The Diamond, Charleston, West Virginia

The Diamond, on Capitol Street in West Virginia's capital city.

Washington Street side of The Diamond, showing 1964 addition housing the men's store on the street floor.

The Diamond
Capitol and Washington Streets
Charleston, West Virginia


Hickory Farms Shop • Budget Store

Street Floor
Fine Jewelry • Costume Jewelry • Fashion Accessories • Handbags • Gloves • Hosiery • Fashion Accessories • Hat Bar • Wig Salon • Naturalizer Shop • Street Floor Lingerie • Blouses • Sweaters • Street Floor Sportswear • Toiletries • Cosmetics • Notions • Stationery • Candy • Bake Shop • Luncheonette
Men's Store Men's Furnishings • Men's Shoes • Men's Sportswear • Men's Wear • Readgate Shop • Tennis Shop

Beauty Salon

Fashion Floor
Shoe Salon • Sportswear • Misses' Dresses • Pin Money Shop • Daytime Dresses • Coats • Suits • Fur Salon • Concept Shop • The Place • The Colony Room • Boutique • Bridal Salon • Lingerie • Foundations • Robes • Maternity Shop
Young W. Va. Shop Junior Dresses • Junior Sportswear • Junior Coats

Third Floor
Lamps • Pictures and Mirrors • Draperies • Furniture • Sleep Shop • Carpet Center

Fourth Floor
Infants' Wear • Toddlers' Wear • Girls' Wear 3-6x • Girls' Wear 7-14 • Girls' Accessories • Jr. High Shop • Little Brother Shop • Boys' Wear • Boys' Furnishings • Children's & Teen Shoes • Toys • Linens • Domestics • Fashion Fabrics • Art Needlework • Trin the Tree Shop

Fifth Floor
Housewares • China • Silver • Gifts • Electronics • Major Appliances • Book Shop • Paints • Cafeteria


Grand Central Mall (1972)
100,000 sq. ft.


  1. It is so neat to find this page. I just bought a mirror at a thrift store because seeing it instantly took me back to my child hood...though I don't know if I would have ever thought of the mirror if I hadn't seen it...

    On the back it says "This is Turner Wall Accessory" and the price tag on the back is from The Diamond. The writing is exactly as it appears above. The tag looks as though it could have been put on only yesterday. It is in very good shape. Apparently the mirror came from 705 Department.

    Very neat to read the history of The Diamond. Thank you! ~Wendy

  2. I hope to add brief histories of these stores when I can.

    Thanks for your interest.


  3. I haven't been in the Diamond since I was in my teens back in the early 70's! I take it that the store is no more. I haven't lived in W.V. 1986 and haven't been back to the area since 1994.

  4. I had a summer job during college as a stockboy for the ladies and childrens shoe departments in the late 1970's. What a fun job. Miss the grand place!

  5. The store is still there unfortunately it has become just another government office like most of downtown.

  6. I'd like info, pictures, about the Diamond Dept Store in Charleston WV in about 1930, for a novel I am writing.
    Linda Lenhardt

  7. I had the great opportunity to be the man in the red suit for the Christmas season of 1982. That was THE ultimate if you got to go to the Diamond to see Santa. It was a busy time, but enjoyed every minute. If anyone happens to remember, or have been there then, keep the string going...

    1. I remember you! We did Breakfast with Santa puppet show. I walked 2 miles in the snow one Saturday morning to get there for it because the buses couldn't get up and down the West Side hills.

    2. I missed a day of elementary school in '79 or' 80 to have breakfast with Santa!

  8. my mother worked at the Diamond for 33 yrs on the elevator and there was even a short article in the paper about her. I loved the Diamond and miss it so much it was a big part of my childhoods days....

