Thanksgiving at Fox’s

Thanksgiving is generally a time for reflecting, with a sense of gratefulness, upon the good in life. For Beatrice Fox Auerbach, Thanksgiving was often a time to express her appreciation to her staff for their loyalty and hard work throughout the year. One example of this expression is seen in an issue of the employee newsletterGo-Getter, November 22, 1960, the Go-Getter, and exemplifies generosity of spirit that came to characterize Beatrice Fox Auerbach.

Although the year was “marked by increased expenses of operation and customer services with narrowed rewards,” the decrease in profits did not prevent Beatrice Fox Auerbach from bestowing upon her employees a generous end-of-year bonus. She indicated that the company, through her, still “wishes to express tangible recognition of [her employees’] devoted work.”

In keeping with her father’s long-standing tradition of providing exceedingly generous yearly bonuses, the 1960 was no exception. This year, Beatrice Fox Auerbach awarded all employees who worked at least 20 hours a week for the past five years or more, “a sum equivalent to such person’s salary for two full weeks.” Those individuals who had been with the company for between five years and three years were given “a sum equivalent to such person’s salary for one and one-half weeks.” One week’s salary was given to those employees who had been with the store between three years and one year and those employees who had worked there for at least six months were given a half and week’s salary. But Mrs. Auerbach didn’t forget those employees who had been at Fox’s for less than six months; they were given the sum of $7.50.

Bonuses were one expression of Beatrice Fox Auerbach’s generosity to her employees, but there were certainly many others, including her establishment of the Theresa Stern Fox Fund, which provided interest-free loans to her employees during times of crisis. More examples can be found among the many materials in the collection and I urge anyone who’s interested to come and check it out for themselves. To conclude this week’s entry, I’d just like to say, in the words of Beatrice Fox Auerbach, “my warmest Thanksgiving wishes to you and your family, as you celebrate the holiday together.”

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