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Hudson's: Detroit's Legendary Department Store (MI) (Images of America) Paperback – November 1, 2004

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Hudson's:  Detroit's  Legendary  Department  Store   (MI)  (Images  of  America) + Remembering Hudson's:: The Grand Dame of Detroit Retailing (Images of America Series) + Sanders  Confectionery   (MI)  (Images  of  America)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Arcadia Publishing (November 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0738533556
  • ISBN-13: 978-0738533551
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 0.3 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #55,128 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Utilizing many of Davis Hillmer's exquisite images, as well as those from other collections, authors Michael Hauser and Marianne Weldon have captured the glory years of Detroit's famous retail entity. Michael Hauser is marketing manager for the Detroit Opera House and was guest curator for the "Remembering Downtown Hudson's" exhibit at the Detroit Historical Museum. Marianne Weldon is an objects conservator working for the Detroit Historical Museums as their collections coordinator.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

42 of 44 people found the following review helpful By Tim Janson HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on December 3, 2004
Format: Paperback
I was too young to remember Hudson's dept. store in it's heyday of the 40's and 50's. But I do still have fond memories of staring at the wonderful chrismas displays in their windows when I was a child attending the annual Hudson's Thanksgiving day parade.

This wonderful little book by Michael Hauser details hudson's history from it's initial construction to it's final, sad, demolition. At it's peak, the massive Hudsons store spanned an entire city block and employed more than 10,000 employees.

Through his text and archival photos, you'll see as Hudsons was built from a single building to a sprawling complex of many buildings over the years. The great photography includes many shots of those great christmas displays in the windows as well as the yearly interior holiday decorating themes, and shots of the classic parade.

This is the tale of a store that was once a one-stop shopping location for everything: Clothes, Furniture, appliances, Toys, tools...truly the days of a multiple floor dept. store. And Hudson's serviced everything, from appliances to fur coats.

Among the most interesting parts and photos deal with the amazing instrastructure of the store...the massive power and boiler rooms to keep the place heated and lighted...the floor dedicated to the storage of over 500 elevator motors. The multitude of pneumatic tubes that went to every corner of the complex, the in house switchboard and operator dept. The store even had its own on-site hospital with 4 full-time doctors and 6 nurses.

Hudson's was truly a city unto itself in its prime. A place for members of high society to shop for expensive fur coats and jewelry and for the common man to shop for t-shirts, get a haircut, or a shoeshine.

A step back in time to an era we will never see again. Highly recommended!
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Cindy Jamroz on August 9, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Anyone who shopped in Detroit's once bustling downtown Woodward corridor should have this book. Starting in the 1930's my grandmother would take the bus downtown at least once a week to shop at Hudson's and the surrounding stores. As a young girl in the mid 1960's, I occasionally traveled with her and some of my earliest and fondest memories are of wandering around the upper 12 floors and two basement levels of merchandise. You would drop your coats off on the forth floor, have lunch on the mezzanine or perhaps the basement cafeteria, shop all afternoon, catch an early dinner at the Riverview room on the 13th floor and then head home with your purchases shipped to your home within a day or two. It was truly an experience that no mall today can come close to. The book consists mostly of photographs and each is sure to spark memories for anyone who had the pleasure of shopping at Hudson's. Photographs cover the start and gradual expansion of the store through it's heyday years in the 1950's followed by it's slow demise in the late 1960's up to demolition day. The most enjoyable photos for me were of ToyTown that covered the usual toy department along with a massive Christmas holiday display and home to the "real" Santa Clause in the adjoining two story auditorium on the 12th floor. I cried the day the store was demolished and I am sure that Grandma was rolling in her grave but this book helped to rekindle my memories of the place and relive a very enjoyable part of my childhood.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By E. Mendoza on January 28, 2006
Format: Paperback
In today's increasingly competitive retail market, it's nice to see books documenting regional department stores. I have my fond memories of J.L. Hudson (known to me as just "Hudson's").

Before the merger with "Dayton's" and then then later re-named as "Marshall Field's" in the 1990's, I have fond memories of Hudson's - particularly the downtown Detroit location. When I was a child, my sister and I would be overwhelmed with the Christmas decorations. The picture with Santa; the imfamous "Santa Bear" - (later adopted by Field's). My mother would enjoy shopping in the "Oval Room" for her shoes, along with "Woodward" suits for my dad. It was the place for that one stop shopping: clothing, furniture, even appliances.

Nevertheless, what gave Detroit, particularly Michigan, an identity - other than the big three auto companies, K-Mart, Meijer, and Motown music, was Hudson's.

The effects of the current onslaught of department store mergers is evident. In several metropolitan areas, communities are losing their store (i.e. Kaufmann's; Robinson-May; Foley's, etc) "identity" as Federated Department Stores continue with re-branding old time stores into "Macy's" into a national brand.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Dr. J. Olin Shrock on April 29, 2009
Format: Paperback
Hudson's, the legendary department store in Detroit, has it's history told from inception to it's final demise with an implosion of the flagship store. The book presents both inside glimpses of the 25 floor building, as well as exterior shots of the ever changing facade.

The book presents it's story with a wealth of pictures and diagrams of how the building evolved over the years. The author explains the significance of each picture without the reader having to read long boring chapters. Once I started the book I couldn't put it down. I remember the building very well and was impressed with the thoroughness of the authors' research.

The book is a must read for anyone studying Detroit in it's Golden Age. The book reads quickly and presents itself very well. I would recommend it to everyone.
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