Malsin, Lena Himmelstein Bryant

Born: 1879 AD
Died: 1951 AD, at 72 years of age.

Nationality: Lithuanian
Categories: Entrepreneurs, Fashion Designer

1895 - Lena Himmelstein, a sixteen-year-old immigrant, arrived in New York, having traveled alone from her native Lithuania.


1899 - Married a Jewish immigrant jeweler from Russia named David Bryant.


1904 - Bryant’s business was so successful that she opened a shop with living quarters in the rear. A bank officer misspelled her name on a business account application, and Lena’s first name became Lane.


1909 - Married Albert Malsin, who became her business partner. She continued as chief designer and Albert Malsin concentrated on the firm’s business operations.


1911 - Her shop was grossing $50,000 per year.         

- Convince the New York Herald to accept an ad. When the paper did, Lane Bryant’s entire stock was sold out the next day.

1915 - Opened its first branch retail store, in Chicago.


1917 - Mail-order sales revenues for Lane Bryant, Inc. exceeded a million dollars.


1923 - Her company sales had reached five million dollars and sales of full-figured clothing outstripped sales of maternity wear.


1947 - After a major explosion and fire in Texas City, Texas, the company re-outfitted 58 mail order customers whose homes were destroyed.


1950 - Her company’s mail order sales made it the sixth-largest mail order retailer in the United States.

- More than 3,500 Lane Bryant employees participated in profit sharing, pension, disability, group life insurance plans and fully reimbursed physician’s visits and hospitalizations.

1951 - She died on September 26th and her sons succeeded her in the business.

Page last updated: 12:49am, 23rd Sep '10
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