Bromwell’s first act began when Jacob Bromwell, a veteran and former Baltimore resident, founded the store in 1819 after emigrating to Cincinnati. It originally sold supplies to settlers who, just like him, came to the area in the early 1800s. Achieving success in that endeavor, the business grew to manufacture metal goods for the home, such as flour sifters and tin cups.
Decades later, the manufacturing arm of Bromwell’s grew so large, the operation encompassed an entire city block. Understanding people needed fire to heat homes and cook food, they also began making and selling items related to the hearth.
The business of fireplaces proved lucrative. So lucrative, in fact, that Bromwell’s split its home goods and hearth-centric divisions in 1923. The Grewes—only the second family to own the business since the original Bromwells—purchased the fireplace division and opened a store in Cincinnati. The housewares division left for Indiana.
That began Bromwell’s second act.
For the next eight decades, the Gerwes and their fireplace store continued writing the story of Bromwell’s in Downtown Cincinnati. By the mid-2000s, though, Gary Gerwe decided he was ready to sell the brand. While Bromwell’s recognition was strong, the business had grown tired. He found a prospective buyer and prepared to move on.
That’s when Bromwell’s third act began.
Jeffrey McClorey moved back to Cincinnati after living in South America for several years. Seeing an upward shift in the economy, he began buying property, including the building Gerwe’s store occupied. He planned to be Bromwell’s landlord.
But Gerwe’s buyer backed out. Instead of selling, he resolved to close the shop. Bromwell’s, it seemed, was finally coming to an end.
McClorey, understanding the importance of the Bromwell’s brand, couldn’t let that happen. He purchased the business and hired Gerwe to help him run it. For the third time in 186 years, Bromwell’s belonged to a new family.
After reaching the 200-year milestone and successfully reenergizing the brand, McClorey and crew are planning their next steps. Bromwell’s has something major coming soon.
The third floor of the building will feature a new concept: Bromwell’s Attic. It’ll sell estate-style, one-off products—things you won’t find anywhere else. These items will be available to “those in the know” and to the public on select days. While Bromwell’s proper doesn’t feature an online store, Bromwell’s Attic will have an internet presence.
At Bromwells we do not just hop on the latest trends, we listen to our customers needs, then find the right fireplace for them that will last for years to come
Choosing the right fireplace for your home can be overwhelming, Bromwells is here to make you feel comfortable about your purchase, before during, and after your fireplace installation.
After 200 years of business we learned that quality is the most important aspect of the fireplace industry, that is why we only carry top brands that have an earned reputation that is up to Bromwells Standards
We are pleased to offer our Lifetime Warranty as an easy way to ensure you are satisfied with your purchase for years to come. We offer it at no charge to you. All we require is that you have us perform an Annual Check-Up on your fireplace each year.
117 W Fourth Street - Cincinnati, Ohio 45202
We are open by appointment only.
Appointment times are available Monday through Friday. from 9 am to 4 pm. Please call during normal business hours of Monday-Friday, 9am to 5pm to schedule a time.