S. H. Kress Co. was a national chain of "five and dime" stores across the country. A large Kress store was built at 14th Street and Broadway in 1926. 1 The building was torn down in [ __? ].
The store opened to great fanfare on August 2, 1926. As was the case with many other Kress stores, it was designed by their in-house team of architects and designers. It featured a 76 foot long candy counter, and a 150 foot long lunch counter.
Kress (and Woolworth's) refused service to blacks at the lunch counters in its southern stores. Across the country, civil rights activists organized pickets and sit-ins in response. Locally, one of the protesters was C. L. Dellums. 2
By 1971, the downtown store had closed [?], and Kress was at the Eastmont Mall. 5
Although the Kress building in Oakland was torn down, a beautiful Kress store in Berkeley is still standing. 3
Links and References
- S. H. Kress & Co. on Wikipedia
- Four-Story Store Structure of S. H. Kress Opens Today on Central Corner Oakland Tribune August 2, 1926
- C.L. Dellums: An Oakland Civil Rights Hero oaklandlibrary.org
The evolution of a downtown corner berkeleyheritage.com
Store Picketed Here Oakland Tribune March 27, 1960
ad Oakland Tribune October 13, 1974