Bryn Mickle of The Flint Journal reports:
"The company was founded in 1924 by two brothers in Flint, who five years later sold half of the company to Charlie Pemberton.
"Pemberton brought his nephew, James, into the company in 1952.
"In its early years, Peerless focused mainly on making and selling mattresses. It eventually expanded to include furniture -- a result of a growing need for household furnishings as the area's population expanded with the automotive boom.
"The store was a fixture of downtown Flint for decades before it was gutted by fire in 1995, two years after it opened a store in Lansing.
"The 1995 fire was blamed on a mentally ill woman and destroyed about $500,000 worth of furniture.
"Company officials opted against rebuilding in Flint and instead built a second facility in Flint Township."