A Brief History

Kuhn’s Jewelers isn’t just the city’s oldest jewelry store – it’s the fourth oldest continuously operated business of its kind in the nation. Since 1853, the business has established itself as a seller of top-quality jewelry and giftware.

In 1923, John A. Kuhn liked the business so well that he bought it and renamed it Kuhn’s Jewelers. The late John R. “Diamond Jack” Purnell, Kuhn’s son-in-law took over the business in 1953 and his daughter, Susan, became co-owner of the firm in 1995.


(Kuhn's Staff (left to right): Diana Barber (Manager), Jenna Bowne (Sales), Kathy Marshall (Sales), Chuck Church (Sales), Susan Purnell (Owner), Ben Bowne (Sales), Savannah Brimer (Sales) & Mary Flowers (Sales)
What sets Kuhn’s apart from the “here today, gone tomorrow” discount businesses is the reputation of the store. Kuhn’s is a guild jewelry store, which indicates a higher quality of jewelry.
Today, Kuhn’s is owned and operated by Susan Purnell, daughter of the late Jack Purnell.  Susan is a graduate gemologist from the Gemological Institute of America (GIA). The Kuhn's staff is comprised of Charles "Chuck" Church who brings over 30 years of industry experience as a buyer for a large department store and a former Jewelry Store owner (CA), and Manager, Diana Barber is the resident GIA Pearl Expert.
Aside from brightening lives in her jewelry store, Susan is extremely active in the community. She holds active positions with the local Community Foundation, Coastal Hospice, Urban Salisbury, and the Girl Scouts of America. She has been honored to receive the Salisbury Chamber of Commerce Business Woman of the Year award and Maryland Top 100 business owner distinction.  When she's not helping her customers find the perfect gift, Susan enjoys kayaking on the Wicomico, playing with her grand children on the beach in Ocean City and singing soprano in the choir at Trinity United Methodist Church.