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Thomas Russell

New York's Crawford Furniture Mfg. in Chapter 11

JAMESTOWN, N.Y. — Citing economic conditions, Crawford Furniture Mfg. has closed its wood furniture plant here and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

At least two of its retail stores operated as Crawford Furniture Retail Outlet Inc. also appear to have closed, according to news reports.

Company President and CEO Michael Cappa was not available for comment, but a report in the Buffalo News said the company's retail landlord, Benderson Development, had locked two of its locations, including a store in Hamburg, N.Y., and a warehouse in Cheektowaga, N.Y.

The company also has retail locations in Amherst, Lockport and Lakewood, N.Y. According to the newspaper report, those locations were open this week.

The 127-year-old company said in a statement that the Aug. 25 bankruptcy filing will allow it to continue operating its businesses while company officials assess their operations. It also said that the stores would remain open during the bankruptcy.

"During this time, all Crawford Furniture store locations, warehouse and customer service department will remain open and continue to operate," the statement said. It also said that current orders would be delivered as scheduled and all warranties will remain valid. Store staff, management and customer service personnel also will be on hand to help customers.

The company also indicated that it would seek to continue selling domestic product, but it was unclear how that would take shape during the bankruptcy proceeding.

"During these difficult economic times, Crawford Furniture will continue to labor and find a way to keep selling a great American-made product," the statement said. "We will fight for our employees and families of western New York. Our 127-year-old company will strive to deliver on all customer orders. Crawford Furniture and our employees appreciate your patience and support during these challenging economic times."

Established in 1883, the company advertises itself as a producer of 100% solid wood furniture made with materials purchased within a 150-mile radius of Jamestown. Its line includes bedroom, dining room, office and home entertainment and occasional furniture.

A bankruptcy filing in U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of New York said there were 100-199 creditors and listed the company as having between $10 million and $50 million in assets and $1 million to $10 million in liabilities. The top 20 unsecured creditors were listed as having more than $645,000 in claims against the company.

An attorney representing the company was not available for immediate comment.

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