There are so many things to notice about this photo taken in 1959 of the north side of 50th Street, (Ben Franklin store's address is 3906 W. 50th Street.)
1. The cars. There is a "Back to the 50s" car show in Minneapolis this weekend. You'll probably see a lot of cars on local roadways that look like this. If these drivers only knew how valuable their cars would be....
2. Ben Franklin store. Although many generations remember the "dime store," younger people have no idea what Ben Franklin or Woolworth's was like. A couple of visitors equated it with today's dollar store, but I don't think that's the right comparison. Dollar stores are filled with merchandise that didn't sell at regular retail outlets and the prices are slashed accordingly. Ben Franklin was a variety store filled with everything from toys to needles and thread.
3. Klad-ezee, a children's clothing store. No one has ever talked to me about this store. Perhaps it was a short-lived business, or children of the day weren't thrilled with clothes shopping.
4. Belleson's, a landmark business at 50th and France. Belleson's Country Club Market near 44th and France was owned by the father; the son chose to go into the men's clothing store business.
5. Town and Country Hardware.
If you have any information or memories about these businesses, please comment.
Below is a Google image of what the strip of businesses looked like a couple of years ago. Tejas, a long-standing restaurant, is gone now. As you slide up and down the street, different vehicles are seen, including a motorcycle and vans. In 50 years, maybe they'll have a "Back to the Mini-Van" weekend at the State Fairgrounds. Perhaps you should hang onto your Sienna or Caravan.
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