9 Watch Us Grow: The May Company

The May Company was the last major department store to locate in downtown Cleveland.  Founded in 1877 in Leadville, CO by David May (1838-1927) and his brother-in-law Moses Shoenberg and originally known as May, Holcomb & Dean, this retail establishment grew very quickly.  It sold large quantities of Levi jeans to the local miners.  Early financial success prompted David May, in 1878, to open a second store called The Great Western Auction House & Clothing.[1]  He moved his headquarters, in 1888, from Leadville, CO to Denver, CO.

This enterprising retailer did not stop there.  David May, in 1892, bought Famous Department Store in St. Louis, MO.  That purchase put him into the big leagues.  St. Louis was one of the fastest growing cities at the turn of the last century, and Famous Department Store had played a major role in that community’s expanding retail sector.  David May, in 1905, relocated his headquarters there.

David May unlike many other downtown Cleveland retailers was not native to Cleveland.  He grew up in Cincinnati, OH before moving west for health issues.  Therefore, such things as family pressure or nostalgia played no role in his final decision to locate in Cleveland.  It was purely a business decision.  Cleveland’s phenomenal growth, during the second half of the 19th century, in conjunction with that city’s expanding and lucrative local retail market more than anything prompted his move.  David May’s business plan focused on finding the best possible retail markets throughout the country, and then establishing large department stores in those areas.  Cleveland represented one of the fastest growing markets at the turn of the 20th century and David May wanted to be a part of it.  Therefore, he and his brother-in-law Colonel Louis Beaumont waited for the right opportunity to enter the Cleveland market.  It came with a bang in 1899.

A well-established Cleveland department store called E.R. Hull & Dutton Company had fallen into hard economic times.  High inventories and mounting debt forced its-owners to liquidate their merchandise and negotiate a buyout.  Edward R. Hull and William F. Dutton, during the summer of 1898, had met with officials from the May Company to discuss merger.  However, the two parties failed to reach an agreement.  Apparently, Hull and Dutton believed that their current financial crisis was temporary, and that their new reorganization plan would remedy it.  They were wrong.[2]

Increased sales that autumn ending in a profitable Christmas season may have lessened their debt; but, it was not the cure-all.  Hull and Dutton, recognizing the problem, reinitiated negotiations.  This time negotiations went smoothly, and on February 4. 1899 the two concerns merged.[3]  This $300,000 merger package not only introduced the May Company to an eager customer-base in Cleveland; but also, provided much needed capital to expand operations.[4] In addition, the May Company’s worldwide retail connections broadened its purchasing power without significantly increasing customer prices.

For the next several months everything appeared much the same.  Even the store’s original name remained.  However, the new management team was working diligently behind the scenes.  Hull & Dutton’s General Manager John C. McWatters, in February 1899, resigned his post.[5] S.E. Graves soon followed.  Both businessmen established their own clothiers.  Graves later merged with the larger McWatters & Dolan.  Officials hired E.M. McGillin to replace John McWatters.

An established and respected Cleveland merchant, McGillin operated several departments.  Henry Curtin of St. Louis became the new head of advertising.[6] David May made it very clear from the outset that his managers, unlike other, less experienced retailers, “study the fashions and the economy with a determination to give its patrons the best prices that are a welcome release from extravagance.”    Hull & Dutton held a special clearance sale that summer followed by “A Change of Firm Sale” that autumn.  E.R. Hull & Dutton Company disappeared after these sales.[7]

This new downtown department store had not only purchased the entire Hull & Dutton stock; but also, sold its merchandise at the lowest possible price.  Nothing was left to chance.  However, David May recognized that it would take much more than low prices to bring the crowds downtown.  He must also develop a loyal customer-base quickly.  The May Company board determined that one of the surest ways to guarantee success was to hire Clevelanders for as many high profile jobs as possible.  Store officials also believed that offering affordable, high quality merchandise from both U.S. and Europe markets would insure repeat business.  They were correct on both accounts.

The Board of Directors, in July 1899, demolished the store’s annex and replaced it with a modern eight-story retail facility.  Designed by the Cleveland architectural firm of Knox and Elliot, this semi-fireproof structure noted for its decorative terra-cotta veneer and large plate glass windows cost $35,000.[8]  It opened on December 1, 1899 to great fanfare.  The store’s continued success led board members, in 1907, to refurbish a nearby Euclid Avenue building that once housed William Taylor Son & Company.  This $75,000 renovation effort provided customers a weather-enclosed connecter linking Euclid and Prospect avenues.

Claiming to be “the largest retail store in Ohio,” the May Company, in 1900, carried a wide selection of merchandise ranging from fashionable women’s hats, various perfumes, fur coats and special notions to top quality men’s suits, ladies corsets, soft leather shoes and infant clothing.[9] Store officials also introduced a new bargain counter.  It featured seal, grain calf, and alligator belts and wallets.  The May Company’s expanded toy department included magnetic tops, tool chests, toy trucks and metal soldiers.

The public not only appreciated the high quality merchandise, but also, its fair prices and expert salesmanship.  Its optimistic advertising staff, in 1899, adopted a new catchy slogan “Watch Us Grow.”[10] It remained popular for years.  The board, wanting its staff to be both healthy and productive, created an employee benefit society.  This organization, known as the Mutual Benefit Association, allotted members up to $6.00 a week for illnesses and $100 in death benefits.  It also sponsored popular social gatherings, sporting events, dances and summer picnics.[11]

The May Company led others in providing a full range of valuable new customer services.  For example, as early as 1901 it offered free home delivery.  Its board, in 1904, also built an indoor playground that accommodated up to 250 children.[12] It featured toy train rides and a very popular Merry-Go-Round.  Other retail firsts included such things as cosmetic demonstrations by the Chicago-based “Temple of Beauty” and a designated “visitor’s space” for conventioneers.[13]  As important as these firsts were in establishing the May Company as a major force in downtown retailing, they were not the only things gaining the public’s attention.

The store’s many fantastic sales really impressed Cleveland’s buying public.  Hardly a week went by without one.  They ranged from furniture clearances and lace/embroidery extravagances to kitchen appliance give-a-ways and sales on durable trousers.  Annual events such as the February Furniture Sale and the Great May Sale brought thousands downtown.[14]  January White Sales, Spring Fashion Sales, Silk Sales and Furs Sales provided an excellent way to sell-off slow moving merchandise.

Other local retailers may have offered sales, but not with the finesse and flair of the May Company.  This retailer knew how to do things right.  The May Company’s extensive buying power and worldwide distribution network enabled store executives to offer items not readily found elsewhere.   For example, this retailer served as the sole agent for Knabe “Mignon” Grand Piano Company.  It also specialized in French style women’s dress coats, men’s silk dinner jackets and close-cropped knit underwear.  The May Company prided itself on offering the best in hand-woven Persian rugs and colorful Indian throw-rugs.

The store’s new installment plan, with no down payment and zero interest, enabled many qualified customers to purchase expensive new items such as phonographs with accompanying records and cylinders.  Free musical concerts featuring Marguerite Clerx-Winter a Soprano, Edwin Douglass a Baritone and Isador Weiss a violinist further heightened the customer’s shopping experience.[15]  Not to be outdone by others, the May Company, in 1907, began carrying auto accessories.  They ranged from Diamond, Goodrich and Gilbert tires and Presto-lite gas tanks to Columbia dry batteries and soft leather driving gloves.[16]  This store also featured bargain towels and sheets at its Prospect Avenue entrance.

The May Company’s profits soared during the first decade of the 20th century.  One early sales promotion became a mainstay for this store.  The May Company, in February 1908, started offering Eagle Stamps for all purchases.[17]  Shoppers received blank stamp books and a certain number of stamps, each visit, based on the cost of the item or items they bought.  They simply licked the back of the stamps and placed them in the book.  Once they collected enough stamps to fill a book ($3.00 to $5.00 in value) then they would trade in the book for valuable merchandise.[18] Store officials claimed that shoppers saved an average of 3% on all items bought.  This retailer continued to give away Eagle Stamps until the 1990s.  At its height in the mid-1970s, over 70% of Cleveland households saved them.

The store’s advertising department, in 1908, coined another catch phrase, “For the Best of Everything-Go to May Company First.”[19] Officials soon expanded their merchandise lines to include such things as efficient gas-powered stoves along with Valspar paints and wallpapers.  They also offered cooking lessons.[20]  The May Company prided itself on its many art exhibitions that included a rare oil painting entitled “Battle of Gettysburg” which was worth $100,000. [21]  Other magnificent paintings by David Lithgow and Herbert de Mareau also gained public attention.  The May Company restaurant not only stayed open later on Saturdays, but also, served a variety of popular dishes at reasonable prices.

Board members, in 1909, wanting to increase store sales before Noon, adopted a new sales strategy called “Early Morning Specials.”[22] Local newspaper advertisements promoted these morning specials by emphasizing the store’s extensive buying power, and how that enabled them to sell the best quality merchandise at a low cost.  The success of “Early Morning Specials” convinced store officials to extend it through the lunch hour.  Renamed “Until Noon Specials,” those purchasing merchandise then were eligible for a special installment plan not offered during peak hours.[23]

The May Company’s financial picture brightened considerably when its Board of Director, in 1910, announced its incorporation in the State of New York.  Two high-profile, New York brokerage firms Goldman, Sachs & Company and Lehman Brothers underwrote it.[24] Its capitalization breakdown was as follows: $15,000,000 in common stocks and $5,000,000 in preferred stocks.  Under this financial arrangement, common stockholders received dividends up to 4% after the payment of 7% in cumulative dividends to preferred stockholders and the accumulation of a $250,000 surplus.  Common stock dividends may exceed the 4% maximum line, but only when the company’s surplus attained $1,000,000.  The State of New York and organizational taxes required $10,000.

National brokerage firms, at the beginning of the 20th century, considered the May Company to be a good, solid investment.  Store profits soared from $712,899 in 1906 to $1,271,727 by 1910.  Preferred stocks, in 1910, paid 7% dividends.  The New York Stock Exchange, in 1911, listed the May Company.  The store’s Board of Directors, that same year, purchased the St. Louis based-retailer William Barr Dry Goods.  This led to the establishment of the Famous-Barr Company.  May Company sales in 1912 topped at $14,800,000 with net profits exceeding $1,500,000.  Stockholders, that same year, approved the $1,000,000 acquisition of the Akron-based O’Neil’s Department Store.  Founded in 1877 by Michael O’Neil and Isaac Dyas, O’Neil’s was known for its extravagant Christmas displays.  That merger enabled the May Company to expand into the Akron-Canton retail market.  Store officials continued to use the O’Neil name into the 1980s.

One of the biggest Cleveland news stories of 1913 involved May Company expansion plans.  The store’s General Manager Nathan L. Dauby (1873-1964), in March, announced that the Board of Directors had approved plans to erect a new, $3,000,000 department store that would extend from Public Square to Prospect Avenue.[25] Designed by the Chicago architectural firm of D.H. Burnham, this 1,080,700 square foot, terra-cotta clad structure not only included the current May Company premises, but also, the adjacent Winslow Block.  The Winslow Block formerly housed another popular retail concern called Crow & Whitmarsh.

The new fireproof superblock featured a large dining room, modern rest rooms, library, showers, baths and gymnasium.  In order to defray the costs resulting from recent acquisitions and construction, the May Company, in 1915, under the auspices of the Chicago brokerage firm of Greenbaum Sons, issued First Mortgage 6% Gold Bonds.  They ranged anywhere from $500 to $1,000.  Rents collected from May Company stores served as collateral.

The May Company scored a number of first during the First World War.  They included such things as an electric vacuum called the “Mary Jane;” $.39 novels in its bookstore, $.89 framed portraits of either Pope Pius X or Pope Benedict XV and travel reimbursement for customers who lived within a 100 mile radius of the store.[26] Shoppers also enjoyed a new indoor driving range and professional putting greens.  Thrifty female customers loved the store’s expanded millinery department.  Free eye examination; amateur tennis matches, art exhibits and practical use of charcoal and crayons in drawing also gained the public’s attention.  The introduction of a branch of the U.S. Post Office made the sending of gifts and cards so easy.[27] Free Christmas gift wrapping also appealed to many shoppers.

Board members, in 1915, secured 6% Gold bonds in denominations of $500 and $1,000.  The store’s total assets were $27,000,000.[28] Officials, the following year, introduced the Citizen’s Christmas Money Club. Customers, at the end of each December, determined how much they wanted to spend on Christmas gifts the following year.  They then opened an account with Citizen’s Savings & Trust Company and started to deposit funds on a weekly basis.  Those reaching their pre-determined goal, through regular deposits over the next 50-weeks, not only received a check from Citizen’s Savings for the full amount earned, but also, 4% in interest.[29] Customers loved it.

Hoping to stimulate greater interest in Eagle Stamps, store executives, in November 1916, ran full page advertisements in the local dailies promoting its many advantages.  These advertisements reminded those customers who paid their utilities on or before the 10th of the month at the May Company, that they qualified for a small discount on their monthly bills, and that they should consider taking that discount in the form of Eagle Stamps.  Officials also encouraged parents to purchase their children’s school books at the May Company.  It represented an excellent way to receive additional stamps.[30]

The 1920s represented a period of tremendous growth for this highly enterprising department store.  Net profits for the 4th quarter of 1919 stood at $4,198,104 equal to $24.92 a common share.  Its income that year reached $7,848,104 as compared to $5,848,104 at the end of 1918.  The store’s inventory jumped to $10,253,908 from $6,018,123, while accounts payable climbed from $831,951 to $3,208,781.  The store’s total surplus in 1919 was $13,578,361 as compared to $10,788,371 the previous year.  Annual stock dividends also increased from 7% to 8%.[31]

Part of the store’s success resulted from its new buying policy.  Store buyers purchased merchandise for the next spring the previous autumn.[32] This action eliminated the possibly of price hikes closer to the season.  It also provided them room for negotiations.  That strategy apparently paid-off well, as profits continued to grow.  Gross assets for 1921 topped $58,981,639.  Its net profit that year was $3,788,707 equal to $16.82 a common share.[33] That favorable balance continued over the next several years.  May Company assets in 1925 topped $32,205,492, while its liabilities were only $7,778,236.[34]

In order to capitalize on their latest financial windfall, stockholders in 1926 approved a 2-for-1 stock split whereby 520,000 shares of common stock value at $55.00 a share were exchanged for 1,200,000 in newly issued common stock.  The new stock was valued at $25.00 a share.[35]  The board held the remaining stock for employees, and set a date of April 1, 1927 to redeem preferred stock at $125 a share.  Its $4,200,000 acquisition, in 1923, of Los Angeles-based A. Hamburger & Sons Department Store proved very beneficial to this retailer.  Not only did it provide the May Company the highly lucrative retail market of Southern California; but also, significantly increased the value of its stock.  The May Company became the stock of choice for many shrewd investors throughout the “Roaring Twenties.”

