top of page



The most common commerce in the neighborhood was grocery stores. Some people who have lived here as children remember corner grocery stores.  The store at Woodland and Taylor was part of a "chain" of independent stores that shared buying power in order to compete with the larger supermarkets. This store was owned by Frank Elston who lived at the same location in 1929.








Other Happy Hour Stores in the neighborhood in 1929 were owned by Charles Hemmele (1617 E Oakland) and James Killion (104 State Street).  There were nearly 50 Happy Hour stores in Bloomington and many more in Normal and surrounding towns.


In 1902 Founder's Grove was for the most part outside the city limits.  The closest groceries were on Grove and Washington:


1002 E Grove -- Mrs John Brechbeller

819 E Grove -- Frank Graff

824 E Washington -- W S Scanlon


In 1904 the first grocery in Founders' Grove had opened at 104 S. State Street by Joe Killion. DH Kurz (or Kurg) took over this grocery by 1907 but Killion was back in 1909. Before Giles Larrick had his grocery on State Street in 1911, he owned the grocery at 1002 E Grove in 1909. RW Torey was the first grocer at 301 Woodland in 1913 but John Elston operated the store soon after it was opened and continued its operation for decades.  It wasn't until 1929 that other groceries were added at 1619 E Oakland (Charles Hemmerle) and 301 Kreitzer (George Montgomery). People have mentioned to me that they remember when the stores at Woodland and the 100 block of State Street were still open!! 


A Piggly Wiggly opened in the neighborhood in the '30's at 1501 E Jackson and across the street was the Biasi's Drug Store.



Elizabeth Forman, landscaper

and arborist:










































Girl needed for light cleaning or . . . marriage??


When searching for help in the house, women would turn to the employment agencies in 1902. Mrs. R Houghton was available for many kinds. 

Crime in the 'Hood


Life was not always as calm as residents might have liked in the 'hood.  On May 12, 1932, the PIggly Wiggly on Jackson was robbed and then the culprits continued on to the Grove Street Piggly Wiggly at Evans.

bottom of page