    They were the most rewarding years of my life..So many fond memories and friends I will NEVER forget.
    Any one who remembers me or needs any info, I can be contacted at:


  10. My parents shopped here in the forties and fifties
    and this was the store my parents bought my first
    closet of clothes including the snowsuits and
    mittens with suspenders for children, including
    everything I needed for school until 1964 .
    All of us five kids worn clothes from your store
    including our first shoes to our last pair of shoes. Thanks for all the sweet memories . some of these clothes were given to my sister's
    first baby,

    Denise Perry
    formerly of Eskdale,W V



  12. I grew up in Charleston and in the late 60's and early 70's a good bit of my childhood memories revolve around going shopping with my grandmother "downtown". We'd start our day at The Diamond and slowly work our way up Capital Street on the OJ Morrison side and walk down the other side of the street finally ending our day at Stone & Thomas. I have a Diamond Dept Store gift box that housed a Christmas gift from 1980 & each time I see it I'm reminded of all the times spent riding the escalators up and down the different levels of the Diamond. Sometimes we'd ride the elevator and I still remember the sound of the elevator lady's voice announcing, "Mezzanine" as the doors opened and we stepped out. But the best part of The Diamond was the Christmas display windows! It was a tradition at our house to ride around Charleston to see all the houses decorated for Christmas and we always cruised by The Diamond. The Diamond Department Store was almost demolished (like so many of the beautiful buildings in downtown Charleston were during the late 70's & early 80's in the name of progress, e.g. the Kearse Theatre & the Greyhound Bus Depot). The exterior of the building looks the same. Great memories...thanks for great site.

  13. I remember The Diamond Dept store, I went there with my mother every Saturday and she purchased many of my clothes, boots there. As a working adult, I would run by there every day on my lunch hour and get a different sample of and give my frieds headaches from taking a bath in it. I still have my mother fur coat with The Diamond emblem sewn in the lining. I cant seem to throw it away even though the fur is coming apart in many places. Great Memories!!!

  14. Linda Lenhardt07 May, 2013 13:31

    I've written a story in three novels about a girl named Elizabeth. Much of it takes place in WV. You would especially enjoy reading the third one. In that one, she and her family are Christmas shopping at the Diamond Department store in Charleston WV in 1930.
    You can get my books at

  15. Can someone tell me who did the fashion design sketches for the Diamond? I think that is what they are called. My friend gave me a few of them. A friend of hers picked them up at an estate sale, but Im not sure who sketched them. Thanks!

  16. I was just recollecting a childhood memory of shopping in downtown Charleston with my grandmother. It was a treat to go to The Diamond and have lunch at the cafeteria. I am 56 years old now and still smile at the thought of getting dressed up for a special day of shopping in the city. Thank you for posting this web page.

  17. My mother and I would go shopping just about every Saturday. The Diamond would always be a stop of ours. I remember the Diamond's window and the beautiful decorations at Christmas. My memories of the Diamond continued in 1979 when I became employed in the drapery department. Sally Hively was the buyer. I was put into the buying program about a year later. I was promoted to buyer of men and boy's clothing in the budget store. I met my future husband at the Diamond. He was the shipping/receiving supervisor. The store closed in May, 1983; we were married October, 1983. We have been married going on thirty years and have a 23 year-old son. In the past twenty-nine years many former employees have met the second Sunday in September to tell stories and tales about our days at the Diamond. This Sunday, September 8, we will be meeting for the thirtieth time. This is held at the Rand Community Center beginning at 1:00. If you are available, bring a covered dish and your favorite 2-liter and join us. This may be the last year. The Diamond was a mall in itself. I truly believe the Diamond would still be a landmark of West Virginia if the employees had joined together, bought the Diamond and the lot across the street in order to build a parking garage and cat walk to the building. They may have taken away the Diamond, but the Diamond memories will never be taken away.

  18. For those former Diamond employees who may not be aware, many of the former employees have been meeting the past twenty-nine years. We will be meeting Sunday, September 8 at the Rand Community Center beginning at 1:00. If you can, please join us. Bring a covered dish and your favorite 2-liter. This may be the last year for our reunion, so please try to join us.