New shopping services made this Cleveland store very special.  Customers particularly enjoyed its new bakery, chocolate malted shakes at the snack bar, children’s barber shop, same day dry cleaning service and supervised indoor playground for children.  Large-size patrons eagerly shopped the new Women’s Department,[36] while parents increasingly attended child rearing lectures given by an authority in the field called Mrs. Helen B. Paulsen.[37]  Men in-the-know appreciated Society brand suits and sports jackets, while homemakers enjoyed using the “Simplex Ironer.”[38]

For the fashioned conscious women, the beauty salon featured the latest “bobbed” hair style for only $.75.[39] However, store officials did not stop there.  They went so far as to promote their store through song and verse.  Two composers Carl Rupp and Marion Campbell wrote a tune commemorating that great department store.  Called “So This Is May Day,” this song expounded the many virtues of shopping at this leading retailer.  Later on, many other stores emulated the May Company and promoted their merchandise through similar song and verse.

However, May Company firsts went beyond those bounds.  For example,   McCall’s Magazine, in 1920, began selling its clothing patterns in the store.[40] Not to be outdone by others, Vogue Magazine sponsored its-own popular in-house fashion shows throughout the 1920s.  Store officials, as a service to their customers, sponsored a daily advertising section in local newspapers.  Called the “May Company Bulletin,” it listed all sale items for that day along with their description and price.  The May Company’s latest slogan, “Ohio’s Best and Largest Store” said it all.[41] This retailer, in 1923, also led competitors when it introduced one of the first all metal washing machines manufactured by Hurley.  Qualified customers could purchase this $125 appliance through a special installment plan.  This plan required an initial down payment of $10.00 followed by 12–monthly payments of only $9.50.[42]

Providing convenience customer services became a major goal of the May Company.  Executives, in 1924, built a large parking garage at the southwest corner of Lakeside Avenue and Ontario Street.[43] Designed by the Boston architectural firm of Lehman & Schmidt and erected by Sam W. Emerson, this facility accommodated hundreds of cars.  The May Company also provided customers a free shuttle service to and from the garage along with a special waiting room for chauffeurs.  Shoppers received up to three hours of free parking with a minimal charge for additional time.

Board members, in 1925, initiated a new credit plan that required an initial down payment on all items purchased followed by weekly payments.[44]  However, the amount paid on a weekly basis was subject to change based on the current economic situation of the customer or customers involved.  No other Cleveland store offered such flexible payment arrangements.  The late 1920s represented a period of sustained growth under the direction of a Cleveland native Nathan L. Dauby.  He served many years as its General and Merchandise Manager.[45]  The St. Louis-based Board of Directors, in 1927, approved the $2,300,000 acquisition of the Baltimore-based Bernheimer-Leader retail chain.  Board members and employees mourned the loss of the store’s founder David May that same year.  He was 79 years old.  After turning over the reins, to his son and heir, Morton J. May (1881-1968), in 1917, the elder May remained active in the business.

A highly innovative retailer, the May Company continued to prosper.  For example, net sales in 1926 reached $100,522,928 as compared to $97,117,891 the previous year.  Preferred dividends, that same year, totaled $336,875 with common dividends equaling $2,989,871.  Due to the high costs incurred by the recent merger, the May Company’s net income dropped by 20% from $8,608,311 in 1925 to $6,972,161 in 1926.[46] However, that did not prevent savvy investors from buying large blocks of common stock over the next several years. The earlier 2-for-1 stock split made it irresistible.

A prime example of this kind of stock buying frenzy, occurred in 1929, when the New York brokerage firm of Dillon, Reed & Company purchased 75,000 shares.[47] Increasing sales in specialty items and services such as high speed power boats and luxury European tours illustrated the growing sophistication of the Cleveland retail market.  One new service, initiated in 1928, enabled qualified customers to use their in-house credit card in any May Company store nationwide.  No other Cleveland retailer offered that kind of convenience.  Additional services included delivery service to hotel guests and mail service to out-of-town locations.  The local press expressed great excitement when the Cleveland Orchestra serenaded May Company shoppers at the 1928 Easter Fashion Show held at the Keith Theatre in Playhouse Square.[48]

The May Company also furnished interiors for model homes.  It began in 1927 with the “Educational Model Home” built by Klein Lampl Homesite.[49] Store officials, in March 1929, proudly announced the grand opening of their redesigned restaurant.  Now known as the Spanish Room Restaurant and Tea Room, it offered quality food at reasonable prices.[50] Special events, in the 1929 shopping season, ran the gamut from an International Silk Sale in March; special program for children hosted by Uncle Wiggly and Funny Clown that April and “Exposition of Toiletries” in May to the grand re-opening of its book department in July, Surety Hat Sale that September and “Jubilee Sales” that November.[51]

The late 1920s represented a period of consolidation and modernization for this leading retailer.  Such prudent action enabled it to survive the Great Depression of the 1930s.  The May Company withstood the economic on-slot of that decade by maintaining large stocks of merchandise as inventory.  This ability to draw upon existing inventory, when necessary, provided store executives flexibility.  Specifically, they adjusted item pricing by adding together old and new prices and then average them out.   That resulted in quick price changes based on fluctuating demand for specific items.  Not every retailer could do that.[52]

The May Company’s extensive buying network permitted each store, including Cleveland, to have its-own buyers.  These buyers catered to the specific needs of the community they served.  Centralized buying facilities and mass purchasing power enabled them to secure the best possible prices and to keep the company afloat even during the worst economic times.  Executives firmly believed that the May Company had “the right merchandise at the right time with prices for every pocketbook.”  Although store sales dropped to $72,500,000 by 1932, they gradually increased.  Sales figures during the second half of the decade rose to $98,400,000 by 1938.  Net profits in 1939 remained firm at $3,800,000.

The May Company, in 1931, became Ohio’s largest department store.  To celebrate this major achievement, its board unveiled its latest renovation plans.  This refurbishing of the Public Square store represented much more than cosmetic changes.  It included a three-story addition.  The architectural firm of Anderson, Probst and White, successor to D.H. Burnham & Company, received the contract.[53] This business strategy apparently paid-off with sales increasing slightly that autumn.

Promotional activities throughout the Great Depression brought customers to the May Company.  Two of the most popular events in 1930 included the Home Furnishing Institute that November and a special visit by the Washington Senator’s professional baseball pitcher and manager Walter Johnson (1887-1946) in December.[54] The May Company also proudly hosted the Second Annual Exhibit of Cleveland Artists and Sculptors, in January 1931, and provided sewing classes on how to make stylish dresses beginning that March.[55]  The May Company Expansion Sale and a special Paint and Wallpaper Sale highlighted the spring season.[56] An Infant’s Clothing Sale in August, the National Air Races at Cleveland Hopkins Airport that September and a fun-filled Christmas Musical Program rounded off that year’s events.[57]

A metered electric refrigerator, in the early 1930s, received a great deal of attention.[58] Through a special installment arrangement called the “Meter Ice Plan,” qualified customers were now able to purchase a $225 refrigerator for a few pennies a day with no down payment.  Their refrigerator came with a tampered-resistant metered coin box and cord.  The cord was connected to the residential electric meter.  Customers deposited $.25 a day in the coin box and the refrigerator operated for the next 24-hours.  This enabled them to take full advantage of their new appliance while paying off the remainder-owed.  Upon receipt of the final payment, May Company representatives removed the coin box and the refrigerator was theirs free and clear.  Should the owner tamper with the coin box or the electric meter then store officials would repossess the refrigerator.

The Board of Directors, in 1932, installed air-conditioning.  The Cleveland store, that same year, celebrated its first $1,000,000 sales day.  Popular items ranged from scented chiffon hose for women; Stewart-Warner movie cameras and Dorothy Gray beauty products to reversible woolen blankets and tree bulbs.[59]  The store’s no penalty clause regarding late payments distinguished it from other local retailers.[60] Knowing the financial straits facing many of their loyal shoppers, store officials did not want to make the situation worse.

Board members, in July 1933, introduced an easy payment plan for those purchasing furniture.[61] Qualified customers paid a 20% down payment on all purchases exceeding $25.00 along with a nominal carrying charge.  The May Company, in exchange, held the furniture free-of-charge for up to 90 days.  Upon receipt of the final payment, the store delivered the furniture to the customer’s home.  The May Company also started to cash customers checks.   That included liquidation “payoff” checks issued by local banking institutions.

The “Day After-Thanksgiving Mark-Down Sale” brought thousands downtown as did the “Snow Suits for Women Sale” in mid-December.[62]  In fact, Christmas sales, in 1933, increased by 10% over a year ago.  Remnant Sales Days, in January 1934, provided cheap prices for quality items.  The May Company further led the pack in selling the popular Home Art Frocks.[63] The store’s optical department also enjoyed a banner year as did housewares.

Store officials, in the spring of 1934, exhibited a model of the Chicago’s World’s Fair.[64] Decorative cookware, beautifully crafted Swiss watches and fine-tuned radios highlighted the summer and autumn shopping seasons.  The May Company, ended the year, by decorating a large Christmas tree in Public Square.  Store executives continued this tradition for many years to come.

Net profits, in 1934, totaled $3,301,614 after depreciation, amortization of buildings and leaseholds, interest, federal taxes, decline in sundry investments and other miscellaneous expenses.  That equaled $2.68 a share minus the 136,938 shares held in the treasury.  May Company assets leveled-off at $30,989,198, while its cash and government securities stood at $8,533,788.  Current liabilities exceeded $3,875,142.  Nineteen thirty-five saw store assets reach $32,559,816, while its cash and government securities grew to $10,339,359.  Store liabilities increased to $4,999,926.[65]

Store sales continued to improve reaching $89,200,000 by year’s end.  Net profits in 1936 rose to $5,070,458.  Common stock also increased from $2.81 a share in 1935 to $4.12 a share.[66]  This surge in store sales peaked in early 1937.  An unexpected downturn in the stock market during the 2nd and 3rd quarters of 1937 resulted in a 7.5% drop in sales.[67] A rebounding economy during the first half of 1938 continued into the following year.  The May Company posted profits of $1,256,527 for the first six months of 1939.[68]  This trend continued for the remainder of the year.  Net profits for 1939 stood at $4,402,894 equal to $3.58 a share on 1,230,396 shares of $10.00 par capital stock.  Net assets that same year reached $14,345,712, while liabilities were $5,416,635.

Promotional activities played an increasingly important role during the mid-to late-1930s.  For example, officials hosted a highly successful fashion show as part of the 1935 Cleveland Auto Show.[69] A Six-Day In-House Bike Race soon followed.  It featured well-known professional cyclists from throughout the world.[70] The store, in 1936, offered a dressmaking course for high school girls and swimming lessons by an Olympic champion named Mickey Riley (1909-1959).[71]  An exhibition of original paintings by U.S. artists fascinated customers, while its “Jubilee Day” at the Great Lakes Exposition in 1936-37 with its special productions of “Jack and the Beanstalk” delighted children.[72] Executives also offered accordion and piano lessons for only $1.25 a week.[73]

The May Company exhibited the latest sewing machines at the 1938 Cleveland Food Show.[74] The Board of Directors, in cooperation with the Group Work Council of the Cleveland Welfare Federation, showcased the many worthwhile recreational activities sponsored by neighborhood settlement houses.  A rebounding national economy led to increased sales in both the Men’s and Millinery departments.  Summer classes in tap dancing, junior dressmaking and children’s ballet reflected the cultural side of the May Company.  The store’s debut, in 1939, of the Crosley automobile received national press coverage.

Its Advanced Credit Plan, introduced in December 1939, represented an important first in local retailing.[75] Store officials encouraged qualified customers to purchase credit coupon books in units of $10, $15, $25, $50 or more.  Customers then opened a coupon book account at the store, made a small deposit and paid a nominal carrying fee.  Those paying cash upfront paid no carrying fee.  Shoppers then paid the remainder in five-monthly installments.

Much of the store’s financial success, prior to the Second World War, originated with its many customer services.  They ranged from a comfortable waiting room, first class lending library, luxury travel agency, popular beauty parlor, and inspiring ecclesiastic department to its efficient post office substation, ample check room, quality dry cleaning department and free gift wrapping service.

The decade of the 1940s opened with translucent China being sold in housewares.  A China service for 12 with 93 pieces cost only $49.99.[76] Local newspaper advertisements, in April 1940, promoted fashionable Sunset Boulevard Hats and beautiful Sac-de-Perle handbags, while the new Home Planning Studio provided decorating hints.[77] September featured the highly popular Hiawatha Heirloom needlepoints for as little as $.29 and Junior Miss plaid-styled frocks beginning at $3.50.

Its Aladdin Beauty Shop provided fashionable women with the Yvette Machineless Permanent for only $4.25.[78] The May Company, in October 1940, hired several salespersons to commemorate National Business Women’s Week.  A November 24, 1940 advertisement in The Cleveland Plain Dealer reminded May Company shoppers that time was running out to join the Christmas Piano Club.  Hallet & Davis Spinet Piano with bench were available for the remarkable price of only $245.

No sooner had the Great Depression ended and war broke out.  Although the Second World War began in Europe on September 1, 1939, few in the U.S. paid much attention to it prior to the bombing of Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941.  In fact, domestic sales in stores such as the May Company soared throughout the 1940-41 shopping season.  Top selling items included Beaux Arts coats for only $39.95; popular record albums for $1.79 a piece[79] and Streamliner slack sets for the amazing low price of $4.50.[80]

Cleveland’s Divisional Manager Sam Rosenberg attributed this resurgence in sales to a rebounding economy.  Mr. Rosenberg was absolutely correct.  Prior to this nation’s entrance into the Second World War, Cleveland factories produced a great deal of war materials destined for the European battle fields.  Good-paying factory jobs increased disposable income, which in turn, led customers to spend more in stores such as the May Company.  Retail sales continued to soar through the 1941 Christmas season.  However, this ended quickly as war needs took precedent over domestic concerns.

The May Company, wholeheartedly, supported the war effort beginning as early as January 1942 when it sold its first supply of Defense Stamps and Savings Bonds.[81] Store executives also encouraged their shoppers to use their May Company charge cards, whenever possible, so that they could spend more time on important defense duties.  They further reminded everyone that new federal regulations required all cardholders to pay their debts in-full within forty days of purchase.  The May Company displayed its patriotism in November 1942 when it celebrated “Women at War” Week.[82]

Store officials abided by federal guidelines when selling merchandise.  For example, the May Company, in February 1943, announced that customers wishing to purchase shoes on either February 9th or June 15th were required to use Stamp No. 17 from the War Ration Book.[83]  Federal officials established the Office of Price Administration, in August 1941, to print and distribute these ration stamps.  Shoppers used them to purchase a wide assortment of permitted items.  They ranged from fuel oil, tires, shoes and nylons to sugar, coffee, meats and processed foods.  Federal officials set limits on distribution based on the scarcity and market value of the item in question.  Those involved in the defense of the nation or in crucial occupations received priority over others engaged in less-essential occupations.

