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Seibu Store

August 06, 1995

* Two articles on July 30 described the recently published book "The Brothers: The Hidden World of Japan's Richest Family" (Book Review and Opinion),but neither article mentioned the family's Los Angeles connection.

On a warm October day in 1960, 35 years ago, Yasujiro Tsutsumi, the late patriarch of the Tsutsumi family, stood with his son, Seiji, on the southeast corner of Wilshire and Fairfax to break ground for their Seibu department store.

I stood there with them, having written their speeches in my role as a public relations representative for Welton Becket and Associates, architects for the Los Angeles store.

Although the Tsutsumi family was fabulously successful in Japan, amassing hotels, railroads, resorts and department stores, the Seibu store in Los Angeles lasted only a few years and proved to be a failure. In time, the building was acquired by the former Ohrbach's department store and is now the Peterson Automotive Museum.

MARTIN A. BROWER

Corona del Mar

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