Speciality Department Store
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A junior department store in North America is a type of retailer that was experienced growth from the late 1930s[1] through the 1960s, but no longer is common today, as retail moved increasingly towards discount stores like Walmart and Target, and big box off-price stores like Ross Dress For Less, Marshalls and TJ Maxx.

Several types of stores were identified as junior department stores, all of which had in common merchandise organized into departments and store sizes ranging from 30,000 to 100,000 square feet (2,800 to 9,300 m2) (according to author James Cooper)[2] but sometimes smaller, especially in the case of large variety stores that promoted themselves as junior department stores.[1] The types of stores called junior department stores included:

  • Larger format variety stores, also known as dime stores or 5 and 10 cent stores. Especially W. T. Grant[3] and TG&Y[4] promoted its locations as "junior department stores", but also at times J. J. Newberry and even Thrifty Drug Stores,[5] which originated as a drug store that started selling general merchandise , did so in Southern California.
  • Traditional department store with merchandise organized into departments and which was normally sold for "full price", i.e. there was not the implication of its being a discount store or prices being permanently lower than full-price stores. They were "junior" in the sense of being either 1) of a smaller size, often stated as less than 100,000 square feet (9,300 m2), and/or 2) as having fewer lines of merchandise, or departments, than a regular (larger) department store,[6] particularly hard goods such as major appliances, which North American department stores generally carried during that era.[7] Examples of stores that fulfilled the criteria of being divided into departments and in the size range are:

Fast fashion brands such as Zara, H&M and Primark are often confused with the specification, as they not only sold clothing but also home goods and cosmetics under their own brand.


  1. ^ a b Roessner, EElmer (October 5, 1948). "Trend Toward Suburban Junior Department Store Gains". Charlotte News. p. 8.
  2. ^ Cooper, James (1973). Real Estate and Urban Land Analysis. Lexington Books. p. 705. A junior department store...occupies less area than a department store...usually under 100,000 sq. ft.... often 30,000 to 60,000 sq. ft.
  3. ^ "Junior department store to be opened tomorrow". Fort Worth Star Telegram. October 8, 1958. p. 13.
  4. ^ "Multi-Million TG&Y Expansion Set Here". Daily Oklahoman. May 26, 1963. p. 66.
  5. ^ "Thrifty Drug Store Sets Grand Opening Sept. 28". Lompoc Record. September 21, 1961. p. 9.
  6. ^ a b Northrup, Jeff (March 17, 1972). "$7,000,000 Enclosed Mall Planned for Lowerll". Lowell Sun. p. 38.
  7. ^ McKeever, James Ross (1977). Shopping Center Development Handbook. Urban Land Institute, Commercial and Office Development Council. p. 69, 81-82. The term junior department store...generally refers to a store that does not carry the full lines customary in department stores and that is smaller than a department store as measured in GLA [gross leasable area]

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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