The Golden Years by Richard Press






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Golden Years: Curtain Call In New York

Today former J. Press president Richard Press once again becomes a citizen of Manhattan, leaving the suburbs of Connecticut for an Upper East Side apartment. Evidently life begins (or at least begins again) at seventy. • • • Twenty-five years in the hinterlands is long enough. Today my wife and I move back to New


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Golden Years: A Tummler On York Street

A New York Times obit for a recently deceased Borscht Belt social director described his job title, “tummler,” a Yiddish word for someone who stirs up tumult or excitement, a jack of all trades. J. Press salesman George Feen (above left), known around New Haven as “Little Georgie Feen”, was a tummler on York Street


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Hot Off The Press: Richard P. On Twitter

If you can’t get enough of our “Golden Years” columnist Richard Press, former president of J. Press and grandson of Jacobi, then you’re in luck. A little coaxing was all it took for him to start tweeting and the septuagenarian says he’s already addicted. Richard will be sharing terse anecdotes, words of wisdom, style tips,


Meet The Press: A Reader Q&A With Richard P.

Richard Press, Ivy Style’s “Golden Years” columnist, former president of J. Press, and grandson of Jacobi, will herein host a virtual question-and-answer session with Ivy-Style.com readers, and the floor is now open. Use the leave comment feature to ask Mr. Press anything you’d like to know about traditional American style, or any other topic on


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Golden Years: The Dartmouth Winter Carnival

Snow willing, the dazzling ice sculptures of Dartmouth Winter Carnival are slated to be inaugurated on February 9. The winter weekend celebration was an intramural Ivy League event of local consequence before Walter Wanger decided to bring Hollywood into the act. Wanger flunked out of Dartmouth in 1915, but achieved notoriety in the film world.





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Golden Years: New York Nightlife In The ’50s

During the Eisenhower years, Manhattan was an island of social, economic and cultural equanimity. The legal drinking age was 18, the bars stayed open until four in the morning, and the Biltmore Hotel advertised special student rates for Seven Sisters and Ivy Leaguers. Here are some memories from those days of my misspent youth. The


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Golden Years: Shoe vs. Weenie

Ivy Style’s homage to white bucks in autumn continues with these reminiscences by Richard Press, grandson of J. Press founder Jacobi. * * * For Yale men, Barrie Ltd. was shoe headquarters since the Isaacs brothers opened their narrow slot of a store attached to J. Press in 1934. Bob and Barry Isaacs always had




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Golden Years: Cash-Sale Mayhem

This weekend J. Press, Brooks Brothers and many other menswear stalwarts launched their big summer sale, reminding me of the mayhem that would followed “cash sale” postcard mailings during the heyday of the Ivy League Look. In the area of Madison Avenue between 44th and 46th Streets — in front of Chipp, J. Press, Brooks


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Golden Years: Anything Goes in New Haven

Last night the Broadway revival of “Anything Goes,” which had received nine Tony nominations, ended up winning three. As I watched, I couldn’t help but remember one of the great historical anecdotes of J. Press: The time my grandfather Jacobi helped the musical’s composer Cole Porter evade the New Haven police. During a 1912 football


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Golden Years: Richard Press on Bleeding Madras

Pop-Up Prep, a multimedia fashion presentation of Tommy Hilfiger and Lisa Birnbach, popped up recently in Lower Manhattan with the slogan “Nothing proclaims preppy like patchwork madras print.” It should only be so easy. The history of the plaid cotton fabric dates back to the turn of the 20th century when it became an informal


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Golden Years: Richard Press On Neckties

A new proposal in New York would ban doctors from wearing neckties after a study revealed that the dangling strips of silk can transmit bacteria leading to infection. This would have been sad news back during the heyday, when J. Press sold many caduceus ties in colors appropriate to the Harvard and Yale medical schools.