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Showing posts from July, 2021

Coming Soon!

Our next group of stores continues just to the south along the eastern edge of the state from Elizabeth. Beginning in Carteret, we'll be wandering through Iselin, an unincorporated part of Woodbridge Township inland a bit (along with a few stops just over the border in Edison along the way) before passing through Metuchen, Fords, and Hopelawn (between Iselin and Perth Amboy), and finally ending up in downtown Perth Amboy where we'll take a look at most of the grocery stores there. In the interest of keeping the groups more geographically focused and shorter, this will only take up the next two and a half weeks or so but we'll be seeing stores here as well as on  The Independent Edition  and  The Market Report . Come back to The Market Report tomorrow to see our first stop to the north! BUT WAIT, THERE'S MORE! We have some updates at a few stores we've previously toured! Check them out here: SuperFresh - Passaic, NJ Stop & Shop - Allwood, Clifton, NJ ShopRite - B

25 S Broad St, Elizabeth, NJ

Original Tenant:  A&P Address:  25 S Broad St, Downtown, Elizabeth, NJ Opened:  ca. 1970 Closed:  1996 Later Tenants:  Supremo Foodmarket Photographed:  1994, June 2020 Today's snapshot is a 1994 image of (sign of) the A&P Sav-A-Center in downtown Elizabeth! The 33,000 square foot store was built around 1970, probably as a replacement for multiple smaller locations in downtown Elizabeth. Two years after this picture, following the A&P's closure, it was subdivided into a 22,000 square foot Supremo Food Market and an 11,000 square foot Rite Aid (now a Walgreens). We've previously toured the Supremo here . Unfortunately, the above photo is the only one I have -- in my defense, the Supremo predates me. And the photo was more intended to show the St. Elizabeth's hospital before it was demolished, given that most of my father's side of the family was born here. Today it is Trinitas Medical Center and looks rather different . Similarly, the Sup

214 Rahway Ave, Elizabeth, NJ

Original Tenant:  ACME Markets Address:  214 Rahway Ave, Downtown, Elizabeth, NJ Opened:  1950s Closed:  unknown Later Tenants:  CVS/subdivided Photographed:  June 2020 Just to the southwest of downtown Elizabeth is this former ACME that has now been subdivided into an Advance Auto Parts and a CVS. Other than probably the loading docks , there's basically nothing left over from ACME unfortunately. Until maybe 10 years ago, it seems there was an ACME trailer complete with the 1970s logo parked behind the store that was visible from the train line which passes behind the store. I am unaware of an older ACME here in Elizabeth, though there likely was at least one older store in the city, and this store probably closed in the 1980s with no replacement. Up next we have a really interesting photo here on Grocery Archaeology!

151-155 Elmora Ave, Elizabeth, NJ

Original Tenant:  One Stop Kosher Market / Jaspan Bros. Hardware Address:  151-155 Elmora Ave, Elmora, Elizabeth, NJ Opened:  unknown Closed:  N/A Later Tenants:  Econo Super Carniceria > La Conga Supermarket > International Supermarket Photographed:  2008 Another historical photo here in Elizabeth! Okay, 2008 isn't too historical but the pictures look a lot older than they actually are because they were shot on a disposable film camera. And, might I add, developed at the CVS just 400 yards from this store. This is a 2008 look at the One Stop Kosher Market and neighboring Jaspan Bros. Hardware (known by everyone as simply Jaspan's). The kosher market is still in business but the hardware store has been several grocery stores after it closed. Today, Jaspan's is the International Supermarket ... ...and the kosher market has a new awning. Up next we're heading towards downtown Elizabeth for a look at a small bodega on The Independent Edit

190 Elmora Ave, Elizabeth, NJ

Original Tenant:  Food Fair Address:  190 Elmora Ave, Elmora, Elizabeth, NJ Opened:  1960s Closed:  1970s Later Tenants:  Pantry Pride > Mayfair Foodtown > Cost Cutters > Elmora Farmers Market/Dollar General Photographed:  ca. 2005, 2008 Repeating that first picture from our 2017 store tour of the Elmora Farmers Market , which takes up a little more than half of this former supermarket. This time, we have a little more material. Namely, a glimpse of the Food Fair arch still intact as late as 2005... Okay, yes, this is a picture of the Dunkin' Donuts outparcel. But you can see the yellow arch in the background of the image! (The Dunkin' Donuts was for a very long time a favorite hangout of my family's older members, along with the White Castle on the other side of the train tracks.) But for a better picture... Here's a look at the store under construction back in 2008. This is very interesting to me... apparently the facade was renov

