We welcome thoughtful comments and respectful opinions that help make the case for the restoration of Marshall Field's to State Street and elsewhere. Off-topic, obviously incorrect, disrespectful or abusive posts will removed at the host's discretion, although an attempt will be made to contact the author, assuming a valid email address is provided with the post. The ethos is conversational--corrections are welcomed. Differing or opposing views are welcome and such posts should respect that this is a blog for opinions of Field's supporters. Due to problems with spam attacks--some even from those opposed to our cause--during certain periods, posts are moderated. As a result, it may take up to seven days for your post to appear, but usually it will take less than a day, and sometimes even immediately. Thank you for your patience, support, and written contributions.

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A 21st-Century Marshall Field's For A 21st-Century Chicago

Review why a revived and reinvented Marshall Field's make more sense than ever today and in the century to come..

Our latest survey shows 78% want Marshall Field's--14% prefer Macy's.

See our 2012 Survey Page for complete details including survey results.

Date: Fri, October 09, 2015, 07:10
Posted by: Susan NY,

Marshall Field's a store worth fighting for, right?

To those who advise us hangers-on to 'get a life': it's the other way around. May the snarks get a life.

Field's was a mighty fine piece of our lives and MBAs do not have all the parts to make that kind of phenomenon happen. It's not just about profit but about passiona level of commitment to excellence that goes beyond stratagems, formulas, and discount lures. Way beyond.

While it would be wonderful if Selfridge, for example, came along and restored fine shopping etc to the city- if you search your soul, you know the Field's name and heritage is what this is about.

Date: Thurs, October 08, 2015, 20:04
Posted by: A State Street Spectator,

I'm glad to hear there will be a gathering in November on State Street. If we can't shop at Field's at least we have this to look forward to at the start of holiday shopping season. I wait to hear more.

Date: Thurs, October 08, 2015, 20:00
Posted by: State Street Watcher,

To piggyback on Paul's post.

Growing up in the 1960s while attending Chicago Public Schools, we studied history of the city of Chicago in third grade throughout the year. We even had a textbook that was history of Chicago, written for kids our age. So they had a whole section on the Chicago fire. It talked about how Marshall Field's came through and pretty much brought back the city. I can't remember the name of the text, but it was a light blue

This history class helped ingrain in us young Chicagoans that Marshall Fields was an important Chicago institution, much more than a store. Macy's is just a store. It's not Marshall Field's.

Date: Thurs, October 08, 2015, 08:23
Posted by: Paul Martin,

They just said on Newsradio CBS 105.9 that today is the anniversary of the Great Chicago Fire in 1871.

Marshall Field's was destroyed, but it came back. Not only did it come back, it brought the city back. It lead the way in Chicago's comeback by being the first to help people and reopen to get back people on its feet.

Here's to Field's coming back now, even better than ever.

Date: Wed, October 07, 2015, 22:54
Posted by: Sharon, ,

Lady in NW Indiana misses Marshall Field's so much that she made a quilt about it.

Why did Macy's get rid of such a hot brand????

Date: Mon, October 05, 2015, 19:30
Posted by: A Field's conversationalist,

I can relate to the comment that just casually mentioning Field's gets a response. I brought my Field's Santa Bear to church for pet blessing last Sunday and set it in the middle of a table at coffee hour. Yes, the discussion started--Field's was a WONDERFUL PLACE, there's nothing but Macy's on State Street now, it's a good thing the building was landmarked, there's nothing to go downtown for anymore. The sentiment is still there, there is no doubt.

Date: Sun, October 04, 2015, 3:36 pm CT
Posted to FB by: Renee Rosen Author,

**News!!** WHAT THE LADY WANTS e-book is on sale for $1.99 & includes an excerpt of WHITE COLLAR GIRL. Available for most e-readers. Just a reminder that the $1.99 sale for WHAT THE LADY WANTS will be ending soon. Avail for any e-reader on Amazon, B&N, KOBO, Apple, Google. Not sure how long this sale is running so get it while you can! Enjoy!


