The Metropolist

From Delivering Packages to Dealing With Complaints, Employees Treasured Their Time at Woodies

(Julia Ewan - Twp)
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By The Metropolist
Friday, October 9, 2009

We've published dozens of memories of Woodies. Here are more from and about the people who worked there.

In the early 1950s, Woodward & Lothrop had a fleet of vans that delivered to customers' doors six days a week. As a teenager, for two summers I was a jumper on one of the vans. Three days a week, we would deliver in the Alexandria area, and the other three days it would be Hyattsville. The normal drill was for me to go to the door, knock and leave the package by the door. The driver was an older guy, and if he had a vacation or trip coming up, he would have me knock and wait for the customer to answer the door. This meant it would take a couple of hours longer, hence overtime pay!

-- Joe Lane, Bethany Beach

I worked as a supervisor in the complaint department for two years between undergraduate school and law school, and there are a lot of funny stories I can tell about the small number of customers who took advantage of the overly generous policies concerning the resolution of complaints.

We tried to help everyone, from the lady who called to complain that her cake crumbled when she cut it, to the mega-law firms that did not like the look of the carpet they had purchased and wanted removed for full credit of $10,000 or more. I have never worked with a bunch of nicer, more dedicated people.

-- Bruce N. Shulman, Silver Spring

In the late 1950s, I worked as a stock clerk at the Woodies in Chevy Chase. Back then, Woodies would give cash refunds for returned items.

Woodies had a distinctive wedding wrap (gray with silver ribbon). One afternoon, a young woman and her mother pulled up to the loading dock in a station wagon full of 30 to 50 Woodies unopened wedding-wrapped items.


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