Our family’s history in the apparel industry goes back generations. After traveling alone as a teenager on the Carpathia steamship in 1909 with only a few dollars in his pocket, my grandfather, Joe Josephs arrived in Ellis Island with the hopes of pursuing the American dream. After working years at odd jobs, he was able to save enough money and established a small, modest factory on the Lower Eastside of Manhattan in 1913. He eventually saved enough money to bring his soon-to-be wife and her family to the US so that they could join him in what would come to be the family business.
By the time America was experiencing the Great Depression, Joe and his wife had two sons and a flourishing business, which ended up opening a larger factory in Coney Island. His apparel factory employed hundreds of workers which were like an extension of his own family. Of course, because family was always important to my grandfather, it’s fitting that both my father and uncle eventually took over the business, where I worked summers all through high school and began working full-time in 1990.
My own father passed just three years after I officially joined the family business. And my grandfather, who prided himself on giving back to those less fortunate, ironically passed away right after returning from a humanitarian trip in Greece. It wasn’t too many years later that the apparel industry began to change. While we still maintained our factory in New York, we also began importing as well.
Today, we operate from both New York and Los Angeles but still maintain our family roots. I bear my grandfather’s name, which I think propels me in some way to continue his legacy. My passion for providing the highest quality product at affordable prices is undoubtedly a trait I’ve inherited from him.