100 Christmases at Woolworth's
At Christmas the stores were crammed with gifts that were mass-produced using the latest methods to give shoppers more for their money. The counters glistened with baubles, candy canes and toys for all ages. The air was thick with the smell of roasting peanuts, and the hubub of festive music blended with the kerching of cash registers jangling.
Just fifty years ago the red-front chain had over five thousand shops, and had become the dominant Christmas store on both sides of the Atlantic, with successful subsidiaries in Mexico, Cuba, Germany, Spain, Africa and the West Indies. On the radio Perry Como and Bing Crosby provided free advertising, telling everyone to take a look at the five-and-ten, where it was beginning to look a lot like Christmas. Today the stores have vanished from the American Main Streets and British High Streets, though Woolworth remains 'right up your Strasse' in Germany, has morphed into 'The Bargain! Shop' in Canada, and also sells a broad range on-line in the UK.
Get festive with our 100 years of Christmas music, or explore the history of Xmas Decorations, look at the cards our great-great grandparents sent and the toys they gave, or see a hundred Christmases on film.
Why not come in and browse around? Every feature is crammed with happy memories. Merry Christmas.
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