[Note: "What the Lady Wants" background: In late-nineteenth-century Chicago, visionary retail tycoon Marshall Field made his fortune wooing women customers with his famous motto: “Give the lady what she wants.” His legendary charm also won the heart of socialite Delia Spencer and led to an infamous love affair. ]

Date: Sun, October 04, 2015, 1:40 pm CT
Posted by: Jim McKay,

A couple of things:

1) In response to "K.R.", there will be gathering under the Great Marshall Field's Clock at State and Washington on the first or second Saturday of November. Details will be forthcoming in the next week or so. This will be very similar to the gathering held on Saturday, November 7, 2014 which was lead by a contingency of our lady Field's Fans who demonstrated, "Give the Lady What She Wants." All Field's Fans and lovers of Chicago are encouraged to attend. Again, more details in 5-8 days.

2) Yesterday, I originally posted this to our Facebook group at (Posted 4:16 pm, CT, 10/3/2015):

The point of the following story is not to talk about where you can buy mugs that feature The Clock; rather, it's to demonstrate how just mentioning "Marshall Field's" can instantly elicit responses that it is missed and different from Macy's.

Here goes the story from a few minutes ago.

Buying coffee (at Gloria Jean's Coffee in the Harlem Irving Plaza, Norridge, IL) . I noticed that they are selling these mugs featuring the Marshall Field' clock ($12.99). I asked if the mug was at all Gloria Jean's coffee shops. Salesperson said probably just this one. I remarked that I know many who would love to buy a mug with the Field's clock. That's all I said. The sales person remarked, "Yes, I really miss Marshall Field's. Everyone does." The customer behind me also immediately chimed in, "So terrible it's Macy's--just not the same." Still: simply amazing how saying "Marshall Field's" can evoke that kind of response 9 years later.

Date: Sat, October 03, 2015,  12:18 pm CT
Posted by: gle,

At this time of year I always used to look forward to seeing signs of the holiday season appear on State Street. When I started working downtown there were 5 deprtments stores and Woolworth's to choose from. As I waited for the No. 145 bus I loved having something to look at, and often tempt me to go in an and buy something. I'm glad I have the memories (and much of the stuff I bought). The highlight of State Street was obviously Marshall Field's. If I didn't need anything at the moment there was always dinner in the Walnut Room. I hope this can eventually be restored. There are certainly enough people who seem to want it.

Date: Fri, October 02, 2015, 5:28 pm CT
Posted by: K.R.,

Are there any events planned for this fall such as a lecture or a rally for Marshall Fields? I'm planning a trip to Chicago, and would like to be part of it if I can.

I really hope it's possible that one day we will get Marshall Fields back. A shame that it is gone and that it was not valued.

Date: Thurs, October 01, 2015, 1:40 pm CT
Posted by: Paula,

Hello everyone!

Marsha, I've seen recipes for the potpies in different places. The most obvious is the Marshall Field Cookbook which came out right before Macy's took over. It's pretty common at Amazon and also in libraries. Other history books also have the recipe. I bet you could just Google, for that matter.

I was looking at the Macy's advertisement circular in yesterday's newspaper. The cover of the broadsheet section was covered with black and red and jammed with words and prices. In contrast, Marshall Fields always had these very classy magazine-like advertisement circulars. The Macy's one is so jampacked with items. It looks cluttered and cheap by comparison. It's certainly not in the same league as Marshall Field's circulars were. Even when Field's had massive sales or clearances like Field's Days, they still had more class than Macy's.

Wish we still had Field's!

Date: Thurs, October 01, 2015, 4:39 pm CT
Posted by: Marsha L. ,

I remember seeing they published recipes for the chicken pot pies. Is there anyone that is definitive????

Date: Wed, September 30, 2015, 9:51 am CT
Posted by: Missing Field's ,

We still miss Field's. When I pass through the Macy's stores from mall parking, I feel sad when I remember how good it used to be.

My money is spent elsewhere now.

