Classic picture courtesy of GUman
Location: 471 Main Street, Chatham, NJ
Thanks to GUman we're treated to a before and after here in Chatham. Acme opened in this spot back in March 1966. The store closed around 1988-89. I very distinctly remember the day I heard they were pulling the plug. I had been by the Chatham store many times on the way to my Aunt's house but had never gone in. Riding along with the rents back in those days. As much as I wanted to say "Can we go in the Acme?", I didn't. My cousin told me the place was not in good shape and they didn't shop there. Too bad because the outside was pretty cool! An early Colonial Cottage model, the earliest one we've seen on the blog. Acme clearly had these stores going up during the pitched-roof era. I had pegged this model coming more towards the end of that era.
How about that classic photo? Interesting variation to the fish-eye sign. Three squares on either side of the sign all done in white. Nice touch with the gate along the roof-line. First time we're seeing either feature on the blog. I remember thinking this Acme looked unusual when we would pass it. Perhaps they tried to make it a little classier with Chatham being an affluent town.
The Acme building is now occupied by a CVS and some other smaller stores. The front side appears to have been completely rebuilt. I could find no scars along the brick walls or sidewalk to indicate the location of Acme's doors or windows. The side and rear do reveal some evidence of Acme...
Around back we see the compressor room doors. Steal lifting bar above has been removed.
Break room and bathroom windows.
From the front, you'd never know it had been an Acme. Certainly looked better back in the Acme days.
Heading back in time...
Brand new in 1966!
The Acme looks to have taken the place of the building in the left.
Flying over to a nearby competitor of the Acme...
A Kings food store just down the street from the Acme. Kings was on the scene as of 1979.
An odd set up for a grocery store. Blink and you'll miss it . The store has no windows facing out to the street.
I've added Kings to this post for two reasons... first, the company is currently being run by Acme's former President, Judy Spires. Secondly, the chain has just announced aggressive plans for the future with a rebranding of their stores and their website. You can read about the rebranding at Supermarket News. Check out the new logo and revamped website here. I don't care for the new tagline "Where inspiration strikes." There's nothing positive about the word "strikes", especially in the grocery store industry.
Not the most inviting of stores. The inside is quiet nice...
Yep, the iPhone 4S needs to be held dead still to get a sharp picture. Looks like that managed to happen only in aisle 4.
Maybe just 7 or 8 aisles. The last few weren't numbered. They're also shorter here to make room for the Deli and Bakery up front.
Kings stores are much smaller than in size to regular grocery stores. They specialize in carrying higher end selection of the products. You won't pay more for your groceries. I was doing some price comparisons and found several items here significantly higher than at Whole Foods!
Views from Main Street...
Through the years...
No idea what was located here back in '70.
Kings will be remodeling it's stores along with their latest rebranding effort. The Bedminster store was the first to get remodeled and just had it's grand reopening last Friday . You can read more about that on mycentraljersey.com. I plan on checking out the store in the near future. I would have liked to include some coverage of it in this post but could not squeeze a visit in before this post was to go up.