Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Mission Valley Center

San Diego, California - 1970's

Thanks to John Chilson of Stumptown Confidential, for this wonderful submission!

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Moorestown Mall

Moorestown, New Jersey


Stunning shot of the golden eagle fountain in front of the John Wanamaker store!

1960's (see enlarged monkey detail below!)

I posted this postcard of the monkey cage before, but this is a nicer version.

Bonus monkey cage porn! It's a little difficult to pick out the actual monkeys in the wider shot above, but those suckers are definitely in there. So I blew that photo up and zoomed in so we could see our furry little Moorestown friends a little better. Click the photo and sit close to the monitor so you can pretend you're a kid again and you're standing there peering into the cage while mom is off shopping elsewhere in the mall! ;)

I can spot two here, both near the top. There's one hanging down on the left by both arms, and one on the right hanging by one arm. Can you see them? I have no idea if there were actually more in this cage (the bottom portion is tough to make out), but at least we can make out two of them for sure. I think the keeper's door is right there facing us.

On a side note, you can't tell me kids (and probably some adults, too) didn't throw popcorn and junk in there to the monkeys all the time. I bet those guys ate all kinds of things they shouldn't have. I'm pretty sure popcorn and wads of cotton candy aren't a part of their normal diet in the jungles of South America. At least, I don't think it is.

Moorestown's current website.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Fashion Fair Mall

Fresno, California - 1975

Wow, what a great interior shot. '70s avacado! :) I really like the sillouetted woman in the foreground. Nice moody scene.

Fashion Fair's current website.

Urban Shopping Center

"Urban Shopping Center"
painting by Mike Jones

Midway Mall

Elyria, Ohio - 1970

And also click right here to see a larger, better-quality version of the above photo, in b&w. (Image source.)

Elyria, Ohio - 1970

Awesome interior fountain photo! (Image source.)

Midway's current generic website.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Walt Whitman Mall

Huntington Station, New York - 1960s

'60s kitsch and design at its best! I really like how the photographer used the tree on the left as a framing device. Great shot and unique perspective, almost like we're hiding and peeking out from it. Shhh...don't mind us, we're just time travelers from the future, snooping around Walt Whitman Mall...

Hollywood Mall

Hollywood, Florida - 1960s

From postcard: "Leisurely shopping in the fully air-conditioned fabulous Hollywood Mall Center in beautiful Hollywood, Florida."

Beautiful is the key word here. Wow!

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Cherry Hill Shopping Center

I'm really breaking out one of the big guns now! I give you a taste of the Cherry -- Cherry Hill Mall, at long last...

Cherry Hill, New Jersey - 1960's

From postcard: "View of part of the huge Cherry Hill Shopping Center, the unique shopping world of over 100 stores and shops all under one roof with enormous parking facilities for over 10,000 cars."

And look! There's a nice outside shot of the Woolworth's in the mall, as well as the oh-so-cool Harvest House cafeteria! Remember those? :)

Cherry Hill, New Jersey - 1960's

From postcard: "On the Mall ... at the Cherry Hill Shopping Center! View of the colorful and delightfully exotic tropical gardens of Cherry Court amid this unique shopping world of over 100 stores and shops all under one roof, completely air conditioned and heated for year-round comfort."

I love this shot! It's sort of like you died and went to heaven, isn't it? Look, there's an angel waiting for you over at the, er, wooden bridge (who needs pearly gates, right?)! But wait a minute--we are at the right place, right?! This is heaven, isn't it? Cuz Hell could easily look like this, too, I think! Heheh.

Vintage Shopping center ephemera

Arlen Shopping Center stock certificate, dated March 20, 1970.

Retro Sears sneakers ad

Here's a wonderful old '70s Sears ad for their Winners sneakers! Click the photo to see it in all its beautiful nostalgic glory! Image sourced here.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Vintage shopping radio spots!

Hey gang! I think a lot of you are going to dig this. I know I sure do.

Here are some old shopping center and department store radio spots I've scrounged around and collected. These were all culled from old radio recordings, and they vary somewhat in volume, so I advise you to be ready to adjust yours from one file to the next. Quality varies, too; some sound great, some terrible.

Vintage commercials like these, really capture the magical vibe and lure of retro shopping spaces. Download these babies, throw 'em all into your MP3 player of choice, close your eyes and let the magic begin! It's also kind of cool to gaze at the pictures here on the blog, whilst listening to these groovy sounds.

The files are all in MP3 format and I'm trying out this free file hosting service for the first time with these, so we'll see how it goes. Hope it all works smoothly for everyone. Please drop me an e-mail or post here if you have any problems. Just follow the instructions closely at each link, and you should be good to go in no time. It's all pretty self-explanatory.

Pick your poison: download the complete collection in one handy zip file (6.24 MB), or each seperately below.

Cherry Hill Mall (1964) - Cherry Hill, NJ.

Federal Department Stores (10-17-67) Spot for Jonathan Moore suits at Federal's.

Gimbles (1969) - Just a few seconds here.

Kmart (1961) - Detroit area recording. Quite an infectious little ditty! Though it also makes me feel like I'm at a drive-in movie.

Kmart (1971) - Detroit area recording. Kmart is the savings place!

Korvettes (1970) - This short snippet almost sounds like it's pumping through the speakers in a mall or store!

Linoleum ('60s or '70s) - I think maybe they need to make their target message a little clearer.

Lits Department Store (1976) - Very short stinger message from a Philadelphia, PA area recording. Sounds like in-store speaker sound, too--almost like you'd hear this right when you walk in. It's actually just a snippet of a longer commercial spot I don't have in its entirety yet.