Supporters contended that using these stamps fairly and honestly would guarantee effective management of natural resources during such critical times.  It would also cut down on waste by restricting domestic production and controlling distribution, while minimizing spending opportunities on what federal officials and military experts considered essential war materials.  In theory, it seemed both fair and practical.  Consumers get some of what they needed and wanted with little difficulty.  However, many people abused the system whenever possible for their-own self interests.  Unscrupulous underworld leaders fed into this frenzy by illegally selling ration stamps.  The black market boomed during the Second World War and for the immediate post-war years.

The May Company Board of Directors not only followed federal guidelines regarding ration stamps, but also, conserved natural resources whenever possible.  That resulted in shorten store hours and more female employees especially in sales.  However, some earlier tradition sales such as “May Days” continued.  Board members thought they owed them to their customers.[84] These sales also provided an effective way to dispose of quality items without adversely affecting the cost of living.

Board members, in 1944, offered some new incentives for those purchasing war bonds.  It included a five full-colored reproductions of an “Open Letter to the Unconquerables” by Joseph Auslander.[85] Those buying bonds in denominations greater than $25.00 also received information packets describing resistance activities within occupied nations.  A full page spread in the Cleveland Plain Dealer on October 18, 1944 encouraged Clevelanders to give generously to the 27th Annual War Chest campaign.  In terms of its current financial situation, May Company net sales, in 1944, reached $181,727,000.  That represented an increase of $167,919,000 over the previous year.

Towards the end of the war, store executives initiated changes.  It began when Vice Presidents Nathan L. Dauby and Jack L. Strauss announced the establishment of a new corporate entity called Affiliated Retailers Incorporated (ARI).  Headed by Howard B. Barber, formerly of Montgomery Ward and Company, ARI encouraged internal buying and merchandise promotion.[86] Goldman, Sack’s and Company and Lehman Brothers, on April 10, 1945, offered 150,000 shares of May Company $3.75 cumulative preferred stock at $103.50 a share and accrued dividends from March 1, 1945.

Store officials used this additional capital to build new branch stores and modernize existing facilities.  For each year ending on July 1st, beginning with 1948, the corporation planned to retire, through a special sinking fund, 1% of the total number of preferred shares of the initial series issued prior to that year.  These shares were redeemable at $107.50 a share prior to July 1, 1947, with successive reductions of $1.00 a share on that date and on each second July 1st thereafter to $103.50 a share.[87]

Stockholders had set the stage for this offer when they authorized the issuance of 250,000 shares of new preferred under this issue.  They also approved a 2-for-1 split of common stock that reduced its par value to $5.00 a share.  The initial dividend paid on the new $5.00 common stock stood at $.42½.[88]  The May Company, at the same time, significantly increased its percentage of the Cleveland retail market when it obtained minority control of one of its chief competitors William Taylor Sons & Company.  This merger enabled the May Company to own 49% of William Taylor Sons & Company common stock and 54% of its preferred stock.  The May Company also reserved the option of purchasing the remaining shares at a later time.[89]

These bold financial moves proved very profitable.  Sales figures for 1945 reached $202,449,639, an increase of $20,772,480 over the previous years.  The store’s President Morton J. May, in September 1946, announced a merger with Kaufmann’s, a popular Pittsburgh-based department store chain.  Combined sales figures in 1946-47 for both the May Company and Kaufmann’s equaled a whopping $246,354,000.

This merger required the issuance of 1/5th share of a new $3.40 dividend bearing preferred stock and 9/20th share of May Company common stock for each outstanding common share of Kaufmann’s surrendered.  The Board of Directors, that same year, declared a 3rd quarter dividend of $.75 a share on common stock.  That represented a $.25 increase over the 2nd quarter.  Officials in St. Louis, envisioning no additional changes in capitalization, kept the Kaufmann management staff in place.[90]

With this new infusion of capital, May Company executives approved major changes for the Cleveland store.  It began, in the autumn of 1945, with the refurbishing of the 4th floor record department.[91] Board members also initiated a $.05 downtown loop bus.[92] The Layette Shop opened in 1947 assisted young mothers in selecting the best items for their infants.[93]  Knowledgeable salespersons also assisted customers in designing their-own ensembles made from Mengel Module furniture pieces.[94]

The board announced, on January 1, 1948, the grand opening of both its new home furnishing department and expanded TV/-radio department.  That was followed, in March 1949, by Beauty Serenade Week and a special sale on “Decco” Aluminum Frame Furniture.[95] Quality Tappan Gas Ranges went on sale in September and beautifully furnished Colonial Style Doll Houses excited small girls that December.[96] The Art Exhibit for Younger Children, in November 1949, brought thousands downtown, as did the “Peggy” angora beret.[97]

Increased sales reflected a period of tremendous growth.  Net sales in 1945, for example, reached a new record of $330,331,000 as compared to $202,449,000 a year ago.[98] Net profits for the May Company reached $7,680,039 equal to $2.94 a share compared with $5,561,836 or $2.26 a share in 1944.  Inventory stood at $22,105,833 vs. $20,820,269 the previous year.  This momentum continued into the 1946-47 shopping season.  For the 12 month period ending July 31, 1947 total net sales at the May Company exceeded $341,077,283.

Such unprecedented growth convinced board members that expansion was in order.  With that idea in mind, they investigated possible mergers with other regional department stores.  This resulted, in 1948, in the acquisition of a Youngstown-based department store called Strouss-Hirshberg Company.  This $5,700,000 merger brought the May Company into Eastern Ohio and Northwest Pennsylvania.  Another merger, in 1948, with T.S. Martin Department Stores of Sioux City, IO opened up the upper Midwest.[99]  May Company expansion activities paid-off.  Net sales figures for the 12-month period ending July 31, 1949 soared to $404,020,000.[100] Net earnings during that same time period were $5,124,000 equal to $1.55 a share as compared to $6,475,000 or $2.11 a share in 1948.

Nineteen fifty began with a major announcement.  The May Company now carried popular Stromberg-Carlson 16 inch televisions.[101]  It also became the exclusive local agent for the Heartbeat Casual Dress line by Pat Hartley.[102] The May Company, in conjunction with the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, co-hosted the 1950 All Ohio Sports & Outdoor Show.[103] Self-adjusting spring mattresses took the public by storm that August.[104] Visits by M. Roget, a hair stylist from Helena Rubinstein’s New York salon and Ernestine Gilbreth Cary, author of Cheaper by the Dozen, increased sales significantly that autumn.[105]

Store President Morton J. May, in the fall of 1950, announced his retirement.  Board members, in 1951, elected his son, Morton D. May (1914-1983) to assume the reins.  He served for the next 16 years.  A special fashion show, part of the Arthur Murray Dance Extravaganza, highlighted the 1951 spring shopping season.[106] The store also introduced a special offer for music lovers.  Qualified customers now had the opportunity of renting a piano, with the option of purchasing it later, for only $10.00 a month.[107] Officials, that autumn, unveiled a wide array of new items.  They included such things as a toy doll that also served as a nightlight; Pepperell electric blankets and Ripple-Edge Nylon curtains.[108]

Nineteen fifty-two ushered in new kind of casual blouse popularized by the Hollywood actress Dorothy Collins.[109] The May Company also sold Modern American Encyclopedias and modern light fixtures.[110]  Demonstrations by the Westinghouse Corporation on the latest laundry techniques helped hundreds of shoppers who had recently purchased washing machines.  The May Company Santa Claus and Bo-Bo the Clown, on December 22, 1952, performed for two hundred disable youngsters.[111] The highly anticipated American “Tourister” Luggage sale kicked off the 1953 shopping season.[112] MGM star Debbie Reynolds that March posed for camera buffs and the ultra-modern Mayfair Room restaurant re-opened.[113] Scottsdale suits went on sale in November and Hickok Christmas Gift Show that December brought shoppers downtown.[114]

Net sales for the first half of 1953 stood at $205,349,000 as compared to $193,959,000 the previous year.  Net income, over that same period of time, increased to $4,220,000 or $.62 a share on common stock.  That compared with $3,665,000 or $.52 a share of common stock in 1952.[115] Unfortunately, these gains did not last long.  Store earnings for the nine month period ending October 31, 1954 dropped by 19.3%.  Net income was $6,205,000 or equal to $.91 a common share as compared to $7,688,000 or $1.16 a common share in 1953.[116] The high cost of downtown renovations and the completion of its first suburban store in Sheffield, OH adversely affected store profits.

Revenue losses notwithstanding customers flocked to the new Sheffield, OH branch store.  Designed by the Cleveland architectural firm of Weinberg & Teare, this 157,000 square foot, modern-styled, three-story O’Neil’s Department Store was an important part of the new $10,000,000 Sheffield Centre shopping complex.[117] The recent success of the May Company’s retail marketing strategy convinced the national investment firm of Ball, Burge & Kraus, in 1954, to endorse the May Company as a sound investment.

That brokerage firm pointed out that with rare exception this retailer’s operating ratio had exceeded its general expenditures.  Its sales nationwide exceeded $450,000,000, while its long-term debt remained reasonable at about $39,000,000.  Also, the May Company had never defaulted on paying dividends to its stockholders.  Its stocks yielded 6% interest and were selling at about $29.00 a share.[118]

The May Company Board, in February 1955, filed with the Security and Exchange Commission to issue $25,000,000 of 3¼ % sinking fund debentures with a maturation date of March 1, 1980.[119]  They intended to increase the amount of general funds available for working capital and store expansion.  The chain included over twenty stores.  Goldman, Sachs and Lehman Brothers underwrote it.  Sales figures for the 1st quarter of 1955 reached a record level of $91,558,000.[120] That represented an 8.7% increase over the previous year.

The May Company, in 1954, offered a new Freezer Food Service for those customers purchasing Westinghouse Refrigerators.  Under this arrangement, a food consultant would assist customers in selecting the amount and kind of food they required over the next six month period.  The consultant would then place the order and make sure that it was delivered in a timely fashion.  This service cost anywhere from $12.67 to $15.48 based on food choices and amount needed.[121]

The public eagerly watched May Company demonstrations of the latest White Sewing Machine at the 1955 Greater Cleveland Home & Flower Show.  Charm Magazine in its February 1955 issue profiled four May Company employees.[122] Store executives provided free wallpaper hanging lessons for those customers purchasing “Trimz,” the new Ready Pasted Wallpaper.[123] The public rushed to the May Company, that September, to buy Christian Dior stockings for an unbelievable price of only $1.65 a pair.[124] Floor coverings and electric lighters gained shopper’s attention that Christmas.  Nineteen fifty-six introduced a new store slogan “You can always find what you want at the May Company.”  Specialty items that year included such things as Parisian inspired nylons; life-like, beautifully matted, pictures by world artists placed in framed double shadow boxes and Lady Ronson Electric Shavers.[125]

Store profits rose sharply over the three month period ending October 31, 1956.  Net income topped $4,957,000 or $.79 a common share, up from $4,264,000 or $.67 a common share the previous year.  Net sales also increased by 3.6% reaching $127,759,000.[126] Merger with Denver-based Daniels & Fisher resulted in the creation of a new retail division amply called May D&F Division.  Expecting a fantastic Christmas season, the May Company placed full page advertisements in the Cleveland newspapers calling for part-time workers.

Its mid-year financial statement reported a net income for the first 3-month period of 1957 of $2,680,000 equal to $.40 a share.  First quarter sales figures rose to $111,619,000, while store earnings increased by 10.6%.[127] A coloring contest for children, Oneida dinnerware, Zircon cocktail rings, and Speed Queen washers/dryers made 1957 a very special year.[128]

The Board of Director, that November, announced major credit and payment changes.  Board members broadened existing choices to include four convenient lines of credit.  All were closely tied to recently-issued customer charge plates.  Customer credit lines and monthly payment schedules ranged anywhere from as little as $120 with $10-monthly payments to $300 with $23-monthly payments.

Stockholders also publicized the grand opening of the May Company’s newest location in University Hts., OH.  Designed by Victor Gruen Associates of Detroit, MI and Jack Bialosky & Partners of Cleveland, OH this 346,000 square foot modern-styled store included gas heating and cooling.[129] It also featured a fashionable beauty salon and full-service garage.  Known as “Mays-on-the-Hts.,” it was downsized in 2000 and 2006.

A devastating fire, in March 1958, at the St. Clair Avenue Apartment House left one hundred people homeless.  The May Company management donated clothes.  Downtown and University Heights stores, that spring, hosted a special Berkshire Fashion Show starring Alice Weston, a local celebrity.[130]  Another merger, involving a $37,000,000 stock exchange, brought the Baltimore-based Hecht Company into the May Company fold.[131] The acquisition of the Cohen Brothers Department Store chain out of Jacksonville, FL expanded retail trade into the Deep South.

The big news item, in August 1958, was the grand opening of the new Taylor’s Department Store at the Southgate Shopping Center in Maple Hts., OH.  Southgate Shopping Center, under the guidance of Ernest H. Siegler, opened in 1955.  Taylor’s at Southgate, which was a May Company subsidiary, became one of that shopping center’s new anchor stores.  Designed by the architectural firm of Welton Beckett Associates at a cost of $5,000,000, this three-story 204,000 square foot branch featured the Tree Top Room Restaurant and Jiffy Bird Snack Bar.  Becoming a branch of the May Company in 1961, it remained opened until 1989 when it was demolished it.  A Giant Eagle Super Market now occupies this site.

Nineteen fifty-nine began with a sour note.  The Federal Trade Commission prohibited the May Company from engaging in false advertising and price fixing for furs.  Store officials admitted no wrong, although they complied with the order.[132] The May Company, in June 1959, broke ground on its latest suburban store at Parmatown Shopping Center Parma, OH.

This four-story, 305,000 square foot building was noted for its reinforced concrete block walls, textured brick veneer and turquoise blue and ceramic flat columns accented in white.  It also featured central air conditioning, central audio system and protected exterior colonnade.  It epitomized the modern-styled branch store of that era.  Two well-known architects Victor Gruen of Los Angeles and Harry A. Sharpe of Cleveland designed this $7,000,000 facility.[133]  This suburban store later became Macy’s.  It was demolished in 2014.

The board, in 1959, unveiled its latest credit plan.  It not only included the traditional 30-day charge option and a new monthly payment arrangement; but also, two other new alternatives.  One required a small down payment and easy monthly payments, while the second afforded a reasonable payment schedule for customers wishing to purchase expensive items.[134] Board members, in 1959, also approved the resignation of James C. Walsh as Secretary and Assistant Treasurer.  He became the May Company’s new Vice President and Treasurer.

Stockholders appointed Lyle M. Allen Sr. to serve as Secretary and Assistant Treasurer.[135] Warner B. (Dusty) Rhoads of the Cleveland division became its Executive Vice President and General Manager.  Sales for the 1st half of 1960 leveled-off at $151,738,000 with net earnings leveling-off at $2,105,000.  That equaled $.26 a common share.  For the 12-month period ending July 31, 1960, net income reached $22,717,000 or $3.13 a share on sales of $682,545,000.  The new Parmatown store opened on August 23rd.  Demolished in 2014, it served most recently as a Macy’s.

