We lead off our "12 Days of Christmas" holiday-themed posts with author David Anthony Witter's wonderful suggestions for not just shopping local this season, but shopping at some of Chicago's oldest and most beloved establishments.
While most Americans are spending this Christmas season scurrying from mall to mall trying to buy the latest flat screen TV, palmtop computer, video game, or other newly processed silicon-based innovation, we thought some shoppers might want to go back to a simpler time. You can travel to the era of George Bailey or even Ebenezer Scrooge, without a time machine, right here in
C.D. Peacock Jewelers (1837): 524 N.
Iwan Reis and Co. (1857): 19 S. Wabash. What could be more Dickensonian than smoking a fine pipe around a raging fire at Christmas time? Buying the pipe and tobacco from a store that has been open since the days of A Christmas Carol! Now on its sixth generation, the oldest family business in
Merz Apothecary (1875): 4716
Central Camera (1899): 30 S. Wabash. You can have your cake--the newest digital cameras, video recorders, and other photo devices--and eat it too at a business that doubles as a both a modern camera store and a living museum to the art of film. Founded at the time not long after the days of photographers disappearing behind a giant box, the knowledgeable staff here not only knows digital, but also caries parts, film, and actually repairs cameras from what is fast becoming the lost art of film photography.
The Jazz Record Mart (1959):
And, for special h
The House of Glunz (
Roeser’s Bakery (
Margies Candies (1921): 1960 N. Western. Need hand-dipped, home-made truffles, terrapins, toffees, and other candies for filling Christmas stockings? No? Then come in on a cozy winter night and have a sundae, banana split, soda, or malt in a shop that looks like a set from a Shirley Temple movie. Maybe you can even sit at the same both of table where famous customers ranging from Al Capone to The Beatles have enjoyed Margie’s classic