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COLLECTION Identifier: MC 1019

Records of Ruby's Provincetown Fine Jewelry, 1993-2016


Correspondence, financial records, operations records, and photographs of Ruby's Provincetown Fine Jewelry.


  • Creation: 1993-2016


Language of Materials

Materials in English.

Access Restrictions:

Access. The bulk of the collection is open for research. Folders #3.3, 4.13-4.14, 4.23-5.2, 5.4, 6.3, and 6.5-6.7, containing financial information, are closed for 10 years from date of creation.

Conditions Governing Use

While photographs and pages of customer album pages may be viewed for research, copies may not be made by any means and may not be disseminated until 2035 without donor permission. Copyright. Copyright in the papers created by Ruby's Provincetown Fine Jewelry is held by Mary DeRocco until her death. Upon her death, copyright is transferred to the President and Fellows of Harvard College for the Schlesinger Library. Copyright in other papers in the collection may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs or assigns.

Copying. Copies of photographs, pages of customer album pages, and financial material may not be made by any means, and may not be disseminated until 2035 without donor permission.


7.92 linear feet ((19 file boxes), plus 1 folio+ folder, 1 oversize folder, 2 photograph folders)

This collection consists mostly of administrative documents, correspondence, and photographs documenting the operations of Ruby's Provincetown Fine Jewelry in Provincetown, Massachusetts, operated independently by two women from 1981-2015 during legislative changes in the United States allowing same-sex marriage. Ruby's served the LGBTQ+ community with the wedding rings, promise rings, and rainbow jewelry from renowned jewelry designers.

Series I. ADMINISTRATIVE, 1993-2016 (#1.1-15.9, F+D.1 OD.1), includes administrative documents, advertisements and press, an award, correspondence, financial material, inventory sheets, invoices, jewelry artist catalogs, and related materials. Advertisements and press include articles, published ads in locally printed guides, sketches, drawings, and store hours. Advertisements were often drafted from drawings or by using cut-outs of artist products, and sent to be printed in local news sources by the owners of Ruby's. The award is a top 50 designer retailer award for the 2014-2015 year. Correspondence includes letters and cards from grateful customers, repair memos sent to artists, business correspondence with customers regarding special orders, repair orders, layaway, and resizing. The bulk of the correspondence is between the store owners and prominent artists including Alex Sepkus and Victoria Moore, who are mentioned on the store's website and Facebook page, have their products displayed in the store's advertisements, and make up the most sizeable contributions to the store's sales. Correspondence regarding special orders, repairs, and resizing often mention Alex Sepkus' rings. Correspondence from customers includes signed pictures from prominent lesbian figures such as tennis player Martina Navratilova and comedians Suzanne Westenhoefer, Kate Clinton, and Michele Balan.

Financial material includes accounting records, balance sheets, bank statements, batch sales records, a comparison and history report, a corporate annual report, financial statements, fraud case documentation, investment reports, ledgers, payroll, sales logs, a sales receipt book, and tax returns. Accounting records include details of some of the tax reports and financial statements. Balance sheets record the flow of money coming into and out of the store and correspond to profit and loss statements. Batch sales records include batches of sales receipts demonstrating the sales conducted within specific time frames. The comparison and history report is an IRS form 1120S, comparing fiscal years 2014 and 2015. The corporate annual report includes a form reporting the store's shares. Financial statements are the store accountant's reports of income and expenditure for the store. Fraud case documentation includes evidence of credit card fraud and insurance claims for restitution of funds lost. Investment reports are statements regarding the value of the store's retirement account, hosted by Fidelity. Ledgers contain general store account information, including sales, purchases, and payments. Payroll contains information regarding the employee payroll account for the store, hosted by Paychex. Sales logs are printed spreadsheets used to manually record the sales of the store. The sales receipt book is a partially-used paper receipt book for the store used to manually record the details of each individual sale. Tax returns include the IRS tax forms filed by the store from 2000-2014.

Inventory sheets include information regarding Ruby's Provincetown Fine Jewelry's inventory and the corresponding inventories of partnered jewelry artists. Invoices include the cost incurred by Ruby's Provincetown Fine Jewelry for routine advertisements in local news sources and for objects such as signs for the store. Invoices document the cost of products from jewelry artists partnered with Ruby's Provincetown Fine Jewelry. Jewelry artist records include catalogs, correspondence regarding products and repair requests, product flyers, and purchase reports regarding jewelry artists and designers.

