I was downtown the other day paying my water bill, and I was forced to park further away in what was the old Eagle’s parking lot. I was pleasantly surprised to see that the sign was still on the back of the building. This brought back a lot of fond memories.
My grandmother always went to Asheboro after Christmas to pay the property taxes. This was when the tax department was in the old courthouse. When I was growing up, she usually brought me along and we would normally stop at Eagle’s on the way back home. Eagle’s was a five and dime store located on Sunset Street in downtown Asheboro.
There was also another five and dime store in downtown High Point called Kress. I remember my dad (or someone) getting me one of those large Tonka cranes from Kress when I was a little boy. My memories of that store are pretty faint now, but I seem to recall that it had a lunch counter.
Sadly, the five and dime stores are a thing of the past now. Eagles closed sometime in the mid 1980’s, but I don’t remember the year. Kress closed around 1981, and the whole block was soon torn down to make room for what is now the Radisson Hotel.
I came across this webpage talking about the history of downtown department stores in High Point, such as Richardson’s, Robinowitz and Wright Clothiers among others. Richardson’s was in the same block as Kress, a few doors up and across from Sears if I remember correctly.
What was interesting about Richardson’s was that it still had and utilized “Pneumatic tube” pipelines. This was a network of vacuum tubes running all throughout the store used for transporting small items back and forth in cylindrical containers.
So what are your memories of downtown department stores? Leave me a comment and let me know. ~MB
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