Sam Rosenberg, the long-time Vice President and General Manager of the Cleveland division, in 1961 announced his retirement.  Rosenberg began his career in 1933 as Divisional Merchandise Manager for Ladies Ready-to-Wear Clothing.  He was 84 years old when died in November 1977.[136] Francis A. Coy replaced him as the store’s Regional President.  Coy, a former divisional merchandise manager for Higbee’s, had most recently served as the Executive Vice President and General Manager for Gold’s Department Store in Lincoln, NE.   Coy remained in that post for ten years.  He later chaired United Way and the Downtown Development Corporation.  Francis A. Coy died in 1992.

The May Company entered the 1960s in trouble.  An allegedly illegal payment of $12,207 by the May Company to William Finnegan, Executive Secretary of the Cleveland AFL-CIO Federation of Labor, resulted in a federal investigation.  Held in March 1961, federal prosecutors accused the defendants of undue favoritism, a direct violation of the Taft-Hartley Act of 1947.  The court acquitted both parties that August.  Sales and office personnel that April rejected a bid by the AFL/CIO to represent them in collective bargaining.[137]

Some of the featured items, in the 1960-61 shopping season, included Webcor phonographs; Wilton carpeting, Fiberglas drapes, English slippers, floor lamps Dunlap tubeless tires and Duracrest appliances.  Net sales for 1961 were a record $708,481,000 up 3.5% from $684,839,000 in 1960.  Net earnings reached $23,409,000 equal to $3.20 a share compared with $22,643,000 or $3.11 a share the previous year.[138] The board announced, on December 17, 1961, the closing of William Taylor Sons & Company.[139] Officials also assumed control of Taylor’s Southgate Store.  The full clothing line carried by Taylor’s transferred over to the May Company, and most of Taylor’s employees found work there.

This merger helped the May Company increase sales and earnings.  Net sales in 1962 nearly doubled reaching a record $709,652,000, while net earnings increased to $24,790,000.  That equaled $3.40 a common share.[140]  With over fifty stores and six regional shopping centers, officials expected an equally profitable year the following year.  They were not disappointed.  Net sales in 1963 stood at $723,714,000, a 2% increase over the previous year.  Net earnings reached $30,663,000.[141]  New merchandise ran the gamut from semi-gloss paints, drip dry cotton blouses and children’s easy wash playwear to acrylic embossed plush pile carpeting, telephone amplifiers and special ski lessons. Board members, in June, approved plans calling for the creation of a new real estate firm known as May Realty & Investment.  It bought shopping centers and other selected properties for the parent corporation.  David May II (1912-1992) led it.  An aggregate distribution of about 15% of its outstanding stocks in the form of dividends to common stockholders fulfilled any obligations owed to their stakeholders.[142]

The Board of Directors, in 1963, built two new auto and tire centers: one at “May’s-on-the Heights” and the other at Parmatown.  They also erected another suburban store at the Great Lakes Mall in Mentor, OH.  This 145,000 square foot, multi-level structure, designed by Welton Beckett Associates of Los Angeles, CA, opened in April 1964.[143]  It featured open air escalators surrounded by transparent glass.  Its restaurant décor included murals depicting the history of the Western Reserve of Ohio.[144] Store officials enlarged and remodeled it in the mid-1970s.  Kaufmann’s, in 1993, replaced the May Company.  Federated Department Stores, in 2006, converted it into a Macy’s.  Simon Property Group, in 2011, financed extensive renovations.

Officials, that September, unveiled their latest credit options.  They included a 30-day No Interest Charge Account, an ABC Revolving Account with no down payment or a Deferred Payment Plan with no down payment and up to 36-months to pay off the balance.[145]  In a bold attempt to increase downtown sales, the Board of Directors, in 1963, constructed a 3,000 car nine-story parking garage on the former site of Bailey’s Department Store.  Located at the corner of Prospect Avenue and Ontario Street and named the Parkade, this self-service parking facility featured curved entrance and exit ramps.  Shoppers with proof of purchase paid only $.10 per half hour for the first two hours and then $.15 per half hour.  The May Company charged those without purchases $.20 per half hour up to two hours and then $.15 per half hour.[146]

The May Company, in the spring of 1964, reported record net earnings for the 1st Quarter.  It totaled $5,094,000 equal to $.69 a common share.  That compared with $3,940,000 or $.52 a common share the previous year.  Net sales over that same time span equaled $159,908,000 up 7.9% from $148,259,000 in 1963.[147] President Morton D. May, in April 1965, proudly announced the acquisition of the 109-year old Portland, OR-based retailer called Meier & Frank Company.[148] Meier & Frank stockholders exchanged their common stock on a one-to-one ratio for newly issued May Company convertible preferred stock.  This stock was redeemable for $50.00 a share after September 30, 1970.  The May Company operated Meier & Frank as a separate district division for nearly forty years.

The May Company that same year added some new items and services.  Some of the new merchandise found on its shelves included inexpensive Robanne watches; Flemish yarn and Irish linen handkerchiefs.[149]  New store services ranged from free ski movies in the main auditorium downtown; teen modeling contests at Southgate and art exhibitions at several prime locations.  New departments such as the Boulevard Shoe Shop; Fashion Accessories, Jewelry and Executive Gift Shop brought many shoppers to Public Square.[150] The financial picture for 1965 appeared very rosy with store sales topping a new all-time record of $869,169,000.  Net earnings that year climbed to $45,860,000 or $3.07 a common share.

Nineteen sixty-five produced some other pleasant surprises for this growing retailer.  The May Company, that September, opened its newest branch at the Great Northern Shopping Center in North Olmsted, OH.  Designed by Welton Beckett Associates of Los Angeles, CA, this 185,000 square foot three–story facility with its unique Bermuda, split-faced, precast stone unit exterior veneer featured a highly decorative 17-foot chandelier.[151]  Suspended from the ceiling over its central escalator core, the chandelier was a crowd pleaser.  This successful retailer, in October, celebrated the grand opening of its latest O’Neil’s Department Store at Summit Mall in Fairlawn, OH.  Replacing a smaller store in the Fairlawn Shopping Center, this new 125,700 square foot two-story structure served the needs of Greater Akron for many years to come.[152]  The May Company, in the 1980s, enlarged the store and Federated in 2006 refitted it as a Macy’s.

The second half of the 1960s was characterized by further innovation and growth.  January 1966 saw the expansion of the jewelry department.  Shoppers loved the Oriental pearls.[153] They ranged in price from $39.95 to $150.00.[154]  Shiseido cosmetics debuted, that spring, as did the Wurlitzer Portable Piano.[155] The board announced that autumn a merger with the Hartford, CT-based department store known as G. Fox & Company.[156] That facility remained in operation until 1993.

Escalating costs incurred from mergers; remodeling efforts and the construction of a new retail outlet as part of the Stow-Kent Shopping Center in Kent, OH lessened profits.  Net earnings in 1966 dropped to $38,416,000 or equal to $2.50 a common share as compared with $47,377,000 or $3.10 a share the previous year.  Miscalculations by store accountants made this situation worse.  Specifically, bad debts incurred by the Cleveland and Washington, D.C. divisions negatively impacted the bottom line.  In the case of Cleveland, customer accounts receivable debts reached $3,300,000 as compared to $500,000 in 1965.[157]

Poor accounting practices, high inventories, lack of item turnover and inadequate margins triggered these unprecedented losses.  The accounting firm of Arthur Anderson replaced Touche, Ross, Bailey & Swart.  When asked to explain the sudden drop in store profits, the Board President Morton D. May attributed it to mounting concerns over the U.S. economy and the political uncertainties associated with the Viet Nam War.  The May Company, in July 1966, also withdrew from the Charga-Plate program.  In its place, it furnished customers with their-own charge cards.  Part of a new, state-of-the-art electronic data processing system these charge cards reduced purchasing time by half.[158]

The store also underwent some major managerial changes.  It began in 1967 with the resignation of the company’s CEO/President Morton D. May.  The Board of Directors appointed Stanley J. Goodman (1910-1992) to the post.  He served from 1967 to 1975.  Goodman implemented some major changes while in office.  They included such things as a new management program for store buyers that emphasized the need to think potential company profit and losses when purchasing merchandise.[159] In the early 1970s, Goodman encouraged more dialogue between store officials and customers as a way of gauging shoppers concerns and wants.[160] Officials at that same time elected James C. Walsh Vice President of Administration Control and Richard G. Freiden as Assistant Treasurer and Corporation Tax Department Manager.[161]

Store officials boasted that “whatever it is, you can get it at May Company.”  They meant every word of it.  To better accommodate the growing needs of their customers, the May Company, in 1967, opened a new, 13,000 square foot home furnishings warehouse.  Located at the corner of Payne Avenue and East 41st Street, this spacious warehouse was one of the largest distribution centers in the country.  No other major department store in Cleveland provided so many conveniences to its shoppers.  One of the local dailies said it best the store has an unblemished record of integrity and dependability.

O’Neil’s Department Store, in 1967, opened a new suburban store at the Chapel Hill Mall in Akron, OH.[162]  It is currently occupied by Macy’s.  The May Company’s net earnings, for the nine month period ending October 31, 1967, totaled $7,842,000.  That equaled $.51 a common share vs. $8,497,000 or $.55 a common share the previous year.  Sales that same year increased to $247,963,000 as compared with $238,396,000 in 1966.[163] The Federal Trade Commission, in 1967, limited further acquisitions for the next ten year period unless approved by them first.

Nineteen sixty-eight store sales broke all previous at $1,000,000,000.[164] Unfortunately, profits dropped to $36,200,000.  Hoping to shore up recent losses, store executives established their-own discount chain called Venture.  A respected discounter John F. Geisse headed it.  Venture stores did quite well financially from the day they opened.  That chain operated more than twenty stores by the mid-1970s.  The May Company, in 1968, also took the lead over its competitors when it introduced its-own flex option account system.  This electronic accounting system monitored all unpaid bills.

Cardholders now had the option of paying their outstanding balances either through a special 30-day charge account or a convenient monthly payment plan.  The May Company, in the latter case, reserved the right periodically to adjust monthly finance and service charges.  Those customers defaulting on monthly payments were required to pay the full amount due on the next payment cycle or face possible prosecution.[165] Officials, in 1968, reported record sales although earnings declined due to the $.22 a share surcharge tax.  Earnings topped $34,006,000 equal $2.21 a share as compared with $36,287,000 or $2.36 a share the previous year.

O’Neil’s Department Store, in 1969, opened another retail outlet at Mellet Mall in Canton, OH.  This 120,000 square foot store closed in 2006.  Some of the latest merchandise added during the 1968-69 shopping seasons included such things as pop records; fashionable patio furniture, Coty and Max Factor cosmetics, Rubbermaid kitchen items and Teflon coated waffle grilles.  Third Quarter sales figures for 1969 were up by 4.2% to $273,076,000, while earnings fell by 29.8% to $5,389,000 or $.35 a share.   Analysts, at that time, expressed some concern regarding recent earnings losses; however, store executives seemed unaffected by it.[166]

The 1970s produced a whole set of new economic challenges.  The growing popularity of discount stores did not appear to faze the May Company board.  Store officials had successfully battled competitors in the past and won.  They were sure they could do it again.  Popular events such as the January White Sales; Foreign Food Fair, May Days Celebration and Cleveland Post Office Summer Arts Program & Festival brought large crowds into the various stores.  The grand opening, in 1971, of the new, 126,000 square foot O’Neil’s Department Store at Belden Village Shopping Center ushered-in a new era of sophisticated shopping.[167] Designed by Jacobs, Visconsi & Jacobs, this store is currently occupied by Macy’s.

Cleveland division President Francis A. Coy, in May 1971, announced his resignation.  The Board of Directors named Denny G. Arvanites as his successor.  Arvanites held that post until August 1975 when the board appointed Raymond L. Klauer.[168] Stockholders, in 1971, approved a new insurance plan for shoppers.  Qualified customers now had the opportunity to purchase a modified life insurance policy naming the May Company their beneficiary.  In the event of their death, the May Company would collect the insurance money and pay-off any-and-all outstanding debts owed this department store.  The board also agreed to reimburse policy holders for all stolen merchandise.  The May Company, in 1972, led others by debuting the area’s first catalog showroom and sold items from Communist China.

Store officials, in November 1972, attempted to bolster Christmas sales by encouraging customers to use their May Company credit cards.  Those using their credit cards to purchase $300 or more in merchandise from November 11th through December 31st would not be billed until February 1973.[169] May Company’s earnings for the 3rd quarter of 1972 were up 23% from a year ago, while sales increased by 17.3%.[170] That trend continued into the following year.

Net earnings for the 26 weeks ending August 4, 1973 reached $13,700,000.  That equaled $.89 a common share as compared to $10,300,000 or $.67 a share the previous year.  Store sales, over that same period of time, totaled a whopping $672,000,000.  That compared with $617,000,000 in 1972.[171] The recession in 1974 brought this upward trend to an end.  For the 13 week period ending November 2, 1974, May Company net earnings declined by 6.1% to $7,800,000.  That equaled $.51 a common share as compared with $8,300,000 or $.54 a common share one year ago.[172] The mid-1970s represented yet another period of rapid change and expansion.  It began, in 1975, when its Board of Directors named David C. Farrell to replace Stanley J. Goodman as CEO/President.  Farrell served for 26 years.  Goodman became the new Chairman of the Board.  In Cleveland, H. Gene Nau replaced Raymond L. Klauer as Cleveland divisional head.[173] Nau remained head into the 1980s.

Hoping to capture an even larger percentage of the Akron-Canton retail market, May Company officials, in August 1975, opened another O’Neil’s Department Store at the Rolling Acres Mall in Akron, OH.  This 103,000 square foot building in 2006 became a Macy’s.  It closed less than two years later.  Continual branch expansion paid-off for stockholders.  Net earnings for the 13-weeks ending August 2, 1975 stood at $9,100,000 or equal to $.59 a common share.  This compared to $7,200,000 or $.47 a share one year ago.  Sales for that same quarter remained high at $446,100,000.  That represented a 14% gain from 1974 figures.[174] Its profitable subsidiary Venture stores accounted for 9% of the May Company’s entire sales which was valued at $1,750,000,000.

The August 1976 opening of the May Company’s latest branch store at Randall Park Mall in North Randall, OH received a great deal of media attention.  The idea of Youngstown native and shopping mall magnate Edward J. DeBartolo Sr. (1909-1994), Randall Park was dubbed the “Largest Mall in the World” when it first opened.  Dallas-based RYA Architects and Cleveland designers Dalton, Dalton, Little & Newport designed it.  The May Company’s 177,000 square foot, two-story structure featured a multitude of departments along with the popular Thistle Grill Restaurant.[175] It became Macy’s in 2006 and closed in February 2008.  Another branch opened in 1977 at the Euclid Square Mall in Euclid, OH.  Its precast concrete panels; rough stone veneer and strip lights lent character to this 177,000 square foot facility.  It featured other special touches such as parquet floors, shiny counters, raised ceilings and recessed lighting.  Designed by the Cleveland architectural firm of Dalton, Dalton, Little & Newport it included Three Crowns Restaurant and a coffee shop.[176] This store in 2004 became a discount department store called “Outlets USA.”  Its asset value, in 2009, was $1,780,000.