Date: Sat, September 26, 2015, 3:58 pm CT
Posted by: Dave Andrews,

I have been following the stories about macy closing its downtown Pittsburgh location. This was Kaufmann's flagship department store and the most profitable location until macy took over and let it run down. Evidently macy originally promised to maintain a store after the building was sold to a developer, but they went back on their word and pulled out of downtown.

I understand that macy is planning to sell their Minneapolis location, the former Dayton's flagship, to a developer and then lease back space to run a store. Sound familiar? Sales are declining, stock prices are dropping, and activist investors are pressuring macy to sell off real estate to generate short term profits.

I fear the same thing may happen on State Street. As business dwindles because there is no reason to visit a downsized, downmarket store, macy could very well sell the building and "promise" to maintain a department store in that location then pull the same stunt they did in Pittsburgh. That despicable Terry would love to destroy the remaining vestiges of Marshall Field's! Beware Chicago! Someone with his arrogance would use his powerful position at macy to sell off the building and close the store while including some stipulation in the sales agreement that another department store could NOT set up shop there. Chicago is the only city that has maintained the fight to regain its iconic department store and Terry's tremendous ego has been bruised. His mean spirited pettiness will drive him to somehow "get even" with Chicago. Beware!

Date: Sat, September 26, 2015, 12:58 am CT
Posted by: gle,

I take the Brown Line "L" home from work in Chicago and get a back door view of the architecture along Wabash Avenue, which includes the former Carson's and Marshall Field's buildings. I ride past the 2nd floor of Carson's, now Target, and see food produce in the window which used to house merchandise. Then I see the 1893 architecture of the Field's building on the corner of Wabash and Washington. It's still beautiful but stained. Down Washington I can see the green clock in the distance (and ugly black awnings of Macy's). The 2nd floor windows do not show many people in Macy's, as I expect. The balance of the building is sadly stained and needs a tuckpoining job. I miss the days when State Street had all the great department stores, and would love to get off the "L" and shop. Hopefully, that will happen someday. I would love to see an entity like Selfridge's take the Field's building and restore it. Right now I just look and dream, and ride on by.

Date: Thurs, September 24, 2015, 3:05 am CT
Posted by: Tina Reynolds,

I love the store and really hope you bring it back my kids didn't get the experience of going to Fields. They used to sale a fragrance called Romeo and Juliet that I loved and I have not been able to find it since, they have always had good products.

Date: Wed, September 23, 2015, 6:54 am CT
Posted by: Susan NY,

Does any of this positive energy have direct ramifications for State Street? Maybe it is time for the tide to turn.

I wonder if anyone besides me mourns the loss of the original mahogany case enfilade of the first floor. That was the standard of the day but the first floors of Carson's and the rest were not noteworthy. Proportion, form, and detailing were distinctive in Field's, soul-stirring, and allowed for grand statements on special occasions. The first floor was an overture, a welcoming greeting. It set the mood for all the rest of the experience of Field's. When you entered, you knew you were in a special place. It embraced you and pulled right into that intoxicating shopper's whirlpool. That was not stupid.

Today's stores' standard unfocused spaces are neither distinguishing nor communicative. They make me feel like I am slithering into an indifferent crowd with backs to me, not joining a welcoming gathering. I am not saying all big stores should do it the Field's way but I still believe the Original Way was, appropriately, a coherent distillation of what the very special institution at 111 N State was all about. Even to a newbie, that would have to be exciting, and resistance, futile.

But then, I am a sucker for turn-of-that-century glam and dignity. I believe it can mesh successfully with current tastes, too.....

Date: Tues, September 22, 2015, 7:01 pm
Posted by: R.G.,

Macy's and Blooomindale's keeps opening those clearance stores outlets.

Field's had the first with the bargain basement.

Date: Monday, September 21, 2015  6:09 am CT
Posted by: Jim McKay.,

According to several reports, Macy's will be hiring about the same number of employees for the Christmas season, although some positions will be shifted to e-commerce fulfillment. Macy's plans to hire about 85,000.

