The Stern family moved to Bloomington about 1905, where Jacob Stern opened Stern’s Furniture Co. The firm was located at 504-06 North Main Street in Bloomington.  Sam Stern was born May 6, 1903, in St. Louis, son of Jacob and Rose Iker Stern. He took over the business with his brothers after their father’s death in 1916. The company expanded into the next-door location in 1939, after the death of Sam’s brother Harry Stern in 1937. In spring of 1982, Sam Stern and his nephew Harry Miller Stern moved Stern Furniture Co. to 502 Eldorado Road, near Veteran’s Parkway. In 1986 the firm held a going out of business sale and closed.

The Stern Family Collection contains furniture store documents including newspaper articles, advertisements, and financial records; plus individual family members’ receipts, property records, registration and identification cards for military and clubs, financial records, personal and business correspondence, school work, and other miscellaneous items.