Saturday, May 11, 2013

Acme — Wilmington, DE

Photos courtesy of Ben from Delaware

Location: 2030 Naamans Road, Wilmington DE

Time for a stop in Delaware thanks to Ben. These pictures were sent in quite a while ago. 2 years to be exact. Not sure what took me so long to post them, especially with a shortage of Delaware posts on the blog. Better late than never! 

This store's last major overhaul and expansion happened in the early 90's. The pyramids, seen on either side, were standard issue in the short lived, yet totally awesome, Checkerboard Arch Decor era. The Acme at 1308 Centerville Road in Wilmington received a similar exterior treatment as did the former Acme in Wayne PA. Not exactly sure what sort of model stood here prior to that. The historic aerials show a pitched-roof building which pened back in 1963. Unfortunately there are no satellite images between 1971 and 2002 to fill in the blanks. Comparing those two years, it appears that a new building was built next to the original store which was then torn down to make way for a strip of stores. We'll see in the present day aerial images that the pitched-roof building was not incorporated into the current structure.

Update: The address of this store has been updated to Wilmington, Delaware. A commenter pointed out that the store is not located in Claymont, which I now see is correct when checking a map. I have seen and heard this store referred to as the "Claymont Acme" since the start of Acme Style. 

The apple filled windows and white signage indicate a Premium Fresh and Healthy remodel. The color scheme of the interior is a bit different from what we've seen in other stores. This entire remodel package, rolled out under SuperValu's leadership, has been
officially retired.

The PF&H remodel was pretty extensive here including new flooring.

Grass lined produce cases which is not typical. In most PF&H stores it is used over the frozen food and dairy cases.

The walls here seem to have a pink hue to them. I'm not sure if that's from Ben's camera or if these departments are painted that way. My pictures of this decor package tend to have a green hue. We will see that the wall along the dairy department is definitely painted a peach color. To see other stores with this decor package, and various versions of it, please click here.

More grass!

Now we're seeing some new wall colors for sure...

The Alberston's leaf was a significant element on the Premium Fresh and Healthy remodels. The giant leaves are kinda cool. These small ones are just too Albertsons for my taste. Fortunately they have been phased out along with this decor package. We'll have to see if the leaf comes back in the future as Albertsons is technically running the show again. The most recent Acme/SuperValu leaf-free decor package can be seen in the new Bryn Mawr store. Alberstons Market stores also have a new package which includes the leaf. You can take a look at one of their stores over on flickr.

Ben noted that the Floral Department has a walk-in case. We've seen a similar case in the now defunct Glasborro store.

Interesting to note as well... this store does not have a pharmacy.

It's hard to tell here but it doesn't appear like the Customer Service Department is built into the front of the store. It looks to be a free standing type set up. I am a fan of the drum pendant lights that hang down over the checkouts and usually throughout frozen... as long as they're kept clean.

Aerial Images...

The seam between old and new may run straight back from the right side pyramid peak. That's my guess anyway.

A Safeway is located directly across the street. This store was originally a Genuardis and was converted to Safeway in 2004.

Historic Satellite Images...



In 1971 you can see how the pitched-roof store stood to the right side of the new store. The screen grabs from 2002 and 1971 are lined up in identical locations. The buidlings on the left side of the image above were torn down prior to 2002. 



And now for a quick look at a nearby
former Acme...

Acme - Claymont, DE

Location: 691 Naamans Road, Claymont DE

The image above above is from Josh Austin's flickr collection. It was located 2 miles east of the current Claymont store. Back in 2010, Bill Haines sent in some info about this store...

"The first Super Saver in the Philadelphia Division was a new store that was located at I-95 and Naamans Road in Claymont, Delaware. It opened 3/26/1969. Same format [as North Jersey SuperSavers] with pretty close to the same results. As time went on certain remodeled stores were converted to Super Savers in the Philadelphia area."

Closing date for this store is unknown but a commenter on Josh's photo said the Total Wine opened in 1991.

The building has been wiped clean of nearly all of it's Acme attributes. There Super Saver roof along the front looks to still be intact but largely covered over by the new awning.

The back of the store has been significantly changed since it's Acme days. Hard to confirm if any Acme elements remain.



 Huge crowds back in 1970! 


  1. This Acme isn't in Claymont, it's in north Wilmington. (Which is not to be confused with the City of Wilmington. Most of unincorporated northern New Castle County in Delaware has a Wilmington address.O

  2. The Claymont Acme closed sometime in the early 2000's

    1. Agreed...I moved to PA back in 1995 (and started traveling sometime after) and that Acme was definitely still around during the late '90s.

  3. I have to disagree with Mr Ruffles above. There is no "good" name for this area. Claymont, Concordville, Talleyville, or Brandywine Hundred are all names that could be used. I even asked a friend, who has lived nearby in Arden his entire life. He said there is no specific name for where this Acme sits.

    North Wilmington is really a stretch. If you head north on Foulk Road from this ACME, you'll be in the state of Pennsylvania in a mere half mile!

