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Do we miss the stores or the cars?

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  • Do we miss the stores or the cars?

    From an article about no longer in business five and dime stores which showed up on my computer.
    Somehow, I miss the cars more than the stores.




  • #2
    The five & dime stores are today's dollar ($1.25) stores [inflation]. That '55 coupe already looks a bit "tired" when the picture was taken. No need to miss either one.
    Gary L.
    Wappinger, NY

    SDC member since 1968
    Studebaker enthusiast much longer

    Comment


    • #3
      As I look at everything through the lens of experience/nostalgia, I remember discounters like Woolworth/Woolco, W.T Grant, Gibsons, Pamida, Ben Franklin, Treasure City.

      When I was of Junior High/middle school age and earning spending cash from delivering the Lincoln Journal, I would buy 1/72 scale model airplanes at Woolworths and Grants back when they were 88 cents; 1/700 scale Imperial Japanese Navy models at Gibson's and later Pamida. I would buy penny candy at the local Ben Franklin and an occasional model car. Treasure City's toy department was stocked by a toy reseller who bought inventories and overstocks so I could buy American Flyer trains up to the mid 1970s.

      Lincoln, NE also had the original Chick Bartlett's HobbyTown, a small hobby store that had almost every type of hobby kit imaginable stacked up to the ceiling, going to HobbyTown was a mind blowing experience back when I was 12-15.

      I didn't get into cars until Dad inherited his late father's 1951 Mercury sports coupe around 1975.

      \"I\'m getting nowhere as fast as I can\"
      The Replacements.

      Comment


      • studegary
        studegary commented
        Editing a comment
        I had a 1951 Mercury sport coupe around 1957.

      • Jessie J.
        Jessie J. commented
        Editing a comment
        Married my wife in ‘69. First charge account we opened was at WT Grant, I bought all of the Avanti models they had in the store that day.
        I built one, still have them all, and that wife too.

    • #4
      I miss the store and local business more as they had people who could help as they knew the products they were selling . Now most help in stores are hard pressed to be able to make change let alone know about the products they sell. Can find the old cars at shows or in my case my favorites are in my garage

      Comment


      • #5
        Of course this is my own personal emotion but experiencing the car is just a short walk down to the shop. Reliving the five and dime is not as easy. I can no longer sit at the Woolworth lunch counter or walk up the isles with it's changing displays.

        Comment


        • BRUCESTUDE
          BRUCESTUDE commented
          Editing a comment
          Cmon Bill, surely you remember Kress 5 and 10 in the Junction- hot roasted peanuts or popcorn!

      • #6
        Originally posted by Hallabutt View Post
        Of course this is my own personal emotion but experiencing the car is just a short walk down to the shop. Reliving the five and dime is not as easy. I can no longer sit at the Woolworth lunch counter or walk up the isles with it's changing displays.
        That brings up different memories. I dated a young lady that worked at one of those lunch counters and my mother worked at one when she was a teen.
        Gary L.
        Wappinger, NY

        SDC member since 1968
        Studebaker enthusiast much longer

        Comment


        • #7
          In Owosso Michigan we are blessed to have a still operating Springrove 5&10 Variety store. A visit there is like stepping back into the 1960s, with huge well stocked candy cases like those of the old Ben Franklin’s and asides loaded with a variety of the classic household wares.
          I always head to the toy section and check out their selection of model cars as the proprietor has excellent taste and there are always interesting 1930s-1960s rods & stockers. Although I’m now going on 73, when I visit there I feel like I’m 13 again.
          Of course those cool models now cost a lot more than 5 or 10 cents, but then that was true even when I was 13.
          The difference now is that I have the coin to buy whatever yanks my crank.

          Comment


          • #8
            I can't miss the cars because I still own the car my parents bought to drive me in the kindergarten carpool, and a look-alike (but better condition and optioned) replacement for the other childhood car that they bought before I was born.
            I do sort of miss the places we used to go in them such as Gino's (before KFC became a national franchise, the Colonel sold the rights to make his chicken recipe to various independent companies. Ginos was one. Their chicken was so good. When Kentucky Fried became a chain in its own right, it was all over for the quality of that food).
            I miss Kiddie City--a competitor to the later Toys R Us. But I would want to go into a Kiddie City that still had the toys of my childhood, not Bratz dolls and Star Wars action figures. I miss Pappy Parker fried chicken (sold at Bob's Big Boy and Roy Rogers) and Butter Gem rolls (sold in supermarkets).
            I miss how endless summer vacation's three months seemed when I was 9 years old, versus how short 3 months seems now.
            I miss going to Korvette's and the Horn & Hardart automat. What a treat it was for a child to have father give you a handful of nickels and tell you to go get whatever you wanted all by yourself.
            And did you know that before Stouffers was a frozen dinner brand it was a restaurant chain? Ate there sometimes.
            All in all, I would never want to really go back to the old days before internet, when everybody smoked everywhere. But if I could take my dream vacation, I wouldn't go to Europe or some other concrete present day destination. I'd take my vacation back in time. And I would probably pick times before I was born. Imagine being able to talk one on one with a Civil War soldier, a former slave, and see things like vaudeville or a traveling circus first hand. That would be far more interesting than the Eiffel Tower or some famous rocks.

            Comment


            • #9
              Just had a flashback... I remember saving up to buy a Panasonic cassette recorder at a Woolworths a few blocks from where I went to college. That was the era of long distance phone charges, so my family used to talk on cassettes and mail them to each other. I taped lectures, singing with my guitar...

