M983.228.4 | Display cabinet

Display cabinet
About 1910, 20th century
205 x 107.5 x 71 cm
Gift of Mr. John Gibb-Carsley
© McCord Museum
Keywords:  Display cabinet (1)
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Keys to History

This display cabinet was used on the premises of the Gibb and Company which was a haberdashery- a dealer in men's clothing and accessories, that existed in Montreal for over one hundred and fifty years.

Born in England, Benaiah Gibb (1755-1826) came to Montreal in 1774 . The next year, he opened a tailoring business he named B. Gibb and Co. Gibb left the firm to two of his sons, Thomas and James Duncan in 1815, and by the 1840s, it was run by another son, Benaiah (d. 1877) . In 1870, the second Benaiah Gibb changed the company's name to Gibb and Company, which remained in business until 1928 .

A display case such as this one would have been very expensive to produce because of the customized curved glass. Gibb and Company was the longest lasting haberdashery in Montreal and catered to many generations of the city's elite.

  • What

    This display case is made of veneered mahogany, glass, and painted in gold leaf are the arms of the Dominion of Canada with the words "Court, Civil and Military tailors."

  • Where

    Painted on this display case is Gibb and Company's address, 146-148 St. James street- the location meant that the company was well-placed to cater to the clothing needs of businessmen that maintained their offices in the area.

  • When

    Gibb and Company, specializing in men's clothes and accessories, opened in 1775 as B. Gibb and Co. and closed in 1928, making it the longest lasting store of its type in Montreal.

  • Who

    Gibb and Company was founded by Benaiah Gibb (1755-1826) who came to Canada in 1774 as a trained tailor.