I found this video a while back. It’s about two of the Carson Pirie Scott & Co. locations in the Chicago area, one of which, the one at Edens Plaza in Wilmette, Illinois, was the one I worked at from 1974 to 1976. The video was shot during the going out of business sale in 2018.

I feel funny watching it. Sad, certainly. I start remembering all the people I worked with there and wonder how many of them are also "out of business," as it were. At one point in the video, they show what the place looked like when I worked there, and all I can think is they really put a lot of work into the place in the years after I left. It was hardly the same place when it closed.

Apparently, the store is still there, sitting empty, still with the name on the building. The same is true of the furniture store in another building, which the guy who made the video said was going to be a medical facility of some type.

That got me to wondering about the other stores, especially the main store on State Street, with its Louis B. Sullivan storefront and everything. Part of the first floor is a CVS Pharnmacy, another part is a Target, but the building was ten stories high. What happened to the rest of it? Was it converted to apartments or condos, into offices, or is that just dead air? Seems like an awful waste if it is.

11 thoughts on “Writers Workshop: FINAL DAYS! EVERYTHING MUST GO!

  1. I like watching videos about abandoned buildings and homes, but there is a sense of eeriness and sadness. Such a waste and so much life lived in them!


    1. The really sad ones are the ones where the property has gone to seed, there’s graffiti all over everything, scavengers have been in to steal all the copper wire… I have to give some of the urban explorers credit: I’d be scared to death to try and walk through some of the places.


  2. Never heard of it, but video was interesting. Where I live the “mall” that used to be a favorite hangout for everyone in the 90’s is pretty bare bones now. Penney’s left, Sears left, the Hallmark stores left, half the clothing shops are gone, the book store left. Always sad to see things go defunct.


    1. Carson’s was a department store chain that was pretty exclusive to Chicago, although they had some sort of arrangement with the Boston Store in Milwaukee. They changed hands a few times. I know Saks Fifth Avenue owned them for a time, and then they were sold to the Bon Ton Stores, which went out of business in 2018.

      I follow several YouTube channels that feature walk-thrus of various dead or dying shopping malls. It’s really kind of sad that so many of them have either gone belly-up or that so many retailers have left the malls. I traveled a lot and frequently visited the malls in the evening for lack of anything better to do…


  3. We never had this store here but it reminds me Sears and Eatons which were in business over a 100 years and now they are history.


      1. It is but i am thinking it will go under too. Unfortunately, like the others, they were bought out by the States and that’s when they went way down. The Bay has been around since the 1600s but they are now over-priced and people don’t seem to want to shop in a department store. Thank Walmart for this too.


    1. Field’s and Lord & Taylor were at Water Tower Place, but I don’t recall Carson’s being there. I worked at the Field’s and some friends worked at Lord & Taylor. Field’s became Macy’s, of course, and I don’t know what happened to Lord & Taylor.

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