The May Company, throughout the 1970s, provided its customers with a wide array of new and exciting products.  They ranged from antique satin drapes; Ponderosa Pine furniture, Farberware and Dutch tulips ready for planting to original lithographs, Presto Coffeemaker Week, Colby Cotton Summer Knits and wine dispensers.  A host of special contests and public service activities such as free trips to Las Vegas, children’s coloring contests along with the Violet Club and “Smoke Enders” also appealed to discerning shoppers.[177]

There was always something happening at the May Company.  Newspaper advertising, in the late 1970s, continually reinforced the important of buying quality merchandise at low prices from stores you trusted.  Officials at the May Company understood that their stores represented much more than places to purchase quality merchandise at reasonable prices.  They provided shoppers with free delivery and installation services; Eagle Stamps, two-week free home trials on selected items and a variety of credit plans.  Not all stores offered that.  Their customers must never lose sight of the role that the May Company played in their daily lives.[178]

May Company net earnings for the 13-weeks ending October 31, 1977 exceeded $15,900,000 or $.71 a common share.  This represented a 9.4% gain over the previous year.  Sales also increased by 9.4% to reach $548,300,000.  Venture Discount Stores posted gains of 18.4%, while May Company catalog showrooms were up by 14.4%.[179] Venture Discount, in 1978, purchased nineteen stores from Chicago’s Jewel Company and the May Company, in 1981, divested its interest in Canadian Consumers Distribution Company.  The board took this infusion of additional capital, generated by this divestiture, to promote its catalog business.  Stockholders that same year approved a 3-for-2 stock split.

Store executives, in 1979, acquired Topeka, -based Volume Shoe Company for about $150,000,000 in stock.[180] This acquisition resulted in a profit loss of 1.6%.  The board, that same year, approved major renovations for the Public Square store.  One gimmick to gain public attention involved what were called “Living Windows.”  “Living Windows” gave an illusion that the manikins in the display cases were putting on and taken off clothes.  In reality, it involved life models, polarized light and revolving platforms.  Special cooking demonstrations, a Bonne Bell Running Clinic, a table top club, special financial planning sessions and a celebrity racquet ball challenge brought many shoppers downtown.  Special appearances by the Amazing Spider Man, Stan Childress of WJW-TV and fashion designer Oscar de la Renta highlighted the 1979 shopping season.[181]

First quarter profits in 1980 had declined by 1.6% to $12,400,000.[182] That equaled $.43 a share as compared with $12,800,000 or $.44 a share the previous year.  Store sales, over that same period of time, had increased by 6.7% to $846,600,000. The May Company, Prudential Life Insurance Company and Melvin Simon Associates, that December, announced merger plans.  The newly created entity known as “May Centers” owned and operated six regional shopping complexes in Denver, CO; Laurel Park, LA and St. Louis, MO.

Under this agreement, the May Company borrowed $75,000,000 from Prudential Life Insurance, over a twenty year period, at an annual interest rate of 9%.  Store officials expected an after-tax return of $9,000,000 equal to $.30 a share.  The gross value of these six regional shopping centers was $145,000,000, while the May Company’s book value on these properties stood at approximately $30,000,000.  Store executives amassed close to $75,000,000 in cash, while maintaining a 50% interest in the equity and future appreciation of those six shopping complexes.  This business deal excluded May Company structures and parcels located within these centers.[183]

This latest merger produced outstanding results quickly.  With more than 180 stores, the May Company’s annual sales advanced to $708,200,000 as compared with $646,600,000 in 1980.[184] The introduction of new high-end items appealed to many fashion conscious shoppers.  These products included Coach name brand items; Candies shoes and a wide selection of Strawberry Shortcake fashions.[185] In response to this merger, stockholders decided to extend their special insurance protection program to include all credit cardholders.

Store officials and employees, in April 1983, mourned the passing of their former President/CEO Morton D. May.  He was 69 years old.[186] The board that same year acquired HRT Industries, Zody’s Discount Department Store chain, and Craddock-Terry Shoe Company.  That action resulted in the establishment of the Payless Shoe chain.  Shoppers especially enjoyed Payless Shoes latest Pro-Wings line of sneakers.

The Board of Directors, in January 1984, appointed Robert B. Cockayne to replace H. Gene Nau as President of the Cleveland-division.[187] The New York brokerage firm of L.F. Rothschild, Unterberg and Towbin, that March, commended the May Company for its very insightful leadership.[188] First quarter profits in 1984 reaching $27,500,000.[189] That represented a 35% increase over the previous year.  That equaled $.95 a common share as compared with $20,300,000 or $.70 a share in 1983.  Sales, during that same time period, soared by 14.3% to $842,600,000.

Store officials, in early 1986, made two very important announcements concerning the future of Associated Dry Goods (ADG).  The first involved the acquisition of the Sibley, Lindsey & Curr Department Store of Rochester, NY.  A part of ADG since 1957, many up-state New Yorkers considered Sibley’s a good and reliable local department store.  Some analysts, at that time, questioned the wisdom of this merger since it added very little to the May Company portfolio.  What critics did not know was that this acquisition was only the first step leading to a much larger merger later that year.

May Company stockholders, in October 1986, approved the acquisition of the entire Associated Dry Goods chain for an unprecedented $2,200,000,000.  That represented the most costly merger by the May Company to date.  The May Company paid $66.00 a share for all 35,000,000 shares of Associated Dry Goods outstanding preferred stock.   ADG, the nation’s 4th largest retail conglomerate, operated some of the nation’s finest department stores.  They including favorites such as p, L.S. Ayers & Company, Loehmann’s, Lord & Taylor’s and J.W. Robinson’s of California.  The May Company now operated stores in 39 states.[190]

That same Board of Directors utilized $2,000,000 of the capital generated from this major business deal to open several new stores.  Fourth quarter earnings for 1986 increased to $213,000,000 or $1.38 a common share.  That symbolized a major increase from $195,000,000 or $1.24 a common share the previous year.  Sales, over that same period of time, exceeded $3,360,000,000.  That represented an increase of 8% from $3,100,000,000 in 1985.[191] The 1986-87 shopping season featured such things as live marionette shows, pop concerts, cabbage patch dolls, career seminars, Sunbeam humidifiers, Gloria chocolates and Glemby coats.

Hoping to generate additional capital for further expansion and remodeling, officials, in August 1988, divested themselves of 50% of its shopping centers holdings.[192] They applied $1,500,000,000 of the capital gained by that divestiture towards the acquisition of two major Federated Department Stores: Filene’s in Boston, MA and Foley’s in Houston, TX.  The May Company also cut its year-end losses by selling Caldor’s and Loehmann’s to Odyssey Partners LP, a private equity firm and Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette, a private investment banking house.[193] These two New York investment groups saw profit potential in these two well-known retail chains.  The Board of Directors also closed O’Neil’s anchor store in Akron and assumed control of all its branches.

Consolidation appeared to be the best course of action to follow then based on the fluctuating stock market.  Net income for the 3rd Quarter of 1988 increased by a whopping 49.4% to reach $133,000,000.  That equaled $.91 a share as compared to $89,000,000 or $.57 a share the previous year.[194] Store revenues grew by $400,000,000 over 1987 figures.  Board members, in 1989, consolidated their various stores into well-defined regional divisions.

Leaders, within those various district divisions, strove to implement new company policies in direct and efficient ways.  They also encouraged their individual stores to meet the challenges posed by their ever-changing customer-base.  The regional business model, adapted by the May Company, emulated a business form fist developed by Macy’s in the 1970s.  Executive at the May Company firmly believed that more efficiently-run stores would survive the on-slot of competitors.

The decade of the 1990s began with the May Company centralizing both its buying and distribution processes.  Board members, in 1990, also built a new 104,000 square foot facility at Midway Mall in Elyria, OH.  It later became Macy’s.  Officials transferred Venture to their shareholders through a special tax-free distribution.  The May Company, in 1990, also purchased the 148-year old Richmond, VA-based department store known as Thalhimers.  It soon became part of the May Company’s Hecht division.   Board members, in the autumn of 1992, approved a merger with Pittsburgh-based Kaufmann Department Store.  They also discard the May Company name and logo.  The Kaufmann name and logo began to appear in May Company stores throughout Ohio and Pennsylvania.[195]

However, this merger led to even bigger changes for the Greater Cleveland retail sector.  The May Company announced, on October 17, 1992, plans to close its downtown store.[196]  Even though the Public Square facility generated about $19,000,000 in sales annually, its profits over the past several years had averaged only $250,000.  Store officials also eliminated 500 to 750 jobs in its sixteen Ohio stores.  The Public Square store closed on January 31, 1993 following a massive liquidation sale.  Store officials firmly believed that they could sell this retail parcel quickly.  They were wrong.  A number of possible deals never materialized.[197]

Finally, the Cadillac Ranch, in 2008, rented 18,000 square feet for its restaurant/bar and Cuyahoga Community College, in 2009, converted 26,000 square feet into its new, state-of-the-art Culinary Center.[198]  A Cleveland developer named Bob Rains unveiled plans, in September 2013, to build luxury one and two bedroom apartments within this popular historic site.

Other business changes affecting the May Company in the early 1990s included establishing a new Californian-based Robinson’s-May division and adding ten Hess Department Stores branches.  The Board of Directors also opened a new Great Lakes Data Center on the former site of O’Neil’s in Sheffield Center.[199] The May Company, over the next five years, expected to spend $4,600,000,000 to create 100 new retail outlets and 1,200 shoe stores.  Officials also planned to refurbish 60 older stores.  Net sales during the 1st Quarter of 1994 reached $2,526,000,000, while net income, over that time span, topped $112,000,000.  Sales figures, in 1995, topped $2,697,000,000 with net income approaching $114,000,000.[200]

The May Company and J.C. Penny Company, in 1995, both filed bids in federal bankruptcy court to purchase the Washington, D.C.-based Woodward & Lothrop Department Store.  Woodward & Lothrop, in January 1994, had filed for bankruptcy protection under Chapter 11.[201] Store executives sought protection in order to restructure their debt.  The court decided otherwise.  J.C. Penny Company, under this court mandate, secured seven of the Woodward & Lothrop branches with the remainder going to the May Company.  The court also allowed the May Company to acquire sixteen Wanamaker stores.  The May Company next purchased thirteen Strawbridge & Clothier stores.  Under this merger agreement, the May Company assumed that retailer’s debt and liabilities totaling about $280,000,000.[202]

The mid-1990s brought on further changes.  Divesting itself of the Payless Shoe chain resulted in a 13% decrease in store profits for the 3rd Quarter of 1996.  Net earnings dropped to $118,000,000 or $.44 a common share vs. $135,000,000 or $.50 a common share a year earlier.  Store sales, on the other hand, soared to $2,860,000,000 as compared to $2,570,000,000 the previous year.[203] With net profits in 1997 exceed $12,000,000,000 stockholders acquired eleven Dillard stores and the Kansas City, MO-based Jones Department Store chain.

An unfavorable court ruling, in 1998, resulting from a lawsuit filed against the May Company, for its illegal collection of credit card payments from bankrupt customers, compelled the Board of Directors to pay 37,000 customers over $27,000,000 in damages.[204] Store executives eagerly awaited the completion of Edward DeBartolo’s redevelopment efforts at the Richmond Mall in Richmond Hts., OH.  The financial losses recently incurred at Euclid Square Mall in Euclid, OH encouraged officials to seek out space elsewhere.  The new Richmond Town Square fitted their needs, and construction began on a new Kaufmann’s store there.[205] Board members, in 1999, approved the acquisition of Zion Cooperative Mercantile Institution (ZCMI).  ZCMI had been a popular Utah department store for one hundred and thirty years.  It remained in business until 2002.

The new Millennium signaled further store mergers and additional managerial changes.  The May Company, in 2000, purchased David’s Bridal Company for $436,000,000.  A buyout firm, in 2007, called Leonard Green & Partners bought this subsidiary for $750,000,000.  The private equity firm of Clayton, Dubilier & Rice, in 2012, purchased it for $900,000,000. Board members also secured Gingiss Formal Wear.[206] Stockholders, in 2001, appointed Eugene S. Kahn as its new President/CEO.  Kahn served at that post until 2005.  The May Company board, in June 2004, approved merger plans with Marshall Fields.  Owned by Dayton-Hudson Company since 1990, the May Company bought Marshall Fields for a whopping $3,240,000,000 in cash.[207]

A reorganized Federated Department Stores, in 2003, began merger talks with the May Company.  The new Federated chain, now with assets exceeding $4,127,000,000, emerged on February 4, 1992 from Chapter 11 protection.  Disagreements regarding the purchase price stalled negotiations for several years.  Finally, in 2006, an agreement with the May Company was struck.  Under this arrangement, Federated stores issued an $11,000,000,000 stock transfer.[208] Citi-Group then purchased Federated store’s combined propriety and credit card business.  As part of this deal, Federated officials also sold both its Lord & Taylor’s and Priscilla’s of Boston.  The May Company transferred more than four hundred stores to Macy’s and closed its credit operations in Sheffield, OH.

The decision to close its Public Square store and remove its May Company logo represented a major tactical blunder for this once popular chain. Regrettably, the “new and improved” Kaufmann’s failed to excite Cleveland customers who were very comfortable with the traditional May Company.  Most Clevelanders considered this store synonymous with locally-based retailing.  The May Company never hesitated in promoting its hometown image even though its headquarters remained in St. Louis.  Cleveland, a highly profitable well-run division for many years, served as a testing ground for many of its future leaders.   In fact, many of the upper echelon executives began their careers in the Public Square store.  They often turned to colleagues in Cleveland for advice.  This close connection with headquarters provided local managers with clout when it came to developing and executing national store policies.  Add into this favorable business mix, competitive pricing and quality merchandise, and the formula for success was established.

It took a major downturn in local sales prompted in large measure by a souring economy before the Board of Directors in St. Louis began to question the value of their Cleveland stores.  Consolidation may have seemed appropriate especially given recent sales drops and growing competition by discounters.  In their minds, sacrificing the downtown store and the May Company name did not mean that they planned to abandon the Cleveland market, far from it.  They firmly believed that once local customers accepted these changes they might even grow to like them.  They were wrong.

Local shoppers felt betrayed and they made a mass exodus.  By the time the Federated Department Stores purchased the May Company net sales and profits had dropped by 40% from the early 1990s.  The die had been caste.  The new glitzy Federated chain, led by the Macy banner, did not compare with the May Company.  Through thick and thin, the May Company had always been there, and then, in a flash, it was gone.  Consolidation might have made perfect business sense to May Company accountants sitting in St. Louis; however, to loyal customers, living and working in Cleveland, such actions were inexcusable.  The May Company was a friend, and a friend does not abandon other friends when times get tough.