Date: Sunday, September 20, 2015  12:59 pm CT
Posted by: State Street Fan,

There is a book on Carson's by the same author who writes about Marshall Field's:
Carson's: The Histoy of a Chicago Shopping Landmark

Date: Friday, September 18, 2015  10:41 am CT
Posted by: PJ,

Just an update re: Macy's Pittsburgh - the main store closes this weekend.

There is a serious negative feeling about Macy's in Pittsburgh right now, and I think a boycott is brewing. It may be a good idea to connect with that energy, somehow?

As a former Pittsburgher and current Chicagoan, I can tell you that people were so dissatisfied with how Macy's ran the beautiful downtown store into the ground. It was as key in the city as the State Street store in Chicago.

Once again they earn the motto "Messy's - Way To Flop!"

Date: Wednesday, September 16, 2015  11:41 am CT
FB Posted by: Mike W.,

I miss Carson's on State Street frown emoticon

Date: Wednesday, September 16, 2015  10:39 am CT
FB Posted by: Sarah K.,

If they don't bring Marshall Field's back, then I hope the Carson's CEO realizes a perfect business opportunity.

Date: Wednesday, September 16, 2015  11:22 am CT
FB Posted by: Timothy E.,

In which case, then, I wish they would....

Date: Tuesday, September 15, 2015  10:27 pm CT
FB Posted by: Chris R.,

I agree with the comments by Carson's CEO and the follow-up comments by the members here. However, I also find it intriguing that Macy's considers there to be 30 "platinum stores." You know that the stores have to include the following: State Street, Water Tower Pl., Oakbrook Center, Woodfield Mall, Old Orchard, Mayfair, and possibly Orland Park and Northbrook. You would also probably throw in there the former Dayton's flagship in Minneapolis. I would imagine the other stores in the top 30 are Herald Square 34th Street, Wannamaker's City Center in Philadelphia, Boston Downtown Crossing, Roosevelt in Queens, Union Square in San Francisco, a couple stores in Los Angeles, a couple stores in Miami, and a dozen others in major metropolitan areas. So think about it. At least a quarter, if not a third of their top 30 doors are former Marshall Field's locations! They need to bring Marshall Field's back!

Date: Tuesday, September 15, 2015  7:39 pm CT
Posted by: Jim H.,

Hope they enter the US market.

Date: Tuesday, September 15, 2015  7:36 pm CT
Posted by: Jim McKay,

Selfridges' major controlling owners are so flush with cash they could buy all of Bon-Ton with their pocket change. In fact, at least on paper, they even could buy all of Macy's/Bloomingdale's.

Date: Tuesday, September 15, 2015  7:33 pm CT
Posted by: Jim H.,

Maybe Ms. Bufano could hire a few Selfridges executives?

Date: Tuesday, September 15, 2015  7:30 pm CT
Posted by: Judy P.,

Anywhere I go in this city, the conversation includes Marshall Fields. Some do shop at Macy's but they still would love to see Fields come back!!!

Date: Tuesday, September 15, 2015  6:54 pm CT
Posted by: Mark M.,

One smart lady.

Date: Tuesday, September 15, 2015  6:33 pm CT
Posted by: Marianne N.,

No surprise there. Everywhere I go, the topic eventually comes up. Everyone misses Field's. Many hate Macy's and some say they shop there half heartedly because it's there.

Date: Tuesday, September 15, 2015  5:21 pm CT
Posted by: Jim McKay,

BTW: Carson's red hexagonal asterisk logo is back. The logo was licensed from Suisse Freres that was was used by Bergner's since the late 1930s and then it was assigned to Carson's and other stores' as they were acquired. BONT's last CEO ditched the red hexagon for the past couple of years. Buffano has now added it to Bon-Ton's logo as well. Samples of where the logo is used in Europe can be seen at

What was also interesting was her comment suggesting that they consider Carson's to be their strongest brand.

Date: Tuesday, September 15, 2015  4:56 pm CT
Posted by: Jim McKay,

Carson's new CEO says their research shows customers overwhelming "mourn the loss of Marshall Field's."