Store operations records include business operations forms including blank time sheets, batch sales sheets, layaway/repair/special order logs, repair and special order sheets, announcements, the store's jewelry case layout, jewelry care tips, and an expenditures log. Also included are a calendar of the final month that the store was in business. Donations were also made to GLAAD and local school fund raisers. Also included are redeemed gift certificates provided to customers and good luck currency that was posted in the store with notations indicating that they were to bring luck.

Also included are itineraries involving travel to trade shows and job postings for part-time help, as well as layaway/repair/special order logs consisting of printed spreadsheets upon which employees of Ruby's could log information regarding the orders that customers had placed on corresponding layaway/repair/special order sheets that contained more specific information to each order. Store operations records also included sign and postings including inspection certificates posted around the store and the zoning request and estimates for the sign that went in front of Ruby's Provincetown Fine Jewelry. Store training material provides customer service guidelines involving how to speak with customers and diffuse tense situations that arise in the sales process; written guidance on how the owners wish their employees to present the store; where cleaning items are located; how to tell customers that ear piercing is no longer conducted; appropriate music that can be played; job expectations; security of the jewelry cases; information on business phone etiquette; answering inquiries; how to fill out special order forms/layaway slips/receipts; processing transactions; taking repairs; customer service mission; sales approaches; making phone reports to supervisors; opening and closing responsibilities; jewelry store security scenarios; glossary of jewelry-related terms; jewelry care instructions; logistics and guidelines that involve step-by-step instructions on how to fill sale receipts, process credit cards, take repairs, answer phone inquiries, put an item on layaway, open/close the store, how to care for the jewelry, and how to employ sales strategies; multiple drafts of jewelry case layouts; and a printed article about Ruby's for employee reference are also included. The communication logs used by Ruby's staff detail the daily operations of the store and include notes regarding the status of customer orders, product information, and messages regarding customer and artist phone calls.

Store operations records also include signs and postings including inspection certificates posted around the store, and the zoning request and estimates for the sign that went in front of Ruby's Provincetown Fine Jewelry. Also included are managerial responsibilities; policies for the store's fire insurance and business vehicle insurance; return memorandums for returned products; sale of business records detailing the steps necessary for permanent closure of a business; sales techniques and strategies taken from magazine articles; and security guidelines printed from business reports regarding jewelry store security breaches and how to avoid them. A purchase bag and a sheet of Ruby's letterhead are also included.

Series II, PHOTOGRAPHS, 1995-2016 (#15.10-19.7, PD.1), contains photographs and correspondence between grateful customers and the owners of Ruby's Provincetown Fine Jewelry. Disassembled albums contain Polaroid pictures of customers, often including captions with the couples' names and the lengths of their relationships, which provide information regarding the years that they purchased their commitment rings, wedding rings, or both commitment and wedding rings from Ruby's Provincetown Fine Jewelry.


Ruby's Provincetown Fine Jewelry, located in Provincetown, Massachusetts, catered to the LGBT+ community for decades before closing in 2015. It was owned by Ruby Druss and Mary DeRocco, and was well known across the United States for its rainbow jewelry, commitment rings, and wedding rings. The store closed in December of 2015. Ruby Druss died in January 2017. As of 2019, Mary DeRocco was residing in Provincetown, Massachusetts.


The collection is arranged in two series:

  1. Series I. Administrative, 1993-2016 (#1.1-15.9, F+D.1 OD.1)
  2. Series II. Photographs, 1997-2015 (#15.10-19.7, PD.1)

Physical Location

Collection stored off site: researchers must request access 36 hours before use.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Accession number: 2016-M181

The records of Ruby's Provincetown Fine Jewelry were given to the Schlesinger Library by Mary DeRocco and Ruby Druss in September 2016.

Processing Information

Processed: October 2022

By: Anna Donovan, with assistance from Mark Vassar and Yolande E. Bennett.

The Schlesinger Library attempts to provide a basic level of preservation and access for all collections, and does more extensive processing of higher priority collections as time and resources permit.  Finding aids may be updated periodically to account for new acquisitions to the collection and/or revisions in arrangement and description.

Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America
Language of description
Processing of this collection was made possible by gifts from the Martha Meisels Miller Fund, the Elsie Rodd Fund, and the Sibyl Shainwald Fund at the Schlesinger Library.

Repository Details

Part of the Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute Repository

The preeminent research library on the history of women in the United States, the Schlesinger Library documents women's lives from the past and present for the future. In addition to its traditional strengths in the history of feminisms, women’s health, and women’s activism, the Schlesinger collections document the intersectional workings of race and ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and class in American history.

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