Gump’s History and a Statue

Gumps is among the oldest luxury retailers in the country. Solomon and Gustave Gump founded Gumps in 1861. It did not start as a big establishment: it changed into something bigger and better. Gumps began as a mirror and frame shop.

After being founded in 1861, Gumps started selling art. This was where the new opportunities lie. This genesis of selling art foreshadowed its continued innovation, but around 1906, Gumps original location burned. This prompted a relocation to Union Square. They began to build and prosper again after the San Francisco fire.

Gump’s buyers began to buy other things, including jewelry, upholstery, silk, art, and furnishings. They considered these things oriental luxury pieces. In the coming years, Gumps became one of the largest suppliers of oriental gifts in the West. Prominent persons such as President F. D. Roosevelt shopped at Gump’s. While Gumps would “change hands” several times throughout the years, the most recent history began in 2005.

The well-known Gumps, based in San Francisco, CA and New York City, NY will once again offer items for sale from famous designers such as Hermes and Buccellati.

When John Chachas visited Gumps when he was a boy, a statue of Buddha intrigued him. Half a century later, he arranged for the sale of Gumps. No one wanted to pay him $225,000 to arrange the transaction. Chachas instead asked for the Buddha statue instead of $225,000… the statue that Chachas had acquired for less than $900 in 1957. Chachas received the statue instead of payment or compensation. Ultimately, he would own the entire company instead of just the statue. Refer to This Article for related information.

The statue appraised for $240,000 in 2007. Since the original contract said he could not move the Buddha statue, Mr. Chachas substituted a similarly valued replica. He used the proceeds from the statue to resurrect Gumps.


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