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Steinberg's Inc. (pronounced /ˈstaɪnbərgz/, us dict: stīn′·bərgz) was a chain of stores in the Eastern United States that specialized in consumer electronics and home appliances. The Reading, Ohio–based[1] company was founded by Ely Steinberg in 1921,[2] and Steinberg family continued to own the chain until its bankruptcy and liquidation in 1997.[3]


Ely Steinberg opened his first store in 1921. The first two stores were located in Cincinnati, Ohio, and focused on musical instruments and electronic audio equipment, such as The Victrola, an early record player, and crystal radio receivers. Notable customers included Powel Crosley Jr., whose WLW-AM later became Cincinnati's premiere radio station.[2]

Steinberg closed the two stores during the Great Depression and reopened one of them in 1937.[2] The chain began to sell a greater variety of products, including stoves, refrigerators, dishwashers, and eventually television sets and desktop computers. By the 1990s, Steinberg's had become a chain of 22 stores in Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, and Tennessee.[4]

Facing competition from larger retailers, such as Sun Television and Appliances and Roberd's Grand,[4] Steinberg's abruptly closed its doors on September 22, 1997, in a manner reminiscent of another Cincinnati-based department store, Swallen's. Steinberg's quickly reopened its stores and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy the next day.[4]


  1. ^ "STEINBERG’S: Chain Files for Bankruptcy". Troubled Company Reporter (InterNet Bankruptcy Library) 1 (27). 1997-09-30. Retrieved 2008-11-29.  
  2. ^ a b c Findsen, Owen (1997-09-24). "Steinberg's started with radio". The Cincinnati Enquirer (Cincinnati, Ohio: Gannett Company). Retrieved 2008-11-29.  
  3. ^ Tresslar, Tim (1997-10-03). "Brady, Ware has launched mergers arm". Dayton Business Journal (Dayton, Ohio: American City Business Journals). Retrieved 2008-11-29.  
  4. ^ a b c Fasig, Lisa Biank (1997-09-24). "Steinberg's trying to keep stores open". The Cincinnati Enquirer (Cincinnati, Ohio: Gannett Company). Retrieved 2008-11-29.  


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