Long before Eastland Mall opened and traffic jams blocked Green River Road every weekend in December, shoppers headed Downtown for holiday gifts. With animated storefronts and window scenes, retailers such as Sears, Roebuck & Co. and Schear’s Department Store (pictured here in December 1948) once defined the holiday shopping experience in Evansville.
Founded in 1906 by Leo Schear, a Russian immigrant, Schear’s Department Store was famous for its intricate window displays until it closed in 1961. Here, a scene from Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol depicts a grouchy Scrooge shooing away a young caroler. The scene is surrounded by bargains a modern shopper couldn’t resist: $5 shirts and $2 ties. Prices may have risen, but holiday spirit remains Pure Evansville.
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