Who was Herbert Marcus?
The Texas State Historical Association records that Herbert Marcus was a merchant born on September 6, 1878. He moved to Dallas about 1899 and sold life insurance. He later joined his brother-in-law, Abraham L. Neiman, in a sales promotion venture with Coca-Cola in Atlanta, Georgia. Their success brought Marcus and Neiman two offers for their business, one of $25,000 in cash and the other of the Missouri or Kansas franchise for the new product, Coca-Cola. They chose the $25,000 and used the money to stake themselves in a specialty shop in Dallas.
“In 1907, with his sister Carrie Marcus Neiman and her husband, Herbert Marcus organized and became president of Neiman Marcus Company, the first specialty store in the Southwest. The store offered ready-made, high-quality clothes for women, as well as exceptional service. In 1928, Marcus bought A. L. Neiman's share of the business. Marcus was president and director of the Riverview Realty Company and the Theodore Marcus Realty Company, director of the Republic National Bank and Trust Company, and the Dallas Joint Stock Land Bank. Aware that his store's future depended on the future of Dallas, Marcus gave much time and energy to the growth and development of the city.
“He was a founder, director, and treasurer of the Southwestern Medical Foundation (i.e., University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas), a primary fund-raiser for the establishment of Southern Methodist University, a trustee of the Hockaday School, and a member of the executive committee of the Citizens Association. He chaired the Dallas Grand Opera Committee of the Chamber of Commerce and also served as a director of the Dallas Art Association.
“[He] was one of the chief founders of the Southwestern Division of the National Conference of Christians and Jews. Marcus was also active on the Welfare Board of the City of Dallas. In addition to his urban concerns, he took an active interest in increasing sheep production in North and East Texas. He married Minnie Lichtenstein of Dallas on February 25, 1902; they had four sons, all of whom entered his business. Marcus was the majority stockholder in Neiman Marcus until his death. He died at his home on December 11, 1950.”
Perez, J. J. (July 26, 2013). Marcus, Herbert. Handbook of Texas Online. Retrieved