OTTAWA — Beckman Jewelers owners Stan and Barney Beckman will retire after 35 years of owning the business together. A member of the next generation, Greg, will take over ownership of the business.
The Beckmans’ great-grandfather, Alexander, opened the business at 117 W. Main St. in downtown Ottawa, where it is still located.
Stan and Barney will retire effective June 30, and Stan’s son and Barney’s nephew, Greg Beckman, will assume ownership of the business July 1. The business will be closed the first week of July and reopen July 7 with a new inventory.
The business started a liquidation April 24, with jewelry marked down from 25 to 70% off, and continues through May 11. The owners said the sales have been brisk and attribute it to the business’s positive reputation. Letters were sent out to customers last week notifying them of the sale and retirements.
“We have a good following of people who have shopped here for years and know we are trustworthy and honest,” Stan said.
When asked why they were retiring, they said they both felt like it was time.
“We knew we would have to retire sometime and are in our 60s, and it’s time to let go and let the next generation to take control,” Stan said. He said he will miss the customers the most and has gotten to know them as family and shared joys and heartaches together.
Barney said it made good business sense to retire. He will miss the customers the most and said the clients have been like family.
“Customers see jewelry as something they can wear, and it is a symbol of love,” Barney said. He thanked customers for their patronage over the years and said they have been wonderful, patient and kind.
Greg, 30, said he started working part-time at Beckmans when he was 15 years old and is looking forward to continuing the family’s business.
“I love that the customers are always here for us and say the nicest things about my parents and grandparents and tell stories about my family. That means a lot to me,” Greg said.
Barney said over the years, the jewelry business has become more digital.
“Customers research jewelry online ahead of time and come in the store and say they want a certain type of jewelry. We can either find it in our store, find it from the vendor or make it,” Barney said.
Stan recalls customers who purchased their engagement rings at the business 25 years ago and remember the Ohio State vs. Michigan game was on the radio while they purchased their rings.
Remaining available jewelry includes women’s engagement and wedding rings, earrings, necklaces and bracelets. With the briskness of sales, the men’s jewelry including watches, money clips and key chains have sold out.
In addition to jewelry, giftware such as spiritual figurines and baptism and communion photo frames are for sale, as well as crystal vases and tableware.
The Beckmans thanked the community for their support. Over the years, there have been customers from Florida and all over Ohio to purchase jewelry.
The retiring brothers said they plan to continue to be active in the community. Stan hopes to continue service with the Ottawa Lions Club, and Barney wants to do volunteer work and continue his membership with the Ottawa-Glandorf Rotary Club.
Reach Jennifer Peryam at 567-242-0362.