The May Company Board of Directors should not have acted so arbitrarily.  After all, success in retailing is based on honesty, trust and value. Long-term growth results from favorable interaction between merchants and shoppers year after year.  Customers expect consistency and product quality. Any sudden changes on the part of the retailer may result in dire economic consequences.  This is exactly what happened with the May Company.  Finding itself caught in this unenviable position, store officials had two choices.  One option encompassed following traditional business practices and riding out the economic downturn of the 1990s, the other involved initiating radical changes while hoping for the best.  The May Company chose the latter course and paid the ultimate price, extinction as a local retailer.

 

Endnotes

  1. Jeanne Abrams, “David May,” Immigration Entrepreneurship German American Business Biographies. http:www.immigrationentrepreneur.org.
  2. “Behind Closed Doors,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 26, 1898.
  3. “Big Deal Consummated,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 5, 1899.
  4. “Tomorrow’s the Last Day,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 8, 1899.
  5. “McWatters Has Resigned, Severs the Connection with the Hull & Dutton Company,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 9, 1899.
  6. “Mr. M.E. McGillin,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 26, 1899.
  7. “Passing of the Hull & Dutton Company,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 9, 1899.
  8. “A Magnificent Building, It Will Be Constructed on the Square for the May Company,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 8, 1899.
  9. “The May Company,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 13, 1899.
  10. “Annual May Sale,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 1, 1907.
  11. “Four Years of Steady Growth, The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 31, 1904.
  12. “Immigrants’ Pioneer Spirit Lives in 50-Years Old May Company,” The Plain Dealer, October 9, 1949.
  13. “Mme. Yale Sends Two Beauty Demonstrations from Chicago to the May Company,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, June 14, 1903. For the Knights Templars, The May Company’s Preparations to Accommodate Them, The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 7, 1903.
  14. “Third Annual August Sale of Furniture,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 7, 1904.
  15. “Free Musicale in our New Auditorium,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 15, 1907.
  16. “The May Company,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 7, 1907.
  17. “The May Company,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 2, 1907.
  18. “Eagle Trading Stamps,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 23, 1908.
  19. “For the Best of Everything, Go to the May Company First,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 22, 1908.
  20. “Our Annual May Company Sale,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 10, 1908.
  21. “Fine Overcoats and Suits,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 14, 1908.
  22. “Morning Specials Notice.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 23, 1909.
  23. “The May Company May Sale,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 15, 1910.
  24. “Department Stores Combine, Holding Company for Western Enterprises Incorporation for $20,000,000,” The New York Times, June 5, 1910.
  25. “May Company to Erect Magnificent Home, Will Build $3,000,000 Sore Extending from Euclid Avenue to Prospect Avenue S.E.,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 23, 1913.
  26. “The Catholic Universe,” September 4, 1914.
  27. “Things Worth Knowing, The May Company,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 4, 1915.
  28. “First Mortgage 6% Gold Bonds,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 2, 1915.
  29. “Join One of these Classes in the Citizen’s Christmas Money Club,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 30, 1916.
  30. “Food for Thought about Eagle Stamps,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 30, 1916.
  31. “May Department Stores Stock Earns $24.92 a Share Last Year Against $15.40 in 1918,” The New York Times, April 6, 1920.
  32. “Buy Now for Spring to Keep Up Trade,” The New York Times, November 13, 1920.
  33. “May Department Stores Net Profits $3,788,707 in 1921 Equivalent to $16.82 Per Share,” The New York Times, March 28, 1922.
  34. “Earns $10.64 on $50.00 Par Common Share May Department Stores Company,” The New York Times, March 24, 1925.
  35. “May Stores Stock Change, New Shares to be traded for old, Two-for-One Basis,” The New York Times, November 24, 1926.
  36. “The May Company’s Daily Shopping Bulletin,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 11, 1920.
  37. “Mothers, A Study of the Rearing and Education of Children,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 14, 1920.
  38. “Society Brand Clothes,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 30, 1921. “Simplex Ironer, the Best Ironer, The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 28, 1920.
  39. “The May Company’s Bulletin,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 12, 1922.
  40. “The May Company is on McCall Street,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 2, 1920.
  41. “Just in Time for the Thanksgiving Holiday, Dinner and Dance Frocks,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 24, 1922.
  42. “If it’s a Question of which machine, Consider these Facts,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 18, 1923.
  43. “The May Company’s Patrons Garage Opens Tomorrow,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, June 21, 1925.
  44. “A Sale of Fine New Winter Overcoats,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 2, 1925.
  45. “N.L. Dauby Dies; Builder of May Company,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 18, 1964.
  46. “May Stores’ Income $6,952,101 Net in 1926,” The New York Times, March 23, 1927.
  47. “Dillon Read Buys May Stores Stock,” The New York Times, September 22, 1929.
  48. “All Next week, See Our Style Show at Keith’s Palace Theatre,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 31, 1928.
  49. “The Klein Lampe Homesite Company,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 17, 1929.
  50. “Opening Monday The Spanish Room Restaurant-Tea Room,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 10, 1929.
  51. “For Fall Surety Hats,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 21, 1929.
  52. Lehman Brothers Collection, Contemporary Business Archives, Harvard University Business School, library.hbs.edu.
  53. “Making Good Our Slogan Watch Us Grow, Ohio Largest Store Becomes Even Larger,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 19, 1931.
  54. “The Homefurnishing Institute Sponsored by the May Company,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 9, 1930. “Baseball fans, Walter Johnson in Person, The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 3, 1930.
  55. “Announcing Second Annual Exhibit Cleveland Artists and Sculptures,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 25, 1931. “Sewing Studio,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 8, 1931.
  56. “Paint Sale,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 3, 1931.
  57. “August Sales Vanta Baby Week,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 16, 1931.
  58. “You Can Buy The Famous Frigidaire,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, June 8, 1934.
  59. “May Company,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 9, 1932. “Production Sales Beginning Today,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 10, 1932.
  60. “The May Company Inaugural Day Celebration Today March 4th,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 4, 1933.
  61. “August Furniture Sale, No Better Time than Now to Spend and Save,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 16, 1933.
  62. “We Will Cash Checks,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 20, 1933. “Friday at the May Company Beginning our Annual After-Thanksgiving Mark Down Sale,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 30, 1933. “Snow Suits, $7.95,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 13, 1933.
  63. “At the May Company, A Scoop for our Yarn Goods Department, Home Art Frocks cut, trimmed-Ready to Sew,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 28, 1934.
  64. “It’s Always May First in Cleveland,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 1, 1934.
  65. “May Stores Group Clears $3,301,614,” The New York Times, April 4, 1935.
  66. “Russeks Sales Up 21.9% in 12 Months, Increased Showings Made also by May Department Stores and Outlet Company,” The New York Times, April 6, 1937.
  67. “Department Stores,” The New York Times, April 27, 1938.
  68. “May Stores Earn $4,402,894 in Year,” The New York Times, April 3, 1940.
  69. “The May Company Fashion Revue Apparel,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 20, 1935.
  70. “Again, Today Six-Day Bike Race,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 9, 1935.
  71. “Headquarters for Mickey Riley Perfect Swim Trunks,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, June 26, 1936.
  72. “Tomorrow August 14 Will be Jubilee Day at the Great Lakes Exposition,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 13, 1937.
  73. “Easy to Play, Easy to Pay,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 12, 1937.
  74. “Spring Fabric Carnival,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 13, 1938.
  75. “Importance Notice, Announcing a New May Company Service Advanced Credit Coupons,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 6, 1939.
  76. “Introducing America’s Largest Creation in Fine Translucent China,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 21, 1940.
  77. “New and Exclusive in Cleveland with the May Company Sunset Boulevard Hat Fashions,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 9, 1940. “Hand Painted Summer flowers Sac-de-Perl Handbags,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 17, 1940. “The May Company Announces the Opening of the New Home Planning Studio,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 4, 1940.
  78. “The May Company Beauty Special in our Aladdin Shop,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 19, 1940.
  79. “Introducing the New and Exclusive Beaux Arts Coats,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 9, 1941. “Classic Records in Complete Albums,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 2, 1941.
  80. “Streamliner Slack sets Tailored by Mayfair $4.50 a Set,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 19, 1941.
  81. “U.S. Defense Stamps Are on Sale at the May Company,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 12, 1942.
  82. “The May Company, This is Women at War Week,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 23, 1942.
  83. “Notice to All Men, Women and Children Who Wish to Buy Shoes,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 2, 1943.
  84. “Advanced Information to an Inquiring Public: Yes We Will Have May Day,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 29, 1943.
  85. “Prelude to the Fourth War Loan, Tribute to the Unconquerables, Norway Day,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 14, 1944.
  86. “Affiliated Retailers, Incorporated, Formed by Macy & Company and May Stores,” The New York Times, August 22, 1944.
  87. “May Stores Stock Offered at $103.50,” The New York Times, April 10, 1945.
  88. “Dividends, Profits for May Stores Company,” The New York Times, May 4, 1945.
  89. “May Widens Its Holdings, Substantial Minority Interests is Taken in Cleveland Store, “The New York Times, April 4, 1945.
  90. “May Stores Incorporated, and Kaufmann’s Announce Plans for a Merger,” The New York Times, July 7, 1946.
  91. “The May Company’s Newly Enlarged Modernized Record Department,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 25, 1945.
  92. “Loop Bus Service To and From The May Company Garage Begins Tuesday, September 4th,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 3, 1945.
  93. “Vanta Baby Week,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 5, 1947.
  94. “The May Company Proudly Presents the most Versatile, Usable Sectional Furniture to date Mengel Module,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 25, 1947.
  95. “This is Beauty Serenade Week at May Company,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 27, 1949.
  96. “Highest Quality Appliances at September-Low Prices,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 11, 1949. “First in Cleveland at the May Company Five-Room Colonial Doll House,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 2, 1949.
  97. “Scoop First in Cleveland Big Picture TV at a small price Admiral TV Combination,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 7, 1948. “May Company Peggy Angora Beret,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 13, 1949.
  98. “May Stores Sales Increase $20,722,480 Net is $7,680,039 in Record $202,449,639,” The New York Times, May 1, 1946.
  99. “T.S. Martin Sold to May Company,” The New York Times, January 1, 1949.
  100. “May Stores’ Sales Off in Half-Years,” The New York Times, September 26, 1949.
  101. “Presenting the Provincial Stromberg Carlson’s Newest 1950,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 19, 1950.
  102. “The May Company Pat Hartley’s Heart Beat a Junior’s Delight,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 5, 1950.
  103. “Be Sure to Visit the May Company’s All Ohio Sports and Outdoor Show,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 5, 1950.
  104. “Simmons, Self-Adjusting Spring $49.50,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 3, 1950.
