Here is what Richard Bohack had to say:
Hi, this is Richard Bohack. I'm the great-grandnephew of Bohack's founder, H.C. Bohack. My father was one of the last employees remaining before Bohack closed its doors for good in the Summer of 1977 (Son of Sam and Elvis' Death took Bohack's End out of the headlines). Many of you have your facts in order (except for the Daitch Shopwell theory ... it was actually the opposite).
The first store was on Fulton St. in Brooklyn ... it opened in 1887. H.C Bohack bought the store where he worked ... after just one year. After H.C. Bohack died in 1931, Bohack was owned by his wife, 4 nephews and 8 friends (who were H.C.'s right-hand-guys from nearly the beginning). One of those nephews was my grandfather, Paul G.A. Bohack, Sr. My Dad, Robert H.C. Bohack, Sr. and his brother, Paul G.A. Bohack, Jr. and some of their cousins were quite involved. In 1965, the "heirs" decided to retire and "Go Public" with the company's equity. Charles Bluedorn, Gulf & Western's Chariman (Gulf Oil, Paramount Pictures, etc ...) became the majority share holder. Bluedorn's regime ousted almost everone who didn't retire, incuding all Bohack family memebers ... except for my father (Robert H.C. Bohack, Sr.) My dad (who is still alive and kickin' at 78-yrs-old) ran HR ... including Personnel, Labor Relations and even Benefits (Primarily a Labor Relations Executive ... since many union workers were employed). Throughout the 1960's, Bohack perchased Daitch Shopwell, Packers and a few other supermarket businesses. From Brooklyn, Queens, Nassau and Suffolk Counties, they expanded into Manhattan and the Bronx. Since Paramount Pictures was "family", they used an Upper West Side Bohack store for the Odd Couple Movie with Jack Lemon and Walter Matthau. Bohack survived the Great Depression and other hard times in the late 1800's and early 1900's. But the recession of the 1970's was too much. Bohack tried to buy-up and built (a huge risk that could've worked) while everyone else was selling and slowing down. They quickly opened stores in Westchester and Fairfield Counties that didn't last at all ... some closed in a month! The risk didn't work. Bohack went through various stages of Bankruptcy and eventually folded. It was July 13, 1977 and I was 13-yrs-old ... I remember it like it was yesterday.
Since the company folded, it wasn't actually taken-over by any one company. Various companies bought owed-properties and stores, as well leased-stores. Bohack Square (where my parents met in 1959 when my Mom, a Maspeth native, was an intern in their offices) was sold in pieces. One note, my brother, Robert H.C. Bohack, Jr. turned 16-yrs-old in May of 1977. He became legal to work for Bohack and got a job in their Metropolitan Ave store in Forest Hills. He worked for Bohack for about 6 weeks. Many cousins and 2nd cousins on my Dad's side ... as well as relatives on my Mom's side worked for Bohack ... it was a right of passage that I never experienced.