Illustration of The Broadway used in the
press, prior to its 1913 opening.
A postcard view of the store as it
looked soon after opening.
|A more contemporary image showing the 10-story|
1924 addition to The Broadway's Fourth St. side.
|"It's at The Broadway"|
401 South Broadway
Los Angeles, CA (1896/1912)
Fine Jewelry 810 • Silver Flatware 59 • Silver Holloware 166 • Clocks 95 • Watches 810 • Better Fashion Jewelry 141 • Fashion Jewelry 20 • Fashion Accessories 41 • Et Cetera 86 • Handbags 37, 132 • Jr. Contemporary Handbags 117 • Personal Leather Goods 142 • Gloves 6 • Cosmetics 17 • Hosiery 3 • Plaza Sportswear 65, 133 • Plaza Skirts & Blouses 66 • Plaza Sweaters 149 • Street Floor Lingerie 54 • The Hat Box 825 • Misses’ Shoes 8 • Almost Shoes 138 • Women’s Casuals 101 • Presents Perfect • Notions 4 • Stationery 15 • Cameras 13 • Electronics 13 • Books 18 • Luggage 33 • Candy 34 • Liquor and Gourmet 845 • Men’s Fragrances 177 • Men’s Accessories 105 • Men’s Loungewear 48 • Men’s Sleepwear 164 • Fashion Neckwear 122 • Men’s Furnishings 7 • University Shop 53 • Men’s Sweaters 171 • Men’s Tops 184
Street Floor Mezzanine
Men’s Clothing 126 • Men’s Shoes and Hats 57 • Men’s Sport Clothing 48 • Men’s Spectator Sportswear 550 • Contemporary Many 124 • Men’s Sportswear 50 • Men’s Active Sportswear 109 • Men’s Better Sportswear 170
Aisle of Fashion Fabrics 1, 30, 67 • Art Needlework 29 • Sewing Machines • Luggage 33 • Lamps 71 • Pictures and Mirrors 31 • Domestics 2 • Towel and Bath Shop 23 • Linens 23 • Bedding 55 • Sporting Goods 43 • Sierra Shop 43 • Boys’ Shop 98 • Little Boys’ Wear 74 • Saturday’s Expression
Hair Styling Salon 601 • Girls’ Shop 44, 47 • Little Girl’s Wear 96 • Toddlers 74,90 • Infants’ Shop 42,137 • Toys 28 • Children’s Accessories 102 • Children’s Shoes 58 • Hi Deb Shop 52 • Body Fashions 19 • Daywear Lingerie 63 • Leisurewear 67 • Robes 51 • Fashion Sleepwear 24 • Misses’ Sportswear Dresses 12 • Plaza Dresses 73 • Plaza PM Dresses 131 • Career Dresses 27
Windsor Shop • Regency Room 22 • Design II Dresses 79 • Design II Sportswear 103 • Signature Collections 440 • VIP Collections 104 • Bridal Salon 93 • Furs 60 • Studio Room Millinery 800 • Contempora Sportswear 78 • Misses’ Sportswear 89 • Dresses 70s 49, 93 • Sportswear 70s 134, 148 • Woman 70s 62 • PM Clothes 93 • Spectator Sports Shop 40 • Coats 25 • Suits 25 • Modern Miss Shop • Junior World Junior Sportswear 97 • Junior Dresses 64, 102 • Young Juniors 52 • Better Juniors 136 • Junior Coats 64 • College Shop 85 • International Shop 64
Pianos • Glassware 36 • Waterford Shop 112 • China 11 • Housewares 39 • Electrical Housewares 95 • Small Housewares 39 • Gift Shop 70 • Cookshop 206 • Cookery Gourmet 143 • Hardware • Garden Shop • Radios • Televisions 72 • The Music Center 77 • Major Appliances 80
Furniture 92 • Recliners • Home Furnishings Studio • Slumber Shop 69 • Auditorium
Carpeting 32 •Rugs 45 • Curtains 10 • Draperies 10 •
Bedspreads 10 • Custom Draperies and Reupholstery 82 •
Credit Office • Cash Office • Offices
Garden Tea Room
Lower Street Floor
1645 Vine Street
March 9, 1931
November 21, 1947
The Chafing Dish
8739 Sepulveda Blvd.
August 18, 1950
October 10, 1955
The Chafing Dish
October 14, 1955
The Chafing Dish
Los Altos Plaza
October 22, 1956
The Chafing Dish
February 16, 1959
The Chafing Dish
5600 Wilshire Boulevard
March 8, 1960
February 13, 1961
August 6, 1962
The Chafing Dish
Buena Ventura Plaza
September 30, 1963
The Chafing Dish
August 24, 1964
October 12, 1964
October 18, 1965
November 15, 1965
The Chafing Dish
August 29, 1966
The Chafing Dish
February 27, 1967
The Chafing Dish
September 11, 1967
The Chafing Dish
August 5, 1968
September 8, 1969
The Chafing Dish
The Mall at Orange
August 17, 1971
The Chafing Dish
September 13, 1971
The Chafing Dish
Northridge Fashion Center
October 18, 1971
The Chafing Dish
September 10, 1973
The Chafing Dish
Eighth, Flower, and Hope Sts.
November 17, 1973
The Chafing Dish Atrium Dining Room
Country Kitchen Coffee Shop
Puente Hills Mall
City of Industry
February 18, 1974
The Chafing Dish
Santa Anita Mall
November 11, 1974
The Chafing Dish
Laguna Hills Mall
August 4, 1975
The Chafing Dish
Fox Hills Mall
The Chafing Dish
191,000 sq. ft.
The Chafing Dish
University Towne Center
October 15, 1977
155,000 sq. ft.
The Chafing Dish
The Chafing Dish
November 5, 1977
The Chafing Dish
October 21, 1978
The Chafing Dish
February 18, 1978
The Chafing Dish
Plaza Camino Real
October 20, 1979
156,000 sq. ft.
Arthur Letts, founder of The Broadway, was born in the small town of Holdenby, Northamptonshire, England, in 1862, and went on to become one of the richest and most influential men in Southern California. While the bulk of his wealth came from the retail powerhouse he built, his journey from the bucolic English countryside to California was, for the most part, an uphill one. After leaving school at age 14, Letts worked in a dry goods firm, first as an apprentice, and moved to London where he remained until he reached 21 years of age.
By 1883, he had crossed the Atlantic ocean, and worked in Toronto, again in the retail business. Letts married in 1886, and relocated to Seattle in 1889, but the city suffered a catastrophic fire three days after his arrival, and the business in which he had found employment burned to the ground. Undaunted, he opened his own shop in a makeshift tent, but his enterprise met with failure and subsequent bankruptcy due to the financial panic of 1893. Paying his creditors only .35 on the dollar (though he later made good on his debts), Letts relocated to Los Angeles, and leased a dry goods store at the corner of Fourth Street and Broadway, then the southern end of Los Angeles’ retail district.
Named The Broadway Department Store, Letts’ establishment prospered quickly due to its policy of fixed prices and liberal returns. An early slogan of The Broadway was “All Cars Transfer at Fourth and Broadway” because trolley lines converged at the store’s corner.
As with many talented and successful people, Letts recognized talent in others and in fact drew talented people to the organization he founded. John Gillespie Bullock, born in Paris, Ontario, in 1871 was one such person. He joined The Broadway in 1896 and so distinguished himself that in twelve months he was appointed buyer, and later manager of the store. It is interesting to note that when Letts acquired a lease to a new department store building under construction further down Broadway, he suggested that Bullock take over the enterprise with his backing, and indeed Bullock’s, another of the city’s great department stores, was related to The Broadway through Letts.
The Broadway outgrew the handsome building it occupied, and in 1913 revealed plans to demolish half of its structure and take over space in the adjacent Clark hotel building, which fronted on Hill Street. In place of the old building would be erected a 9-story department store building “in a commercial adaptation of the Italian Renaissance style.” The company stated at the time that “the earth will be ransacked for merchandise” to fill the 470,000 sq. ft. building. When the first half of the planned structure opened in February of 1914, the Los Angeles Times described it as an “imposing and harmonious structure,” while Letts stated in an interview that “I am most pleased that my people, those who have worked so faithfully, can have plenty of heat, plenty of light . . . during their hours of downtown life.”
Letts suffered a nervous breakdown due to overwork and contracted pneumonia during convalescence. Just prior to his death in 1923, he purchased the Wolfskill ranch in the Westwood district of Los Angeles, and planned to develop a district of grand estates which he named Holmby Hills, loosely based on the name of his native town in England. His son and son-in-law continued the development, which is today one of the most exclusive residential enclaves in the world. The Broadway was subsequently led by Arthur Letts, Jr., and indeed, at the time, the store’s management reminded customers that the elder Letts “left us the foundation stones of the business: truth, courtesy, liberality, and value” and that these principles would continue to guide the organization.