  105. “M. Roget is Here Famous Hairstylists from Helena Rubinstein’s New York Salon,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 22, 1950. “Your Invited to Meet Ernestine Gilbreth Cary,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 29, 1950.
  106. “The May Company Fabric Department Presents Arthur Murray Dancers in a Musical Fashion Show,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 7, 1951.
  107. “Rent a Piano,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 15, 1951.
  108. “Pepperell Electric Blankets $25.00,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 14, 1951. “Sale Ripple Edge Nylon Curtains,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 7, 1951.
  109. “Exclusive at the May Company – The TV Blouse,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 14, 1952.
  110. “Exclusively at the May Company, Seven-Volume Modern American Encyclopedia Set,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 21, 1952.
  111. “Spirit of Holiday Gets Early Start, Parties Around the Clock Keep City Bustling,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 23, 1952.
  112. “Fine American Tourister Luggage at Big Savings,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 22, 1953.
  113. “Amateur Camera Fans Enter the Hieland Research Photo Contest,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 15, 1953. “Eat, The Mayfair Room,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 15, 1953.
  114. “Cleveland Greatest Clothing Value Scottsdale Suits,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 22, 1953. “Hickok Christmas Gift Shop Presents the Greatest Gift Show on Earth, The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 13, 1953.
  115. May Department Stores’ Net in Half Year Is Placed at $4,220,000 or $.62 a share,” The New York Times, September 21, 1953.
  116. “May Stores Show 19.3% Dip in Profit,” The New York Times, December 4, 1954.
  117. “Three Big Shopping Center Costing $18,200,000 to Open,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 6, 1954. “Sheffield Center Opening Today,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 1, 1954.
  118. “Why Buy Stocks? The May Company,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 16, 1954.
  119. “May Stores Files A $25,000,000 Issue,” The New York Times, February 10, 1955. “Three New Issues on Market Today,” The New York Times, March 1, 1955.
  120. “Chain Lifts Sales 8.7% for Quarter,” The New York Times, June 1, 1955.
  121. “Eat Better for Less with the New and Dependable Freezer Food Service Program,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 12, 1954.
  122. “She Works in Cleveland,” Charm Magazine, February 1955.
  123. “Premier Showing of the New White Automatic,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 20, 1955. “Wallpaper Demonstration,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 10, 1955.
  124. “Christian Dior Stockings Exclusively at May Company,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 11, 1955.
  125. “Exclusive at May Company…Decorator Pictures,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 19, 1956. “The May Company Midwest Preview of the brand New Lady Ronson Electric Shaver,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 2, 1956.
  126. “May Stores Lift Sales and Profits, Figures for Latest Quarter and Nine Months Surpass Those of ’55 Periods,” The New York Times, December 7, 1956.
  127. “May Department Stores, First Quarter Profits Raised to a $.40 a share from $.36,” The New York Times, June 15, 1957.
  128. “Monkey Business for Ginger, Zippy and You,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 17, 1957. “Now at the May Company the Romantic New Ballard Pattern in Oneida Community Silverplate,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 2, 1957. “Exclusive at May’s Carloads Sale, Special Savings on 1957 Deluxe Speed Queen Washers, $119.95,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 22, 1957.
  129. “Even the Air is Modern at the New May Company Store Comfort-Conditioned by Gas,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 1, 1957.
  130. “The May Company Tire Sale,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 10, 1957. “Come to the May Company, Berkshire Fashion Show,” The Plain Dealer, April 18. 1958.
  131. “Store Merger Set By May and Hecht,” The New York Times, October 15, 1958.
  132. “May Company Bows to Decree,” The New York Times, June 29, 1959.
  133. “May’s Store is Rising in Parmatown,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 27, 1960. Mary Hirschfeld, “Third Store in May Group Serving Greater Cleveland,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 28, 1960.
  134. “The May Company Has a Credit Plan to Meet your Every Budget Need,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 25, 1959.
  135. “Executive is Elevated By the May Stores Company,” The New York Times, March 15, 1960.
  136. “Obituaries, Sam Rosenberg, Retired May Company Manager,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 26, 1977.
  137. J.C. Daschbach, “Trial of May’s and Finegan is Due to Open,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 12, 1961.
  138. Anthony J. Disantis, “May Company’s Employees Turn Down Unions in Balloting,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 29, 1960.
  139. “May Stores Company,” The New York Times, April 27, 1962.
  140. “One Door Closes Another Opens Wide With Welcome as Taylor’s Comes to May’s,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 17, 1961.
  141. Clare M. Reckert, “Continental Can Adds to Dividends,” The New York Times, April 24, 1963.
  142. “Fifty-Five Stores Comprise May Company’s Network,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 19, 1964.
  143. “May Stores to Form Separate Realty Firm,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 16, 1962.
  144. “Now Four Great Tire Centers to Serve You,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 22, 1964.
  145. “Mays Opening April 22, Western Reserve is Store Motif,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 11, 1964.
  146. “Tent Sale Starts Today,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 8, 1962.
  147. “Shop May’s Today, May’s New Parkade Opens Today, The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 23, 1964.
  148. “Profits at Peak For May Stores, Earnings Rise to $5,094,000,” The New York Times, May 19, 1964.
  149. “May Company Completes Its Bid for Control of Meier and Frank,” The New York Times, April 27, 1965.
  150. “Sale Robanne Watches for all the Family,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 11, 1965. “Irish Linen Hankies with her Initials,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 28, 1965.
  151. “May’s New Street Floor Your Passport to Fashion,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 12, 1965.
  152. “Chandelier Is Eye Catcher,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 5, 1965.
  153. “Fairlawn Gets Preview of Nee Shopping Center,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 27, 1965.
  154. “Oriental Bazaars,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 24, 1966.
  155. “Discover the Magic of Christmas at A Wonderful World of Gifts,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 1, 1965.
  156. “Running Out of Hobbies?” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 7, 1966.
  157. “May Stores Sets Earnings Records,” The New York Times, November 17, 1965.
  158. “Profits Decline for May Stores, But Volume for Fiscal 1966 Reaches Record Level” The New York Times, April 7, 1967. Leonard Sloane, “May Stores’ Meeting Dominated by Wrangling Over Accountants,” The New York Times, June 9, 1967.
  159. Michael Kelly, “May Company Ends Charga-Plate Link,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 16, 1966.
  160. Isadore Barmash, “May Chain Stresses Excitement and Agility,” The New York Times, July 4, 1968.
  161. “Walsh Is Names by May Stores,” The New York Times, April 18, 1967.
  162. John Kashar, “Akron Battles Heart Decay,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, June 7, 1965.
  163. “May Department Stores Net Slips,” The New York Times, November 18, 1967.
  164. “Sales at May Company Surge,” The New York Times, January 25, 1968.
  165. “Why Isn’t Johnny Ready for School Now, His Mother Doesn’t Have May’s Charge Card Yet,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 25, 1968.
  166. “May Company Profits Dip on Record Sales,” The New York Times, April 8, 1969. Clare M. Reckert, “Some Retail-Chain Profits Dip,” The New York Times, November 21, 1969.
  167. Paul F. Colebrook Jr., “Eaves Dropping Mobilizers Move,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 10, 1969.
  168. “Coy Moves Up,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 8, 1971.
  169. “Holiday Dollars Another Good Reason to Have a May Company Charge Account,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 19, 1972.
  170. Clare M. Reckert, “Three Retail Chains Increase Profits Sharply; Other Companies Report Earnings,” The New York Times, November 16, 1972.
  171. Clare M. Reckert, “May Stores Registers Record Earnings and Volume,” The New York Times, August 23, 1974.
  172. Clare M. Reckert, “Three Store Chains Show Profit Drops,” The New York Times, November 20, 1974.
  173. Michael Kelly, “Nau to Take May Company Helm Here,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 18, 1976.
  174. Clare M. Reckert, “Penny Net Down; Federated and May Show Profit Gains,” The New York Times, August 20, 1975.
  175. “Designed from Inside Out, Décor Important in New May Company,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 8, 1976.
  176. “May Company to be Fashion Leader at Euclid Square,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 1, 1977.
  177. “You Will Stop Smoking on October 22nd, Calmly and Comfortably,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 4, 1975.
  178. “Labor Day Weekend, The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 4, 1977.
  179. Clare M. Reckert, “Department Store Chains Show Sharp Profit Rise,” The New York Times, November 17, 1977.
  180. “Earnings, Allied Stores Profit Off 37.9% in October,” The New York Times, May 22, 1980.
  181. “See the Superhero at the May Company,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 9, 1979. “What’s Happening at the May Company, The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 26, 1979. “What’s Happening at the May Company, The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 23, 1979.
  182. “Earnings, Allied Stores Profit Off 37.9% in October.”
  183. Isadore Barmash, “May and Prudential in Venture,” The New York Times, December 23, 1980.
  184. Phillip H. Wiggins, “Federated Stores’ Net Up 53.6% May, Allied, Dayton Also Gain,” The New York Times, May 21, 1981.
  185. “New at the May Company Strawberry Shortcake Shop,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 1, 1981.
  186. Lindsey Gruson, “Morton D. May Dies in St. Louis; Headed Department Store Chain,” The New York Times, April 14, 1983.
  187. Marcus Gleisser, “Nation Sees Sun but Ohio Outlook Remains Cloudy,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 29, 1984.
  188. Isadore Barmash, “Market Place, Power Cited in Retailers,” The New York Times, April 24, 1984.
  189. Isadore Barmash, “Market Place, May Stores As a Target,” The New York Times, July 20, 1984.
  190. Eric Schmitt, “May Stores Seeks Associated Chain,” The New York Times, June 23, 1986.
  191. “Federated’s Net Rises 11% May’s Is Up 9%,” The New York Times, March 19, 1987.
  192. Isadore Barmash, “Market Place, For May Stores Reason to Grow,” The New York Times, August 2, 1988.
  193. Isadore Barmash, “May Stores to Sell Its Caldor Unit,” The New York Times, October 12, 1989.
  194. “May Stores Up; Macy has Loss,” The New York Times, November 11, 1988.
  195. “Kaufmann’s Replacing May Company On Store Signs,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 28, 1993.
  196. Miriam Hill, “It Won’t Seem Like Cleveland Anymore,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 17, 1992.
  197. Bill Lubinger, “Downtown May Company Loses Buyer Solon Firm Drops Plans to Rebuild Store,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, June 10, 1995. Bill Lubinger, “May Company Building Downtown May Be Renovated as a Hotel,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 1, 1998. Bill Lubinger, “Auto Museum Considering Downtown Sites More Storage, Exhibit Space Needed for Historic Showplaces,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 24, 1999.
  198. Michelle Jarboe, “Restaurant Club for May Company Site Cadillac Ranch,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 2, 2008. Janet Okobeu, “Tri-C to Open Culinary Center in old May Company Building,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 28, 2009.
  199. Stephen Hudak, “May Company to add 100 Jobs at Credit Card Service Center,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 22, 1995.
  200. “Company Earnings, May Department Stores Company,” The New York Times, May 9, 1995
  201. “Company News, New Offer is Made for Woodward and Lothrop,” The New York Times, July 28, 1995.
  202. “Company News, May in Accord to Buy Strawbridge and Clothier,” The New York Times, April 5, 1996.
  203. “Company Earnings, May Department Stores Company,” The New York Times, November 12, 1996.
  204. “May Stores to Settle Lawsuits on Debt-Collection Tactics,” The New York Times, November 3, 1998.
  205. Marcia Pledger, “Curtain is Raised at Renovated Mall About 30 of Richmond Town Square’s 75 New or Renovated Stores are Opened,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 5, 1998. Michael O’Malley, “Clevelanders are Flocking to Euclid Square Mall 24 Houses of Worship are Renting Storefronts for Sunday Services, Weekday Bible Studies,” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 7, 2013.
  206. “May Department Buying 125 Stores from Gingiss Group,” The New York Times, December 30, 2003.
  207. Tracie Rozhon,”May Stores Acquiring Marshall Field’s,” The New York Times, June 10, 2004.
  208. “Los at Federated; Deals for May Company Cited,” The New York Times, May 11, 2006.

