From Main Street to Mall: The Rise and Fall of the American by Vicki Howard

By Vicki Howard

The geography of yankee retail has replaced dramatically because the first sumptuous department shops sprang up in nineteenth-century towns. Introducing gentle, colour, and tune to dry-goods emporia, those "palaces of intake" reworked mere alternate into events for excitement and spectacle. in the course of the early 20th century, department shops remained facilities of social task in neighborhood groups. yet after international battle II, suburban development and the ubiquity of autos shifted the seat of monetary prosperity to department shops and procuring facilities. the next upward thrust of big-box shops and digital purchasing speeded up the speed at which neighborhood department shops have been shuttered or absorbed by way of nationwide chains. yet because the outpouring of nostalgia for misplaced downtown shops and ancient purchasing districts may point out, those bright social associations have been in detail attached to American political, cultural, and monetary identities.

The first nationwide learn of the dept shop undefined, From major highway to Mall strains the altering monetary and political contexts that reworked the yank procuring adventure within the 20th century. With cautious awareness to small-town shops in addition to glamorous landmarks equivalent to Marshall Field's in Chicago and Wanamaker's in Philadelphia, historian Vicki Howard bargains a entire account of the asymmetric trajectory that caused the lack of in the community pointed out division shop organizations and the increase of nationwide chains like Macy's and J. C. Penney. She attracts on a wealth of fundamental resource facts to illustrate how the choices of shoppers, executive coverage makers, and division shop leaders culminated in modern day Wal-Mart international. Richly illustrated with archival photos of the nation's loved downtown enterprise facilities, From major road to Mall indicates that department shops have been greater than simply locations to shop.

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