In fact, the store was being expanded when Letts passed away. The 10-story addition on Fourth Street opened in 1924, adding 128,000 sq. ft. to the store which was now an anchor on the north end of the Broadway retail district. Subsequently, in 1926, the estate of Arthur Letts sold The Broadway to its executives, and the business was renamed The Broadway Store, Incorporated.
The Broadway grew by acquiring smaller retailers. It purchased B.H. Dyas, which had just built a new store in Hollywood, in 1931. The store was christened The Broadway-Hollywood and was a major retail presence in “tinsel-town” during its heyday. Likewise, the purchase of Milliron’s in 1950 and Walker’s in 1956 gave The Broadway instant branches in Westchester and Long Beach, respectively.
A major event in 1950 was the merger of The Broadway with Hale Brothers of San Francisco, which operated department stores in Oakland, San Jose and Sacramento, as well as Weinstock’s in the latter city. The holding company was named Broadway-Hale stores, and went on to acquire The Emporium of San Francisco and Capwell’s of Oakland, which had operated together since 1927.
The Broadway entered the San Diego market in 1961 by purchasing Marston’s, a leading retailer, which operated independently for a few years before taking the Broadway name. In 1968, the Broadway purchased Korrick’s of Phoenix, and by subsequent expansion in Arizona, Nevada, and New Mexico, formed a separate division known as The Broadway-Southwest.
In the Los Angeles area, The Broadway began branch expansion in earnest with a striking art-deco store on Pasadena’s Colorado Boulevard. A similar store anchored the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza in 1947, a pioneer planned shopping center. With the help of its architects, The Broadway developed a signature look for its suburban stores, which numbered in the thirties by 1979. Earlier stores (including those in Arizona) were composed of a large mass of patterned block which used the Southern California sun to great advantage. Some, such as the Cerritos, Northridge, and Newport Beach stores were surrounded by a colonnade of thin pillars, and others, like the Carson and Phoenix Metrocenter branches were characterized by a brutalist geometric design composed of overhangs and deep recesses. The Broadways later branches were more simple compositions of warm masonry, often with rounded or chamfered corners.
A firm favorite of middle-class shoppers, the Broadway dominated its market area and competed directly with The May Co., which served a similar market. Even though it was not as exclusive as competitors Robinson's and Bullock's, its stores had a unique style which was appreciated by the public, and recognizable throughout the region.
As the public’s taste for designer names grew in the 1970s, the store responded by introducing “Signature” and “VIP Collections” in its department lineup. In the area of hospitality, the stores’ restaurants were popular casual dining locations, initially called “The Terrace Room” in many cases. Later the restaurants were re-branded “The Chafing Dish” and were well-patronized by The Broadway's customers.
The area in which the large downtown Broadway store began to decline in the 1960s, and by 1973, a replacement was built as a component of Broadway Plaza, a mixed-use development which also included a shopping gallery, an office tower, and the first new hotel built downtown in many years. Its opening was widely heralded as progress for downtown Los Angeles, even though its presence on Seventh Avenue, across Hope Street from The J.W. Robinson Co., meant that the traditional Broadway retail corridor – which the eponymous store abandoned – suffered continued decline.
The Broadway’s holding company was renamed Carter-Hawley-Hale Stores in 1972 “to reflect the contributions of its executives.” In reality, the name was often derided as “Ego, Inc.” by analysts, and the company went on an aggressive buying binge, acquiring Neiman Marcus, Bergdorf Goodman, and Canada’s Holt Renfrew luxury stores. In the east, Carter Hawley Hale gobbled up Thalhimers of Richmond and John Wanamaker. The Broadway stores also expanded in San Diego and into Colorado as well. This strategy involved enormous debt, eroding Carter Hawley Hale’s bottom line. The company declared bankruptcy in 1991, was downsized and reorganized into a new "Broadway Stores, Inc.," but was shortly thereafter taken over by Federated Department Stores. In the final transaction, The Broadway’s historic Los Angeles area stores were converted into Macy’s or Bloomingdale’s by Federated, depending on location.
As the Broadway was one of the largest dept. store chains in its prime, I'd say that's one the largest suburban store galleries you've made! Well done! However, you omitted The Broadway Plaza store which replaced the 4th & Broadway store as their downtown flagship in 1973.ReplyDelete
The Hollywood store opened as B. H. Dyas in 1927. Westchester as Milliron's in 1949 and acquired by The Broadway the year after. Long Beach opened in 1955 as Walker's a year before that store was bought. The Grossmont and Chula Vista stores were originally Marston's in the years indicated, and were renamed The Broadway in 1964.
You might also want to add their stores outside California that were eventually spun off into their Southwest division. In 1962,they acquired Korricks in Phoenix which operated a downtown store built in 1961, and a year-old branch store at Chris-Town Mall. In 1966, Korricks was renamed the Broadway and opened a store in Las Vegas at Boulevard Mall. The following year, they closed their downtown Phoenix store and consolidated the staff and merchandise with the expanded Chris-Town store.
Here are the remaining non-California Broadway locations and opening dates:
1968-Biltmore Fashion Park, Phoenix
1969-Los Arcos Mall, Scottsdale
1974-Park Mall, Tucson and Fashion Place, Murray, UT*
1976-Coronado Center, Albuquerque
1978-Meadows Mall, Las Vegas
1979-Fiesta Mall, Mesa, AZ
*The Murray branch was converted to The Broadway's Sacramento-based sibling, Weinstock's in 1978. I hope you do a Weinstock's exhibition very soon.
"The Broadway Southwest" will be covered along with other Phoenix department stores in due course.ReplyDelete
I will add the Broadway Plaza shortly along with a floor-by-floor for the Wilshire store, too. It took a lot of searching to find so many images of the branch stores, that I had to postpone further updates, so the exhibit, as of now, is a "work in progress."
At the moment, I do not have a lot of information about Weinstock's, but I do hope to find enough to include it. In fact, all of the exhibits which I intend to include are listed on the "Welcome to the Museum" page, but it will take some time.
I thought there was one in North Hollywood, next to the freeway?ReplyDelete
The store next to the freeway in North Hollywood was The May CompanyReplyDelete
I used to work at the store on Wilshire Blvd.. so long ago.. How can we contact some of The BroadwayReplyDelete
I use to work at the same store between 1976 to around 1980. I worked in lady's shoes. How about you? My name is PatriciaDelete
The Long Beach store opened as Walker's in 1955, a year before being acquired and renamed The Broadway.ReplyDelete
I worked at the long beach store , starting in 1980 for 2 years, before being transfered to the service center in lo s Angeles...Delete
I was the Operations manager and later the Manager at Long Beach in the early 1970's. Before that, I was Operations Manager in West Covina, Men's Divisional Sales Manager in Huntington Beach, Shoe Dept Manager in Del Amo amoong many other things. It was a great company with great people. I loved to see it grow and succeed and I really grieved when Macy's destroyed it.Delete
The Broadway was located in Santa Monica and The Beverly Center in West Hollywood/LAReplyDelete
I worked at the Wilshire store in 1975-6. It was a grand dept store in it's day. I have no pictures but a vivid memory of the store because of it's history. GaryReplyDelete
I have a chronological list the of the exact opening dates of the Los Angeles and Chicago chains. Here are the opening dates for The Broadway. The parenthisised names indicate the previous nameplate of the location The Broadway acquired.ReplyDelete
Downtown - Feb. 24, 1896
Hollywood - Mar. 9, 1931 (B. H. Dyas)
Pasadena - Nov. 15, 1940
Crenshaw - Nov. 21, 1947
Westchester - Aug. 18, 1950 (Milliron's)
Panorama City - Oct. 10, 1955
Anaheim - Oct. 14, 1955
Long Beach - Oct. 22, 1956 (Walker's)
Del Amo - Feb. 16, 1959
Wilshire - Mar. 8, 1960 (Coulter's)
Whittier - Feb. 13, 1961
West Covina - Aug. 6, 1962
Ventura - Sept. 30, 1963