1319 Magie Ave, Union, NJ

Original Tenant:  ACME Markets Address:  1319 Magie Ave, Union, NJ Opened:  1957 Closed:  2006 Later Tenants:  CVS Photographed:  October 2016 Now we're getting really close to Elizabeth -- in fact, the other side of Magie Avenue is Elizabeth, while this side is Union. The newer of the ACMEs on Magie Avenue, this 1957 store replaced a much smaller 1940s-era store just to the east at 950 Magie . Believe it or not, this six-aisle, 17,000 square foot store actually lasted until 2006. It was a very successful store and got many customers fed up with the not one but two nearby A&Ps -- my family included. We shopped at both A&Ps (now a newer ACME and a Seabra's ) and this store, but always generally found this store better if smaller. Acme Style has their usual extensive coverage, including pictures of the store as an ACME, here . And I know we've been almost  in Elizabeth a lot. But we have one more store before we can actually make it into the c

360 Chestnut St, Union, NJ

Original Tenant: unknown (possibly Grand Union) Address: 360 Chestnut St, Union, NJ Opened:  by the 1960s Closed:  unknown Later Tenants:  subdivided Photographed:  January 2021 Shoutout to the Union Township Historical Society 's website for helping me with this one! I'd felt like this was a supermarket for many years, having grown up blocks away from this store, but I didn't actually have confirmation. In fact, I think someone told me this was a bowling alley. Not sure if that was ever true or not, but it certainly was a supermarket. The 12,000 square foot building anchors a strip mall that also contains Times Farm , a small produce market I am very familiar with. Now let's get into the history of this store. Historic Aerials shows that the building was originally a freestanding structure built some time in the 50s, and the front wall faced Five Points, the intersection just at the end of this strip mall. The strip mall was built the following decade, extending out t

595 Chestnut St, Union, NJ

Original Tenant: Safeway Address: 595 Chestnut St, Union, NJ Opened:  by 1953 Closed:  unknown Later Tenants:  various non-grocery tenants Photographed:  June 2021 One of three posts today! This small 3700 square foot store was probably built in the 1930s or 40s as a Safeway, and still has the distinctive brick facade today. It's been a car dealer or some car-related business as long as I've known it, and I grew up just a few blocks behind this store (I went to Washington Elementary right nearby for kindergarten and first grade before moving, by the way). I believe that the store later moved down to Five Points , and that location was later sold to Grand Union. That strip mall today also has a small greengrocer shop called Times Farm . Tomorrow we're going to see another former supermarket in the same area, right here on Grocery Archaeology!

1448 Morris Ave, Union, NJ

Original Tenant:  unknown (possibly Grand Union) Address:  1448 Morris Ave, Union, NJ Opened:  unknown Closed:  unknown Later Tenants:  Buy Rite Liquors Photographed:  May 2020 This is a store I've long thought originated as a supermarket, though of course I could be wrong. It bears some similarities to 1950s-era supermarkets, and I am vaguely aware of there being a Grand Union on Morris Avenue in Union (although that could refer to a now-demolished supermarket on Morris Ave in Elizabeth, or perhaps the Grand Union on Morris Ave in Springfield to the west). If this was ever a supermarket, it's also quite possible it was an independent store or a store without standardized models, such as ShopRite or Foodtown. This side of the store -- the tower, the brick, and the columns -- really looks like a former supermarket. Can anyone identify it? Anyway, we're going just to the north to Hillside, where we've previously seen a ShopRite , to see the towns

Coming Soon!

  Our next stop is in the Elizabeth area! Oh sure, we've  been to Elizabeth before , even with a  whole week dedicated to it , but this time we're finishing up the last few stores in and immediately around the city that we haven't seen yet. We'll start to the northwest of the city with the rest of Union, Hillside, and Roselle, then through the city and finishing up out in Linden. Among our stops is a newly renovated store each just outside Elizabeth and in the city, a few small produce markets, the newest supermarket in Elizabeth, and even some historical photos of stores around the city (since this is the city where my family is from)! We're going to begin on Morris Avenue tomorrow with a former supermarket here on Grocery Archaeology. BUT WAIT, THERE'S MORE! I recently took a trip to NYC to visit some new stores. We won't be seeing the bulk of the stores just yet, but we have three  brand-new supermarkets  in Queens we're taking a look at today in Spec

52-56 Westfield Ave - Clark, NJ

Original Tenant:  Mayfair Foodtown Address: 52-56 Westfield Ave, Clark, NJ Opened:  unknown Closed:  1989 Later Tenants:  A&P (1989-2006) Photographed:  December 2020 Quite the relic here in downtown Clark. This 24,000 square foot building was built as a Mayfair Foodtown, later being sold to A&P in 1989. A&P, in turn, moved a little over a mile northwest to the location that's now ACME in 2006. Since then, the space has remained vacant, with A&P even holding on to the lease until 2012. The township, then, condemned the space in 2018 with plans to forcibly acquire the store by eminent domain, although I'm not sure where those plans stand now. As much as a retail relic like this excites me, I also understand it's quite the eyesore in a downtown location. The building's exterior has deteriorated extensively over the years, with paint peeling and mold forming around the walls. I believe the panels above the doors here are something to do with ventilation,