A & P's on Cape Cod, Mass.

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capecodder
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A & P's on Cape Cod, Mass.

Post by capecodder » 25 Nov 2007 13:21

Great site -- I just discovered it this weekend. In the early 1980's, I was employed at A&P #191 in Mattapoisett, Mass. (near Cape Cod). At the time there were numerous A&P stores on Cape Cod, announced by a memorable sign at the Buzzards Bay rotary ("A&P on Cape Cod" with store locations hanging from a design with the arm of Cape Cod and the A&P symbol.

Since this time all the A&P's on Cape Cod have closed -- some became Grand Unions (future stores, esp.), other Salvation Army Thrift shops (as is #191 in Mattapoisett). There were several on Martha' Vineyard and Nantucket, as well (I worked at briefly at the Nantucket location -- dirty and crowded, but everything sold. "Stack it high and watch it fly!," was the motto).

I noticed that the Northeast section does not focus on New England as much. If there is interest, as I now live on Cape Cod, I will photograph some old A&P locations and post. Perhaps someone has some information regarding Souteastern Mass. and Cape Cod A&P's in particular.

Thanks!

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romleys
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A&P photos

Post by romleys » 25 Nov 2007 17:36

I would like to see these photos!
Charles H:)

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Post by krogerclerk » 26 Nov 2007 15:38

A&P survived in "touristy" areas of markets it was otherwise a marginal operator well into the 90's. A&P was virtually gone from Massachusetts by the mid-80's and gone from neighboring Rhode Island. Parts of upstate New York and Vermont were other areas that A&P held on somewhat isolated from other clusters of stores. I suspect familiarity with A&P among tourists, as opposed to regional operators such as Stop N Shop, Shaw's/Star Markets, DeMoula's, Almacs and Finast were a factor, Cape Cod is a popular getaway for New Yorkers, A&P's home market, and generally having held the real estate the stores were located on prior to higher property values which would have given A&P a location count advantage.

A&P survived in the Myrtle Beach/Grand Strand area of South Carolina, outlasting the Charlotte division's demise which was originally the divisional operator the area A&P's. The final MB A&P closed in 1999, having continued to operate as part of the Atlanta division, closing with the division itself. A&P operated almost 10 locations at the beginning of the 90's, so I would credit a long held advantage of being established in an area with increasingly valuable real estate was a bigger factor in its survival as most Carolinans, the vast majority of MB tourists, were equally if not more familiar with A&P's competitors.

The Hartford's(founders of A&P) had early interests in many Atlantic coast resorts areas due to ties, I believe but am not certain through marriage, with the Huntington family whose fortune was made in railroads, particularly the transcontinental railroad. Brookgreen Gardens in Myrtle Beach features the sculptors of Anna Hyatt Huntington. George Huntington Hartford, founder of A&P was from Augusta, Maine and I'm not sure if his middle name is due to relation to the Huntington's itself as Huntington was more common as a given name in the 1800's. Perhaps someone could spread light on any Hartford and Huntington interest in the Cape Code, Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket Island area as well as the nature of the relationship.

capecodder
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Former A&P Buzzards Bay -- Gateway to Cape Cod, Mass.

Post by capecodder » 27 Nov 2007 18:46

Attached are three pics -- two of the former A&P in Buzzards Bay, Mass. and one of the spot where a memorable sign announcing "A&P's on Cape Cod" once stood. The location is interesting; directly on a rotary with the Bourne Bridge in the background.

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I will attempt other photos of former Cape A&P's in the months ahead...Nantucket, Martha's Vineyard, and Provincetown might take a little longer!

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Post by Max » 01 Dec 2007 14:59

I know a lot about this topic since I used to vacation on Cape Cod.

One of my favorite A&P locations anywhere has to have been the former Chatham location. (Actually, A&P had two stores in Chatham. The location I am referring to is the location that is currently called Chatham Village Market.) Back when it closed in 2003, this store must have been the one of the oldest A&P's in the entire chain. (Does anybody know when it originally opened?) Something that made this store unusual was that although it was a Centennial, the center of the roof lacked the "triangular slant" (where the A&P sign is placed). Were there any other early Centennials that did not have this triangular section on the roof?

I also remember the Provincetown location (currently occupied by Grand Union), which was a pretty new store that opened in the early-90's. It replaced a previous Centennial that has since been razed to make room for condos.

Here are some additional questions I have:
*Regarding the second A&P location in Chatham (the one that is currently an Ocean State Job Lot), when did it open as an A&P? What supermarket was there prior to the A&P?

*Did A&P ever have supermarkets in Welfleet and/or Orleans? I guessing that the fomer IGA in Welfleet may have been an A&P at some point. (Note that I did see a 1940's picture of Welfleet Main Street, which back then had an A&P grocery store. However, my question specifically asks if A&P had a large supermarket in Welfleet.) And, the building currently occupied by Star Market in Orleans looks very much like a Centennial (only its bricks are not red).

capecodder
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Post by capecodder » 01 Dec 2007 17:29

Great info, Max. There were two A&P's in Chatham -- employees called them 'big Chatham' and 'little Chatham'. I visited each once sometime in the 1980's.

Below are pics of the former A&P in Dennisport -- right on the Dennis/ Harwich line just off of Rte. 28 and Upper County Road. Don't know anything about this location...

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capecodder
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Re: A & P's on Cape Cod, Mass.