Topanga - Aug. 24, 1964
Century City - Oct. 12, 1964
Downey - Oct. 18, 1965
Huntington Beach - Nov. 15, 1965
San Bernardino - Aug. 29, 1966
Bakersfield - Feb. 27, 1967
Newport Beach - Sept. 11, 1967
Montclair - Aug. 5, 1968
Fashion Valley - Sept. 8, 1969 (replacing Downtown San Diego store)
Riverside - Oct. 12, 1970
Orange - Aug. 16, 1971
Cerritos - Sept. 13, 1971
Northridge - Oct. 18, 1971
Carson - Sept. 10, 1973
Broadway Plaza - Nov. 17, 1973 (replacing orig. Downtown LA flagship)
Puente Hills - Feb. 18, 1974
Santa Anita - Nov. 11, 1974
Laguna Hills - Aug 4, 1975
Glendale - Aug ?, 1976
Hawthorne - Feb 14, 1977
La Jolla - Oct 15, 1977
Sherman Oaks - Nov 5, 1977
Thousand Oaks - Feb 18, 1978
Brea - Oct 21, 1978
Carlsbad - Oct 20, 1979
Plaza Pasadena - Aug 16, 1980 (replacing 1940 Pasadena store)
Santa Monica - Oct 16, 1980
Beverly Center - Mar ?, 1982
Downtown San Diego @ Horton Plaza - Oct 4, 1985
Escondido @ North County Fair - Feb 13, 1986
Costa Mesa @ South Coast Plaza's Crystal Court -Oct 31, 1986
Santa Barbara @ Paseo Nuevo Mall - Aug 17, 1990
Nice pictures! The Broadway Pasadena and Crenshaw are almost similiar but for a long while the stores each had a design unique to that store prior to the fifties. I live about a mile west from the ex-Broadway now doing just nice as Sears, Whittwood, 1961, and can tell you that it's nice to see that 1955 "Anaheim Plaza" look, then the next standard look, designed for "Whittwood", and the similiar one for 1962's "West Covina Plaza".ReplyDelete
This is an amazing site. I never cease to be thriled at the quality and amount of information that is available through the internet. The novelty never wears off. I am in possesion of BROADWAY memorabilia for an event that took place in 1929 and 1930. The event was called The DOLL TEA PARTY and the items are teacups and saucers. The have the BROADWAY name and ALFRED LETTS JR.'s signature on some of them. There seems to have been different artists designs commemrating the event...I have been hunting information on these items for four years now and have not been able to come up with anything solid. I hope my selfish needs are not taken the wrong way by using this wonderful siet as a platform to find out information but..what do I have to lose? And what is interesting also is if these dated items are 1929 and 1930...which BROADWAY was the event held at? Being a California native and having moved around a lot...it is fun to look at the different Broadways and having memories from them. THANKS FOR THE MEMORIES!!ReplyDelete
This website is great! Although most of these buildings were built way before my time (im only 25) I have an appreciation for the design of these buildings. I live in southern california and frequently drive by these buildings. Ironically, I work in the old Broadway at Fashion Island which is currently a Bloomingdale's. Next time I walk into work I'll appreciate my old building a little more.ReplyDelete
I worked in the advertising department from 1974 to 1985 as a home furnishings illustrator. A great place to start my career. After 11 years of drawing bedding, pots and pans, furniture, appliances... anything that wasn't fashion... I could draw anything. I kind of lament the loss of the type of newspaper advertising we had back then, that was my first job and as I look back, one of my best.ReplyDelete
Hello! I worked for The Broadway also, probably just after you. I studied illustration and worked under someone named Clara. I admired the drawings used in advertising just before photography they were quite beautiful. I drew both housewares and fashion. Yes, I have a few good memories but WOW... I didn't find the atmosphere to be quite a "gentleman's game". I would like to get in touch with someone named Scott. I'm sure you must know, there was never a dull moment! Lovely to read your memories!Delete
Does anyone remember the Cheesecake they served at their tea rooms? Is the recipe still around?ReplyDelete
I have have the recipeDelete
wow, great site, I worked for the Broadway at the Hollywood store till it closed, Westchester and thenReplyDelete
the Santa Monica Store, many fond memories of that
Department Store, Remember when Managers worked 9-5 Monday through Friday and we had night and weekend Manager ? I tale that tell to all my Managers now.
Excellent website and sketches of many of the stores I helped open. Many, many a fond memory with The Broadway. I spent 5 years in Hollywood managing nights and weekends while in college. I know every inch of that store from the lower level to the penthouse. Then on to open Glendale and then The Service Building.Asst Buyer, Buyer and Home Furnishings VP. 15 years 1971-1986. An Important part of California history is lost to the younger generation, but I still have some friends. Hi Steve!ReplyDelete
Thanks for the comments about The Braodway. I would like to include a directory for the Hollywood store; I should be able to glean the information from the Los Angeles Times.ReplyDelete
I appreciate your affection for this fine store.
I worked at the Broadway Montclair Plaza as a contingent on call extra and from there became a cashier at the Service Bldg in Los Angeles as my last position in 1979. The stores I was employed besides Montclair were Puente Hills, Fox Hills, Westchester, Northridge, Panorama City and Glendale. I had some wonderful years and remember them fondly. It was a joy to come to work and I loved every year. I was shocked and saddened to learn when living in Michigan that the company went defunct!ReplyDelete
I started at the long beach store ("store 8") from 1980 to 1982 And at the service center from 1982 through 1983.. And I remember going to the cashiers office to cash my pay checks !!!Delete
I miss the Broadway very much. I worked there for the last 5 years in the San Diego area. I worked from a commissioned sales associate up to management and had fun doing it. The environment in the store was fun and rewarding. I met my wife there and lots of my life long friends and will always regard the years spent there as some of the best. When Macy's took over it was never the same.ReplyDelete
Bak...Would love to see the Hollywood Store Directory and relive my countless hours riding up and down the escalator. When the bells rang out twice and then five times I had to pick up a store phone to hear where they needed a check signed off for a customer. No pagers, no cell phones...those were the days!ReplyDelete
Is there ANY way to find out when an employee was hired at the Downtown Store? Here is the reason: My cousin was working there in 1971 when she was murdered. I am the family historian and have been researching her, but do not know when she began that job. Would love to find that out and add it to her family information. This site awesome. Thanks so much for making it.ReplyDelete
What do the numbers mean after each department?ReplyDelete
The numbers are the department numbers used by the store, which they also published in their advertisments. Some stores did this, others didn't. One can only assume that the ones that did, like The Broadway, did so to help customers find merchandise in case of difficulty.ReplyDelete
To begin with, let me say how sorry I am to hear that your cousin was murdered. The only consolation is that after so long, she is obviously still remembered, and kept alive in her loved ones' hearts. One also hopes and prays that there was some justice for this terrible crime.ReplyDelete
I would check with Macy's, Inc. They bought The Broadway and may still maintain some of those records. I do know that the former Marshall Field & Company store on State Street in Chicago has an archive and museum, but whether the records are there, in New York, or Cincinnati (current headquarters), I cannot say.
You may try also something like Ancestry.com for social security and tax records, if they have them.
Furthermore, I have access to The Los Angeles Times archives in digital format, and I could search her name. If you would like me to, comment with your e-mail and her name (I will not publish the comment) and I will try to find what I can for you. I have a few major commitments over the next couple of weeks, so it may take a little time, but I will try my best to help.
I worked for the Broadway Security Department from 1978 to 1994 in various capacities. I worked in the Newport Beach, Laguna Hills, Huntington Beach, Carlsbad and Escondido stores, The Service Building, as well as an internal investigator covering all the stores. There wasn't a ceiling, crawlspace or hidden wall I didn't have to go inside at one time or another. This is a pretty cool site.ReplyDelete
Have you heard the ghost stories about the Hollywood store?
