Changing Retail Patterns

In 1896 the Crescent Works, manufacturers of custom-made corsets and "comfortable waists," moved into the upper floors of the new Pratt Block (above). For a few years the corset salesroom was in the central bay on the street between the Portland Café — "Open All Night" — and Hendrick Millinery, one of nine Ann Arbor shops fashioning hats for ladies. By 1909 Schumacher Hardware to the left had expanded into two storefronts of the Pratt Block. They sold everything from bathtubs and sporting goods to toys and vacuum cleaners.

In 1930 Klines Department Store took over the entire Pratt Block. It was the first chain store to challenge local businesses like Mack & Co. with cheaper, mass-produced goods. Next door, Sears Roebuck built a sleek new store in 1940. Until the 1970s Main Street was able to support both chains as well as Goodyear's, the remaining locally owned department store. Sears left downtown in 1974 for the Briarwood shopping mall. Goodyear's closed soon after. Left to itself downtown, Klines expanded into the old Sears space before closing in 1994. By then, most of Main Street's stores had been converted from traditional service and retail businesses to restaurants, specialty shops, and galleries.

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Photos Courtesy of the Bentley Historical Library

These images may be protected by copyright law. Contact the Bentley Historical Library for permission to reproduce, display or transmit this image. Repository: Bentley Historical Library

Klines Department Store, 1930


Klines Department Store, 1930

In 1930 Klines Department Store took over the entire Pratt Block. It was the first chain store to challenge local businesses like Mack & Co. with cheaper, mass-produced goods. Next door, Sears Roebuck built a sleek new store in 1940. Until the 1970s Main Street was able to support both chains as well as Goodyear's, the remaining locally owned department store. Sears left downtown in 1974 for the Briarwood shopping mall. Goodyear's closed soon after. Left to itself downtown, Klines expanded into the old Sears space before closing in 1994. By then, most of Main Street's stores had been converted from traditional service and retail businesses to restaurants, specialty shops, and galleries.

Frame location: Northeast corner wall, just east of Main on Liberty

This image may be protected by copyright law. Contact the Bentley Historical Library for permission to reproduce, display or transmit this image. Repository: Bentley Historical Library

Rights Held By: 
Ann Arbor District Library



The Crescent Works


The Crescent Works

Frame location: Northeast corner wall, just east of Main on Liberty

This image may be protected by copyright law. Contact the Bentley Historical Library for permission to reproduce, display or transmit this image. Repository: Bentley Historical Library

Rights Held By: 
Ann Arbor District Library



The Crescent Works


The Crescent Works

Drawing of the Crescent Works manufacturers of High Grade and Custom Corsets and Waists.

Frame location: Northeast corner wall, just east of Main on Liberty

This image may be protected by copyright law. Contact the Bentley Historical Library for permission to reproduce, display or transmit this image. Repository: Bentley Historical Library

Rights Held By: 
Ann Arbor District Library



Pratt Block, 1896


Pratt Block, 1896

In 1896 the Crescent Works, manufacturers of custom-made corsets and "comfortable waists," moved into the upper floors of the new Pratt Block (above). For a few years the corset salesroom was in the central bay on the street between the Portland Café— "Open All Night"— and Hendrick Millinery, one of nine Ann Arbor shops fashioning hats for ladies. By 1909 Schumacher Hardware to the left had expanded into two storefronts of the Pratt Block. They sold everything from bathtubs and sporting goods to toys and vacuum cleaners.

Frame location: Northeast corner wall, just east of Main on Liberty

This image may be protected by copyright law. Contact the Bentley Historical Library for permission to reproduce, display or transmit this image. Repository: Bentley Historical Library

Rights Held By: 
Ann Arbor District Library



Klines


Klines

Klines was known for its continuous sales.

Frame location: Northeast corner wall, just east of Main on Liberty

This image may be protected by copyright law. Contact the Bentley Historical Library for permission to reproduce, display or transmit this image. Repository: Bentley Historical Library

Rights Held By: 
Ann Arbor District Library



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