New location list: Dubuque 1925-1990

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Great Pumpkin
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New location list: Dubuque 1925-1990

Post by Groceteria » 24 Apr 2018 20:12

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Andrew T.
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Re: New location list: Dubuque 1925-1990

Post by Andrew T. » 06 May 2018 10:45

Back in 2011 I was trapped in Wisconsin by my circumstances, and I applied for a job in Platteville in the hopes that I could scoot down the road to Dubuque a few months later. So, there's that.

The midwestern states are something of grocery enigmas, with a lot of variation from city to city and a high historical proportion of independents. Iowa is no exception, and the state was also the subject of 1930s anti-chain legislation that shaped its retail history.

Hy-Vee is Iowa's dominent grocer today, but they started near the central Iowa-Missouri border and took their time working north and east. Dubuque may have been one of their last in-state conquests; the Hy-Vee name doesn't show up in the spreadsheet until 1990.

Kroger is another grocery chain with just a single, solitary store on the list; and given its short life (and Kroger's historical weakness in adjacent states) I'm surprised that they ever operated in Dubuque at all. The store building is long-gone, but its site is now home to a two-story U.S. Bank building that gives me mid-century modern vibes.
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Re: New location list: Dubuque 1925-1990

Post by 47of74 » 17 Apr 2019 16:11

I grew up and currently live near Dubuque and if I remember right Hy-Vee had purchased the Save-u-More and was running the Dubuque store on Asbury Road while building their first store in Dubuque at 3500 Dodge Street. Once that was up and running they closed down the Save-U-More and moved everything over to the new Hy-Vee. I think that happened in the mid 1980s.

When I was growing up Eagle's was the dominant grocery store around here, with three locations. One on Locust Street, one on JFK, and one on Elm Street. When Eagle's went bankrupt in the early 2000s Hy-Vee purchased the Locust St. site. At the time they said they were going to remodel the building and reopen it as a Hy-Vee since it wasn't all that old, but ultimately tore it down and put up a new store. (I remember emailing Hy-Vee several times because they seemed to be dawdling about putting up a new store and without Eagle's the south end had no grocery store to ask when the Locust St. store was going to open). The old JFK store became a Big Lots for several years and now houses both a Fareway and a Dollar Tree. The Elm Street location is still an Eagle Country Market, but it's an independent operation that has no connection to the original company.

Another store that we had in Dubuque was EconoFoods on 3355 John F. Kennedy Circle. That store had opened in 1986 and operated until 2010. There was the increased competition from Hy-Vee and Wal-Mart, and I think it was about the time that EconoFoods pulled out of Iowa altogether.

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