NEW: Allentown PA, 1925-2021

Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia.

Moderator: Groceteria

Post Reply

User avatar
Andrew T.
Senior Member
Posts: 597
Joined: 18 Oct 2007 14:26
Location: Thunder Bay
Contact:

Re: NEW: Allentown PA, 1925-2021

Post by Andrew T. » 14 Jun 2021 02:05

I'm intrigued by this "American" chain. It utterly dominated the city's market in the 1930s and 1940s...then it shrivelled up at a fast clip and was history by 1960. There's got to be a story behind this.

Even more strangely, none of their stores appear to have been reused by competing chain tenants (save one short-lived Acme). It's as if they disappeared without a trace!
"The pale pastels which have been featured in most food stores during the past 20 years are no longer in tune with the mood of the 1970s."
Andrew Turnbull

User avatar
Groceteria
Great Pumpkin
Posts: 1677
Joined: 04 Nov 2005 12:13
Location: NC Triad
Contact:

Re: NEW: Allentown PA, 1925-2021

Post by Groceteria » 14 Jun 2021 08:25

American Stores was actually the genesis of Acme. As they closed the smaller stores and converted to supermarkets, they began using the Acme Markets name. The company was still officially known as American Stores until it merged with Albertsons in the late 1990s. American also acquired Alpha Beta, Lucky, Jewel, and Shaw's, among others.

Steve Landry
Senior Member
Posts: 227
Joined: 04 Nov 2005 22:00
Location: Los Angeles

Re: NEW: Allentown PA, 1925-2021

Post by Steve Landry » 14 Jun 2021 10:53

Would be cool if anyone was intrigued with Food Fair........................................lol

Just teasing ;-)
The Food Fair Empire

TW-Upstate NY
Senior Member
Posts: 139
Joined: 18 Sep 2006 20:45

Re: NEW: Allentown PA, 1925-2021

Post by TW-Upstate NY » 14 Jun 2021 12:23

Now that Allentown is in the books, can Scranton be far behind?

User avatar
Groceteria
Great Pumpkin
Posts: 1677
Joined: 04 Nov 2005 12:13
Location: NC Triad
Contact:

Re: NEW: Allentown PA, 1925-2021

Post by Groceteria » 14 Jun 2021 19:12

I do plan to do Scranton and Wilkes-Barre (as well as Harrisburg) at some point, but I can’t say when.

User avatar
Groceteria
Great Pumpkin
Posts: 1677
Joined: 04 Nov 2005 12:13
Location: NC Triad
Contact:

Re: NEW: Allentown PA, 1925-2021

Post by Groceteria » 14 Jun 2021 19:14

I did try to give you a city that had a significant Food Fair presence. And I did feature a Food Fair grand opening ad on Twitter yesterday. I think I’m doing my part here!
Steve Landry wrote: 14 Jun 2021 10:53 Would be cool if anyone was intrigued with Food Fair........................................lol

Just teasing ;-)

User avatar
Andrew T.
Senior Member
Posts: 597
Joined: 18 Oct 2007 14:26
Location: Thunder Bay
Contact:

Re: NEW: Allentown PA, 1925-2021

Post by Andrew T. » 14 Jun 2021 22:26

You know...I was familiar with American Stores' role as the corporate parent of Acme and Alpha Beta, but it never once before crossed my mind that the name predated the 1979 Skaggs sale, or that Acme itself could have once been called that.

"American Stores" was surely a generic name* that some late 20th-century corporate suit had picked for being as anonymous as possible, which fit in well with their reputation as being a low-profile, hands-off holding company for multiple unintegrated supermarket chains. Right?

Sometimes truth is weirder than fiction.

(*Yes, I also still think of "Food Fair" as a generic name.)
"The pale pastels which have been featured in most food stores during the past 20 years are no longer in tune with the mood of the 1970s."
Andrew Turnbull

Steve Landry
Senior Member
Posts: 227
Joined: 04 Nov 2005 22:00
Location: Los Angeles

Re: NEW: Allentown PA, 1925-2021

Post by Steve Landry » 15 Jun 2021 10:12

Groceteria wrote: 14 Jun 2021 19:14 I did try to give you a city that had a significant Food Fair presence. And I did feature a Food Fair grand opening ad on Twitter yesterday. I think I’m doing my part here!
Steve Landry wrote: 14 Jun 2021 10:53 Would be cool if anyone was intrigued with Food Fair........................................lol

Just teasing ;-)
I know you do, always. I was not thinking of you at all :-)

Most folks are just not interested (for many reasons).

xoxoxo

Steve
The Food Fair Empire

User avatar
Groceteria
Great Pumpkin
Posts: 1677
Joined: 04 Nov 2005 12:13
Location: NC Triad
Contact:

Re: NEW: Allentown PA, 1925-2021

Post by Groceteria » 15 Jun 2021 18:39

I knew it wasn’t really a complaint :) I did find it interesting that the Allentown stores were the first I remember seeing that we’re initially branded as “Giant Food Fair.“

Steve Landry
Senior Member
Posts: 227
Joined: 04 Nov 2005 22:00
Location: Los Angeles

Re: NEW: Allentown PA, 1925-2021

Post by Steve Landry » 16 Jun 2021 11:22

Groceteria wrote: 15 Jun 2021 18:39 I knew it wasn’t really a complaint :) I did find it interesting that the Allentown stores were the first I remember seeing that we’re initially branded as “Giant Food Fair.“
Yup!

I think that might be the second iteration.

If memory serves me, it was Giant Quality Discount?

:-)
The Food Fair Empire

rich
Senior Member
Posts: 609
Joined: 15 Nov 2005 20:51
Location: Washington, DC

Re: NEW: Allentown PA, 1925-2021

Post by rich » 16 Jun 2021 16:38

Acme's corporate name was "Acme Markets" for a while (60s until merger with Skagg's, et al.), after which it reverted back to American Stores.

Post Reply