Around 1890, two brothers named John Price and Isaac Starks opened a fine men’s clothing store called Crutcher & Starks, at the corner of Fourth & Jefferson Streets in downtown Louisville. Nearly 20 years later, John Price and Isaac Starks sold the store, which had become the top men’s fine clothing store in Louisville.

About four years after the sale of Crutcher & Starks, John Price Starks hired William H. Rapier and John Starks Rodes and opened another men’s fine clothing store, The Starks Company. The owners of Crutcher & Starks made intense legal objections over the use of the “Starks” name in a competing men’s clothing store. Consequently, The Starks Company was reincorporated as the Rodes-Rapier Company in early 1914.

From its inception on March 17, 1914 (St. Patrick’s Day), the company focused on providing quality merchandise, exceptional service and value. In 1954, Rodes was expanded to accommodate the increased demand for tailored men’s and boy’s clothing in the prosperous post-World War II era. Based on the continuing success of the building location through the first half of the century, additional Rodes locations were added in Tennessee and Indiana during the second half of the century.

In 1989, the company’s revenues were coming solely from Rodes. So during the early ’90s, Rodes utilized its core strengths of service and tailoring to enter the tailored uniform business. In fiscal 1996, more than half the company’s revenues came from the Uniforms Division. In January 2000, Rodes sold Rodes Professional Apparel (Uniforms Division) to Uniforms To You, a Chicago-based company and division of Cintas.

In 2002, as the company saw additional opportunities for growth, they asked their customers what was needed to enhance their shopping experience. The resounding answer was “a convenient store – not in a mall – where you could pull up to the door.” In early 2003, Rodes found the perfect location and opened its new 12,000 sq. ft. location on Brownsboro Road, in the East End of Metro Louisville. The new “Rodes Building” has allowed the firm to redevelop its presence in the ladies apparel business.

Today, Rodes is recognized as one of the finest specialty apparel stores in the country, still family owned and operated. You’ll find a wide selection of traditional and Italian clothing, sportswear and accessories for men as well as quality apparel for women. Their goal is their commitment to you, as they strive to provide the ultimate in quality, value and service.