Both Macy's and Bon-Ton (parent of Carson Pirie Scott) presented at last week's Goldman Sach's Global Retail Conference. For Macy's, it was the new president, Jeff Gennette. (Terry Lundgren remains CEO and Chairman). CFO Karen Hoguet was also available to answer questions. Gennette talked about Macy's new strategy of focusing of their 30 best stores which are now designated as "platinum", along with another class of their top 150 stores which will also have special attention and special merchandising. State Street is one of the 30 and, according to Gennette, the Build-a-Bear Workshop is an example of special initiatives that will stand out at State Street.

Meanwhile, Carson's (Bon-Ton's) CEO, Kathryn Bufano gave an overview of what's going on at Bon-Ton, including Carson's. Bufano is a Chicago native who most recently was CMO at Belk, a southeastern US regional chain about the same size as Bon-Ton. Before that she has had stints with the old Sears, Lord and Taylor and over 15 years ago at Macy's.

What she brought up early on in her 23-minute talk was how the local brands are what the customers want. She explains right after she took the new job, her husband asked if she was going to change all of Bon-Ton's assortment of name plates (Bon-Ton, Bergner's, Boston Store, Younker's, Herberger's, Elder-Beerman) to Carson's. She said no--customers shop at their stores because they love those names and are part of their identity. Customers still very much "mourn the loss of Marshall Field's." She explained that their new approach will be to emphasize that these stores are local. Bon-Ton is working on stepping up community engagement at the local level.

Keep in mind that half of their 270 or so stores are Bon-Ton and Elder-Beerman. These stores are in smaller metro areas and are much smaller than the average Carson's that we know here in Chicago. In many cases they are about the size of an average Target, if that. Also keep in mind that Macy's/Bloomingdale's outstanding shares of stock are valued at about $19 BILLION while BONT/Carson's is at about $87 MILLION. Field's State Street is valued at $1.74 BILLION as real estate while the whole Macy's, Inc. would probably sell for $40B.

I sadly can't help but think that if Bufano had been CEO back in 2005-2006, we'd still have Carson's on State Street. In earlier interviews, she's spoken about visiting Carson's and Field's on State Street while growing up in Chicagoland.

If you want to listen to the talks: Links to the 9/9/2015 Bon-Ton is at Macy's is at…


Another interview from last summer where Carson's acknowledges the loss of Field's:

"'Being local and being regional, we can leverage the brand loyalty behind a Carson's customer and a Younker's customer, and definitely I see that as part of our future,” she said. “We have the advantage of having our hometown nameplates, and that cements us as the hometown store. I know as a Chicagoan, they mourn the loss of Marshall Fields. We still have that (brand) loyalty. We still have the emotional tug if you will of people having loyalty to a Carson's or a Younkers.' "

"Bufano grew up in Waukegan, Ill., which is only about 50 miles south of Milwaukee, and has long been familiar with Bon-Ton's brands. 'I've been a Carson's shopper all of my life,' she said."

More at

Date: Sunday, September 13, 2015  10:39 am CT
Posted by: Sarah K.,

This morning's Tribune has a cover story on how Jeff Smisek has finally been deposed from his throne at United Continental. It's an example of a coporation screwing up, especially screwing up things for customers. There's no guarantee that the successor will right the ship, but when I think of Macy's CEO, it gives me hope that he may leave just as Smisek finally was forced out.

Every time I go to State Street, it gets worse and worse. This Lundgren guy needs to go!!!!!!!

Date: Saturday, September 12, 2015  7:34 am CT
Posted by: Susan in NY,

Why is it OK for investors to press a company to dismember itself and sell the parts, so they can take the profits and run to feast on the next future cadaver?

Apparently now the USA is a very different place from the one in which a flagship department store could be a flagship department store. It's all about the Bottom Line in portfolios, nothing more. Doesn't matter how you get there.

Comment from the webmaster:
Susan in NY: I think this may be the first time your opinion here may be quite closely aligned with Terry Lundgren, Karen Hoguet, and other senior execs at Macy's/Bloomingdale's.