Pick and Pay (12-23-63) - Part of a Pick and Pay store spot from the Cleveland area. This, just a couple days before Christmas of 1963.

Robert Hall Clothing Stores (1955) - A classic jingle here, folks, with Les Paul and Mary Ford! It will be stuck in your head for days, I'm sorry to tell you. It's actually a cool little tune, and Les Paul's breezy guitar licks are dynamite! California area recording.

Robert Hall Clothing Stores (1964) - This song is like crack, man. Should be illegal. Heck, maybe it is, I don't know. California area recording.

Shopping mall
(1960's) - Small part of some unknown shopping mall or shopping center spot. And yes, the girl is actually saying "hep" there at the end. :)

Southgate Shopping Center (6-25-59) - Wow! Maybe my favorite of the bunch, because it really captures that retro dreamy, romantic feeling I have about old shopping malls and department stores. And just listen to that beautiful background muzak, too! Southgate sure sounds like paradise to me!

Career Girl Stores (1970's) - Oh yeah! Some hot, breathable polyester action! (This short clip via the fabulous DeeT's 70's Page!

Value City (1962) - Cleveland, Ohio area recording. The little ditty at the end of this one is great! Value City is a dreeeeeam! Indeed.

Welp, hope you've enjoyed the sounds! Yes, there's more to come... :)

Sunday, August 14, 2005

NorthPark Center

Dallas, Texas - 1960's

Man, there's beauty in that sparseness. Does look sort of quiet and lonely, though, doesn't it? But I like it. Very peaceful and reflective.

NorthPark today!

And in certain areas anyway, this mall looks relatively (and surprisingly) unchanged. Just look at the photo above and compare it to the same shot in the old postcard at the top--not much changed there! I love it.

And this is one of the few malls I've seen that actually has a great website, with an apparent appreciation for their own history (visit their "NorthPark Experience" section). Way to go, NorthPark! Judging by the photos on their site, and the overall vibe there, it still looks like a cool mall. Can anyone report on what it's actually like today?

York County Shopping Center

Souvenir from the 1963 Antique Auto Show in the York County Shopping Center in York, Pennsylvania.

Southcenter Mall

Tukwila, Washington - 1960's

I see this listed as Westfield "Shoppingtown" Southcenter, a lot now (though not on this postcard). Not sure if that "Shoppingtown" part is a newer moniker, or if it's always been called that.

Either way, here's a nice shot of an old Penneys, and the parking lot with all those glorious '60s cars down there! Their current website.

Friday, August 12, 2005

Vintage dimestore ads

While not shopping malls exactly, I thought I'd highlight some cool vintage dimestore ephemera, since it still manages to evoke the same kinds of memories and feelings. Here are some great old Ben Franklin ads from the '70s! Check out some of these prices, too! :) Hopefully, gazing at these babies will really take you back like they do me. Enjoy...


September, 1977

February, 1977

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Yahoo! likes old malls!

MALLS OF AMERICA was featured as Yahoo's 'Pick of the Day' today! Very cool. You can view the entry right here!

Many thanks to Yahoo! for the honor! And thanks to everyone visiting and, more importantly, interacting by making submissions and/or filling in more memories and details in the various posts here! You guys all make this a really fun place to hang out (in year-round, air-conditioned comfort, of course)! :)

Lafayette Square Mall

Indianapolis, Indiana - '60s or '70s

View of the beautiful center concourse area.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Topanga Plaza Shopping Center

Canoga Park, California - '60s or '70s

Color balance is a little muddled on this one, but you get the idea. More of note here, are those clear super-funky tubes running down from the cieling, straight into the garden area below! What's up with that?! Just looking at it, I'm assuming that maybe water trickled down those babies? If so, this is one of the coolest features I've seen in any mall so far! Just such a groovy, far-out idea, don't you think! :)

There also appears to be some nice lighting down there around the tubes, so I'm betting this was quite a sight in the evening, when the whole thing was turned on and running! If the tubes aren't for water, then I have no idea what's going on there. Anyone know this mall from back in the day, who can shed some light on this for us?

Topanga's still there, apparently, and they've just begun construction on a major expansion to the mall. Here's their current, generic Westfield-owned website.

Gulfgate Shopping Center

Houston, Texas - 1950's

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Vintage Kresge patch

1960's or '70s

An old Kresge uniform sew-on patch. Kresge would soon become Kmart. You're cool if you actually remember when it was Kresge!

This patch is sweet vintage old school, man.

Midtown Plaza Mall

Rochester, New York - 1960's

"America's Town Square"

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Edgewater Plaza Shopping City

Biloxi, Mississippi - 1960's

Now we're cookin' with gas! The postcard above, and awesome snapshots below, were all kindly submitted by Malls of America regular, Cora Buhlert, in Germany. Thanks, Cora! I love these pictures and appreciate you taking the time to locate and share them. Be sure and drop Cora a line if you need any web designing done, among other things. She has some great International services to offer.

The pictures below were all taken in Edgewater Plaza in 1978. Behold the beauty of that wonderful fountain up close and personal now. What a treat!

Finally, the two bonus photos below, of Cora (age 5) and her mom next to the famous Golden Fisherman statue in the old Vieux Marche' shopping plaza district in Biloxi, were also taken in 1978. The statue was moved to Point Cadet (Biloxi) in 2002. And hey, check out the old Woolworth's store there on the left! Coolage. Betty Gay stores I've never heard of. Are they still around?

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Paramus Park Mall

Paramus, New Jersey - 1982

Souvenir Mickey Mantle button from a public appearance.

Gateway Mall

Lincoln, Nebraska - 1960's

Plaza area.

Belden Village Mall

Canton, Ohio - 1960's or early '70s

Current website.

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