I worked security also.. Was at store 8 from 1980 til 1982 and then at the service center from 1982 til 1983...Delete
Thahnks, DWK, for the compliment and for your comments. Given that Oct. 31 is approaching, why don't you submit the ghost stories here for everyone to enjoy?ReplyDelete
The Broadway played some role in nearly everyone's life if they grew up in Southern California during it's day. My grandmother worked in the Pasadena and Huntington Beach locations for many years and always spoke of it fondly. I went on to work for the company in the mid-1980's. The Pasadena and Hollywood locations were key, they represented the first time the Broadway made it to the suburbs. Interestingly, The Broadway-Hollywood sign still stands, although the building has been converted to fabulous condos that now use the name for the development. That sign can be seen in old episodes of "I Love Lucy" during the season when the show is set in California. You might have thought that producers of the show would have used the famous hillside Hollywood sign, yet, revealing it's importance, in the view from the window of Ricky and Lucy's hotel suite stands the classic, neon, timeless sign that reads "The Broadway - Hollywood." The sign itself is a landmark! For a time a slogan used by the company was "The Broadway IS Southern California." It's true, it really was.ReplyDelete
The 'Broadway - Hollywood' sign was also visible in the photo used for many years behind Johnny Carson's desk on The Tonight Show.ReplyDelete
No picture or information of the Beverly Center- Los Angeles store. JoelReplyDelete
My Grandfather was the manager and a partner in Broadway Hale starting in the late 1920s. In 1931 he opened The Broadway Hollywood and managed that store from 1931-1940. He moved to the Broadway Pasadena in 1940 staying in charge until 1955 when he transferred to the new Anaheim store. He retired from the Broadway after 35-years in 1960.ReplyDelete
Here's a link that includes photos of the distinctive "stacked blocks" Broadway store in Riverside, California. Opened in 1970 and designed by Los Angeles-based Charles Luckman & Associates, the building has sister stores in Fresno and Citrus Heights (Sacramento). The Riverside building previously housed Macy's (1996-2006) and recently re-opened as Forever 21.ReplyDelete
Citrus Heights is still a Macys, but wonder how much longer, bad management in center ( Sunrise mall) and its a dual store and they really only need one,but I believe they own both buildingsDelete
I'd like to see an exhibit on Weinstock's, the Sacramento-based sibling of the The Broadway. There are some photos of their branch stores from the Sacramento History Catalog under http://sacramento.pastperfect-online.com. I'd be more than happy to provide the opening dates of the Weinstocks branches.ReplyDelete
I worked at Weinstocks between 1985 and right up to the buy out. I found out years later, selling a furniture item to a retired employee, he had been management in the Mission Rd Warehouse and he told me they had done inventory for close out quietly and Macy's came in with a offer right after that and bought it. Everyone in Management, Ive met over the years from Broadway, Emporium and Weinstock's, pointed the finger at our long time CEODelete
I plan to include Weinstock's; I have seen the photos of the branches at the Sacramento History Center; but I would need a floor-by-floor directory of the downtown store, preferably from the 1960s. The only way I can get this information is by looking through Sacramento Newspapers, which are not yet online.ReplyDelete
worked at Weinstock's at Sunrise, Arden, Florin and Downtown Plaza, the downtown plaza store was built in the late 70's, the 12th and K store built in the 20's was built to resemble a Paris Department Store. Its offices now and Bank of America near the State CapitalDelete
My first job was at The Broadway Chula Vista (Store 37) in 1980. I transferred to the newly remodeled Fashion Valley store (Store 38) in the same year. It was a lovely store in the largest mall in the area. The Fashion Valley store replaced the downtown Marston's store in 1969. Most Broadways had a three-story plan with Cosmetics, Accessories, Plaza Sportswear, Ladies Shoes and The Men's Store (Men's Suits, Furnishings, Sportswear and Young Men's or University Shop) on 1, Dresses, Furs, Lingerie, Children's and Junior's on 2, and Housewares, China and Glass, Silver, Linens, Draperies, Furniture and Notions on 3. There was a restaurant in all stores, and it was quite the place for a special occasion. The Grossmont store (Store 36) was not on the same plan, as it was only 2 stories and was planned before Broadway's acquisition of Marston's. Chula Vista was the first store in San Diego that was planned by The Broadway and looks similar to Huntington Beach and many of the locations in Arizona and to many of the mid-60's Weinstock's in Sacramento. The 3 San Diego locations mentioned are now Macy's branches, with Fashion Valley functioning as the flagship Macy's location in the area. Too bad there is not a picture of the Grossmont store in La Mesa as it is a lovely store, too.ReplyDelete
Correction: The Broadway Sherman Oaks was at Sherman Oaks Fashion Square, not Sherman Oaks Galleria. May Company and Robinson's were the anchors of Galleria. Fashion Square won the battle and now has Macy's (former Bullock's) and Bloomingdales (former Broadway).ReplyDelete
I purchase a wooden tennis racket at a garage sale today and did not know what type of racket is was. I'm just a tennis fan looking for old rackets. One side of the racket has "Peter Pan" and the other side has "BH DYAS CO LA". I searched "B.H. DYAS CO LA", and found your information. What great information on the Broadway Store and how wonderful to own a little of their history.ReplyDelete
I worked at the Broadway at the Boulevard Mall in Las Vegas, NV from 1969 to 1986. It was a great store to work in and great people to work with. I miss it but I still have friends today that I worked with then!ReplyDelete
The Broadway Westchester had door handles that were "W"s. My Dad said they stood for the town name. Since this history says the original store at that site was Milliron's I have a feeling that they were originally "M"s. I know when Mervyn's took over the store the handles were turned around and appeared as "M"s. They were there in 2005 when I last took my Dad shopping there.ReplyDelete
This building had parking on the roof of the building which made it unique in the area. They had a room at the roof level when I took a "Charm" course as a young teen. The restaurant may have been at this level also, but the rest of the store was all on the first floor.
The hat department was located at the southwest corner of the building, near the grand entrance. It always looked like a fairyland to me.
Outstanding Article!!! I love the pictures of the Broadbuildings, I think they are so wonderful and I am glad they are still around in Los Angeles. I am linking my article on Arthur Letts to this post. Thanks for the great article!ReplyDelete
What an outstanding job you did on The Broadway's history. Given how numerous the branch locations were, and the changes in corporate name from 1950 through the 1996 Federated acquisition that closed the books on Bullock's, The Broadway, The Emporium and Weinstock's. A couple of facts to add to your well-written history: Arthur Letts Jr's former home is known today as the Playboy Mansion.ReplyDelete
The Chafing Dish name gave way to 'Cafe California' by summer 1988, which was when I began work there. The food service division was slowly being phased out: a few were removed during remodels; in others the entrances were just blocked off and the spaces (tables, chairs and equipment intact)used for storage.
my great aunt anna lee cates had lions and wild cats that somehow worked for may and company from flier i have from early 1900's ...does anyone know about that? thanks anna LeeReplyDelete
Before Federated Stores acquired (and later changed it's name to) Macy's, it was actually considering purchasing the Broadway with the intent on re-naming it A&S -West. Of course, this didn't happen as the Macy's name was considered the new national moniker. So the remaining Broadway stores are now either Macy's or Bloomingdales.ReplyDelete
Awsome Collection and I really appreciate your work.ReplyDelete
I worked for the Broadway for many years, then became a Social Worker prior to its demise. The end of the Broadway Chain triggered a hobby and passion of capturing things are changing or going away in my area. You have done well!
Thank you so much,
Tortuga One on FLICKR
I grew up in Playa del Rey in the 60's and 70's and our go-to store was The Broadway in Westchester. I do remember the W door handles just like Sharon said. And yes, there was a restaurant up on the top parking lot level. My mom used to take me and my sister there for special occasions. Good times. Thanks for the memories and creating such a great website!ReplyDelete
I grew up in Westchester in the 40's and 50's. Yes, the door handles were turned upside down when The Broadway acquired Milliron's. I bought a Mickey Mantle model Rawlings baseball glove there in 1954 which I still have. Every year Santa Claus was set up on the central stairs which came down from the rooftop parking area. It was thrilling to drive up the ramps to the roof.ReplyDelete
I met my husband when we were working together at The Broadway Glendale in 1980. I miss all the people we met through the years, it was a good place to work for so many years, I was there for 12 years, my husband until they were closing all the stores and turning some into Macy's. Thank you for your article it brings back many fond memories.ReplyDelete
This is a great website. I worked at the Broadway Panorama City from Christmas 1967 to September 1972, while in college. In the early 60s the Beach Boys performed at the Broadway for a back to school fashion show. Later Gary Puckett and the Union Gap performed at the Hollywood Bowl for another back to school show. The wooden escalator at the downtown store still is there. The building now houses offices. What a shame these department stores no longer are there. Shopping downtown used to be fun!ReplyDelete
Does anybody have the recipe for the Broadway cheesecake the Chafing Dish Restaurant made? It was so good! I used to have it on a tee shirt years ago but moving caused me to lose it! I made it several times and it turned out really well. Just forgot it because I haven't made it for a long time!ReplyDelete
I'm looking for the cheesecake recipe too.Delete
Great website, my mother is part of the Letts Family. Arthur Letts is my Great Uncle. We have one of the family books that was given out at the time of his death. He is buried in the "Hollywood Forever Cemetery" on Santa Monica Blvd. My mom worked at the downtown store back in the 50's. in the office. Again, thank you for keeping the store alive.....ReplyDelete
The hamburgers at the Ventura store's Terrace Room restaurant were authentic char-broiled. They were very good.ReplyDelete
I grew up at the Broadway Bakersfield. Worked 25 years there. Went through the take over attempt by the Limited. Went through many remodels until it became a Macys.ReplyDelete
The Broadway was a class act here in town. Very much into the community. Paul Allen, store manager for most of those years. Staff was developed and made to feel appreciated. Very proud of having worked there.
the limited take over attempt was by Investment writers at the time considered a very good offer, they didn't want the department stores they wanted the speciality stores like Contempo Casual, Neiman Marcus etc, and then they lost all those stores to General Cinema, at least had they sold them , they would have had the money instead of the debt from fighting them offDelete
The thing I most remember was the wonderful coconut cream pie served at the Chafing Dish Restaurant at 4th & Broadway downtown Los Angeles. Vary proud to have worked in the credit files from 1970-1975ReplyDelete
My great-aunt was the buyer for the downtown Broadway store in the 1930's. It was quite an important job, and she was one of the first women to fly on buying trips around the world. Apparently, it was in all the Los Angeles newspapers. I'm doing a family history and haven't been able to locate any of these articles. Did the store maintain archives? Any ideas on how to find out more about this? Thanx for any help.ReplyDelete
Her name wasn't Lucille Grant, was it??Delete
i'm looking for the cheesecake recipe tooReplyDelete
I have it! Just found it in an old cook book. I cut it out from The Los Angeles Time, August 12,1976, Culinary SOS section.Delete
Broadway Dept. Store Cheesecake
1/2 cup lemon flavored gelatin
1 1/4 cups hot water
1/2 cup chilled evaporated milk
1 1/2 cups whipping cream
2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese
1/2 cottage cheese
1/2 cup lemon juice
1/4 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup sugar
1 graham cracker crust
Dissolve gelatin in hot water and set aside until syrupy. Combine evaporated milk and whipping cream and beat until mixture is quite thick. In a separate bowl mix together cream cheese, cottage cream, lemon juice, vanilla, salt and sugar. Add cheese mixture to cream mixture. Add partially set gelatin. Mix thoroughly. Pour into prepared crust and chill 4 hours.
