Samuel Gordon Jewelers, a well-respected and high-profile Oklahoma City jeweler active in industry groups, is closing after 111 years.
“The reason is very, very boring,” says owner Gary Gordon. “I’m ready to retire. This is my 46th year. The first 36 years, I worked six days a week. And the last 10 years, five days. I have had very few vacations. My vacation for many years was the JCK show.”
“After I graduated college, the next morning, I was at work. This is all I have ever done, and all I wanted to do. I’ve loved the business, I always have, and I always will. I lived and breathed it. It’s been my passion. But it’s just time.”
He says that he wants to stop and smell the roses for a while but “if any opportunity comes my way, I’ll be honored. Right now, I have no plans.”
His customers are “stunned” by the news, he says.
“I’ve had customers that are grown men come in the store that I never saw any emotion from that were teary-eyed,” he says.
The American Gem Society-member store was founded in 1904 by Gordon’s grandfather Samuel, a Lithuanian immigrant. The business at one point comprised three stores, which in 1990 was combined into one local superstore.
Gary, who was a professional musician in college and is proud of his history hosting prominent jazz musicians in his store, was chairman of the Jewelry Information Center and on the board of Jewelers for Children.
Son Daniel, who often shared his passion for social media with JCK, has left the family business and now works with the Johnson Family Diamond Cellar in Columbus, Ohio.