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Collection Tier:
Tier 2

Clothing and Accessories
Men's Clothing ➔ Sweatshirt

This white sweatshirt has long sleeves and a crew neckline. There is a screen printed graphic on the front advertising Herpolsheimer's holiday sale. It also depicts Herpolsheimer's special monorail train, the Santa Express. An interior maker label from Gildan lists that materials, size, and care instructions. 

This sweatshirt was purchased during a sidewalk sale in the 1990s. The company selling it had silk-screened an old newspaper Christmas season advertisement from the Herpolsheimer's Department store, estimated to be from around 1970, onto the sweatshirt to sell as a nostalgic "souvenir" to local folks who still hold fond memories of their childhood Christmas season experiences in downtown Grand Rapids from the 1950s through the 1980s.

This souvenir or promotional clothing article documents a thriving and vital mid-twentieth centralized downtown retail environment. Herpolsheimer's Department Store was one of the top three local downtown retailers that helped define the Grand Rapids shopping experience during this period. More importantly, the period advertisement and line drawing of the much-loved Herp's Santa Rocket Express monorail train that operated in that location from 1950 until 2000 when it was removed and given to the Museum, increases its value and appeal for the Museum collection.
circa 1990
Silk Screened, Cotton
Current Location Status:
In Storage
Gift Of Ruth Bumstead
Christmas and the Herpolsheimer's Train (2008 – 2010)
This small exhibit was put out in the entrance lobby of the Van Andel Museum Center during the Christmas season for several years.
Gildan Activewear Inc.

Gildan Activewear Inc. was founded in Canada in 1984 by Greg and Glen Chamandy. The company was originally founded to make fabric for Harley Inc. which was the childrenswear business owned by the family. After Gildan began to see success, Harley Inc. was closed by 1994 in order to put all focus and efforts into Gildan. The company specializes in undecorated t-shirts, activewear, and fleeces which are then often decorated by screen-printing companies. Currently, the company employs over 42,000 people and owns and operates manufacturing facilities in Rio Nance, Honduras, and the Caribbean.

Bumstead, Ruth

In 1865, William G. Herpolsheimer and Charles G. A. Voigt, two young businessmen, established the Voigt, Herpolsheimer & Company, a dry goods and carpet store in Michigan City, Indiana before relocating to Grand Rapids, Michigan in 1870. The partnership between Voigt and Herpolsheimer ended in 1902 with Voigt taking over the flour mills and Herpolsheimer the store. Herpolsheimer's Firm continued to operate department stores until it was sold in 1987 making it one of the longest running retail establishments in West Michigan.
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