History of WJ

What is the history of Wieshuber Jewelers?

In 1923, my grandfather Franz X. Wieshuber immigrated from Germany to Chicago and opened a jewelry store on Fullerton Avenue. He was a jeweler and metalsmith who wanted nothing more than to make beautiful things. As a P.O.W. in WWI, he fashioned rings and vases out of spent shells. His American captors prized his creations and granted him special privileges. After the war he declined his father’s offer to take over the family business. Instead, he started his own business in the U.S. Soon he sent for his wife and they had five children, living in the small apartment over the jewelry store.

After 35 years in the states, he longed to return to his beloved Bavaria. His sons Franz Jr. (my uncle) and Anton (my dad, pictured here) took over the business when their parents departed. Doing business in the city became difficult and dangerous as robberies increased. The brothers obtained a loan and opened the second incarnation of Wieshuber Jewelers in the suburb of Park Ridge, Illinois. There it stayed until January 2000, when Anton retired after buying out his brother a few years earlier.

Starting in 2012, I returned to my roots by taking some jewelry making classes. My career as a graphic designer gave me a solid foundation to create and market jewelry. Wieshuber Jewelers was reborn in 2016, this time in Colorado.