Graham Cracker Crust
6 tablespoons margarine
1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
3 tablespoons sugar
Melt margarine. Work the crumbs and sugar into melted margarine uning fingers. Divide mixture using 2/3 to cover bottom and sides of 9 inch springform pan and remaining third as topping to sprinkle over filling.
It was good to find this on line museum. I worked at the Broadway Store (Store #18) while in college, and later moved into regional and corporate positions. I loved the company and miss it a lot. Might be interesting to add the store numbers for each of the chain's stores. For example, the downtown store in L.A. was store #1, and years later the downtown Plaza store became number 1 (the company's NEW flagship store). Hollywood was #2, Pasadena was #3, etc.ReplyDelete
I worked at The Broadway Department stores from 1977 - 1987. Started at Del Amo, transferred to the alarm center ( security) servicing all the Building alarm systems. Then transferred to Brea as the store engineer. Spent the last year at the Carson store.ReplyDelete
Hi. I picked out my China wedding set at the Broadway in Orange, CA at the Orange Mall store I. I don't remember who made it but it was a soft white with a silver lip around it and it had small blue/purple colored butterfly's on one side. It was very delicate artwork. I know the MayCo carried it too. I am trying to find a picture of my pattern as an ex boyfriend has my 5 piece set, so I need a picture, name anything to show the judge it belongs to me. If you could help me in anyway please email me. My grandmother bought me all 5 sets so it has special meaning to me. Please let me know if you know my pattern. Regards Dana Anaheim Hills, CA.Delete
Does anyone have a menu from the Chafing Dish from around 1978-1980?ReplyDelete
I seem to recall that in the late '80s or early '90s, when I was a kid, that the restaurant in The Broadway at the Tyler Mall in Riverside, CA was called Cafe California or California Cafe. Maybe I'm wrong. Does anyone remember an in-store restaurant by that name?ReplyDelete
I have been searching everywhere for the name! I remember the California Cafe also! They had one at the Thousand Oaks location as well. The food was fantastic, and they had a very country chic vibe to them. If you can find any more information Id love to know more. I have some wonderful memories there, but no one I know seems to remember it.Delete
I was 19 when I started working in the Chafing Dish Restaurant in the Broadway at Grossmont Center, San Diego, 1969 - 1971ReplyDelete
During my employment the Downtown San Diego store closed and the Fashion Valley opened. I also worked a few days at the Riverside store when it opened. I started as a dishwasher/busboy and worked up to line cook. Every Friday night we had a buffet set up in the dining room. I prepared the salads and served the roast beef as the diners requested it. It was very popular with the customers. The kitchen crew were great. We had a cook Erma who made wonderful breads and desserts. Coconut pies and date nut bread were the most popular ones. The older cooks took the younger one under their wings and tried to teach them how to cook real food. The kitchen was huge with rows of stainless steel counters. Originally everything was prepared from scratch. There was a steam kettle that was big enough to bathe in. They made homemade soups and served them by the cup or the bowl. Actually they were the same size but .25 cents difference (maybe it was the extra crackers). That restaurant was very popular and being on the second floor it drew in a lot of potential customers for the store. Originally there was a second dining room but they turned it into a toy department. The dining room seated about 100 and the coffee shop 45. I threw a lot of dishes through that dish washer. There was a belt conveyor the ran from the dining room to the dishwasher. It held about 30 bus pans and it was usually filled by the end of lunch. I worked under four different managers. The first one was on vacation when I was hired and took a immediate dislike to me. I don’t know why. The second one a man that loved to eat bacon even though it was against his religious views. The third was a terrible man that would sit at his desk behind a window and say suggestive things to the waitresses as the walked by. He was escorted out in handcuffs for stealing from the cash register ( he cost one cashier her job ). The last one I worked under was a wonderful lady that treated us a special people and we loved working for her.
During my employment the 70’s fashion era started with the wild designs and colors. The sales people had a dress code: dark suits and ties for the men and white blouses and dark skirts for the ladies. Well the fancy dressed mannequins made the sales people look really old fashion. So the management finally changed the dress code. As I worked around the store employees taking their breaks in the coffee shop, I heard lots of unguarded conversations. The issue of the dress code was a real problem with some of the older workers. It caused sort of a separation by their liberal and conservative clothes.
Sorry to say most of those fellow workers are long gone - but not forgotten. I Loved the experience.
recently we bought a house in Claremore, Oklahoma. In a kitchen cabinet we found a box which contains a Shafford Tea Set in its original packaging that appears to have never been used. On the outside of the box is a hand written shipping label that shows the Broadway, 3880 No. Mission Rd, Los Angeles , Ca. the label doesn't appear to have a complete date but does have other information such as salesman number, purchaser's account number, etc.ReplyDelete
I would like to see if anyone can help us put a timeframe around when this may have been purchased. I have a high resolution image of the label. If you think you could help please contact me at email@example.com.
I do believe that the address was of the Broadway's warehouse and distribution center in Los Angeles. I do not know when it was built there, but you could,if your library has access to ProQuest Historical Newspapers, search for not only it but Broadway ads for Shafford China as well.ReplyDelete
The 3880 N. Mission Rd. was the address for the new warehouse as well as the Data Center which housed the Buyers, mailrooom, downstairs warehouse (before the new one was built around the mid 1970's), Personnel, Sales Audit, Finance, MIO, Accountng, Computer room, Keypunch dept., etc. I bought a (green) refrigerator at one of the first warehouse sales around 1975.Delete
I have a pair of early 1900's women's boots with the Arthur Lett's label. Do you collect items for the museum to display?ReplyDelete
Thanks - I could only use a picture of them which I would place in the exhibit eventually.ReplyDelete
This wonderful site brings back the best memories for me. This was where my Mother and I liked to shop. I grew up in Whittier and worked at the mall and this was my Mothers favorite place for shoes and purses. Also my beloved Aunt Joyce (my mothers sister) used to take me to Stonewood Broadway for my first underthings. I have lost them both now, (first Christmas without my Mother) and this has brought some peace and joy to this Christmas without the one who loved Christmas and modeled her tree after the big one that used to sit on the Broadway main floor! (My successful father almost went broke with that one!) Not to mention she loved the gift wrap department and used it often when she did not have time to create her own works of wrapping art. Thank you so much for this beautiful tribute site. GenieReplyDelete
God bless your dear mother and your aunt Joyce, too. Look what great memories they gave you, and to have a little part in helping you remember is a tremendous pleasure.
