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In 1953, a 12-year-old William Schlemmer moved from Germany to New York City, where he found a haven working in one of the first American hardware stores. Fifteen years later he purchased the store, and it became the iconic brand of Hammacher Schlemmer. The store was often ahead of the curve, being the first to introduce many technological advances, such as the electric razor, coffee maker and answering machine, to the American consumer. They started to carry more than just hardware, and now offer a full range of home décor and furnishings, clothing, electronics, sporting equipment, toys, travel supplies and more.