Category: retail store

Lana Turner window shopping


Image: Life magazine photo by Peter Stackpole via .

This appears to be in southern California based on the Los Angeles city style streetlights. Click on the image link to see more 1939-1940 photos of the actress.


Thanksgiving on Nov. 30?


“Roosevelt listened to this plea [from the head of Federated Stores to move the Turkey Day forward one week, to give merchants another week to tempt their customers], and at a Press Conference held August 14th, he said that ‘I have been hearing from a great many people for the last six years, complaints that Thanksgiving came too close to Christmas’. After Lazarus, the President had also heard from the National Retail Dry Goods Association, as well as executives of Gimbels and Lord & Taylor. Roosevelt reminded the press that Thanksgiving was still not an official holiday, and that each year the President picked the date. And, since these experts believed that adding another week to the shopping season would increase sales by 10%, Franklin announced, this year, at least, he was moving Thanksgiving to Thursday, November 23rd.

Image and excerpt from . Learn more about the arguments for and against the date change at the link.

Beverly Hills


Image: unknown source via .

“Beverly Hills was a prosperous and sought-after location long before it was discovered by the movie industry. At the beginning, our fabled El Dorado was blessed with the most precious commodity in Southern California: water…

“Attracted to an elegant lifestyle made possible by the [1912-built Beverly Hills Hotel], Douglas Fairbanks and Mary Pickford led the wave of movie stars here when they bought an existing hunting lodge and had it redesigned into the their mansion, Pickfair, in 1919…

“…[Will] Rogers, a wise cracking political humorist, became honorary first mayor of Beverly Hills. Rogers went on to play a part in the development of Beverly Hills by fostering construction of a new City Hall in 1932 and the establishment of a U.S. Post Office in 1934.

“Beverly Hills continued to grow. Promotional materials from the period touted the young metropolis as ‘center of the next million.’ Fortunately, human-scale public improvements helped soften the effects of growth. In the 1930s, Santa Monica Park was renamed Beverly Gardens and was extended to span the length of the City. The famous Electric Fountain was installed. A finely modeled sculpture atop the fountain shows a Tongva in prayer, homage to Beverly Hills’ heritage as a wellspring of fertility and abundance.”

Excerpts from . Click on the link to learn more about the city and its history.


17oct11beverly2Image: 1938 tourist map from .

Retail store interiors


The National Cash Register Company published a series of booklets for the trade that reprinted chapters from Better Retailing, a handbook on modern retailing.

This eight-page one from 1939 shows photos and tells shopkeepers how to increase sales by displaying the goods to their best advantage. Here are some examples of the advice:

“The first impression your store makes may determine whether or not they buy from you then or come back to buy at some other time.”

“Appearance of a store is much more important today than it was a few years ago. The majority of people like to trade in stores which are clean, convenient, comfortable and attractive.”

“‘Dealer Helps’ cover a great variety of things furnished by manufacturers to help sell goods: packages that open into counter displays; show cases designed for the manufacturers goods only; window displays; counter displays; booklets; and many others.”

Excerpts and images from Interior Displays and Store Fixtures, The National Cash Register Company.