Yesterday the homes of suburbia. Today, the shopping centers. Behold the Mall, before the mall.

Not everyone had a big climate-controlled indoor retail establishment down the road. Towns had strip malls, an ugly name for a “Shopping Center.”

They are now derided, mostly because they’re car-centric: all that empty space for parking. But look what you could do: grocery, shoes, a variety store, a drug store. Exceptionally convenient. There were two grocery stores, actually - Kroger, of course, and Colonial at the end.

Does it look better today? You be the judge:

Looks as if it had the flesh stripped from the bones.

So: why is the shopping center regarded with horror by the urbanists, but this gets a pass?

Because it’s brick?

This is the main shopping drag for Forsyth, and it looks odd because there’s nothing across the street. But it’s basically a strip mall, except from the 20s


Here's another, in bold newspaper ad form:

No parking out front, no interior courtyards - it's actually a fine little small-town Main Street, in its own way. But it's hated by the urbanists because you have to drive to get there, and there are highways, etc.

But people loved it.

The entire complex was redone:

Not to tell you something you don't know, but when I see an ad like this . . . .

. . . I have to see what's there know.

The sign of an old grocery store. I mean, literally, the sign. That tells you it was a post-war grocery store.

What made me smile was the backside of the strip mall.

That's a survivor.




Sugarcane 99, which isn’t, but it is, but it . . . isn’t?

As long as we’re touting Squibb’s curious foray into sweeteners:

Sweeta girls. They have concentration.

Here are the storyboards for another Sweeta ad. Are those people in heaven?

We conclude with this week's Hiatal Contest:

A 1924 newspaper contest that went on forever.

I couldn't find the answer key, so we're going to be on our own.