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Boswells of Oxford is an independent department store that has served the city of Oxford and its residents for 275 years. This has secured it as one of Oxford’s landmarks whose longevity and standard of customer service set it aside from many other mainstream retailers.
Originally Francis Boswell started selling travels goods at 50 Cornmarket Street in 1738, and his business remained in the Boswell family until the line of direct succession ended in 1890. Following this the business was passed to Arthur Pearson, the then owner of the Oxford Drug Company. Boswells and the Oxford Drug Company are still owned by the Pearson family, and have therefore been under the same ownership since 1890.
Although Boswells and the Oxford Drug Company in Cornmarket Street had been united under ownership in 1890, and moved into Boswell House in 1929 where they were soon recognised as “Hardware merchants” and later as “Hardware & kitchen equipment, refrigeration engineers, leather & travel goods, cutlery, silverware & fancy jewellery & household linens”, it was only in 1958 a connection was made between the two buildings, where they remain united today.