Remembering Past Retail Favorites 

Bismarck has always been a major regional retail hub, second only to Fargo in the state, covering a vast portion of central and western North Dakota. This page remembers the retail stores of the past, many of them long since forgotten.
Webb Brothers Building - constructed in 1900Webb Brothers
Opened as a furniture store in 1884, Webb Brothers eventually expanded its merchandise to include clothing, dry goods, and other household items. For many years it was the only dry goods in the region, until competitor A.W. Lucas & Company opened a store in 1899, of which Webb Brothers actually providing funding. It built a new building in 1900, after fire destroyed their original store. In 1928, Webb Brothers opened Bismarck's first funeral parlor. For some time, the upper floors of the Webb Building occupied the courthouse. Webb Brothers closed in 1945, at which point national retailer Sears occupied the store. Read more...
A.W. Lucas & Company on Fourth Street & Broadway AvenueA.W. Lucas & Company
Opened in 1899 as a partnership between Arthur Lucas and William O'Hara, A.W. Lucas remained in business for eighty years. The store outgrew its original location and relocated into an adjacent building in 1924. Over the years, it continued to expand into adjacent buildings. In 1979, A.W. Lucas established itself as an original anchor store at Gateway Mall, before closing shortly after.  Read more...
F.W. Woolworth on Main AvenueF.W. Woolworth Company
The F.W. Woolworth Company was Bismarck's first national retailer, arriving in or around 1915. The building that housed Woolworth for its entire tenure in downtown Bismarck was constructed in 1913 to house City National Bank. Woolworth's was the first store to open at Kirkwood Plaza Shopping Center, of which was named to honor Woolworth's CEO and Chairman Robert Kirkwood, who had served as Bismarck's store manager from 1932-1939. The Bismarck location closed in 1985, to be replaced by Dayton's.


Montgomery Ward on Fourth Street & Thayer AvenueMontgomery Ward
Montgomery Ward came to Bismarck in 1928. Wards later established itself as an original anchor at Kirkwood Plaza Shopping Center when it opened in 1971. Montgomery Wards closed its Bismarck location in 1998 shortly after the company filed for bankruptcy. The downtown building that formerly housed Montgomery Ward still bares its name - The Wards Building.
Best Products SignBest Products
Best Products, known more commonly as "BEST", was a national catalogue retailer, which opened its Bismarck location in 1979. Bismarck's BEST store closed in 1997 and was then converted to house Big Lots! and Office Depot.
White Mart was an original anchor at Gateway Mall when it opened in 1979. It closed in 1986 shortly after the merger of White Drug and Thrifty Drug.White Mart
White Mart was a regional discount department store established by Jamestown-based White Drug. White Mart established itself as an original anchor at Gateway Mall when it opened in 1979, and but closed in 1986. The space then became home to Menards, and now is home to Hancock Fabrics and a "Medical Mall". Read more...

Daytons/Marshall Fields
Daytons was a national department store chain that first opened in 1902. Dayton's opened its Bismarck location inside the former Woolworth space at Kirkwood Mall when it closed in 1985. The store was rebranded Marshall Fields in 2001 during the company's effort to consolidate its department store operations. The Dayton Company opened the nation's first enclosed shopping center in 1956, and entered the discount chain market when it opened the first Target store in 1962. The company acquired Marshall Fields in 1990. In an effort to consolidate its operations, all Dayton's store were rebranded Marshall Fields in 2001. The Bismarck location closed in 2005 shortly after Target sold the Marshall Fields division.

Bismarck Home DepotHome Depot
Home Depot is the nation's largest home improvement chain, and second largest retailer. The Bismarck location opened in 2005, and closed just three years later amidst a flooded market that included competitors Menards and Lowe's.