Thursday, November 09, 2006

SouthPark Mall 1970s

Moline, Illinois - circa 1970s

Greetings from Moline, Illinois--and SouthPark Mall! This is an old postcard view (if you couldn't guess) showcasing another "SouthPark", this one not in North Carolina for a change.

Younkers, one of the mall's three original anchors, can be seen on the left side in the top photo, with another store (Premier?) on the right. The Monkey Wards anchor is visible on the left side of the bottom half photo, with a Walgreens just to its right. From Wikipedia:
"Southpark Mall was built by General Growth Properties at a cost of $12 million on 47 acres (190,000 m²) of land that General Growth purchased in 1966. Montgomery Ward, Petersen Harned Von Maur, and Younkers were the mall's three original anchors when it opened on February 27, 1974. Southpark has been expanded twice: JCPenney was added in 1978, while Sears and a food court were added in 1990. Montgomery Ward closed in early 2001 when the chain went out of business, and the anchor space remained vacant for three years. Dillard's eventually leased the space, and they rebuilt the space, which they then opened in 2004."
Additionally, see this article for a nice history on this mall.

Mall history: 1974 - present
Developer: General Growth Properties
Current website: here
Current aerial view
Previous entries: none


Anonymous Anonymous said...

God thats a depressing looking parking lot. You just know those people are in there spending there hard earned dollars on things like electric carving knives and winter coats.

Thu Nov 09, 07:08:00 AM  
Anonymous Laura said...

Wouldn't the store on the right in the top photo be Von Maur? At the time the store was known as Petersen Harned Von Maur; I can't read the sign in the picture but I'm guessing it says Petersen's. You can see a picture of the current store on Von Maur's website here:

It makes sense since Von Maur was one of the original anchors. They shortened their name in the late 1980's.

Thu Nov 09, 09:52:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

SouthPark is a very cool mall, as I've been there twice. This mall is where I went to a Dillard's for the first time (love that store!)

Oddly enough, a Montgomery Ward's auto center (all labelscared up and definitely showing light signs of vandalism) still remains and you can see inside and everything. I thought this was weird because there is no Wards at this mall anymore! I guess Wards was where Dillard's is today.

Could the store in the top picture of that postcard to the right be a Parisian store? Today, this store is occupied by Von Maur. Seems to be that this is a mall that has dealt with a lot of stores shifting around.

Thu Nov 09, 09:53:00 AM  
Anonymous Tim said...

Wow after a year of enjoying Malls of America, I can finally comment about a mall. I’ve been to South Park Mall hundreds of times since the 70’s.

As Laura says, the mall on the right is Petersen's (Harned Von Maur), which switched to Von Maur in the late 80’s I believe. My Grandma worked at the Younkers in the 70’s and 80’s. In the mid 80’s, Younkers started selling computer where I saw my first Macintosh (a 512k model no less).

Dillard’s is where the old Montgomery Wards was and the Ward’s auto center remains. Later two more anchor stores were added, Sears and JC Pennies making for a total of five anchor stores (and a unique design) all of which remain.

Thu Nov 09, 10:31:00 AM  
Anonymous didi said...

Yay! Another Illinois mall! I like this one even though I have never been there. Keep looking for more Illinois gems Keith.

Thu Nov 09, 01:34:00 PM  
Blogger BIGMallrat said...

This is a cool looking mall. What's a Von Maur like?
I was surprised with the mall directory on Simon's Web site. It listed categories twice, and some in Spanish. Where is this "Quad-City"?

Thu Nov 09, 05:13:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In my opinion, Von Maur has a very Nordstrom-y feel to it. They both sell similar merchandise.

Thu Nov 09, 06:56:00 PM  
Anonymous Bobby said...

The "Quad Cities" are Moline, IL; Rock Island, IL; Davenport, IA; and Bettendorf, IA.

Thu Nov 09, 07:14:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello,im new to the site and I love it!I live in Nashville and we have a mall that keeps dying and coming back to life.Its called 100 Oaks.Its anchor store is a Burlington Coat Factory.It is so sad to go in there and see so many empty store fronts.Anyway Im 33 yrs old. Am I crazy or did people used to be able to smoke ciggerates in the mall? Ive told my 15 Year old daughter that you used to be able to smoke in the mall and she thinks Im kidding.

Fri Nov 10, 09:56:00 AM  
Anonymous Bobby said...

I think you may be right, many malls did allow smoking well into the 1990s.

Fri Nov 10, 03:13:00 PM  
Anonymous didi said...

I remember smoking in malls as a kid in the 80s.

Fri Nov 10, 05:07:00 PM  
Anonymous J said...

Back in the '90s, I went into a mall in Lexington, KY, unaware that management had just implemented a no-smoking policy. When I entered, I was immediately struck by the fact that the air quality was vastly different. Then I saw the new "Thank you for not smoking" signs. The difference it made really amazed me.

Fri Nov 10, 05:48:00 PM  
Blogger BIGMallrat said...

There was nothing like coming back from the mall smelling like an ashtray (or casino, if you live in Nevada). However, in the late Eighties, it was nice to enjoy the sweet savory taste of a wholesome cigarette in Sears :)

Fri Nov 10, 09:42:00 PM  
Anonymous suit & tie guy said...

retail smoking is awesome.

i resent missing out on the mid-20th century.

Thu Mar 01, 06:40:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Petersen's was once an upscale general department store, they had the latest fashions every year and had a very trendy juniors department. I'm looking for information on the water sculpture that used to stand in the Central Court in front of Yonkers in that mall. It had a water wheel and various peices that interacted to move water throughout the sculpture. It was in the mall till the mid 90's when they added the wing with the food court and Sears. It broke down a lot.

Mon Sep 13, 07:30:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That store is now a Von Maur's and was Petersen's back in the 70s. And Anonymous: you are right Nordstrom's is Von Maur's blueprint. BTW, Most of the fountain components were taken out in the early 90s if I remember right, and then the tile base was taken out when they redid the mall and added a food court on the other side a little later. I've been going to that Mall since I can remember.

Tue Dec 04, 02:24:00 PM  

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