  19. Does anyone remember the elavator operators ? my aunt Lorraine and aunt Lillian were operators?

  20. If anyone has read my books, "Train up a Child: A Girl Named Elizabeth" and "All Aboard: A Girl Called Lizza-Betty" and "On the Right Track: Just Call Me Isabel" which you can order at, I would appreciate it if you posted comments about them. If you remember Charleston fondly, I'm sure you'd enjoy reading these books!

  21. My mother worked at The Diamond from 1950 to the closing of the store. I spend many hours there as a child.

  22. My dad has the Elves and Mrs. Santa from the Christmas window display all in working order and paint and in great shape.

  23. I remember the hamburgers at the lunch counter. They had a special sauce that I would die to have again. It was almost like a thousand island dressing but seemed to have cheese in it too. I would love to have that recipe and see an old menu!

  24. I had lunch at the Diamond downstairs counter the last year they were in business. I had the cream cheese/olive sandwich on white toast. It was delicious. But I was in a hurry and asked the waitress when my sandwich would be ready as my lunch friend had hers already. I quote here her answer, "When you see it on the counter, you'll know it is ready". We laughed so loud at that. We had a ball. I loved that store.

  25. I lived in Charleston from 1937 to 1949 before returning to San Francisco (where I was born) to go to college. I remember the Diamond very well! When I was in grammar school (J. E.Robbins) going to the Diamond was a big treat because mom always took me to lunch there. I also remember the People's Store and their fancy windows that curved in. It was across the street from the library as I remember.

  26. I worked at WCHS TV on Quarrier St until 1973. The Diamond was just a few blocks away and on my lunch hour I would happily spend my shopping time there. So many "on sale" items - it was my favorite store even while I was a child. How many Christmas' we spent coming downtown to check out the beautiful "moving" Christmas scenes in each window. I can still almost feel the cold wind in the air and the crunchy snow we stood on as we enjoyed all the wonderful decorated windows! Yes, I still have a "The Diamond" shopping bag! And I fondly remember the "parcel check-in" located by the Washington St. door. First-Class all the way!!!

  27. We went on a sixth grade school trip in 1959 from Lincoln Elementary School in Beckley, WV to the Diamond Department store and I remember there was a black student with us and they would not serve him at the lunch counter, so we all left the store. My first experience of racial discrimination.

  28. I worked at their warehouse in 1970 for a while after I was discharged from the Air Force. I can't for the life of me remember where it was located. I know it was next to the railroad because we had a ramp right up to the boxcars so we could unload refrigerators and ranges, etc. I made $1.65 per hour which was minimum wage then.

  29. Does anyone remember the Jolly Dolls they had at Christmas time? It was an elf in a red suit - so cute! Would love to see a picture of one again.

  30. What a treat to see this posting. I worked as Ass't Credit Manager under Glenn Wine. Also, tasked with investigation of theft. Met many celebrities signing their biographies such as Mickie Mantle.."Blaze Starr" and others. During Christmas we raked in over 100 grand a was owned by a huge N.Y. company...Lord & Taylor...Stix, Bair & Fuller..part of the company. Credit was given to thousands..if you had a 1.. 2... or the end of your number it determined your credit limit. Olympic Gold Medal winner Wilma Rudolph became a customer in 1974 (opening W.V. Track and Field Hall of Fame.) Visited her at her home with her family a couple times and played basketball with her husband Robert and his son. Just remembered the corporation name: Associated Dry Goods. Loved the store..the people...very nice memories.

  31. I remember my parents taking me to the Diamond. Now, my office is on the 7th floor of that building. My son and I are collecting local advertising and displays from Charleston. If you have anything from The Diamond, we would love to talk to you. We are not dealers or resellers; just a local family trying to preserve Charleston history. My email address is

    1. This is a great link:

  32. The memories of my family visiting from Northfork, WV and staying at the Daniel Boone Hotel and shopping at The Diamond every March during the basketball state tournament remain so vivid and precious to me. I can still recall the thrill of receiving our Diamond credit card - we thought we were something!!! THANKS FOR THE SITE. John David Brant, Jr. of Miami, FL (formerly of Northfork, WV - McDowell County