I would side with FundingUniverse, as company histories tend to distort their own history. I did a bit of research on Tom Thumb (the Texas supermarket owned by Safeway/Albertsons, not the Florida gas station owned by Kroger) and found that the grocery chain tried to rewrite history a la Ray Kroc and McDonald's.klkla wrote:There is an interesting article about Mayfair's history and legal problems here:
http://www.fundinguniverse.com/company- ... c-history/
Interesting thing is their description of Mayfair's history: "The company's history may be traced as far back as the 1933 incorporation of Western Dairies, Inc., a small California dairy operation that gradually expanded its geographic scope and product line to become a grocery retailer known as the Arden Farm Company beginning in 1940. By 1964, Arden Farms was ready for growth through acquisition. In October of that year Arden acquired Mayfair Markets, a chain of supermarkets in Los Angeles, creating Arden-Mayfair, Inc., later a subsidiary of the Arden Group. At the same time, Arden acquired a small chain of supermarkets from the Gelson Brothers. The Gelsons had opened their first store in North Hollywood in the late 1940s. "
But on the Gelson's website they have their own description: "We like to say there’s a little bit of Mayfair in every Gelson’s — its gusto, its cand-do spirit, its love for the customer — even though the last Mayfair Market recently became a Gelson’s. The Mayfair Connection actually began years before Gelson’s did. Estimates put the genesis of the chain sometime around the stock market crash of 1929. In 1948, eight existing California stores run by the Mayfair Companies were merged with 43 California Van’s Markets, both owned by Arden Farms Co., to create a new chain of stores: Mayfair Markets."
Don't know which version is accurate but I would assume it's Gelson's.
This is the place for general and miscellaneous posts on topics which might extend past the boundaries of any specific region.
You could very well be correct. Their history seems to be muddled in general.pseudo3d wrote:I would side with FundingUniverse, as company histories tend to distort their own history. I did a bit of research on Tom Thumb (the Texas supermarket owned by Safeway/Albertsons, not the Florida gas station owned by Kroger) and found that the grocery chain tried to rewrite history a la Ray Kroc and McDonald's.
The following article seems to corroborate Gelson's view. On the Gelson's site they say that they were acquired by Arden-Mayfair in 1966. Funding Universe says it happened in 1964. This article includes an image capture of the LA Times article from June 7th 1966 about completion of the acquisition and a July 13th, 1966 ad for the grand opening of Gelson's #3 in North Hollywood.
http://scalar.usc.edu/hc/forgotten-hist ... ayfair-inc
However, this next link is an actual SEC filing from the company made in 1995 (the company was known as Arden Group. Inc. by this time) in which they say:
"The first Gelson's store was opened in Burbank, California in 1946. Gelson's was incorporated in California in 1959 and in 1965, Gelson's, which then consisted of three stores, was acquired by Arden-Mayfair. Arden-Mayfair became a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Company (Arden Group, Inc) in a corporate restructuring completed in December 1978. The Mayfair markets were acquired in 1929 by Arden Farms, a dairy operation founded in 1925. In 1964 and 1965 Arden Farms underwent a corporate restructuring, and the name of the surviving corporation was changed to Arden-Mayfair, Inc. "
https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data ... 001995.txt
So, if I was a betting man I would say that Arden-Mayfair was created by the restructuring in 1964 and Gelson's was acquired two years later in 1966.
I decided to update this when among some old papers I found an official store list dated January 1986. By this time they were down to 22 stores in the Southern Region, about half of what they had 6 years earlier and all operating under Mayfair name).klkla wrote: ↑15 Dec 2009 20:25 1980: About 45 +/- stores in California and Nevada operating as Mayfair and Low Cost Discount Foods. All the California stores were in the Southern part of the state except for the three stores mentioned in the above post and included stores in Oxnard, Ventura, Bakersfield (2), San Diego (5), El Centro, and Brawley with the balance in Los Angeles/Orange County from what I remember.
