The 3rd. Avenue A&P


In 1937, the 3rd Avenue A&P was one of the many downtown Huntington
 buildings damaged by that year’s devastating Ohio River flood.

Courtesy the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers


HUNTINGTON — The Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company, better known
 as A&P, was an American chain of grocery stores that operated from 1859 to
2015. From 1915 through 1975, A&P was considered such an American
 icon that, according to The Wall Street Journal, it “was as
 well-known as McDonald’s or Google is today.”

The chain was founded in 1859 by George Gilman who opened a
small group of retail tea and coffee stores in New York City,
 and then expanded to a national mail order business.

The firm grew to 70 stores by 1878. By 1900, it operated almost 200 stores.
 A&P grew dramatically by introducing the economy store concept in 1912,
growing to 1,600 stores by 1915. In 1930, A&P, by then the world’s
 largest retailer, reached $2.9 billion in sales ($47 billion today) with
16,000 stores. In 1936, the chain adopted the self-service
 supermarket concept. After decades of financial turmoil,
 a bankrupt A&P went out of business in 2015.

In the 1930s, an A&P store was located in downtown Huntington
on the south side of the 1000 block of 3rd Avenue. In 1937,
the 3rd Avenue A&P was one of the many downtown
Huntington buildings damaged by that year’s
 devastating Ohio River flood.

By the 1940s, the 3rd Avenue A&P was gone,
 having been replaced by a Kroger store

In the early 1970s, the former A&P was one of the several
buildings demolished to make way for the construction
of Harold Frankel’s downtown Holiday Inn, which
survives today as a DoubleTree by Hilton.


Note:  This Article and picture appeared in the Herald-Dispatch Newspaper on Jan. 24, 2023..


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