Tuesday, July 25, 2017

How Sears—Sears!—disrupted retail

The Sears at 4201 Main, the oldest Sears in Houston. Photo: Godofredo A. Vasquez, Staff / Godofredo A. VasquezThe lifetime of Sears has spanned, and embodied, the rise of modern American consumer culture. The 130-year-old mass merchandiser that was once the largest retailer in the United States is part of the fabric of American society.

From its start as a 19th-century mail-order firm, to its heyday on Main Street and in suburban malls, and from its late 20th-century reorientation toward credit and financial products to its attempted return to its original retail identity, Sears has mirrored the ups and downs of the American economy.. . . more

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