Friday, May 12, 2006

Stanford Shopping Center

This just in from an eBay auction. A vintage postcard showing The Emporium department store at Stanford Shopping Center in Palo Alto.

The back of the card reads "THE STANFORD SHOPPING CENTER. . .Located on U.S. Highway 101 "El Camino Real" Palo Alto, Calif."

From the looks of the cars in the lot, the card is probably from the late Fifties to early Sixties (no date is printed on the back of the card).

The building still looks fairly similar, although now it's Bloomingdale's.

My favorite part of this card is the giant E that was so common on old Emporiums. The last remnant of any of the E's can only be found in a stain on the ex-Emporium-Capwell building in Almaden Plaza, San Jose.

Read my Guide to Stanford Shopping Center


dean said...

I always thought this was an imposing building though the "E" logo was pertty cool. What is not apparent in the photo are the staggered vertical "slots" that still grace the facade to this day. It seemed to be on other Emporium buildings as well.

This Emporium was huge enough to have two sets of escalators. I always felt that one set of them had been added later. I spent hours killing time in this building while my mother and sisters shopped. It is one of the first places I remember seeing Pong.

hushpuppy said...

What a great photo. It really takes me back. The 'Big E' logo was so recognizable, on all the suburban stores from Stonestown in 1952 through Salinas in 1971; it was the only identification the buildings needed.

The footprint of both the Stanford and Stevens Creek stores were so large (over 100,000 each floor), they always had two sets of escalators.

Anonymous said...

Although I haven't seen it myself yet, I believe that I read that they've retained the old Emporium "E" somewhere on the interior of the new addition to San Francisco Centre.