting thing about this
fad was that after the caps were
burned at the hictoric "cap night,"
the students would rush the movie
theaters for free shows. This rush
has been heralded as the forerun-
ner of the present "panty raid."
As an outgrowth of the fresh-
man caps came the, custom of
"class toques" in the colors of the
individual classes and depart-
ments. These caps, similar to to-
day's ski or "watch" caps were
in such demand that students

would line up the length of the
store to place their orders. When
they came in, Wagner's would
send a man to meet the train and
rush the orders up to the waiting
students.
Toques
New "toques" were required each
year as the freshmen wore grey
(the same color as their freshman
beanies), the sophomores wore
maroon with a white band, the
juniors white with a navy band
and the "staid old seniors" wore
navy with a white band to reverse
the juniors. The buttons topping
off the headgear were in the aca-
demic colors of each department.
Another fad, that of "class
canes" became so popular that
"cane days" would be decreed. At:
this time, student would carry his
class cane, the design especially
chosen by a class committee.
Even the fads had to bow to the
growth of the University. In place
of fads for the men, Wagner's
began to carry women's clothes.1
Their first effort in this direction
came when Pendleton began to
make women's clothes.
Less Intimate
As the University became more
cosmopolitan the personal contact

w i t h customers lessened and
friendships with many individual
students became less intimate.
Wagners still understands the
student however. In 1948 they car-
ried a display of typical student's
room in their front window. Amid
the chaos the Wagners put their
boxer dog, Belda, to complete the
scene. An enterprizing newspaper
man picked up the story and the
picture of the window was syndi-
cated across the nation. The
"neatness" of the University of
Michigan student had been duly
recognized.
Modernized
In 1960 the store was again
modernized to add 3,200 feet of
space and completely alter the
existing interior and store front.
During the renovations, which in-
cluded tearing down brick walls,
the store did business as usual.
One hundred and twenty-four
year and three generations later,
the Wagners are still serving Ann
Arbor and Michigan from State
Street.
However, along with their mer-
chandise, their customers have ex-
panded. Last week they sent a
"Beethoven" sweatshirt to Den-
mark..

'I

BELDA, THE DOG-Wagner's once carried a window display of
a student's room. Belda completed the scene.

.t . . 1 . ...^
Find what your
family and friends
will enjoy ait John
Leidy's. We will
be glad to gift wrap
and mail it for you.
JOhN LIDY
Phone NO 8-6779 0 601 East Liberty
.?::.M::!k' ..
Trade up
to ROBERTS...
: a
Example:
S ROBERTS 1040. .. ... $299.95
1 Trade* . . . . . . . . . . . . $ 80.00
$219.95 ~
*Depending on model

TWIN POSE-On the right is William Wagner in front of his Main Street store before the turn of the Century. On the left is Paul
Wagner in a similar stance, before his establishment on State Street.

P: y
Who needs mistletoe? Give Weejuns
and get the mae effect. A Basn
for.
Men or Women
-41
1 DECEMBER STORE HOURS
Who reedisl-etoGie3 eeun
(Open M ay n Fridayto :30
open every evening until 8:30

MAKE A CHOICE-Using the above picture, customers during the
Civil War would choose the style they liked and Wagner's would
tailor a suit for them.
come to
SrE k
N WEAA
BR EAKFASTS

6
c

LUNCHES
and
DINNERS
DAILY

Stop by
on your trip
to the
Frieze Building
corner of
State and Liberty

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