I worked in the display dept.at topanga plaza 1971 to 1979 with many famous people sam gross, david j o Connell and pat Thompson. creative artist that became famous. if you remember them,share it, soni .ReplyDelete
I received a lovely necklace for Christmas from my daughter-in-law. She purchased it from a local antique/consignment shop. I the box was a slip from THE BROADWAY Los Angeles-Hollywood-Pasadena. I'm assuming it is costume jewlery as there is a Dept. 20 on the receipt it has a sales person # R29 and a serial &check No. 46344-47. There is also a P142 stamped over the other wording and that may say instrector it is very faint. Is there anyway to find about what year this was purchased? Any other info would be greatly appreciated. The necklace is silver with some kind of clear stones and other stones that look like black onyx. It is very pretty. Thanks!ReplyDelete
All I can tell you is that it was bought between 1940 and 1947, given the fact that the logo on the box mentions The Pasadena store of 1940, but not the Crenshaw one that opened in 1947.ReplyDelete
Funny thing is that on the day that they opened the Los Arcos Broadway in Scottsdale there was a time capsual put there for future use,,,,now a ASU building what ever happened to it. Broadway was great in there window displays and had fabulous displays.......started my long career in Visual at The Broadway!,,still have newspaper and blue prints of all the stores.ReplyDelete
Broadway Southwest Colordo locations:ReplyDelete
Cinderella City 3 floors Grand opening Nov 5 1985
Villa Itallia 3 floors Grand Opening Nov 5 1985
Westiminister Mall 2 floors Grand opening late October 1986
Aurora Mall never built ( option on anchor pad )
Chapel Hills Colo Springs never built ( option on anchor pad )
My father in-law worked for the original Broadway store in LA. He left us a box full of pictures of when they were putting in the foundation, the building of the store, and then pictures of the interior and the beautiful displays they used to have. I feel like these are pieces of Broadway history that shouldn't just be sitting in my apartment, but should be shared with the public. I have no idea what to do with them or if anyone is interested. Any ideas out there for me?ReplyDelete
Did you ever decide what to do with the photos? The collection sounds terrific. Perhaps create a webpage to share them or contribute them to a historical society or university. I believe USC has a LA history project with some emphasis on retail historyDelete
Does anyone have any pictures or information about the entrance mural at the Pasadena Broadway? It was painted by Norman Brice, who was my father's uncle. My father remembers seeing the mural as a child in the 1940s. I have not been able to locate a picture or any reference at all to the mural.ReplyDelete
When 'the Broadway' West Covina opened in 1962, there was a contemporary mosaic sculpture outside the southeast entrance to the store. I remember it vividly from my childhood! It was a colorful, abstract depiction of the four seasons. Sadly, the sculpture was removed, (or worse, demolished), when the Plaza was expanded into an enclosed mall in the '70's. In my research, I've learned that the sculpture was the work of renowned mosaic artist, Millard Sheets. I would love to find a photo or any information on this lost artwork.ReplyDelete
You might find information on the piece by contacting this group https://esotouric.com/millard-sheets/Delete
The decline of the downtown flagship, as with all of downtown shopping, came with the demise of streetcar service in the early sixties. Slowly, complete abandonment of a once vibrant shopping district took its toll on the landmark which began to feel creaky and claustrophobic. At the same time, Hollywood and Vine was like a Mecca of shopping up to around 1969 when Hollywood started to become Hollywierd. My mother worked for the Broadway. My father had been at the Plaza Hotel and then the Roosevelt with stints at the Beverly Hills (He could relate stories of the Polo Lounge). My aunts were at the Brown Derby. Actor Richard Dawson would occasionally stop in at the Broadway to shop. Like a lost treasure seen only in old films of the Golden era, the main floor was stunning. And this was just the beggining of the adventure. You'll never hear the word mezzanine again in the "big box" world of consumerism. This was the world laughingly portrayed in the Britcom "Are You Being Served?". There were still guys like the colonel running the show. Children of employees were welcome but they better know how to behave likeReplyDelete
ladies and gentlemen if they didn't want to cost their parents a job. "Service" still meant something of an all encompassing nature. Employees were often very knowledgeable but used it in a polite manner. The opening of a store in the Glendale Galleria came with the change of eras and policy. It was goodbye to Tinsel Town, hello to Havanna. The shopping mall era, short lived as it was, approximated the closest thing middle America had to a wild night in Cuba. To me, the Broadway was ill-suited to the new world of "have it your way" and the food court hangover. As a teenager living near Eagle Rock and Glendale, I had become used to the world of old Brand Blvd. and the growing Eagle Rock Plaza. While I shopped at the new Galleria, and even worked for a while for Buffum's, I can't remember ever spending a dime at the new Broadway. The generation gap of loyalties had widened. Later, as an adult, I would frequent the May Co, Bullock's Westwood, Brook's Brothers and even the grand old Harris' San Bernadino among others. There was no place for the Broadway in my life with Nordstrom's sweeping into SoCal along with the many specialty merchandisers ready to drive the proverbial nail in the coffin. Havanna had now moved to the Miami Vice Florida of the 80's. Alas, I did get to visit Macy's Manhattan Store in this era (is it there still) and feel they were a worthy heir to the vacuum left by the Broadway's demise. Of course I don't know how well NY JETS boxers would sell in LA. Now, the revival of the Roaring 20's is long over and we can see that the once proud Broadway did not belong in the world of fancy fluff. Their is something to be said for the old and stogy of the block building department store era and the phrase goes, "Forget the flying car, where's my time machine!".
I remember the Broadway in Northridge after the 1994 earthquake. While the building and Northridge mall was significantly damaged, they built a large tent in the parking lot and sold housewares and furniture. Above the tent was a huge sign that said - "You Knew We'd Be Back!" It was a great feeling. My parents bought their new den furniture from there. I remember when they reopened the store after the earthquake it was very nicely refurbished and they had a large celebration. Sadly, the store structure has been converted to smaller stores and restaurants...Border's and Cost Plus.ReplyDelete
I was Copy Director then, and named the tent (The Home Dome) and wrote the slogan. A scary and inspiring time.Delete
At a recent estate sale I purchased a huge (15" x 16") white album entitled "The Bride" in gold with a second line in gold "The Broadway Southern California". Inside the title page reads "Fall and Winter Fashions for the Bride." There are pages of magnificent black & white drawings of brides in different wedding gowns perhaps from the 1950's? The pages are numbered 100-121. I'd thank anyone who might have information on this gem!ReplyDelete
I worked at the Broadway in Chula Vista (#37). Neither the Broadway at Chula Vista Center or the Broadway at Grossmont Center in El Cajon are listed, and they were both established in 1964 after the Broadway bought out Marston's in San Diego.ReplyDelete
The Broadway Grossmont Center and the Chula Vista Center store are listed under Marston's. I believe The Broadway purchased Marston's just after Grossmont Center was opened as Marston's and before Chula Vista Center was built.ReplyDelete
I started my career out of UCSD in Broadway's newest San Diego store by campus. Worked my way thru the Broadways manager training program for college grads. This was the best career path to take. 15 years from stores to buying office and made a great retail career at Broadway. It was the jewel of retail in Los Angeles and made it to Broadway Southwest as a mens sportwear Buyer. The best years of my life.ReplyDelete
I worked at the Broadway warehouse on mission road. Worked in the evening in the credit department while attending college. Started 1966 and retired on 1988. Worked in the following dept. Credit, itd. Personnel, exec office reception, and left as exec. Secretary to the vp of wo Momens. I'm trying to find out the group that worked at Broadway still meet at the winery?ReplyDelete
I started working in the Data Processing dept. on Mission Rd. in Oct of 1967. Our dept was in the front of the building - next to Personnel. Do you remember the sniper on the hill across the street who took shots at the window's in the personnel dept? They later cemented up the window. I worked outside the Computer room. My job at first was to spindle the price tags collected from each dept. in each store by van drivers who collected the trunks with each store's number and name on it. The trunks contained cash register receipts, envelopes with the item tags and other things from the stores every night. My first job with the company was to spindle those tickets and run them through a machine to get a list of items sold, then each buyer would get a computer printed report so they knew what was sold in their dept. the day before... This was very early data processing. I worked in what was originally called MIS (later IS, and then IT). I originally worked for Tully Toomes, do you remember him? WOW!!! The memories I have reading everyone's posts. I worked at the Mission Rd. location for 20 years then transferred to the Data Processing building in Anaheim where I worked in the Information Security dept until we closed our doors in April of 1996. I was with CHH for almost 30 years.Delete
The Broadway Stonewood in Downey, Ca was my first paying job in 1965. I worked in Cosmetics and had the most wonderful time. When they were closing the store many years later I took a nostalgic walk through. Such great memories.ReplyDelete
I,too feel soprry for your cosuin's death (to the one whose cousin was killed in a Boradway)SCReplyDelete
February 6, 2016,Edmond, Oklahoma. I am going to a funeral this afternoon and have been going through my old suits to find one that fits. The one that I will have on today has a Broadway label that I bought back in the very late 1980's. It still fits, and looks great. Trying on that suit, is what prompted me to find this site and think back on my many purchases at The Broadway. As a kid, my parents took me there every year to see Santa. I am sure that many readers that remember The Broadway wish the good old days would return. RIPReplyDelete
My mother, father, grandparents and both aunts all worked for the Broadway. My parents met there. My grandfather was the men's clothing buyer in the Downtown store until his death--in the store at closing time--in 1948. My father was a maintenance man in the downtown store, working on the tube lines, until his death--in the store before opening time--in 1954. He and my mother met in that store about 1937. My mother worked many years later at the Broadway warehouse in El Sereno.ReplyDelete
There used to be a large bronze plaque on the ground floor with the names of all the men who served in WWII. My father's name was on the plaque. I have no idea what happened to it when the store was torn down.
