Joanne Emerman and Clare Prasow: Donner’s Furniture Store

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Uncle Sam and Martin and new truck
Rights - JMABC

[Fanny Donner]
Rights - JMABC

[Donner's Furniture Store]
Rights - JMABC

[Ed, Fred and Sam Donner standing in front of doorway]
Rights - JMABC
Emerman, Joanne
Prasow, Clare
Vancouver, BC
Raivich, Leora
Monday, August 11, 2003
Digital audio recording #: 20-03:22


LR: Is anything more you can tell us about the actual furniture store itself [Donner’s Furniture Store in Vancouver, 1127 Granville Street].

JE: I think in my interview with you previously, we did a bit of our own manufacturing at one point. We did… we had a hardware store; it was like three different components.

LR: That’s right, I remember that.

JE: Hardwood, Furniture and the unpainted furniture. And then it was actually… we sort of catered to the middle and lower class. So we weren’t really that competitive necessarily. You didn’t have to… we weren’t in competition with the Wosk’s or Hope or Belmont. They had sort of the upper class type furniture.

CP: But we also had appliances

JE: We had everything, we had toys. We were just the whole works. And it was great. It was really, buy everything for your house from one store. And at one time it did, as I say, we also had the manufacturing. I don’t know much really about that end of it. I don’t know …It was not a long period of time. They had… underneath… it’s quite a large store. They actually stored a lot of furniture because they had a basement and so they could actually store a lot of material. They didn’t just have to order it in as it was sold. They actually had a huge warehouse in both stores. And as I say, I don’t know much about the manufacturing but they touched on that. And they enjoyed it so maybe that’s important to tell you. They loved working together, loved it! And they loved working with Nana. And they enjoyed going to work, they enjoyed being together and they all took their days off together and I told you, whenever they socialized… right to the very end…the last one went… they always huddled in a corner, not to talk business but just to be together. Because they just liked to be together. And we celebrated all the holidays together, it was a very… we were all one big family. I mean I consider… I’ve always considered Uncle Sam and Uncle Fred and Auntie Claire just like my parents and their spouses… Uncle Saul and Aunt Hazel and Auntie Min. We were all just one big family.

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