1897 : First Kresge Dime Store Opens in Detroit

March 20, 2018 all-day

On March 20, 1897, Sebastian Spering Kresge and associates opened the first Kresge dime store in Detroit, carrying over 1500 items costing a dime or less.  Kresge Store #1 would go on to become one of the top three such stores in the country, making Kresge very wealthy.

The company was renamed the Kmart Corporation in 1977, and evolved into today’s Sears Holdings Corporation, parent of Kmart and Sears.

In 1924 Kresge established The Kresge Foundation, a non-profit organization whose income he specified simply “to promote the well-being of mankind.” By the time of his death, Kresge had given the foundation over $60,000,000

Source : Bill Loomis, On this Day in Detroit History (2016), p.49.

Also see S. S. Kresge wikipedia entry.

S. S. Kresge Obituary, New York Times, October 19, 1966.

Note:  Kresge bought half-ownership in two 5 and 10 stores in Detroit and Memphis in 1897 with John G. McCrory; by 1899 he was sole owner of the Detroit store and went on from there to build a retail empire.

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