My mother's entire family worked for The Broadway. Grandpa was the men's clothing buyer at the flagship store in L.A. Grandma, Mom, and both of my aunts worked in several of the stores. My dad also worked at the store downtown where he met Mom. There used to be a large bronze plaque in the lobby of the L.A. store listing all the employees who served in WWII. My dad's name was on it. (Wonder whatever happened to it.) Both Dad and Grandpa died in the L.A. store--Grandpa at closing in 1948 and Dad at opening in 1954. Both died of heart attacks. Years later, Mom and my aunt Muriel worked at the warehouse. All the time my brother and I were growing up, the store gave Mom a discount on our clothing. I was very sad to see the store gone.ReplyDelete
I still have a few of the old Broadway World newsletters, including the one announcing my birth.
The store you have labeled as Pasadena was actually the Crenshaw store. The back of the store may have resembled the one in Pasadena but the corner tower (at Crenshaw and Santa Barbara) was a landmark in the area and remained after the center was converted to a mall.ReplyDelete
Until recently, it sported a WalMart sign but the palm trees are still there.
Here's a more recent photo -https://flic.kr/p/b34dpe
No, that IS the Pasadena store - it had a corner tower too until it was expanded in later years. I will post a photo of that, but I assure you that this is a picture of the original Pasadena store, taken from the newspaper at the time of its opening. The picture of the Crenshaw store is from the rear and doesn't show the (very similar) tower.ReplyDelete
The 1940 Broadway Pasadena store was demolished and relocated in 1980. The same year that opened, a location in Santa Monica opened.Delete
I am writing a family history of Bullock's partner P.G.Winnett, if there are any good memorabilia from early years-1910-1930. Thanks.ReplyDelete
I just wish someone had the recipes from the Orange Tree Café that was upstairs in The Broadway. I worked there when I was a senior in high school as a waitress, at the Grossmont location in La Mesa. I have looked for years to find the recipe for their bread pudding with vanilla sauce and their Pacific Paragon salad. Anyone out there that knows anything about it?ReplyDelete
I would like to find out the brand name of the jujyfruit type candy they sold in the candy section. It was so much better than Jujyfruit and I can still remember how the red ones tasted.ReplyDelete
What a great site... I worked at the Chula Vista store in 1966 as a Hi Deb in my Senior year in high school. One girl was chosen from each of all the Southern California stores. Then for the year we modeled clothing from the store at great locations all over the county,indoors and out. We also worked in the store in all sorts of departments. It was a fabulous year for me. There were about 10 of us ...I would have to look it up in my scrapbook. ANY of you ladies a part of that program?ReplyDelete
Wonderful site. I worked at the old Pasadena Store while in college just before it was closed and moved to across the street to the Pasadena Plaza in 1980. Made through their Management training program, worked at the service building as assistant buyer then back to the store in Pasadena as training director. As great as the program was, the best training came from the sales staff at Pasadena. I was fortunate to work with women who had been "ribbon ladies" in 30's and 40's. a huge THANK YOU to all who trained us newbies. Your lessons remained with me as well as the others who left The Broadway for other careers.ReplyDelete
I would like to use your sketch of the Del Amo store (I was a Hi-Deb there and then went on to the buying offices in East LA) on my blog. I've written an essay about what each work experience has given me in terms of skills, and I don't know if these are copyrighted or not. Since the company is out of business perhaps I can use the picture you show here?ReplyDelete
Thank you for asking about the picture. Most people just take them and use them elsewhere. I believe you can use it on your blog without any problems. The sketch came from an ad from the day the store opened. I have a higher-resolution version which I can send to you if you e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Best of luck!
I used to love shopping at Broadway in Bakersfield. My go to store when I was able to shop on my own. I was going thru some items I have from my Great Aunt and found something, at first, I thought was a coin holder, but coins don't fit in it. I'm curious what it is, if anyone knows. It has on it, THE BROADWAY Broadway, First and Hill Los Angeles, Ca 3 holes that you can push down and slits on the sides to fill it. The slits seem to be different sizes but the holes on the top are the same. Maybe coins were thinner then?ReplyDelete
I remember The Broadway in Bakersfield Ca, which was part of The Valley Plaza Mall, beautiful store with three floors. When it closed in 1996, Macy's aquired it and moved in. They didn't remodel or update the facility, and it stll has the same layout and feel of The Broadway when you walk in.ReplyDelete
I have memories of the Broadway Pasadena from the 1940s, as a boy being impressed by the interior, which was what might be called Streamline Moderne. Moving into the 1960s, my first wife worked nights in the luggage dept, and one night in Nov. 1962, I came to pick her up, and we heard the "You won't have Dick Nixon to kick around anymore" speech on the car radio. Thanks for providing the year that the store was closed and demolished--I was commenting on a Facebook posting about the Broadway in Riverside.ReplyDelete
Love this site. I opened the store in Riverside....I worked in the record dpt. From there I opened Orange... Cerritos...I worked in the hosiery buying office..last store was Delivered Del Amo..HR and Training..25 years of my life...broke my heart when they had to close.ReplyDelete
My mother and her sister attended both Doll Tea Parties. My grandfather was the menswear buyer for the downtown store. They received teacups. I still have my mother's. (They say "Doll Tea Party" on the bottom.)ReplyDelete
This comment has been removed by the author.ReplyDelete
I worked at the Broadway in San Diego for 4 years as a waitress. I know there was a cookbook put out in the early 80's called The Chafing Dish. I have bee searching the Internet and can't find this book anywhere. Does anyone have a copy or know how to get one?ReplyDelete
I grew up in the San Fernando Valley in the 60s, and the Panorama City store (06) was the most reliable place for middle-class folks to get their back-to-school clothes. I graduated from college in 1978, and my first job was with the Broadway, in a class of 76 college grads in "Executive Training". Six weeks in the Panorama store,working with Peggy Harrison and Sue Biel, then six weeks in the Service Building (I was assigned to Department 66 - Plaza Blouses buying office with Sandy Frazin), then returned to the stores. Eventually, I was hired as a group manager for the men's department in store 10 (the old Coulter's Emporium art deco building) on Wilshire, then back to Panorama City in Housewares/China/casual furniture, then an assistant buyer in women's fashion accessories in the Service Building. 2 1/2 years in all before I went back for graduate school. Among the great memories:ReplyDelete
1. The Service Building seemed to have 5 or six stories underground, where the merchandise was tagged with codebars, and put into "totes" according to the "store splits" generated by the buyers.
2. Panorama was an EOM (End of Month) store, meaning that all the broken lots and distressed merchandise was consolidated into those stores for EOM sales. Inventory was a disaster, and store managers Ted Weber and Bill Curley, merchandise manager Dan McCusker, and Ops Manager Jim Lacy seemed to have more fun than anybody else!
3. Closing down the 06 store including a long process of shutting off the chillers (air conditioning units) on the fourth floor...there had to be at least 30 steps to this!
4. I was a trainer for the "great place to shop" program, designed by Senn-Delaney Associates, to try to improve customer service. Every employee went through 40 hours of training, Panorama City's training location was the North Hollywood Bridge Club near Bob Burns restaurant in North Hollywood. Personnel Manager, Jane Charness, training manager Estelle Bender, Assistant Personnel Manager Ellen, and I were the four trainers, and we hung out in Ellen's RV during training days. Broadway cut budgets after the first round, so the planned cultural change collapsed due to lack of top management commitment.
5. So many fun Broadway gals to hang out with: Cheryl Dutcher, Pegi Tenyer, Pat Kilty, Karen Singer, Chris Cancino, Cindy Ruthrauff, Vanessa Jorgenson, Michele Macomber, Deena Crowder, Julie Morton, Joanne Morgan, Nancy Jhovanic, and more names I can't recall!
6. Grant LaClave, the manager at Wilshire (10), wore a gold chain necklace outside his necktie, and Regional Manager Bob Sparks would grab the chain and lead Grant around the store! Working at Wilshire was great because of its proximity to LACMA, great restaurants and dance clubs!
