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Grunewald & Adams to close


The owner’s health leads to the decision for the jewelry store at El Con Mall.

After 89 years as one of Tucson’s premier jewelry stores, Grunewald & Adams is closing.

The decision, by President Abbey Grunewald, was prompted by her failing health and her desire to protect the Grunewald & Adams name.

Plagued with heart trouble that has worsened this year, Grunewald said, “My doctor said I had to stop working.’

Faced with the choice of selling or closing, she said, “I just didn’t want to sell our name to someone who may or may not keep the same standards as I have.’

Gruenwald & Adams was founded in Tucson in 1906. Originally it was called Greenwald & Adams after founders Fred Adams and Morris Greenwald. Abbey Grunewald’s husband, Arthur, bought the business in the early ’40s and changed the name.

When Arthur died in 1974, Abbey, a housewife, mother and community volunteer, took over the store. She moved it from downtown to the then-new El Con Mall. Later she expanded her market, opening stores in the Foothills Mall and the Biltmore Fashion Mall in Scottsdale.

She has been pulling back the past few years, closing her stores except the one in El Con, which she moved from the original location near the former Steinfeld’s store to one across from Dillard’s.

Grunewald began a private sale yesterday and will open her store Friday to the general public for its liquidation sale.

“It was mobbed in the morning,’ she said, yesterday. “So many of my old friends came by.’

She figures it will take through the end of the year to sell Grunewald & Adams’ inventory, which stretches from china to silver to porcelain figurines to high-priced jewelry, such as a $25,000 diamond-and-gold necklace with a matching $15,000 bracelet.

Many of her longtime customers were sorry to see Grunewald close the store.

“I always got very good service here,’ said Edelmira Silva, an eight-year customer.

“I used to come here every Christmas,’ reminisced Charles “Doc’ Mobley.

He and his wife bought their wedding rings and fine china at Grunewald & Adams when they were married in 1946 – and still have them.

“When I started buying fine jewelry, most of it came from Grunewald and Adams,’ he said.

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