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How Today’s Cargo Became a Jewelry Destination in Alexandria March 08, 2023 (0 comments)


Alexandria, VA--Gladys Irvin, a resourceful military wife with a love for jewelry, started Today's Cargo in Alexandria in 1973. She imported gold chains, embroidered linens, and trinket boxes from Asia and sold them at a local flea market.

[Image via The Zebra]

A report says that as her popularity grew, she leased a shared space with a frame maker at 217 Cameron Street and named her business "Today's Cargo." Gladys designed the merchandise layout and kept ordering, spending little on decor. She believed in putting the money into the merchandise and passing the savings onto the customer, which is still the philosophy of the business today.

Today's Cargo offers unique treasures worldwide, including pearls from China and Japan, Italian gold and sterling, German and Italian cameos, handmade pieces from Mexico and Thailand, Lithuanian amber, and unique gift items that range from scarves to gemstone soaps. The store also offers a one-stop shop for pearl and bead restringing, watch batteries, ring sizing, and all other jewelry repairs. Appraisals and ear-piercing are also available by appointment.

Carla Clarke and Donna McIntyre now run the show at Today's Cargo, which relocated to its current spot at 1102 King Street in 2007. Rising rents prompted the move to Upper King Street, a life-saver when the recession hit in 2008. Today's Cargo's friendly atmosphere ensures that customers feel comfortable, and the store's staff treat their customers like they want to be treated. The business has come a long way since Gladys's card table in a flea market, and her legacy is thriving thanks to Donna and Carla.

Learn more about their story in this report.

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