Date: Friday, September 11, 2015  8:19 pm CT
Posted by: Steph,

McDonald's expects to gain an uptick of 2.45% in sales by selling select breakfast items all day long. The news said, McDonald's has been resisting giving customers what they have wanted since the 1970s--all day breakfast items! It's something that these corporate big wigs like Lundgreen and McDonald's will sacrifice profits and not listen to their customers and give them what they want, even if it's good for business. There needs to be checks and balances.

Date: Friday, September 11, 2015  CT
Posted by: FieldsFansChicago,

Remembering fourteen years ago today. Honoring, respecting, and thanking all who sacrificed.

Date: Thursday, September 10, 2015  9:23 pm CT
Posted by: Eve.F.,

We really miss our Marshall Field's here in South Bend! Hudson's too!

Date: Wednesday, September 9, 2015  7:35 pm CT
FB Posted by: Alfred I.,

Thanks, Jim. Here's to the once and future Marshall Field's! Here's to restoring the wheat sheaves—and everything!

Date: Wednesday, September 9, 2015  7:32 pm CT
FB Posted by: Jim McKay,

  • 44 years ago today, Marshall Field and Company, Woodfield officially opened its doors.
  • 9 years ago today, all Marshall Field's stores became Macy's.
  • 8 years ago today was the biggest rally of them all for Marshall Field's to return.
  • From Bloomberg, 9/10/07:
    Macy's Finds Chicago Indignant on Marshall Field's
    Macy's is still feeling the wrath of Chicago shoppers.

    Date: Wednesday, September 9, 2015  8:21 am CT
    FB Posted by: Michael D.,

    Here's some historic photos I haven't seen before:

    1930 Store window:

    Date: Wednesday, September 9, 2015  12:12 am CT
    FB Posted by: Jim,

    I think Macy's knows it's not revolutionary. It seems like they plan such hyped distractions whenever they are about to announce bad news, like the store closings. In fact, leased or partnered electronics departments is not a new idea for Macy's. They have electronics vending machines that sell iPods, headphones, etc. in about 200 of their stores (last count) and J & R had a decent-sized electronics department the NYC flagship until J & R went under reorganization.

    So my understanding (according to reports at, etc.) is that this Best Buy collaboration is for Samsung products only, only for two months (early November into January) in ten stores, and probably only needs one personal duty to staff it. The space is only 300 sq ft which is 10' X 15' or about the size of a single handicapped parking space. That's teeny. As you mention, Field's had their own appliance and electronics departments and then leased them to Silo (a horrible electronics dealer that deserved to go out of business). It's just a gimmick--and they chose to announce it as good news to try and balance the bad news.

    I know some think that the activist stockholders are a good thing in that maybe things will shift to Marshall Field's because it will maximize value; however, it could also end up like Carson's on State, with the State Street closed and cut up for shops, offices, condos and hotels. Note that last week it was announced that the upper floors of the former Dayton's flagship is being sold off from Macy's to a Chicago developer who will make offices out of it.

    Date: Wednesday, September 9, 2015  12:05 am CT
    FB Posted by: Peter A.,

    Interesting thing. Macy's also indicated its going to test selling electronics thru Best Buy at some stores. They seem to think that's revolutionary. MF&Co had licensed Silo stores in all locations prior to the Dayton's takeover. It's so amazing how Macy's spins things. Like they invented the wheel.

    Date: Tuesday, September 8, 2015  9:55 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Jim,

    A lot of positive comments about Marshall Field's in the story below. I know that during past Januarys, people have commented Macy's must be in trouble because they closed maybe 10 to 12 stores. I disagree on those situations. This is different. This is 5% of their stores. Furthermore, they have never given this much advance warning about store closures. I think the activist shareholders who want to extract money for Macy's real estate are pushing this. They have access to what's going on behind the scenes. I'm not sure how this will turn out, but I think someone's finally pressuring Terry Lundgren and Macy's management.
    Macy's says it will close 35 to 40 stores in early 2016:

    Date: Monday, September 7, 2014  CT
    Posted by: Field's Fans

    HAPPY LABOR DAY! (especially to those who made Marshall Field's so special!)

