Like most seniors, I remember growing up in a neighborhood during the 30′s, where there was a small grocery on just about every corner, many of whose proprietors moved into a residence and opened their business in the living room, and lived either behind or above the grocery.Small men and women clothing shops, hardware, tailor shops, liquor stores,candy stores,drug stores,shoe repair shops,butcher stores, pop and mom shops occupied many neighborhoods, and like the small groceries, owners slept behind or above their businesses.
As time went on, a few large department stores, 5 and 10 variety shops, jewelry stores, super markets, and drug stores opened in the downtown sections of large cities. Most of these
larger retailers restricted their products to what their type of business normally offered for sale.
Around the mid 50′s a few super markets added pharmacies, and health and beauty aids like tooth paste, aspirin, cosmetics, mouth washes etc.
In the Washington DC ,Maryland, Virginia areas some of the small chain drug stores, like Peoples and Drug Fairs, added the sale of groceries,toys, cleaning supplies to their inventory.
More large types of retailers opened their doors in the suburbs of many larger cities as many Americans purchased and rented homes in these suburbs,
Many folks began using credit cards to pay for their purchases which resulted in larger increases of merchandise sold.
During the 50′s I worked for a Drug wholesaler who supplied pharmaceuticals, health and beauty aids, patent medicines to the hundred of small drug stores in the DC area.
As time went on, the Peoples pharmacy chain sold out to the CVS drug chain, and the Drug Fair pharmacy chain sold out to the Rite Aide drug store chains.
Many of the small drug stores could not compete with these chains and slowly started to close their doors.
Likewise, many small groceries,men and lady shops, shoe shops, and jewelry shops followed suite, abd were forced to close.
Many gas stations started to sell candy bars, soda, coffee, and snacks, discovering that these products were welcomed by gas purchases.Many greeting card and gift shops closed their doors, when the well known Hallmark greeting card chain commenced selling greeting cards to the CVS drug store chain, located near the card shops.
The growth of giant business continued when Service Corporation International commenced to purchase small funeral homes and cemeteries throughout the US.
Additional well known discount corporations, like Wal-Mart, Costco price clubs, that sold a large variety of merchandise has continued to grow.
With the growth of computers, the Amazon.Com corporation first began selling books on line, at a discount, and gradually continued to offer just about any type of merchandise for
sale, enabling the public to make purchases without visiting a brick and mortar star.
At thise time 2014, there began the merging and buy outs of big box corporations of all kinds–Supermarkets Safeway and the Albertons chain merged, Men’s Wearhouse, Jos A. Bank,
giant menswear corps merged, Staples stationery announced it is closing 225 stores by 2015,and the Radio Shack appliance chain is closing many shops.
SO WHO IS GOING TO SELL WHAT PRODUCT IN THE FUTURE???
WILL MOST PRODUCTS ONLY BE SOLD FROM YOUR COMPUTER ON LINE????
WILL SOME BILLIONAIRS CONSTRUCT GIANT VARIETY STORES WHERE YOU CAN PURCHASE AN AUTOMOBILE, BOAT OR EVEN AN AIRPLANE????
TIME WILL TELL