Independents

Virginia Jeweler to Close After 90 Years

IndependentsNov 14, 2023

Virginia Jeweler to Close After 90 Years

Bowen Jewelry Company’s third-generation owner is heading into retirement.

Bowen Jewelry Company
Bowen Jewelry Company in downtown Lynchburg, Virginia, is closing after nearly a century in business as its owner retires.
Lynchburg, Va.—Virginia jeweler Bowen Jewelry Company is closing its doors after 90 years.

The fine jewelry store is going out of business as third-generation owner Brian “Biff” Bowen Jr. begins his retirement.

In 1933, Charles Wesley Bowen Jr. opened Bowen Jewelry Company. 

The watchmaker, goldsmith and hand-engraver was known as one of Lynchburg’s most skilled jewelers.

His son, Brian H. M. Bowen, joined the business in 1946, following a duration of military service during World War II, in which he became a decorated hero. 

The father-son duo worked to ensure the Bowen legacy would be remembered as having integrity, honesty, and community.

The store garnered attention well beyond Central Virginia when, in 1956, Brian Bowen arranged for the historic Hope Diamond to make a stop at the store on its way to the Smithsonian. People lined up around the block to see the “prestigious ladies of the town” model the famous 45.52-carat blue diamond. 

 Related stories will be right here … 

Current owner Biff Bowen returned to Lynchburg in 1988 to work with his father after graduating from the University of Montana, where he studied geology. 

Within a few years, he became a Certified Gemologist Appraiser and began buying, appraising, and designing jewelry. 

He’s also been an enthusiastic community member.

The company also has been closely involved in the community, supporting fine arts and local nonprofits, including breast cancer awareness efforts, the Children’s Museum, the Miss Virginia Pageant, the local food bank, and more.

Bowen Jewelry Company was the downtown Lynchburg community’s premier destination for births, engagements, anniversaries, memorials, and everything in between, said the company.

The family said it focused on service before sales, building long-lasting, meaningful relationships with clients.

“I’m just so grateful for the friendships, loyalty, and trust that our customers have given us for the last 90 years,” said Biff. “My father once told me that our family never got rich off the jewelry business, but we’ve been rich in friends, and that’s even better.” 

Biff plans to stay active in the community in his retirement.

The store is hosting a going-out-of-business sale featuring discounts on gold jewelry, diamonds, silver, gemstones, pearls and more.

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