    Date: Sunday, September 6, 2015  4:00 pm CT
    Posted by: Eric B.,

    While browsing online, I stubbed my big toe on this Web page:
    Upon reading the description of the "World famous Macyís Department Store on State Street" (item #2), a much stronger word than OUCH!!! escaped my lips. I promptly sent this brief message to the Traveladvisortips editorial team:

    "The description of Macy's department store leaves out a historically important fact: This store was Marshall Field's until 2006. Please revise the description to include this vital fact."

    I submitted the above message on August 14. To date, I've received no reply and the description of Macy's remains unchanged. Meanwhile, I noticed that their description of the "lost fountain" is also erroneous.

    Perhaps additional feedback is needed to prod Traveladvisortips into correcting their Web page description. Field's Fans can encourage them to set the record straight by completing and submitting the "Contact Us" form found here:

    Date: Sunday, September 6, 2015  3:01 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay,

    Since August 25th, the posting page for this blog has had an error that was just discovered. The problem is now fixed and you should be able to post again.

    Thank you for your patience while the ability to post to our blog has had technical difficulties.

    Best regards and many thanks for your posts and support.


    Date: Tuesday, August 25, 2015  7:01 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay,

    What Should Macy's Do With Its Flagship Store?
    Retailer considers whether to spin off real-estate assets, which include landmark building in New York
    Cowen concluded that the company’s second most-valuable store, in Chicago, is worth about $1.7 billion.
    For us fact finders, another quotable, credible source that cites State Street as having a value of $1.7 billion is an important fact. Consider that the value of all outstanding shares of Macy's stock is about $19-$21 B. (For years, reporters were shocked and disbelieving when I told them about the value cited in 2007 of $1.5B.)

    My response posted at after this article:

    "Again, it's important to note that the [value of ] Chicago store goes from $1.7 billion to over $2 billion when reunited with the dormant Marshall Field's brand. Federated/Macy's and May Department Stores SEC 10K filings from 2005 showed the Marshall Field's trade names as worth $419 M. That was more than the sum of Macy's and Bloomingdale's tradenames at the time (listed in the 2005 SEC 10K as $377 M combined) and the dozen or so MayCo tradenames including Lord and Taylor (listed at that same time as under $190 M combined). Running the Chicago store as Macy's is wildly UNpopular and degrades its value. Running the store as Marshall Field's enhances the building's value as an international destination.

    It's disgraceful that Macy's senior management continues to devalue stockholder assets rather than admit mistakes of the ego."

    Date: Monday, August 24, 2015  7:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Destiny R.,

    Remember Marshall Field's Regards customer loyalty program? Macy's changed it to Star Rewards. Now it's really gotten stupid. They have a paltry program called Plenti. It's affiliated with the filthy corner Mobil station! WHOOPI!!!!!!!! Those Macy's people are nutsowacko!

    Date: Sunday, August 23, 2015  8:57 am CT
    Posted by: Clare H.,

    Macy's appears to have gone and killed off Glamorama. They now have something called Macy's Fashion's Front Row. Instead of being held in theaters in in Minneapolis, Chicago, L.A. and San Francisco, they are having one show at the theatre of Madison Square Garden. This is the theatre, not the arena so it's not like a lot of people will attend. I mean this is for all of the NYC tri-state area!. This year's event will close NYC Fashion Week on September 17th. It will be on cable TV. They did something similar some time back. It was on CBS. It got horrible ratings. Then a week later they will have a mini Fashion's Front Row on the third floor of State Street. No event at Minneapolis. There is some sort of discount pass you can still purchase to benefit local charities. But like everything else, Macy's scales back and whittles away and away and away.

    I can't wait to get clothes by Heidi Klum. Oh wait, yes, I can wait forever. Who wants clothes by Heidi Klum?????