Here are several photos of the Broadway Plaza store from 1979 - including Cosmetics, Plaza Sportswear, Women's Shoes and Hosiery, Bedding and Curtains, Towels, Linens, Lamps (and the entrance to the Chaffing Dish Restaurant beyond) and the Country Kitchen Coffee ShopReplyDelete
I believe the Warehouse was 3880 E. Mission Road, I worked in the warehouse in the sixties and again after I was drafted until 1972. I was a forklift operator and on weekends I drove a van to the various stores dropping valuables and office communication. I enjoyed working there until I graduated fron PC(now Point Loma University).ReplyDelete
I took a job in data processing at Broadway headquarters 3880 No. Mission Rd, Los Angeles , Ca in 1970 Operated their computer equipment on 3rd shift for 5 years, loved that job! It was the start of my career in mainframe software support. Names I remember at Mission road are Mike Lane, Allen Balla,Steve Main, Mark Bowerman, Herb Temblor, Alice Burroughs, Danny Vasquez, Marla Hall. They were great people to work with and I still miss them and the Broadway.ReplyDelete
My boss was Steve Main. I worked with Mike Lane (it as unfortunate when he was killed one night on the freeway, he was riding his motorcycle and someone shot him). I worked with Allen Balla, Mark Bowerman - well, I knew everyone you mentioned. I started working as a Spindler outside the Computer room (in 1967) and kind of grew with the technology. Remember Gordon Fiske? Ed Arisa? Herb Temblor was one of my mentors. I worked with Silvia Flores, Anna Ortiz, Stella Altizer... I wish we could post pictures because I have lots from back in the day. Back then my name was Carol Cox. I still keep in touch with Steve Main. What is your name? We probably worked together... small world good memories.Delete
I worked as a store detective for the security department . I opened the Orange store but worked in all the stores. I was there from 1971/ 1987. Worked for Chuck Sennewald, who I am still in touch with. Wonderful job and wonderful company.ReplyDelete
Hey Teri, do you remember me, Ernest Govea? Drop me a line if you wish. email@example.com.Delete
I worked at the Broadway around 1982. I worked in the LP department and traveled to many locations. Whittier, West Covina, Cerritos, Downtown LA, San Bernardino, Riverside, Montclair, Huntington Beach, Century City, Bev Center, Puente Hills, Panorama City, Santa Monica. As LP we lived in the ceilings watching associates. I was stilled employed during the Macy's takeover. Recently, the Montclair location was torn down. Lot's of memories. Does anyone have any signage or memorabilia with The Broadway for sale. Should I check ebay?ReplyDelete
I left after 10 Years with The Broadway. I tried to roll over my retirement and was told about the bankruptcy. They said there was nothing left. Last month I received a notice about my Pension with Macys? I'll know in the next 60 days what I have. That was unexpected!ReplyDelete
This site is so amazing, helping me reminisce about my career in retail foodservice management (Broadway Southwest and May D&F, both gobbled by Federated). For those wanting the Cheesecake Recipe:ReplyDelete
1/2 c lemon Jello 1/2 c cottage cheese
1 1/4 c hot water 1/2 lemon juice (fresh is better)
1/2 c chilled evap milk 1/4 t vanilla
1 1/2 c whipping cream 1/4 t salt
2 8oz pkg cream cheese 1/2 c sugar
Dissolve gelatin in hot water and set aside until syrupy. Combine evap milk and whipping cream and beat until quite thick. Separately mix cream cheese and remaining ingredients. Add cheese mixture to cream mixture. Add partially set gelatin and mix thoroughly. Pour into pre-chilled graham cracker crust and chill at least 4 hours. Enjoy this treat from the forgotten days of tearooms and department store dining.
Do you have other recipes from the Broadway's restaurant?Delete
Orange opened August 16, 1971, Fox Hills on October 4, 1975, Glendale on August 8, 1976, and Hawthorne on February 12, 1977.ReplyDelete
Does anybody know a men’s store call curly son Whittier blvdReplyDelete
This is a great history. I was hired into the Broadway's management training program out of college and spent time as a floor manager in one of the San Fernando Valley stores. I transferred to Emporium before coming back to LA as an Assistant Buyer at the Mission Road headquarters. I moved on shortly thereafter to grad school and left retail merchandising altogether.ReplyDelete
A few highlights from that career I can remember:
*Opening the Santa Barbara store in 1990
*Going out to the receiving lines at Mission Blvd. to inspect merchandise before it was ticketed and re-distributed to stores on our own trucks
*Store inventory nights (oh man were those a pain)
*6 day weeks during Xmas season (even for us buyers)
*All the weird nooks and crannys where security personally used to hide to watch for shoplifters
*Having a "smash and grab" right in front of my eyes (a rack of men's leather jackets)
*Markdowns, markdowns, markdowns
*Wearing a suit(!) whether on the sales floor or in the buying office
*Store inspections (less fun as a store employee, more fun as a buyer)
*Remodeling stores (Santa Anita, Newport, etc.)
*The decline of the Panorama City store (which became a dead end destination for markdowns that couldn't be sold elsewhere)
I suppose I could go on and on.
Absolutely enjoyed reading all the memories people have about working at the stores. My mom worked at the original downtown branch and performed in USO shows at the store and was working there the day they declared the war was over,she still recalls everyone leaving the store and running out onto the streets.ReplyDelete
Here are photos of the Tucson locations.:ReplyDelete
Hi Bak, thanks for link for broadway building picture. Would you please make that a follow link? I have written about Arthur Letts, and adolph sieroty https://jamescolincampbell.com/eastern-columbia-lofts/ of Eastern Columbia department stores if you'd like me to write a guest post about either of these public figuresReplyDelete
I worked at Store 7 in Anaheim. 1976 and then again 1978 to 80. I recall going to the restaurant before my shift. I was sitting in one of the U shaped counters when an elderly customer began coughing and choking.I looked around and no one was going to help. At 16 years old I sprung into action. I had just learned The Heimlich Manuver, I applied pressure and she quit choking, along with her dentures landing in her soup! She asked me "what did you do that for"? I went back to my meal, no one uttered a word! Lots of memories!ReplyDelete
I was a model (we had to dance too) at a Back to School Show at the Hollywood Bowl. Must've been maybe 1967? I was at UCLA then. So much fun. We rehearsed on the top floor (empty) of the Hollywood Broadway. Thanks for remembering!ReplyDelete
Neon Lighting! I own 2 very special Neon fixtures, custom designed for the Audio/Stereophonic Department. The store location was in Sherman Oaks, California. When it was time to advance the quality of my system, The Broadway had a real expert named George. He really understood every facet of the technology. I revamped everything, bought my first 5 CD player, also a graphic equalizer. George came to my Sherman Oaks apartment to set everything up, for the best possible sound advantage! What a professional!ReplyDelete
This particular Broadway had amazing Neon Light fixtures throughout the Audio/Stereo section. They were absolutely unique, designed for that store. I was already into Neon Lighting, with 1 piece I bought in 1985. Resting at angles on a 7 foot rectangular shaft of brushed aluminum, It's purely linear, no subject matter at all and it's beautiful. I always admired the Neon at The Broadway. Their Neon was pure abstract design. I remember fixtures in deep red, light blue and some other colors.
When the store announced it would be closing, I immediately visited George to inquire about buying the Neon pieces I liked so much. They were store property; never intended for sale so they had no price. I wanted to buy the 2 light blue fixtures and hopefully, the identical red electric pieces. The design is black anodized metal, cut as 2 identical triangles with interior black anodized metallic space between, to securely hold the triangular Neon. These are quite generous in size, looking grand on top of my large stereo speakers.
George knew I was serious about buying, but what was the cost for something that wasn't meant to be sold? He went to the store manager. I could buy the 2 blue fixtures plus a red one, for $500.00, or buy the 2 blue pieces for $350.00. If I had the money I would have bought both of the blue and the 2 red fixtures, but I could only afford the blue Neon works, for $350.00.
When I went back about a week later, hoping to acquire 1 red Neon fixture, I was told that a Broadway store employee bought them both, and he got the store discount. Not long after that, so sad for me, the store was gone.
Still, it's September 20, 2020, and I have my beautiful, truly unique Broadway Department Store custom Neon fixtures. They are as wonderful as ever. Someday, when I'm ready, I'll donate the fixtures to a museum of art. They are authentic 1980's Neon artworks, virtually unobtainable anywhere. I'll tell the museum about The Broadway, and George and the Audio/Stereo Department, and how my upgraded stereo system came from that store- along with 2 original pieces of Broadway History.
You can believe I take really good care of my Broadway Neon!
There was a Broadway store in Glendale, CA on Glendale Ave before the Galleria was built. Any chance you have a drawing or photo of that store? I think it became JK Robinson's after Broadway? ThanksReplyDelete
This is wonderful! My father was the Merchandising Manager at the Broadway store from the 70s to late 80s at the original store on Colorado Blvd, then to the location in the Pasadena mall then he transferred to the Carson city store. A lot of people knew him, he passed in 1990. So many neat memories of this store😊ReplyDelete
Thank you for putting this site together. In 1987-1988 I worked at Bullock’s Century City in Men’s Furnishings. The store manager at that time was Chris Cottey. In 1988 I was promoted to Department Manager of Men’s Clothing and Shoes at the then-new Downtown store at 7th Marketplace (7th and Figueroa) in Los Angeles, which opened about 1986. The store manager for most of my time at the Downtown store was Susan Sittig. Those were good years (at least until the Macy’s acquisition), and which bring back many good memories.ReplyDelete
Home remodeling contractors in Los Altos hills, CAReplyDelete
We are providing best ideas and design for home, kitchen, and Bathroom in Los Altos hills, CA. Check out our Kitchen, Bathroom renovation, and Kitchen remodeling contractors.