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.


Just returned from my holiday road trip to Charleston WV, Pittsburgh, and Richmond, and I have photos to share. Info on any of the questionable or unidentiied stores is very much solicited.


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.

Just returned from a brief road trip in the environs of Washington, Baltimore, and Wilmington DE, and here are a few photos for your amusement. This wasn’t really a “research” trip, so I didn’t come back with too much.

Sorry. I haven’t been doing much exploring of my own lately, although I have completed a very nice paper on the validity of paid placement search engine results and also an annotated bibliography on historical document digitization projects in the past few weeks, just in case anyone cares. But I’m planning on getting away this weekend, so there’s no telling what I might come back with (or where I might go).


Above photo courtesy of Mike in New Jersey.

The photo above shows the remains of an A&P on Mt. Prospect Avenue in Newark. It’s still selling groceries probably seventy years after A&P moved in, so the location was obviously pretty good. The sign was evidently of pretty high quality as well.


Above photo courtesy of Jess Cliffe, Vintage Seattle.

Recently spotted online:


This beauty from the 200 block of East Front Street in Burlington NC, just a few blocks from Blanche Taylor Moore’s Kroger, undoubtedly started life as a Big Star about 1938 or so. A lot of variations on this prototype were built in the southeast in the late 1930s, and a good proportion of them have held up remarkably well. The craftsmanship and materials are a stark contrast to the cheap stucco effects on most new chain stores.

I’m also guessing the building to the left was a 1940s A&P, but I’ll save that for another post.

Also from this weekend’s long drive:


I’m saying with maybe 60% certainty that this building from downtown Yanceyville NC once housed an A&P.


This Family Dollar on South Scales Street in Reidsville NC was definitely something, probably an A&P as well, but I’m not sure. It also looks like it may have expanded into a neighboring (but built at the same time) adjacent storefront.


Courtesy of Mike, this photo of the spooky, abandoned A&P offices in Paterson NJ shows label scars from at least two different versions of the A&P logo.


From Robby Delius, an interesting TV news shot of an early 1980s Big Star in Durham NC highlights the chain’s Grand Union era makeover.