Post by capecodder » 19 Dec 2007 18:34

Here's pics of what I believe to be the former A&P location in Osterville, Mass.

http://i237.photobucket.com/albums/ff27 ... 030088.jpg
http://i237.photobucket.com/albums/ff27 ... 030087.jpg

I know I can get pics of the Mattapoisett and Wareham locations. Anyone know of other Cape and Islands' sites still reflecting some of their A&P heritage?

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Re: A & P's on Cape Cod, Mass.

Post by Max » 19 Dec 2007 21:40

I'm pretty sure that the "little" Chatham location still reflects its A&P heritage. After the chain left Cape Cod, (I believe) the owners of that particular store went into business themselves under the name "Chatham Village Market." As of my last visit to Cape Cod in 2005, this supermarket was still operating and the exterior of the building was unchanged since its A&P days (with the obvious exception of the sign being replaced).

capecodder
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Re: A & P's on Cape Cod, Mass.

Post by capecodder » 31 Dec 2007 15:00

Here's a pic of the former A&P in Wareham, Mass. My "home" A&P, #191 in Mattapoisett, was razed withing the last 12 months. Ugh!

http://i237.photobucket.com/albums/ff27 ... 030089.jpg

I'll work on the "little Chatham" pic as Max has suggested.

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Re: A & P's on Cape Cod, Mass.

Post by capecodder » 23 Jan 2008 13:22

Here's the pics of the two A&P Chatham locations -- about 1.5 miles apart along Route 28. "Big Chatham" is now the Ocean State Job Lot, while "Little Chatham" is now Chatham Village Market. The abandoned A&P sign sits in the small parking lot of "Little Chatham."

http://i237.photobucket.com/albums/ff27 ... 030137.jpg
http://i237.photobucket.com/albums/ff27 ... 030139.jpg
http://i237.photobucket.com/albums/ff27 ... 030140.jpg
http://i237.photobucket.com/albums/ff27 ... 030138.jpg

That's it for former A&P locations on or around Cape Cod that I am aware maintain some semblance of their past. There may be more not yet razed -- if so, point me in the right direction!

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Re: A & P's on Cape Cod, Mass.

Post by Groceteria » 24 Jan 2008 22:56

capecodder wrote:"Little Chatham" is now Chatham Village Market.
Any comments on the interior of this one? Is there anythig original left?

Ackman
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Re: A & P's on Cape Cod, Mass.

Post by Ackman » 17 Feb 2008 13:44

The A&P here on Nantucket is now a Grand Union

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Re: A & P's on Cape Cod, Mass.

Post by paul3124 » 23 Oct 2008 17:59

Having lived and worked on Cape Cod for many summers, I can tell you where A&P stores were located and what they are housing now.

Bourne, opened in 93, closed in 2003, then a Grand Union, now vacant
Buzzards Bay, opened early 60s, closed in 93, now Ocean State Job Lot
Sandwich, opened 1990 as a Futurestore, now Stop and Shop
Falmouth, opened about 1960, later expanded, closed in 93, now an independent market
Osterville, opened in 1959, closed in 2001, now housing a non grocery business
Hyannis, opened in late 50s, closed in the 80s, now a Staples
South Yarmouth, opened in 87 as a Futurestore, closed 2003, now a Stop and Shop
Dennisport, purchased from Stop and Shop in 1983, closed 2003, now vacant
Harwichport, opened in early 60s, closed about 1985, now a Post Office
Orleans, opened in the 50s, closed in the late 70s, now an independent grocer
Chatham (downtown), opened in the 50s, closed in 2003, now an independent grocer
Chatham, purchased from Stop and Shop in 83, closed in 2002, now an Ocean State Job Lot
Provincetown, old store dates to the late 50s, replaced by a new store in 1990, closed in 2003, now a Grand Union
Vineyard Haven, opened in the 50s, closed 2003, now a Stop and Shop
Edgartown, opened in early 60s, expanded in late 80s, now a Stop and Shop
Nantucket, opened in 60s, closed 2003, now a Grand Union

There were a couple of off-Cape stores, one in Duxbury which closed in 2003, now an independent grocer; and Fairhaven, opened in 1990, closed in 1995, now a non-grocery retailer. Mattapoisett, opened in the 50s, closed upon the opening of the replacement Fairhaven store

capecodder
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Re: A & P's on Cape Cod, Mass.

Post by capecodder » 11 Nov 2008 14:12

Thanks for the list! There are a few listed that I hadn't remembered. What do you know of the Hyannis location (now Staples?)

I read in today's Cape Cod Times that the GU in Provincetown (formerly A&P) will become a Stop & Shop, like South Yarmouth recently, leaving GU only on Nantucket.
There were a couple of off-Cape stores, one in Duxbury which closed in 2003, now an independent grocer; and Fairhaven, opened in 1990, closed in 1995, now a non-grocery retailer. Mattapoisett, opened in the 50s, closed upon the opening of the replacement Fairhaven store
Also, Wareham, now a CVS.

As stated earlier, Mattapoisett #191 was closed in leiu of an A&P Sav-A-Center in Fairhaven, directly across from a hugely successful Shaw's -- needless to say, the new A&P could not make a dent in Shaw's strength.

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Re: A & P's on Cape Cod, Mass.

Post by Max » 01 Aug 2009 19:01

One of the many cool things about the little Chatham store was that--up until the very end--it sported the "cursive" A&P logo on one of the the sides of the building. (The other side of the building--along with the front of the store--sported the more recent "pill" logo.)

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