Courtesy of the Greensboro Historical Museum. Used by permission.


I’ve written about this store and how important it was to me before.

Most of you probably do not know that in my other life, I am an academic librarian whose job primarily involves supervising the digitization and online presentation of archival material. The job and the hobby intersect from time to time and this is one of those cases. These photos are part of a huge grant-funded project we recently unveiled on the history of Greensboro from Reconstruction to World War II. They’re great (and a rare find) because they show the pristine interior of this store at its grand opening. They come from the papers of Jim Sifford, who was apparently an A&P regional manager in the area. I’ll add more later.

Another great photo surfaced as well, but you’ve seen that one before.


This is kind of sad. One of the two oldest continuously operating chain supermarkets in my hometown is closing. The Harris Teeter location at Golden Gate Shopping Center opened in 1961 as an A&P. A Kroger opened simultaneously at the other end of the center. The Kroger was replaced about 1975 with one of Greensboro’s first Food Town (now Food Lion) stores. The A&P lasted until the late 1970s and became a Bestway (local chain) and then Harris Teeter in 1988. Centers with two supermarket anchors were common at the time but are rarely seen anymore.

The view above is from 1999. Below is a 1961 “grand opening” photo from the Greensboro Daily News:


Just got back from a conference in Morehead City NC and thought I’d throw up a few pictures I grabbed in cities along the way back. I only had my phone camera with me, so the quality is somewhat lacking. Above is a beautiful former Colonial store at 1201 Broad Street in New Bern. It was closed so I was unable to determine if there were any interesting interior remnants.


This former A&P is at 919 Broad Street, also in New Bern.


You rarely find a former centennial A&P like this with its pole sign largely intact. This store is in the 1200 block of Pittsburgh Street in Cheswick PA. The whole surrounding shopping center is a little odd, as it contains a two-story building that looks like it may have housed a skating rink or a bowling alley upstairs. Underneath is a block of stores, one of which is currently a Goodwill, but feels very Kroger-like inside.

More photos after the jump.


This lovely storefront served as the A&P branch for my new part-time neighborhood, Pittsburgh’s Upper Lawrenceville, from at least 1925-1955. It’s presented here tonight more for symbolic purposes, as a means of announcing that I’ve begun my Pittsburgh research. I’ve compiled a first draft of addresses through 1980, but I’m still entering them into a spreadsheet. I’ve got A&P, Kroger, Giant Eagle, Loblaw’s/Del Farm, Streamline/Thorofare, Butler’s, Ondek’s, and many more.

In fact, it looks like Pittsburgh will prove to be even more interesting than San Francisco was; I’m only done with data entry through 1945, and I already have 935 addresses, as opposed to about 600 for the entire 1928-1999 period in San Francisco.

Anyway, I’ll keep you updated. It will be a while before there’s a proper new section, since I’m still working on updating the rest of the site following the move to WordPress as well. But look for some Pittsburgh photos (including some vintage ones) to start popping up here soon. And if you have anything to contribute, please let me know.


Microfilm is a wonderful thing. I’m working on a volunteer project at the Greensboro library that involves digitizing portions of the archives of the local newspapers so they can be placed online. Of course, I’m finding lost of interesting stuff along the way, like the 1960 ad above for the High Point-based Big Bear chain, which is not to be confused with several other chains of the same name around the country.

And then, there’s this: the 1947grand opening ad from the famed A&P that began my obsession with odl supermarkets:


Memco, anyone? Through other research, I’ve determined that Lucky‘s Lady Lee branded items were sold in esat coast memco stores, at least during the 1970s. Memco came to Greensbor in 1980 and lasted less than three years. It was close to my house that I could actually walk there during high school; I bought most of my musc there or at the Peaches Records and Tape across the street.


And, last but not least, here’s a 1984 ad for A&P‘s Family Mart chain. It was in Family Mart that your humble host, at age 15, was illegally purchasing several six-packs of beer when he turned around to see his (not at all amused) mother standing in line behind him:


A&P, 1121 Linwood, Kansas City MO, 1940. Unknown source.

I can’t remember wher I came up with this photo several years ago, but I’ve always loved it. It’s a beautiful store, with its glass brick, its neon, and the structural entrance to the parking lot. It’s a building I’d hoped to seek out next time I was in Kansas City.

Yesterday, while editing some video of my 1997 trip to KC, the image below jumped out at me, and I was almost sure that it was this same store. You can see the brick pattern across the front, the glass brick in the tower, and even th residue from where they tore down the parking entrance. A little research using Google Maps and based on some surrounding structures that were also visible on the tape confirmed it.

Former A&P, 1121 Linwood, Kansas City MO, 1997.

Unfortunately, the same Google Maps research also revealed that this store is no longer standing. In fact, it looks like rather large chunks of the surrounding neighborhood are gone, including the multistory building to the right of the A&P in the 1940 photo. Looks like the years have not been kind to that area, as it seems to be all vacant lots now. I really regret never having gotten a better look at that building.