A place to recall and celebrate the wonderful stores of a Downtown Boston now alive only in our memories

Monday, 31 March 2008

An Hour In the Boston W.T. Grant Store

Nick DeWolf spent a quality hour doing some great photos of Christmas shoppers in Grant’s back in December 1970. Grant’s had a long history on Washington Street and it was one of the shops my family had been visiting for years as part of a routine shopping trip into Boston.
Grant’s began operating shops of the five and dime variety back in 1906 and carried on all over the US in most cities until 1975 when it failed.
Grant’s in Boston had always done well but by the early 1970’s the effect of suburban shopping malls and the new “BIG” Woolworth’s across the street took a serious toll on business. Grant’s was the first big store of it’s kind to fail in the downtown area during my childhood. Others had closed before my time but this was the first of the newer closings and it seemed rather sad to my 10 year-old mind.
The photos show the typical layout of these type of stores. I am very fond of the shot showing the candy and nut counter. I can still smell the aroma!
Grant’s in Boston had a two floor plan with a staricase and escalator connecting the levels.
After Grant’s was closed and renovated in 1975, Barnes and Noble held the location for nearly 30 years. Note the excellent hair styles and the Bobby Orr record on offer that year with a free wall poster. I had one.....Oh, well:-)

Also there is a great view taken under the Orpheum Theatre door looking towards Grant's. You can just see the base of the wall sign above the main door.




martha said...

What wonderful photos of Grants at Christmas in 1970. I could very well have been one of those shoppers as I worked at Miles on Winter St. when I was in my early 20s (1970-1972). During my lunch break I would often go shopping in the area and fondly remember the delicious blueberry muffins at Jordan Marsh.

Charles Boston said...

Thank you Martha!!
Loved Miles...and I bet you waited on us!!!
What neat little shop it was!


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