  1. Abrams, Jeanne. “David May.” Immigration Entrepreneurship German American Business Biographies. http:www.immigrationentrepreneur.org.
  2. “Behind Closed Doors.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 26, 1898.
  3. “Big Deal Consummated.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 5, 1899.
  4. “Tomorrow’s the Last Day.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 8, 1899.
  5. “McWatters Has Resigned, Severs the Connection with the Hull & Dutton Company.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 9, 1899.
  6. “Mr. M.E. McGillin.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 26, 1899.
  7. “Passing of the Hull & Dutton Company.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 9, 1899.
  8. “A Magnificent Building, It Will Be Constructed on the Square for the May Company.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 8, 1899.
  9. “The May Company.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 13, 1899.
  10. “Annual May Sale.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 1, 1907.
  11. “Four Years of Steady Growth.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 31, 1904.
  12. “Immigrants’ Pioneer Spirit Lives in 50-Years Old May Company.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 9, 1949.
  13. “Mme. Yale Sends Two Beauty Demonstrations from Chicago to the May Company.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, June 14, 1903. “For the Knights Templars, The May Company’s Preparations to Accommodate Them.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 7, 1903.
  14. “Third Annual August Sale of Furniture.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 7, 1904.
  15. “Free Musicale in our New Auditorium.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 15, 1907.
  16. “The May Company.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 7, 1907.
  17. “The May Company.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 2, 1907.
  18. “Eagle Trading Stamps.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 23, 1908.
  19. “For the Best of Everything, Go to the May Company First.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 22, 1908.
  20. “Our Annual May Company Sale.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 10, 1908.
  21. “Fine Overcoats and Suits.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 14, 1908.
  22. “Morning Specials Notice.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 23, 1909.
  23. “The May Company May Sale.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 15, 1910.
  24. “Department Stores Combine, Holding Company for Western Enterprises Incorporation for $20,000,000.” The New York Times, June 5, 1910.
  25. “May Company to Erect Magnificent Home, Will Build $3,000,000 Sore Extending from Euclid Avenue to Prospect Avenue S.E.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 23, 1913.
  26. “The Catholic Universe.” September 4, 1914.
  27. “Things Worth Knowing, The May Company.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 4, 1915.
  28. “First Mortgage 6% Gold Bonds.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 2, 1915.
  29. “Join One of these Classes in the Citizen’s Christmas Money Club.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 30, 1916.
  30. “Food for Thought about Eagle Stamps.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 30, 1916.
  31. “May Department Stores Stock Earns $24.92 a Share Last Year Against $15.40 in 1918.” The New York Times, April 6, 1920.
  32. “Buy Now for Spring to Keep Up Trade.” The New York Times, November 13, 1920.
  33. “May Department Stores Net Profits $3,788,707 in 1921 Equivalent to $16.82 Per Share.” The New York Times, March 28, 1922.
  34. “Earns $10.64 on $50.00 Par Common Share May Department Stores Company.” The New York Times, March 24, 1925.
  35. “May Stores Stock Change, New Shares to be traded for old, Two-for-One Basis.” The New York Times, November 24, 1926.
  36. “The May Company’s Daily Shopping Bulletin.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 11, 1920.
  37. “Mothers, A Study of the Rearing and Education of Children.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 14, 1920.
  38. “Society Brand Clothes.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 30, 1921. “Simplex Ironer, the Best Ironer.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 28, 1920.
  39. “The May Company’s Bulletin.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 12, 1922.
  40. “The May Company is on McCall Street.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 2, 1920.
  41. “Just in Time for the Thanksgiving Holiday, Dinner and Dance Frocks.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 24, 1922.
  42. “If it’s a Question of which machine, Consider these Facts.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 18, 1923.
  43. “The May Company’s Patrons Garage Opens Tomorrow.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, June 21, 1925.
  44. “A Sale of Fine New Winter Overcoats.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 2, 1925.
  45. “N.L. Dauby Dies; Builder of May Company.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 18, 1964.
  46. “May Stores’ Income $6,952,101 Net in 1926.” The New York Times, March 23, 1927.
  47. “Dillon Read Buys May Stores Stock.” The New York Times, September 22, 1929.
  48. “All Next week, See Our Style Show at Keith’s Palace Theatre.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 31, 1928.
  49. “The Klein Lampe Homesite Company.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 17, 1929.
  50. “Opening Monday The Spanish Room Restaurant-Tea Room.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 10, 1929.
  51. “For Fall Surety Hats.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 21, 1929.
  52. “Lehman Brothers Collection.” Contemporary Business Archives, Harvard University Business School, library.hbs.edu.
  53. “Making Good Our Slogan Watch Us Grow, Ohio Largest Store Becomes Even Larger.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 19, 1931.
  54. “The Homefurnishing Institute Sponsored by the May Company.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 9, 1930. “Baseball fans, Walter Johnson in Person.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 3, 1930.
  55. “Announcing Second Annual Exhibit Cleveland Artists and Sculptures.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 25, 1931. “Sewing Studio.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 8, 1931.
  56. “Paint Sale.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 3, 1931.
  57. “August Sales Vanta Baby Week.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 16, 1931.
  58. “You Can Buy The Famous Frigidaire.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, June 8, 1934.
  59. “May Company.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 9, 1932. “Production Sales Beginning Today.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 10, 1932.
  60. “The May Company Inaugural Day Celebration Today March 4th.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 4, 1933.
  61. “August Furniture Sale, No Better Time than Now to Spend and Save.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 16, 1933.
  62. “We Will Cash Checks.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 20, 1933. “Friday at the May Company Beginning our Annual After-Thanksgiving Mark Down Sale.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 30, 1933. “Snow Suits, $7.95.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 13, 1933.
  63. “At the May Company, A Scoop for our Yarn Goods Department, Home Art Frocks cut, trimmed-Ready to Sew.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 28, 1934.
  64. “It’s Always May First in Cleveland.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 1, 1934.
  65. “May Stores Group Clears $3,301,614.” The New York Times, April 4, 1935.
  66. “Russeks Sales Up 21.9% in 12 Months, Increased Showings Made also by May Department Stores and Outlet Company.” The New York Times, April 6, 1937.
  67. “Department Stores.” The New York Times, April 27, 1938.
  68. “May Stores Earn $4,402,894 in Year.” The New York Times, April 3, 1940.
  69. “The May Company Fashion Revue Apparel.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 20, 1935.
  70. “Again, Today Six-Day Bike Race.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 9, 1935.
  71. “Headquarters for Mickey Riley Perfect Swim Trunks.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, June 26, 1936.
  72. “Tomorrow August 14 Will be Jubilee Day at the Great Lakes Exposition.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 13, 1937.
  73. “Easy to Play, Easy to Pay.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 12, 1937.
  74. “Spring Fabric Carnival.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 13, 1938.
  75. “Importance Notice, Announcing a New May Company Service Advanced Credit Coupons.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 6, 1939.
  76. “Introducing America’s Largest Creation in Fine Translucent China.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 21, 1940.
  77. “New and Exclusive in Cleveland with the May Company Sunset Boulevard Hat Fashions.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 9, 1940. “Hand Painted Summer flowers Sac-de-Perl Handbags.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 17, 1940. “The May Company Announces the Opening of the New Home Planning Studio.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 4, 1940.
  78. “The May Company Beauty Special in our Aladdin Shop.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 19, 1940.
  79. “Introducing the New and Exclusive Beaux Arts Coats.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 9, 1941. “Classic Records in Complete Albums.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 2, 1941.
  80. “Streamliner Slack sets Tailored by Mayfair $4.50 a Set.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 19, 1941.
  81. “U.S. Defense Stamps Are on Sale at the May Company.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 12, 1942.
  82. “The May Company, This is Women at War Week.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 23, 1942.
  83. “Notice to All Men, Women and Children Who Wish to Buy Shoes.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 2, 1943.
  84. “Advanced Information to an Inquiring Public: Yes We Will Have May Day.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 29, 1943.
  85. “Prelude to the Fourth War Loan, Tribute to the Unconquerables, Norway Day.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 14, 1944.
  86. “Affiliated Retailers, Incorporated, Formed by Macy & Company and May Stores.” The New York Times, August 22, 1944.
  87. “May Stores Stock Offered at $103.50.” The New York Times, April 10, 1945.
  88. “Dividends, Profits for May Stores Company.” The New York Times, May 4, 1945.
  89. “May Widens Its Holdings, Substantial Minority Interests is Taken in Cleveland Store.” The New York Times, April 4, 1945.
  90. “May Stores Incorporated, and Kaufmann’s Announce Plans for a Merger.” The New York Times, July 7, 1946.
  91. “The May Company’s Newly Enlarged Modernized Record Department.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 25, 1945.
  92. “Loop Bus Service To and From The May Company Garage Begins Tuesday, September 4th.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 3, 1945.
  93. “Vanta Baby Week.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 5, 1947.
  94. “The May Company Proudly Presents the most Versatile, Usable Sectional Furniture to date Mengel Module.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 25, 1947.
  95. “This is Beauty Serenade Week at May Company.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 27, 1949.
  96. “Highest Quality Appliances at September-Low Prices.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 11, 1949. “First in Cleveland at the May Company Five-Room Colonial Doll House.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 2, 1949.
  97. “Scoop First in Cleveland Big Picture TV at a small price Admiral TV Combination.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 7, 1948. “May Company Peggy Angora Beret.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 13, 1949.
  98. “May Stores Sales Increase $20,722,480 Net is $7,680,039 in Record $202,449,639.” The New York Times, May 1, 1946.
  99. “T.S. Martin Sold to May Company.” The New York Times, January 1, 1949.
  100. “May Stores’ Sales Off in Half-Years.” The New York Times, September 26, 1949.
  101. “Presenting the Provincial Stromberg Carlson’s Newest 1950.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 19, 1950.
  102. “The May Company Pat Hartley’s Heart Beat a Junior’s Delight.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 5, 1950.
  103. “Be Sure to Visit the May Company’s All Ohio Sports and Outdoor Show.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 5, 1950.
  104. “Simmons, Self-Adjusting Spring $49.50.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 3, 1950.
  105. “M. Roget is Here Famous Hairstylists from Helena Rubinstein’s New York Salon.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 22, 1950. “You're Invited to Meet Ernestine Gilbreth Cary.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 29, 1950.
  106. “The May Company Fabric Department Presents Arthur Murray Dancers in a Musical Fashion Show.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 7, 1951.
  107. “Rent a Piano.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 15, 1951.
  108. “Pepperell Electric Blankets $25.00.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 14, 1951. “Sale Ripple Edge Nylon Curtains.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 7, 1951.
  109. “Exclusive at the May Company – The TV Blouse.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 14, 1952.
  110. “Exclusively at the May Company, Seven-Volume Modern American Encyclopedia Set.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 21, 1952.
  111. “Spirit of Holiday Gets Early Start, Parties Around the Clock Keep City Bustling.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 23, 1952.
  112. “Fine American Tourister Luggage at Big Savings.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 22, 1953.
  113. “Amateur Camera Fans Enter the Hieland Research Photo Contest.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 15, 1953. “Eat, The Mayfair Room.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 15, 1953.
  114. “Cleveland Greatest Clothing Value Scottsdale Suits.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 22, 1953. “Hickok Christmas Gift Shop Presents the Greatest Gift Show on Earth.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 13, 1953.
  115. “May Department Stores’ Net in Half Year Is Placed at $4,220,000 or $.62 a share.” The New York Times, September 21, 1953.
  116. “May Stores Show 19.3% Dip in Profit.” The New York Times, December 4, 1954.
  117. “Three Big Shopping Center Costing $18,200,000 to Open.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 6, 1954. “Sheffield Center Opening Today.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 1, 1954.
  118. “Why Buy Stocks? The May Company.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 16, 1954.
  119. “May Stores Files A $25,000,000 Issue.” The New York Times, February 10, 1955. “Three New Issues on Market Today.” The New York Times, March 1, 1955.
  120. “Chain Lifts Sales 8.7% for Quarter.” The New York Times, June 1, 1955.
  121. “Eat Better for Less with the New and Dependable Freezer Food Service Program.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 12, 1954.
  122. “She Works in Cleveland.” Charm Magazine, February 1955.
  123. “Premier Showing of the New White Automatic.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 20, 1955. “Wallpaper Demonstration.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 10, 1955.
  124. “Christian Dior Stockings Exclusively at May Company.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 11, 1955.
  125. “Exclusive at May Company…Decorator Pictures.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 19, 1956. “The May Company Midwest Preview of the brand New Lady Ronson Electric Shaver.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 2, 1956.
  126. “May Stores Lift Sales and Profits, Figures for Latest Quarter and Nine Months Surpass Those of ’55 Periods.” The New York Times, December 7, 1956.
  127. “May Department Stores, First Quarter Profits Raised to a $.40 a share from $.36.” The New York Times, June 15, 1957.
  128. “Monkey Business for Ginger, Zippy and You.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 17, 1957. “Now at the May Company the Romantic New Ballard Pattern in Oneida Community Silverplate.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 2, 1957. “Exclusive at May’s Carloads Sale, Special Savings on 1957 Deluxe Speed Queen Washers, $119.95.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 22, 1957.
  129. “Even the Air is Modern at the New May Company Store Comfort-Conditioned by Gas.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 1, 1957.
  130. “The May Company Tire Sale.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 10, 1957. “Come to the May Company, Berkshire Fashion Show.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 18. 1958.
  131. “Store Merger Set By May and Hecht.” The New York Times, October 15, 1958.
  132. “May Company Bows to Decree.” The New York Times, June 29, 1959.
  133. “May’s Store is Rising in Parmatown.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 27, 1960. Hirschfeld, Mary. “Third Store in May Group Serving Greater Cleveland.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 28, 1960.
  134. “The May Company Has a Credit Plan to Meet your Every Budget Need.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 25, 1959.
  135. “Executive is Elevated By the May Stores Company.” The New York Times, March 15, 1960.
  136. “Obituaries, Sam Rosenberg, Retired May Company Manager.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 26, 1977.
  137. Disantis, Anthony J. “May Company’s Employees Turn Down Unions in Balloting.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 29, 1960.
  138. “May Stores Company.” The New York Times, April 27, 1962.
  139. “One Door Closes Another Opens Wide With Welcome as Taylor’s Comes to May’s.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 17, 1961.
  140. Reckert, Clare M. “Continental Can Adds to Dividends.” The New York Times, April 24, 1963.
  141. “Fifty-Five Stores Comprise May Company’s Network.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 19, 1964.
  142. “May Stores to Form Separate Realty Firm.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, May 16, 1962.
  143. “Now Four Great Tire Centers to Serve You.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 22, 1964.
  144. “Mays Opening April 22, Western Reserve is Store Motif.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 11, 1964.
  145. “Tent Sale Starts Today.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 8, 1962.
  146. “Shop May’s Today, May’s New Parkade Opens Today.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 23, 1964.
  147. “Profits at Peak For May Stores, Earnings Rise to $5,094,000.” The New York Times, May 19, 1964.
  148. “May Company Completes Its Bid for Control of Meier and Frank.” The New York Times, April 27, 1965.
  149. “Sale Robanne Watches for all the Family.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 11, 1965. “Irish Linen Hankies with her Initials.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 28, 1965.
  150. “May’s New Street Floor Your Passport to Fashion.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 12, 1965.
  151. “Chandelier Is Eye Catcher.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 5, 1965.
  152. “Fairlawn Gets Preview of Nee Shopping Center.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 27, 1965.
  153. “Oriental Bazaars.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 24, 1966.
  154. “Discover the Magic of Christmas at A Wonderful World of Gifts.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, December 1, 1965.
  155. “Running Out of Hobbies?” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 7, 1966.
  156. “May Stores Sets Earnings Records.” The New York Times, November 17, 1965.
  157. “Profits Decline for May Stores, But Volume for Fiscal 1966 Reaches Record Level.” The New York Times, April 7, 1967. Sloane, Leonard. “May Stores’ Meeting Dominated by Wrangling Over Accountants.” The New York Times, June 9, 1967.
  158. Kelly, Michael.“May Company Ends Charga-Plate Link.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 16, 1966.
  159. Barmash, Isadore. “May Chain Stresses Excitement and Agility.” The New York Times, July 4, 1968.
  160. “Walsh Is Names by May Stores.” The New York Times, April 18, 1967.
  161. “Walsh Is Names by May Stores.” The New York Times, April 18, 1967.
  162. Kashar, John. “Akron Battles Heart Decay.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, June 7, 1965.
  163. “May Department Stores Net Slips.” The New York Times, November 18, 1967.
  164. “Sales at May Company Surge.” The New York Times, January 25, 1968.
  165. “Why Isn’t Johnny Ready for School Now, His Mother Doesn’t Have May’s Charge Card Yet.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 25, 1968.
  166. “May Company Profits Dip on Record Sales.” The New York Times, April 8, 1969. Reckert, Clare M. “Some Retail-Chain Profits Dip.” The New York Times, November 21, 1969.
  167. Colebrook, Paul F. Jr. “Eaves Dropping Mobilizers Move.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 10, 1969.
  168. “Coy Moves Up.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 8, 1971.
  169. “Holiday Dollars Another Good Reason to Have a May Company Charge Account.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 19, 1972.
  170. Reckert, Clare M. “Three Retail Chains Increase Profits Sharply; Other Companies Report Earnings.” The New York Times, November 16, 1972.
  171. Reckert, Clare M. “May Stores Registers Record Earnings and Volume.” The New York Times, August 23, 1974.
  172. Reckert, Clare M. “Three Store Chains Show Profit Drops.” The New York Times, November 20, 1974.
  173. Kelly, Michael. “Nau to Take May Company Helm Here.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 18, 1976.
  174. Reckert, Clare M. “Penny Net Down; Federated and May Show Profit Gains.” The New York Times, August 20, 1975.
  175. “Designed from Inside Out, Décor Important in New May Company.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 8, 1976.
  176. “May Company to be Fashion Leader at Euclid Square.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 1, 1977.
  177. “You Will Stop Smoking on October 22nd, Calmly and Comfortably.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 4, 1975.
  178. “Labor Day Weekend.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 4, 1977.
  179. Reckert, Clare M. “Department Store Chains Show Sharp Profit Rise.” The New York Times, November 17, 1977.
  180. “Earnings, Allied Stores Profit Off 37.9% in October.” The New York Times, May 22, 1980.
  181. “See the Superhero at the May Company.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 9, 1979. “What’s Happening at the May Company.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 26, 1979. “What’s Happening at the May Company.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, September 23, 1979.
  182. “Earnings, Allied Stores Profit Off 37.9% in October.”
  183. Barmash, Isadore. “May and Prudential in Venture.” The New York Times, December 23, 1980.
  184. Wiggins, Phillip H. “Federated Stores’ Net Up 53.6% May, Allied, Dayton Also Gain.” The New York Times, May 21, 1981.
  185. “New at the May Company Strawberry Shortcake Shop.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 1, 1981.
  186. Gruson, Lindsey. “Morton D. May Dies in St. Louis; Headed Department Store Chain.” The New York Times, April 14, 1983.
  187. Gleisser, Marcus. “Nation Sees Sun but Ohio Outlook Remains Cloudy.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 29, 1984.
  188. Barmash, Isadore. “Market Place, Power Cited in Retailers.” The New York Times, April 24, 1984.
  189. Barmash, Isadore. “Market Place, May Stores As a Target.” The New York Times, July 20, 1984.
  190. Schmitt, Eric. “May Stores Seeks Associated Chain.” The New York Times, June 23, 1986.
  191. “Federated’s Net Rises 11% May’s Is Up 9%.” The New York Times, March 19, 1987.
  192. Barmash, Isadore. “Market Place, For May Stores Reason to Grow.” The New York Times, August 2, 1988.
  193. Barmash, Isadore. “May Stores to Sell Its Caldor Unit.” The New York Times, October 12, 1989.
  194. “May Stores Up; Macy has Loss.” The New York Times, November 11, 1988.
  195. “Kaufmann’s Replacing May Company On Store Signs.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, January 28, 1993.
  196. Hill, Miriam. “It Won’t Seem Like Cleveland Anymore.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 17, 1992.
  197. Lubinger, Bill. “Downtown May Company Loses Buyer Solon Firm Drops Plans to Rebuild Store.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, June 10, 1995. Lubinger, Bill. “May Company Building Downtown May Be Renovated as a Hotel.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 1, 1998. Lubinger, Bill. “Auto Museum Considering Downtown Sites More Storage, Exhibit Space Needed for Historic Showplaces.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, August 24, 1999.
  198. Jarboe, Michelle. “Restaurant Club for May Company Site Cadillac Ranch.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 2, 2008. Okobeu, Janet. “Tri-C to Open Culinary Center in old May Company Building.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, March 28, 2009.
  199. Hudak, Stephen. “May Company to add 100 Jobs at Credit Card Service Center.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, February 22, 1995.
  200. “Company Earnings, May Department Stores Company.” The New York Times, May 9, 1995.
  201. “Company News, New Offer is Made for Woodward and Lothrop.” The New York Times, July 28, 1995.
  202. “Company News, May in Accord to Buy Strawbridge and Clothier.” The New York Times, April 5, 1996.
  203. “Company Earnings, May Department Stores Company.” The New York Times, November 12, 1996.
  204. “May Stores to Settle Lawsuits on Debt-Collection Tactics.” The New York Times, November 3, 1998.
  205. Pledger, Marcia. “Curtain is Raised at Renovated Mall About 30 of Richmond Town Square’s 75 New or Renovated Stores are Opened.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, November 5, 1998. O’Malley, Michael. “Clevelanders are Flocking to Euclid Square Mall 24 Houses of Worship are Renting Storefronts for Sunday Services, Weekday Bible Studies.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer, July 7, 2013.
  206. “May Department Buying 125 Stores from Gingiss Group.” The New York Times, December 30, 2003.
  207. Rozhon, Tracie. “May Stores Acquiring Marshall Field’s.” The New York Times, June 10, 2004.
  208. “Los at Federated; Deals for May Company Cited.” The New York Times, May 11, 2006.

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Watch Us Grow: The May Company by Richard Klein, Ph.D is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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