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The end of the five and dime, the ten and 25 cent, and the Dollar Stores, of Phoenix


Although I'm not quite old enough to remember when stores actually sold everything for a nickel, or a dime, I remember the old buildings in Minneapolis when I was a kid that had a five and a ten on them. I suppose the old-timers were dismayed as prices of things just got too expensive to be sold for a nickel, or a dime, or even a quarter, especially in the early 1970s.

And now I'm going to see the end of the Dollar Store. They've been around for a long time, but selling things for a dollar just isn't practical anymore. In fact, at my local 99-cent store, they've already started selling a lot of stuff for over 99 cents. The price could be $.99, or $5.99. But my local Dollar Store is still, as of this writing, selling everything in there for a dollar.

I suppose in the future, there will be ten-dollar stores. And while that may sound far-fetched, it's really the difference between the most expensive things at a five and dime as compared to a Dollar Store today. I'm sure it would blow the mind of someone who had shopped at a five and dime, and even a 10 and 25-cent store, like Newberry's.

Of course, when we look back at prices "back in the day" we tend to forget that we didn't have quite as much money in our wallets. Prices can be "adjusted for inflation", but it just comes down to how much money we can earn versus what that money can buy. A dollar would have bought a lot at a five and dime, but it looks like in the near future it won't even buy things at a Dollar Store.

Speaking for myself, I remember that my first apartment in Phoenix, in 1977, was a little under $150 a month. I had a minimum-wage job, which paid $3.25 an hour, and on that I could have my own place, and put gas in my car (which was about forty cents a gallon). I'm not much for "inflation calculators", I just think about what things cost, and what I earned. And one thing is for sure, prices are going up!

I was working part time in a five-and-dime,
My boss was Mr. McGee,
He told me several times that he didn't like my kind,
'Cause I was a bit too leisurely...

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