f/8 and Be There
Fred Lynch

27 North Main: 1925

Posted Wednesday, October 5, 2011, at 6:00 AM

This property in downtown Cape Girardeau has had many tenants over the last century. This scene captures a "going out of business" sale for Kugman's Store.

Here is a portion of an advertisement in the Aug. 19, 1925 Southeast Missourian:

The unexpected has happened. It's goodby Cape Girardeau.

We are DOOMED!

The jig is up--Caught like rats in a trap--The building has been sold over our head and it's "Kugman, Get Out." Nothing else to do but quit the "Good Old Town" and kiss it "Goodbye and Good Luck."

Some mess we're in--puts us in a heck of a shape--a bitter pill, but we'll take our medicine.


Editor's Notes:

The lease was not renewed by J.C. Penney Co. and the store was remodeled for the People's Store which moved from its location at Main and Independence. That business operated there for two years until 1928.

The local Carp and Co. store, 17 North Main, secured a 20-year lease on the People's Store building, 27 North Main, and also the Vandivort Dry Goods Co. building, 25 North Main. Both buildings were remodeled into one room for Carp's.

We found advertising for Carp's as late as 1942. Apparently the store left Cape Girardeau before its lease would have expired in 1948.

Years later, Carp's came back to Cape Girardeau, building a 50,000-square-foot facility located at 211 South Kingshighway.

The Aug. 12, 1968 Southeast Missourian reported:

Carp's is not a stranger to Missouri...for that matter, include Illinois, Arkansas, Louisiana, Kansas, Alabama, Mississippi and Florida...60 stores located in eight states. The opening of the new Cape Girardeau discount store will boost the number of stores in Missouri alone to 20. The general offices and warehouse serving the entire Carp's chain are also located in Missouri, just west of St. Louis in the new Westport Industrial Development Area.

The new Carp's Super Discount Department Store brings a new concept in merchandising to Cape Girardeau. The basic idea of this modern system of merchandising is to offer first quality merchandise of every type at "across the board discount prices." This simply means wall-to-wall discount prices on everything.

Oct. 6, 1973 Southeast Missourian

Carps Super Store, one of Cape Girardeau's largest businesses, is being purchased by Wetterau Foods, Inc, a major distributing company in the Midwest and South. The Missourian learned it is part of a move by Carps to divest itself of its chain of discount and other stores in several states.

Carps, Inc. headquartered in St. Louis, reportedly owes more than $5 million to numerous creditors.

March 9, 1974 Southeast Missourian

The former Carps Super Store, 211 South Kingshighway, now carries the names of its new owner and operator, Mohr Value.

Editor's Note:

In 1977, Wetterau sold 16 of its 20 Mohr Value stores to Wal-Mart which took over store operations. The building now houses Hobby Lobby which began there in 1993.


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  • Pretty good ad copy. Better than most of what you see today.

    Note all the oil stains under the cars and the hint of trolley tracks in the photo.

    -- Posted by ksteinhoff on Wed, Oct 5, 2011, at 8:38 AM