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Dawson, New Mexico Photo GalleryIMAGES OF THE AMERICAN WEST

Dawson, New Mexico Photographs

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Dawson, New Mexico Company Store, 1920's



Company Store, 1920's, New Mexico Wanderings Website

1920's, New Mexico Wanderings Website


Dawson Company Store Exterior

Company Store Exterior - 1920's, Myers Collection, NMSU



In 1914, the Phelps Dodge Mercantile was opened. The original company store building which had been constructed in 1902 was converted into a gymnasium the same year.

The company constructed the building as modern as possible. The new store was square in stature with sides ranging in length from 100 to 150 feet in length. The main structural support of the building was concrete. The main floor of the store housed hardware, men's and women's clothing, shoes, drug store items, the grocery store, and an extensive meat department. Furniture items were displayed on the mezzanine, and the bakery and offices were located on the top floor. The basement housed an ice plant which manufactured 5.000 pounds of ice of ice every 24 hours. The building's freight elevator was run by water pressure and utilized a combination of pumps and valves to move the elevator up and down. The store had a fleet of six delivery trucks and made numerous deliveries around town.




The Phelps Dodge Mercantile had several large display windows which were designed by a professional decorator who was hired specifically to design and execute the furnishing of the windows and the interior of the store. Photographs of the exhibits in the store's display windows were entered in several national contests, and the decorator received national recognition several times. The latest fashion shows were always available at Phelps Dodge Mercantile because of the size of the store.


By 1919, the store had 3 branches and more than 60 employees.


Though 1916 proved to be a peak year for coal production in Dawson and coal began to decline for years afterwards, the store remained open until the town closed in 1950.


Source:  Family Search Wiki


Compiled and editied by Kathy Weiser/Legends of America, updated May, 2016.  


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