The Marston Co., San Diego, California

Founded in 1878, Marston's outgrew
earlier locations and advertised a new
building to be opened in 1912.

Marston's familiar Neo-Renaissance building
was a landmark in downtown San Diego for
many years and a popular and elegant
shopping venue.

Marston's occupied space in adja-
cent buildings along 5th street,
but demolished these in order to
build a new addition as indicated
by the faint white dotted line.

In 1954, Marston's expanded into a new,
6-story addition on 5th street.

Marston's expanded its home-furnishings
selection in 1960 by occupying space
in the former Parmelee-Dohrmann building
at 7th and C streets.

The Marston Co.
5th, 6th, and C Streets
San Diego, California

Belmont 3-8061

Lower Street Floor
Boys' Shop • Student's Shop • Luggage • Cameras • Books • Sporting Goods • Toys • Picnic Shop • Barbecue Shop • Trim-A-Home Shop
Street Floor
Fine Jewelry • Costume Jewelry • Handbags • Personal Leather Goods • Gloves • Hosiery • Cosmetics • Accessories • Neckwear • Hat Bar • Blouses • Sweaters • Cosmetics • Notions • Stationery • Candy • Delicacy Shop
Store for Men Men's Furnishings • Men;s Shoes • Boys' Shoes • Men's Sportswear • Men's Clothing • University Shop
Second Floor
Fabrics • Art Needlework • Bedding and Towels • Curtains and Draperies • Gift Shop • Credit Office • Cashier • Place Pigalle Coffee Shop • Beauty Salon • Infants' Shop • Nursery Furniture • Toddlers' Shop • Girls' Shop • 7-14 Girls' World • Sub-Teens Shop • Children's Shoes
Third Floor
Sportswear • Junior Sportswear • Smart Shop Dresses • Smart Shop Millinery • Smart Shop Coats and Suits • Smart Shop Custom Sizes • Women's Sport Shop • Casual Dresses • Discovery Shop • Career Corner • Lingerie • Robes • Foundations • Maternity Shop • Uniforms • Swim Shop
Fourth Floor
Moderately Priced Dresses • Knit Center • Coats • Suits • Millinery • Young San Diegan Shop • Modernaire Shop • Fur Salon • Bridal Salon
Fashion Circle Dresses • Coats and Suits • Oval Room
Fifth Floor
Major Appliances • Fifth Floor Lounge • Personnel Office
Sixth Floor
Tea Room • Galleria

Carpet Store, 6th Street
First Floor
Floor Coverings • Rugs

Marston's 7th and C
Lower Main Floor
Housewares • Sleep Shop • Furniture
Main Floor
China • Glassware • Silver • Linens • Clocks
Second Floor
Lamps • Pictures • Mirrors

La Mesa

November, 1961
151,000 s.f.
The Orange Tree Dining Room

Coffee Shop

Chula Vista

150,000 s.f.
The Orange Tree Dining Room

Coffee shop


  1. I just purchased a vintage pair of ladies leather shoes, which are in excellent condition and they have Made Expressly for Marston's San Diego inside. I googled the store and found this great site that gave me the history of Marston's. Thank you!

  2. My dad designed display cases for Marston's store back in the 1950s. He loved doing this sort of work and was very proud of his woodworking in the downtown store. I wish I could find inside shots of these display cases.

  3. I just found out that my grandmother was a model for some of the Marston's catalogues. Would anyone know where I could possibly locate some of the old catalogues?

  4. After moving and opening untold boxes, I came across a Marston's box with the brand name:
    El Camino Vellum with a gold engraved square plate inside. There isn't anything I can find on line. Would anyone out there remember such an item?

  5. Just bought a beautiful vintage black velvet evening jacket with Marston Company San Diego label in it. Glad I found this site.

  6. You can still ride the open-cage brass elevator. Enter the little coffee shop through the entrance on C Street. March a few feet deeper and enter the elevator. Press 4 to go to the top.

  7. Ah, so that's what the coffee shop building used to be. Awesome. Going through old opera programs and found an ad for Marston's Tea Room, which brought me here.

  8. I just purchased a mink coat with the Marsten's San Diego tag in it. Very beautiful!