              I have always had a hard time waking up and so was constantly tardy for class and on the verge of having to drop the class if I missed one more. So I got a gal friend with the most cheerful/obnoxious voice to record a wake up message, then plugged it into a timer. That thing saved what little GPA I had left.

              Wow, what a wonderful memory!

              Rafe Hollister
              Attached Files

              Comment


              • #10
                I don’t have to go that far back, I miss Toys R Us…Mike
                Mike - Assistant Editor, Turning Wheels
                Fort Worth, TX


                1964 Avanti R2 #R-4986

                Comment


                • #11
                  Originally posted by Jeff T. View Post
                  As I look at everything through the lens of experience/nostalgia, I remember discounters like Woolworth/Woolco, W.T Grant, Gibsons, Pamida, Ben Franklin, Treasure City.

                  When I was of Junior High/middle school age and earning spending cash from delivering the Lincoln Journal, I would buy 1/72 scale model airplanes at Woolworths and Grants back when they were 88 cents; 1/700 scale Imperial Japanese Navy models at Gibson's and later Pamida. I would buy penny candy at the local Ben Franklin and an occasional model car. Treasure City's toy department was stocked by a toy reseller who bought inventories and overstocks so I could buy American Flyer trains up to the mid 1970s.

                  Lincoln, NE also had the original Chick Bartlett's HobbyTown, a small hobby store that had almost every type of hobby kit imaginable stacked up to the ceiling, going to HobbyTown was a mind blowing experience back when I was 12-15.

                  I didn't get into cars until Dad inherited his late father's 1951 Mercury sports coupe around 1975.
                  I'm with you Jeff. I miss going to the local Woolworth and Sprouse -Ritz stores and buying model kits. I didn't buy aircraft, ships or cars though. I bought the monster and figure models made by Aurora, Hawk, Revell, and even Lindberg. I did later get some of the Tom Daniel car kits from Monogram.

                  I remember the Aurora "Monster Scenes" line when it came out, and being able to purchase three of the eight models in the line. They cost me $0.89 and $0.99 ( List price was $1 and $1.25) That model line was only sold from Mar '71 thru Dec '71; it was recalled due to "public outcry". Two of the three I bought were pulled from sale quite early; May '71. I guess I bought the right ones. I still have all of my monster models dating back to the early '60s, and have since aquired the others in the various model lines I couldn't get then. Some of those 1971 $.089 kits are going for as much as $175 last I checked; most are around $75. They're like Chrysler muscle cars; should have filled a wherehouse full of them back then, they're better than gold.

                  I'm currently working on a 1974 MPC "Escape From the Crypt". I've been building real cars, motorcycles and high tech stuff for decades, both for work and fun, so never had much intrest in models of such. It's nice to get back to some of the fun I had as a kid, building monsters.
                  The only thing missing is the fun of seeing all the choices and hours spent in the five and dime drooling over what to spend my next dollar on. It's now the internet, point and click, and wait for UPS to deliver. In fact a case of Hawk models came today. I just hope I'm around long enough to built the couple hundred I've aquired over the years.

                  As for the cars, like others have said; I can go out to my shop and look at cars from eight of the last ten decades.

                  Comment


                  • #12
                    Originally posted by rbisacca View Post


                    That photo looks a lot like the main street of my hometown of Milaca, only the Newberry store would be a Ben Franklin where my mother would take me for back-to-school supplies (tablets, pencils, etc.) when I was attending elementary school. The former Ben Franklin is now a pharmacy.
                    As for stores that I miss the most are the new auto dealerships and the many hardware stores that my hometown had when I was a child.
                    Most of all, I miss the Newman-Altman store in South Bend.... stepping into that store was almost like traveling back in time.
                    sigpic
                    In the middle of MinneSTUDEa.

                    Comment


                    • #13
                      I miss the 5 and 10 stores too. We also had independently owned ones in our area besides the big names like Woolworths.

                      In 1973 I got my Uncle's '55 DeSoto as a hobby car, which I then owned for about 9 years. The radio in it didn't work. I didn't know anything about car radios (still don't) but I removed the radio and took the tubes out. There were several, as I recall. I took them to my local discount store and plugged them into the tube tester - remember those? I found one that was dead and one that was weak. I bought new ones to replace those, put all the tubes back in and reinstalled the radio and it worked fine.

                      You won't find a tube tester today at Wal Mart. I'm sure some younger people would have no idea about what I just described.

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                      • #14
                        I miss the stores more. I have owned and driven the old cars since my first Studebaker in 1953. The old cars have never gone out of my life. I just came in from putting my 53 in the garage. I don't missum cause i still driveum

                        Comment


                        • #15
                          I remember seeing tube testers at stores. They were placed there by independent contractors like candy machines, or cigarette vending machines, so they were never in the main store area, always along an edge or wall.
                          We never used a tube tester. My father worked for RCA so all our TVs and radios were RCA. If a tube went bad he would bring a box of tubes home from work and play switcheroo. I remember one time when the vertical hold circuit was bad on our TV, he sat me (I must have been around 4) on the couch and told me to look at the screen. He swapped a tube and asked me if that fixed it. When I said it did, he stopped swapping.
                          I also remember the sound tubes made--an ultra high buzz. I could always tell when a TV or radio was on but not warmed up enough to make sound or a picture.
                          Being an adult male, he could not. He asked how I could tell that, and I told him I heard it. He even tested my ability. To his amazement, I passed. I really could hear a tube being on. Took no special skill, but since he could not hear it, it was magical to him.
                          I still remember the sound of a tube being on, though I have no tube TVs or radios to see if I can still hear that sound.

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