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Northwest Grocery

Northwest Grocery

Question Corner: April 2021

by Tim Athan

From the April, 2021 issue

Q. In the mid-1970s, I wandered the streets of Ann Arbor taking hundreds of photographs, and I can still identify all of the locations except this one (above). I'm positive the store no longer exists, but I wonder if there's anyone out there who remembers it.

A. This was known as Northwest Grocery, and informally in its later years as "Greg's", for then-owner Greg Letsis. The grocery closed in the mid-1970s. Now it is a tri-plex apartment residence.

Neighborhood shops were essential when many people lived without cars or refrigerators. Ann Arbor's older neighborhoods have many buildings that were once shops, subsequently converted to residences.

Patti Smith and Britain Woodman's Vanishing Ann Arbor presents a lengthy list of neighborhood groceries. Within walking distance of Greg's were: Tom's (N. Main near Felch); Ty's, now Knight's (Miller at Spring); Nick's (Miller at Chapin); Fox's (Miller at Brooks); Brooks (Miller at Brooks); Miner Street Grocery (a block and a half north of Miller); and Water's, later the Corner Grocery (Miller at Spring), which in 1928 advertised "fresh daily" foods and a "first class soda fountain." Today it is the Big City Small World bakery.

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