“THE WARE, PRATT COMPANY.
Custom and Manufacturing Clothiers and Dealers in Men’s Furnishing Goods—Nos. 408 and 412 Main St.—W. W. Johnson, President; H. S. Pratt, Treasurer; Charles E. Black, Secretary.
– This great leading clothing house — the most extensive in Worcester or in the State west of Boston—had its origin in a small tailoring and ready-made clothing store established by Mr. A. P. Ware in 1847. Eleven years later a new firm was organized under the name and style of A. P. Ware & Co., to whom Ware, Pratt & Co. succeeded in 1869, and enjoyed uninterrupted prosperity until its dissolution and the incorporation of the existing company January 1, 1888, capital stock $100,000. The off1cers, named above, rank with Worcester’s best and most popular business men. President Johnson, who entered the service of A. V. Ware & Co. as a clerk many years ago and advanced step by step to a copartnership, was selected for his present responsible position in recognition of his great executive ability on the organization of the company. Treasurer Pratt was Mr. Ware’s first partner in the firm of Ware & Pratt, has been connected with the house for thirty-five years, is noted for energy, tact and enterprise, is reputed the most astute and farlighted clothing man in New England, is a director of the Citizens’ National Hank, a member of the Worcester Club, and a liberal, progressive and respected citizen. Secretary Black, experienced, alert, accurate and efficient, has the unbounded confidence of his associates in business and of the community at large. One hundred people are employed in all capacities, and that they are ept busy is attested by the volume of transactions, averaging $236,000 per annum, about $65,000 of which is credited to the custom tailoring department, the largest, best managed and most comprehensive in New England, employing several expert cutters and numerous skillful tailors, carrying an immense and varied stock of fine and medium foreign and domestic woolens, and favored with the patronage of legions of well-dressed men in all walks of life. The beautiful and commodious five-story brick structure illustrated herewith is situated at Nos. 408 and 412 Main street. It is 49 feet front by 137 feet deep, and was originally erected for the accommodation of the concern when- Ware & Pratt and A. P. Ware & Co. consolidated, occupying it for the first time March 10, 1869. Three immense floors are now devoted to the business, and every department—custom tailoring, wholesale, manufacturing and sales—is complete in itself. It would be difficult to describe each in detail. Suffice it to say that the house “buys heavily for cash directly from mills and importers, is at all times supplied with the latest styles of fabrics in abundance, closely follows the fashions from season to season, and is prepared to meet promptly all fair competition in the essentials of quality, cut, fit and workmanship, whether the garment be selected from the ready-made stock or ordered direct from the tailoring department. And operations are not confined to gentlemen’s attire alone, the company showing the finest, largest and most varied assortment of youths’, boys’ and children’s suits and single garments, and goods from which to make others to measure, ever exhibited in this market. We designed speaking at length of the furnishing goods department, but have already extended this notice to unusual length, and in this connection will simply say that no labor or pains are spared to provide for rich and poor alike in the matter of shirts, collars, cuffs, neckwear, underwear, and all of the requisites of a neat appearance and personal comfort. The stock embraces all grades and styles, and prices are always as low as any reasonable being could expect.”
Inland Massachusetts Illustrated, by Elsner Publishing Co., 1891, pages 68-9