f/8 and Be There
Fred Lynch

Ward Week at Montgomery Ward

Posted Wednesday, March 13, 2013, at 12:00 AM

Montgomery Ward is busy with shoppers on Main Street in Cape Girardeau in this undated photo by G.D. Fronabarger.

Previous blog with history of the store:

Montgomery Ward


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  • Looks similar to Midnight Madness I covered in 1964. In fact, Frony and I shot pictures from somewhat the same angle years apart.

    One difference: his lights had globes; they had been changed to fluorescent lights by my era.


    -- Posted by ksteinhoff on Wed, Mar 13, 2013, at 7:50 AM
  • I missed your blog from 4/13/12 concerning the Montgomery Ward store. I went back to it and the first thing that caught my eyes was the parking meters along Main St. in the photo.

    These meters are part of the reason why Wards in Cape died when it did. And why other downtown Main, and adjacent Broadway, Spanish,and Independence merchants, withered and closed shop a generation ago. The relentless ticking of parking meters eventually moved southern Illinois customers, who had to cross the bridge to trade-- and who were funneled directly to the downtown--to abandon the businesses in Cape's historic east-side shopping district.

    When Town Plaza opened, shoppers had no meters to contend with. No worry about how long they parked in one location. No aggravation.

    I was Ward's automotive manager when it closed. Wards was given the option of moving west, following Sears and Penneys relocation from downtown. The Ward's store manager at the time said, "No."

    His decision wouldn't have saved the company, or the store. But, if he had chosen to move, he might have saved Ward's presence in Cape for another couple of decades.

    -- Posted by criticaldiscerner on Wed, Mar 13, 2013, at 1:00 PM
  • Couldnt wait for the Wards Christmas catalog when I was kid..

    -- Posted by bagman on Wed, Mar 13, 2013, at 8:32 PM