History And Heritage

Since establishing Schiffman’s Jewelers over 120 years ago, the Schiffman family and their firm have maintained a significant role in the Greensboro, North Carolina community; outfitting the city’s men and women in exquisite watches and jewels and extending a philanthropic hand to local organizations.

Schiffman’s is now under the leadership of the family’s fourth generation, Arnold III, Vance and Lane, and the firm remains true to the standards and traditions put into practice by their great-grandfather, Simon.

Schiffman’s Jewelers has earned its reputation for excellence, due in part to the highly knowledgeable sales associates who help to convey their ideals each day.

1890s

1893

Simon Schiffman purchases the George Lampman jewelry business at 308 South Elm Street in Greensboro, North Carolina, establishing Schiffman’s Jewelers.

1910s

1912

Schiffman’s Jewelers moves to a new larger location in the Grissom building at 310 South Elm Street, where Simon installed the best fixtures of the day and the first modern show windows.

1918

Simon Schiffman falls ill, and is compelled to turn the day-to-day operations of the firm over to his sons; Arnold and Harold. Arnold, returns from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill to run the business under Simon’s tutelage. Harold, who served in the armed forces, officially joins the firm after the Armistice of 1919.

1920s

1923

The city’s population was moving north; Arnold and Harold decide to move with it, and build a new home for Schiffman’s at 225 South Elm Street.

1930s

1936

Just as the economy was recovering from the Depression, a disastrous fire destroys the store, forcing it to close for a year. Saddened by the loss, the family decides to rebuild an elegant, fire-proof building in the same location.

1937

Schiffman’s new store at 225 South Elm Street opens. Modern amenities include air conditioning and an automatic door; creating a modern version of the beloved Schiffman Crystal room with mirror-clad walls and ceiling designed to reflect light and emphasize the faceting of the cut crystal on display.

1950s

1952

Arnold begins hosting a weekly television show, The Story of the Stones, on Greensboro’s Channel 2.

1957

Arnold becomes the first president of Jewelers of America, the new industry organization that emerging from the merger American National Retail Jewelers and National Jewelers of America. Arnold’s son Tony joined the family firm.

1959

North Carolina Governor, Luther H. Hodges presents a Sterling Silver statuette of Sir Walter Raleigh, designed and crafted by Schiffman’s Jewelers, to H.R.H. Queen Elizabeth of Great Britain on her visit state visit to North Carolina.

1960s

1965

Arnold stepped away from day-to-day operations to become Chairman of the Board, Tony is named as the president of Schiffman’s Jewelers.

1962

Schiffman’s opens a leased jewelry boutique within the Belk’s Department store in downtown Charlotte, NC; beginning a 20 year association with Belk’s.

1965

Schiffman’s Jewelers moves into the Asheville, NC, market with the acquisition of Carpenter-Mathews Jewelers; beginning a 36 year association in that market.

1970s

1971

Schiffman’s opens a second location in Greensboro at the new Friendly Shopping Center.

1975

Schiffman’s moves into the Winston-Salem, NC, market with the acquisition of McPhail’s Jewelers.

1980s

1980

Tony’s son Arnold III officially joins the firm.

1983

Schiffman’s Jewelers in Winston-Salem moves to a freestanding location on South Stratford Road. Tony’s son Vance officially joins the firm.

1986

Tony’s son Lane officially joins the firm.

2000s

2007

Tony steps back from the day-to-day business, officially passing the family’s legacy to Arnold, Vance and Lane. Schiffman’s Jewelry Company official becomes Schiffman’s Jewelers, Inc. The Friendly Center location is refreshed.

2010s

2010

Schiffman's began sponsorship of the Diamond Club at the Greensboro Coliseum.

2012

Tony is inducted into the Retail Jewelers Hall of Fame.

The Schiffman Family

2013

The Winston-Salem location is renovated and expanded.

Schiffmans Story

Since establishing Schiffman’s Jewelers over 120 years ago, the Schiffman family and their firm have maintained a significant role in the Greensboro, North Carolina community; outfitting the city’s men and women in exquisite watches and jewels and extending a philanthropic hand to local organizations. Happenstance brought young Simon Schiffman to Greensboro in 1893. A master watchmaker on his way Asheville to purchase a jewelry business, Simon discovered a jewelry shop for sale while walking down Elm Street between trains, and purchased it on the spot.

Simon was a man of great integrity and business insight. His values and high standards for service and quality form the pillars of Schiffman’s Jewelers today: the importance of family, community service and hard work, as well as, representation of the highest quality merchandise. Immediately after taking ownership of the jewelry store and changing the name on the storefront, he took the necessary steps to replace the store’s existing inventory with that of a higher quality.

Simon instilled these values in his son Arnold, who ushered the company into the roaring 20s. A certified gemologist, Arnold was a visionary: an early advocate for the retail jewelry business, he joined the American Gem Society (AGS) at its inception and later helped to organize Retail Jewelers of America (now Jewelers of America) becoming its first president. Arnold moved the store to a new, larger location on Greensboro’s Elm Street, where the company continues to operate today. When the store was destroyed by fire in the ‘30s, they rebuilt on the same location. The new store set the standards for luxury retail of the day, and featured a modern and elegant aesthetic with a designated space for jewelry, a watch salon and a stunning mirrored gallery for cut crystal, known as the Schiffman Crystal Room.

Arnold’s son Tony was soon at the helm, and made his mark on the company through great expansion, opening additional Schiffman’s locations in North Carolina, and purchasing other businesses with heritage and standards similar to their own throughout the country. Following in his father’s footsteps, Tony was an AGS titleholder as a Registered Jeweler. He served as president of the North Carolina Jewelers Association and became the second generation of his family to serve as the president of the Greensboro Merchants Association. In 2012, Tony was inducted in the Retail Jewelers Hall of Fame.

Now under the leadership of the family’s fourth generation, Arnold III, Vance and Lane, the firm remains true to the standards and traditions put into practice by their great-grandfather, Simon. Each of the brothers occupies their own niche in the business and is actively involved in its continued growth. Arnold serves as the business manager and jewelry buyer, Vance as the diamond buyer and Lane oversees the watch and marketing departments.

Today, Schiffman’s Jewelers is known to generations of jewelry and watch connoisseurs in the Piedmont Triad Region for the many celebrated collections represented in its galleries including fine timepieces by Rolex, Omega, Tudor, David Yurman, Michele, Raymond Weil, Ball Watch, and Tissot; exquisite diamonds from Hearts On Fire, Schiffman’s Fire & Ice and Christopher Designs; and fine jewelry from such respected brands as Mikimoto, David Yurman, Suna Brothers, Roberto Coin, Marco Bicego, Kirk Kara, Penny Preville, Konstantino, Lagos, Wellendorff and more. In addition to its flagship store on Elm Street, Schiffman’s has stores in Friendly Center in Greensboro and Stratford Village in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

Schiffman’s Jewelers has earned its reputation for excellence, due in part to the highly knowledgeable sales associates who help to convey their ideals each day. The team receives continuous in-store and brand training in all watch and jewelry matters. With client service at the forefront, each store has both a master watchmaker and jeweler working on site, and offers cutstom design, appraisal and buying services.

One of the oldest family-run businesses in North Carolina, Schiffman’s Jewelers was named as the 2014 North Carolina Family Business of the Year in the Century Category by Wake Forest University Family Business Center. The sponsor of the Schiffman’s Diamond Club at the Greensboro Coliseum, the family and firm remain dedicated to the betterment of the Triad community supporting many philanthropic, civic and cultural organizations including The Junior League, the Make-A-Wish Foundation, Family Service of Greensboro and Brenner Children’s Hospital.