19 - 7525 Eads Ave La Jolla (Now CVS)
96 - 535 Robinson St. San Diego (Now RiteAid)*
97 - 4840 Niagara San Diego (Now RiteAid)
204 - 4813 Paradise Road Las Vegas (Shopping center no longer exists)
113 - 459 W. Main St. Brawley (There's now a Vons on the property but at 475 Main)
137 -1653 Main St. El Centro (now an office of the local power and water company)
3 - 29211 Heathercliff Road Malibu (Now a Pavilions)
6 - 450 S. Western Ave. L.A. (Store torn down and larger Korean store built on property)
22 - 2725 Hyperion Ave. L.A. (Now a Gelson's)
23 - 5587 Sepulveda Blvd.. Culver City (Now a Big Lots)
70 - 1234 N. La Brea (Jons took their place in the 1990's and then later was torn down and is now apartments)*
74 - 2245 Yosemite Dr. Eagle Rock L.A. (Was a Super A and now is a Sprouts)
100 - 635 S. Ventura Rd. Oxnard (Now an Aldi)
108 - 8330 W. Santa Monica Blvd. West Hollywood (Now a Gelson's)
109 - 230 N. Market Street Inglewood (Now a DD's Discounts)
114 - 5877 Franklin Ave. Hollywood (Now a Gelson's)
Districts 3 & 5 Combined
164 - 313 Olive St. Madera (Was a Mi Rancho Market but appears to be vacant now)
167 - 917 E. Olive St. Fresno (Now a Dollar Tree)
221 - 295 E. Plumb Lane Reno (was vacant as of 2019)*
222 - 445 N. Virginia Reno (Torn down and replaced by a casino)
224 - 2749 N. Carson St. Carson City (As of 2018 some sort of dollar store)
225 - 560 Idaho St. Elko NV (Now Ray's Market)
*Was also district office
A Mayfair supermarket exterior in Malibu, Calif. (Heathercliff Rd.) appeared in the background of a shot in a season 3 episode of "CHiPs" titled "Valley Go Home!" It first aired in September of 1979. The shot can be seen in this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SSg2TVFI3Qw Go to 8:33. The YouTube video is about filming locations in that episode. The video producer visited the supermarket site in 2022, which is now a Pavilions store.
I remember that store so well.Jason B. wrote: ↑16 Apr 2022 04:59 A Mayfair supermarket exterior in Malibu, Calif. (Heathercliff Rd.) appeared in the background of a shot in a season 3 episode of "CHiPs" titled "Valley Go Home!" It first aired in September of 1979. The shot can be seen in this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SSg2TVFI3Qw Go to 8:33. The YouTube video is about filming locations in that episode. The video producer visited the supermarket site in 2022, which is now a Pavilions store.
A very special friend of mine worked there!
The Food Fair Empire
I haven't found any evidence of them in Walla Walla. They expanded into the Tri-Cities and Yakima areas by purchasing local operators Campbell's Food Markets and C & H Foods in 1960. Park 'n Shop, 1103 W. Court St. in Pasco, was taken over the next year. Stone's Low Priced (Williams and Jadwin in Richland) was acquired in 1962, less than six months after it opened.marshd1000 wrote: ↑16 Jan 2013 21:57 I know I am resurrecting a old thread about Mayfair. But I remember Mayfair Markets when I was a child. As stated earlier, they sold their Western Washington operations to Lucky by 1975. I do remember being in Mayfair one last time in 1980 in Newport, Oregon. But according to a earlier post, there were Mayfair stores in Eastern Washington, in places like Walla Walla. But I am wondering what other cities and towns in Eastern Washington had Mayfair Markets? Can anyone answer that?
At their peak in the early and mid-'60s, Mayfair operated the following:
Kennewick 1401 Kennewick Ave
Kennewick 10th & Washington
Kennewick 116 N Morain
Kennewick Angus Village
Pasco 12th & Lewis
Pasco 1103 W Court
Pasco 10th & Sylvester
Richland Jadwin & Williams
Richland Comstock & Goethals
Richland 1902 George Washington Way
Richland Williams & Thayer
Richland Swift & Wright
There were also two stores in Yakima, one of which was at 314 S 11th Ave (I don't have the address of the other), one in Grandview, and one in Toppenish. Interestingly enough, they were operating some of the Tri-Cities locations as 24-hour stores in the early '60s.
In 1965, Mayfair purchased Stejer's Food Center, 926 S. Monroe in Spokane, and operated there for six years until they sold the store back to the previous owner. A Spokane Chronicle article from 1965 said they had planned on acquiring other stores in the area to form a group, but that obviously didn't happen.
Mayfair was a URM client during their time in Eastern Washington.
Over the years, most of the stores were closed or sold to other operators. By 1972, they were down to two stores in Kennewick, one in Pasco, one in Richland, and three in Yakima.
By 1982, they were down to just three stores in the Tri-Cities: Williams & Thayer in Richland, 12th & Lewis in Pasco, 902 S. Washington in Kennewick. The Richland store closed in 1983 and the Pasco store in 1984. The Kennewick store had been remodeled in 1979 and remained somewhat competitive along with one of the Yakima stores. A Tri-City Herald article from June 1984 quotes the president of Mayfair saying that they operated one store by itself in Las Vegas "and we're successful there." About six weeks later, the Kennewick store was bought by Mayfair's former Tri-Cities district manager and converted to The Family Grocer. It remains operating as a Red Apple Market today.
The exterior of the 12th & Lewis building in Pasco (https://goo.gl/maps/sgGjzcnZZfKhXDg76) has been barely altered and is a good example of a barrel roofed mid-'50s supermarket with a large pylon.