Hellberg’s Jewelers — 120 years strong

T-R PHOTO BY SARA JORDAN-HEINTZ Since 1898, Hellberg’s Jewelers has offered an array of jewelry and related gifts in downtown Marshalltown. On Friday, the business celebrated its 120th anniversary. It is owned and operated by Gayle and Vic Hellberg.

Not many family businesses sustain into the triple digits of time, but Hellberg’s Jewelers, 13 W. Main Street, celebrated its 120th anniversary on Friday.

“I did research and discovered Sept. 7, 1898 was the day my great-grandfather (William Hellberg) opened the store in Marshalltown. It was at 23 W. Main,” owner Vic Hellberg said. “We’re really excited to serve the community for that period of time. Not a lot make it to a century with the same family.”

The store has been situated at its present locale since 1973, and is run by Vic and his wife Gayle. It sustained damage in the July 19 tornado, reopening a week later.

To mark this momentous occasion, the Hellbergs hosted an open house celebration, greeting long-time customers and friends, offering refreshments and goodie bags.

The couple said they share in their success with daughters Nicole Hellberg and Erika Lindblom, and Erika’s husband Kevin and their daughters Summer and Aubree, all of Marion.

“Everything (we sell) makes people happy,” Gayle said. “Nobody needs a thing that we have in here, but when they make a purchase it makes them happy, whether they’re giving it or keeping it for themselves. That’s what’s fun.”

Staying competitive in the age of online shopping comes down to customer service, Vic said.

“It’s all about service and being there for their needs,” he said. “The people that are buying things on the Internet don’t have any relationship; they’re just looking at a picture and buying something. With us, they can hold it in their hands, and we take care (of the product) during its lifetime — whether it’s a battery for a watch or an engagement ring. I’m selling engagement rings to the sixth generation since my great-grandfather did. That’s amazing.”

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Contact Sara Jordan-Heintz at 641-753-6611 or sjordan@timesrepublican.com