"Is it not cruel to let our city die by degrees, stripped of all her proud monuments, until there will be nothing left of all her history and beauty to inspire our children? If they are not inspired by the past of our city, where will they find the strength to fight for her future?" Jacqueline Kennedy

Monday, March 10, 2014

Here Is Hoping That Marietta Dry Goods Store On Court Street Re-Opens Soon

Marietta at 392 Court Street a while back

I walked past Marietta's at 392 Court Street a few times in the past week and was surprised to find the gate closed when the store should have been open. Just a few days ago, a notice was taped to its front gate announcing that the closing was "due to illness" and that the old-school Carroll Gardens clothing store would re-open soon.
Let us hope, because Carroll Gardens without Marietta's, well, it just wouldn't be the same.   It is a true neighborhood gem and a time capsule of Carroll Gardens' past
The clothing store has been in operation at this location since the 1940s. It was originally opened by Marietta Chirico, a gutsy Italian immigrant who saved up her money and bought the Court Street building, so that she could open her dry goods store on the ground floor.  Later, her two sons stepped in to help run the business.
To this day, brothers Joe (93) and Matty (85) Chirico still busy themselves behind the counter of their store. The merchandize consists of undergarments, house coats in a variety of small flowered prints, flannel pajamas, sweatshirts and pants, all at impossibly low prices.  Though there doesn't seem to be any visible order in the store, Joe and Matty know exactly in which brown cardboard box to look to find what their customers are looking for.
Besides white cotton underwear, Joe and Matty serve up their infectious laughs and hilarious banter.  These two are real characters and one can only imagine what Mother Marietta was like.

Back in the 1990s,  when my kids attended PS 58, I purchased my children's assembly clothes at Marietta: Red tie and white shirt with blue pants or skirt.
Back then, assembly on the first Thursday of every month and all the kids had to dress the same.  Does anyone remember those days?
Marietta was the only place in the neighborhood that stocked the red ties.

I sincerely hope that Joe and Matty will soon re-open their store.  And if it does, I hope that everyone will go in to buy something, even if it is just a pair if white socks.  Because this is one mom-an-pop store we shouldn't lose here in Carroll Gardens.

Matty and Joe Chirico
image above courtesy of Carroll Gardens Patch

Here is a beautiful video of the Chirico brothers in their store. It was filmed by Abbey Adkinson.


Anonymous said...

I also shopped there for my kids many years ago; great for kid's underwear, PJs, etc. There was another similar store on Union between Hicks and Columbia called Franks. for several years now it has been a wonderful sewing and knitting store called Brooklyn General, but they kept the Frank's sign.

Katia said...

Yes, I love that the yarn store on Union kept the old signage for Frank's. Makes me like Brooklyn General even more.

Becky said...

I second everything you said Katia. Get well soon, Marietta's! We love you!

Anonymous said...

Strangely, I've never shopped there despite living in the area for 20 years, but I've always admired the signage and the beautiful deep blue tiles on the storefront. Now I will have to go in and buy something!

kerri dunne said...

I love them! those guys are so much fun to chat with. I haven't been to the store for a few years but I'm very due for a visit. I hope they are okay and back at the store soon. We cannot lose Marietta's. It's one of the few gems left of a neighborhood that once was.

Agnes said...

I got all my dad's pajamas there, best selections, and my mom's housecoats. Great socks, undergarments, too. And excellent quality for the price. Please get well soon! Love to Marietta.

Katia said...

Glad to report that the door of the store was open as I walked by this afternoon. I didn't have the time to go inside, but it is a great sign that the boys are still around.

Becky said...

We went in today and my husband bought two pairs of pants. Joe was restocking, but we didn't see Matty.

Katia said...

I am just happy the store is open again.

Anonymous said...

Great place for New Baby Gifts: One-sies, receiving blankets, etc - - Name brands at Huge Discounts.

If you mom/dad go into the Hospital, pefect place for pajama's & nightgowns. Dress Socks & Tube Socks and undershirts, too.

Anonymous said...

The grandson has been helping run things for a while now. Great family! When I stopped in in June they told me that the city was harassing them because they didn't believe that they were charging their old tenet upstairs such a low affordable rent. Apparently they haven't raised the rents there over the past 50 years. Sure hope that the government isn't adding to the stress for these guys.

Unknown said...

Looks like Matty has passed a way per a sign outside the store. So sad for the neighborhood.

Katia said...

Oh, no. That is truly sad. He will be terribly missed in the neighborhood.