    1. I agree that there is no good name for this area of the Brandywine Hundred but the address given for this Acme is Wilmington. It's definitely not within the Claymont limits nor is it in Concordville which is in Pennsylvania. It would be a stretch to call it Talleyville as that is by 202 (which has its own Acme).

      Brandywine Hundred is used to designate the northern part of New Castle County outside of the City of Wilmington so it's not really used as a specific location designation. North Wilmington is used by those of us who live here. (And it's certainly not a stretch as it's north of Wilmington proper. And you proved my point, it's so far north that it's south of the PA border.)

    2. I hear you. I guess I just tend to think of the word "north" as part of a city itself. As an example, North Philly is still inside Philly itself, the same as west, south, etc. To me, North Wilmington would be the northern parts within the city limits. Nontheless, you're right, this term could be used for this area, as well as many other terms. Of course, like you said, the Wilmington mailing address goes all over the northern part of the county. It's ridiculous.

      As for Concordville, yes people use that name in PA, but I've heard it used many times for the first mile or two of DE when crossing the state line on 202. For example, near the Target, Sullivan's Steakhouse, etc. Not to mention, the Concord Mall. If you don't consider the Target/Sullivan's to be in Concordville, what do you personally call that area?

    3. Good question. I would probably use the Brandywine name, because of the old race track that was there (where Brandywine Town Center now sits). Generically, I would probably just say "Concord Pike."

      I'm not a native Delawarean, so I don't know the proper place names and the history behind them, for the most part.

      I just find it kind of funny that I live at a New Castle address (but not in the city proper), but you could also address mail to my subdivision name, DE 19720 and I would still get it.

  4. The Rite Aid next to the current Acme looks like it dates back to the late 70s, so I would think the new store and strip would have been built around then, early 80s at the latest.

  5. I would call it Brandywine Hundred as well. In the biz, we referred to it as Acme F&N (Foulk and Naamans, the intersection it sits at).

    Most of the Acmes in Northern Delaware have a similar outside look to them. Hockessin, Pike Creek, and I believe Prices Corner as well. The Elkton MD store also has the pyramids. I'm guessing they were all built around the same time.

    The old Claymont store didn't sit empty long before the Total Wine expanded and moved into their space, if I remember correctly. It was a small store, dwarfed by the F&N store and a nearby Super Fresh that had recently opened (they moved from a much smaller location that was closer to I-495).


  7. Hey when I worked at that Acme it was knoiwn simply as Foulk & Namans. The Safeway was originaly a Channel Lumber. The Claymont store was a busy store un till Foulk and Namans was built. If you go to The Philadelphia Pike across from Mcdonalds and WAWa, you will fin d the second Claymont store that was a pitched roof affair. The original Claymont store is across the street from the Post Office and is now a sub storew, the building next to it was the original A@P both built in 1930. The Foodlion up the street from it was the second A@P and a Food Fair now a catering hall can be found on the pike. Thanks Gerry

  8. What a coincidence. I've driven by the shopping center at the corner of Philly Pike and Harvey Rd. in Claymont so many times but yesterday I was coming out of Wawa's Harvey Rd. exit and realized I was staring straight at an old pitched roof Acme. I'll have to try to swing by sometime to get some photos.

    So the building at the corner of Seminole Rd. and Philly Pike with Primo's Hoagie shop and apartments on the second floor is the original Acme? I'll have to take a look but I thought the building next to it was a church.

    1. I have a post ready to go for the former Claymont store on Philly Pike. So just using satellite images at the moment. If you could get some pics for us, I could finish up the post!

    2. I'll try and stop by there this week or next to get some exterior shots. Not sure if there's any interior left as the space has been chopped between two or three stores.

      I was just at the 1930 Claymont location Gerry pointed out and I just noticed where the column where the sign would have been. Not much else to show it was an Acme. Some apartments were added on in the back.

      Not sure about the 1930 A&P though. Next door is an old house that has been converted to offices and an old stone church next to that. The Food Lion was a former A&P/Superfresh before that moved about a couple miles down Philly Pike.

  9. Hi I should have been more clear the Primo building\d was actualy twp stores the Acme with the stair caqse to the side street and the A@P with a front door facing the pike not that uncommon for the times. I have seen pictures of it it a book about the pikes history. The old A@p on broad street in Palisades Park in the 49!s was tw3o stores and A@P and a Safeway. Safeway closed and the walls came down and A& P expanded with two basements. Gerry

  10. I'm sorry if I missed this in an earlier post, but I am wonodering if anyone remembers details or photos of the ACME that sat at Phila Pike and Harvey Rd in the 1970's - same center as Richard's Deli and Eckerd Drugs. That one did sit empty for many years. There were rampant unfounded rumors with Claymont youth that it would become a roller skating rink. In the many years since it has been a video rental store, a dance academy, a used book store, and is now an Aaron's.

  11. This is one of those few places (there's a spot in Dallas that's another) where an Albertsons brand and a Safeway brand "compete" head to head. What's the future for these stores?

  12. This store now has the "Quality Built" decor package. I visited yesterday 12/10/16 and the store looks fantastic.