For those of us who remember Woolworth’s, the five-and-dime store, it was a wonderful interactive experience. It was a place where you could get creepers, those parakeets that couldn’t fly and were inexpensive enough for kids to be able to purchase and have as a pet. You could get 45 vinyl singles affordably, if you were okay with the record having a hole on the top of the center, as it didn’t affect the sound quality. Best of all was the lunch counter and the food. Woolworth’s was a place where memories were made.
The Woolworth Building was originally deemed the headquarters for Woolworth’s retail stores, even though F.W. Woolworth had been operating without a headquarters for many years with stores all over the world. The site for the building was originally purchased by F.W. Woolworth on April 15th, 1910, for the price of $1.65 million. There weren’t any loans taken out or any type of financing done.
The Woolworth Building, located at 233 Broadway in New York, was once hailed as the tallest building in the world, with its impressive 60 stories measuring 792 feet above street level. The construction of the building took place between 1910 and 1912 and cost $13.5 million. Since F. W. Woolworth paid cash, he had a say in the style in which it was to be built, so he was noted as the developer on record. The architect was Cass Gilbert, who was an early supporter of skyscrapers. The Woolworth Building was constructed in neo-Gothic style, complete with a steel frame structure and stunning sculptures, mosaics, and veined marble brought in from Greece.
On November 13th, 1966, the building was added to the U.S. National Register of Historic Places. Today, the very top 30 floors of the Woolworth Building houses the most luxurious condominiums ever to grace New York City.
While many today may never have had the opportunity to visit the iconic store, for those who have, their memories of Woolworth’s probably include lunch at the counter.