CWRU Links

BAILEY CO.

The BAILEY CO. was one of Cleveland's major department stores and a national pioneer in opening branch operations. Its forerunner was a small dry goods store opened by Lewis A. Bailey and Joseph W. Crothers at Ontario and Prospect Aves. in 1881. By 1899, Col. LOUIS BLACK and Chas. K. Sunshine had assumed its management, incorporating it as the Bailey Co. Consolidation with the neighboring Cleveland Dry Goods Co. made Baileys a major department store, with a variety of home furnishings and clothing and 11 employees. With Bailey's success, the company erected a 7-story building at Ontario and Prospect in 1903, and by 1910 had built a 10-story addition. In 1927 the Natl. Dept. Stores Co. was organized by Bailey's president, Victor W. Sincere, and Bailey was made a division of the new firm. A Bailey innovation in merchandising was the opening of an east side branch store at 10007 Euclid Ave. in 1929 and a west side store at Detroit and Warren Rd. in Lakewood the following year. In the 1940s and 1950s, Bailey's remodeled its existing stores and opened a new branch at E. 228 St. and Lake Shore Blvd. in Euclid in 1951 and another in 1960 at 1349 SOM Center Rd. in Mayfield Hts. In 1958 Natl. Dept. Stores sold Bailey's to the Century Food Market Co. (later the CFM Co.), however, the company's sales declined, and the east side store was closed in 1962. In 1965 the Lakewood store was sold to Nevilles, which went bankrupt in 1968. In an effort to retain the profitability of the 3 remaining Bailey stores, they were taken over by one of CFM's subsidiaries, Miracle Mart, Inc. of New York, and made into discount department stores; however, by 1968 all three had closed.