    Date: Thursday, August 20, 2015  11:59 pm CT
    Posted by: Syl J.,

    We visited Selfridge's in London a couple of years ago. It was eerie how it felt so much like Field's. It's a natural.

    Date: Thursday, August 20, 2015  10:27 pm CT
    Posted by: Barb L.,

    I hope we get our Marshall-Field's back! If not, Selfridge's would be Great!

    Date: Tuesday, August 18, 2015  6:07 am CT
    Posted by: F.H.,

    In today's "Chicago Daily Tribune" almanac. Today would have been Marshall Field's 181st birthday. Born in western Massachusetts in 1834. Happy birthday!

    Date: Monday, August 17, 2015  6:12 pm CT
    Posted by: gle,

    I think this is a fantastic strategy with perfect timing--invite Selfridge's to Chicago. I would LOVE to see a Selfridge's here. Would even more love to see a return to Marshall Field's.

    Date: Sunday, August 16, 2015  8:36 pm CT
    Posted by: Dave A.,

    The timing of your attempts to bring Selfridge's to Chicago could not have been better! One of the excuses macy offered for declining sales and profits was lack of tourist spending.

    What traveler from foreign lands or from another part of the USA would bother to shop at macy since it is everywhere these days? Even their prized Herald Square flagship is no longer a tourist attraction since it is just a bigger physical presence of a now generic, nondescript mass marketer found at most shopping centers across the USA. Travelers visit stores like Selfridge's, Harrod's, KeDeWe because they are special and unique--not something as ubiquitous as Rite Aid, CVS, or 7-11 (or Macy's).

    Date: Sunday, August 16, 2015  5:35 pm CT
    Posted by: Shirley L.,

    I have worn my Marshall Field's button on numerous occasions here where I live in North Carolina. Everyone is well aware of Marshall Fields (as customers and former employees and part-time holiday help) tell me their experiences with the Store in Chicago!

    Date: Saturday, August 15, 2015  7:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Denise F.,

    It's a tragedy that Macy's doesn't recognize what it has in Marshall Field's. Selfridge's would appreciate it, although they have a little bit different personality.

    Date: Friday, August 14, 2015  1:10 pm CT
    Posted by: Bob G.,

    I still refuse to shop at Macy's for their having buried the Field's experience. If we can't get Field's back, Selfridges sounds like an interesting option. If they open here, I will, without question, check them out. If they live up to their reputation, I will likely become a regular customer.

    Date: Friday, August 14, 2015  10:12 am CT
    Posted by: Barbra K.,

    Glad to hear about the outreach to Selfridges. That would be something for Chicago to have. I'd have a reason to go to Chicago to shop again.

    Date: Friday, August 14, 2015  4:30 am CT
    FB Posted by: Alfred I., Washington, D.C.

    Here's to the once and future Marshall Field's!

    Date: Thursday, August 13, 2015  8:32 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Rosalie B.,

    The Marshall Field's fans are still going strong. Yay!!

    Date: Thursday, August 13, 2015  5:10 pm CT
    Posted by: B L., Florida

    Great idea to court Selfridges! Although we're in Florida, we miss Fields terribly and would love to have the spirit of this iconic Chicago store resurrected. I wish I were there to help!!!

    Thank you for all your efforts. Please know that they are appreciated.


    Date: Thursday, August 13, 2015  4:07 pm CT
    Posted by: Gaile J.,Georgia

    I have been a proud vocal supporter of Marshall Fields. I have awaited a new beginning for State Street..I welcome the day Chicago has world class shopping once again!

    Gaile J.

    Date: Thursday, August 13, 2015  2:14 pm CT
    Posted by: Sonia S.,Maryland

    Marshall Field's means purchasing lovely fabrics and attending the fashion show every year. On every visit to Field's I'd stop on the 5th floor at a little stand to get a chilled drink of coconut milk and raspberry juice. I remember when they covered the lobby with so many luscious plants, we’d take a tour just to know what they were. I'd see Mr. Johnson inspecting his Fashion Fair display. I have so many fond memories.

    Sonia S.

    Date: Thursday, August 13, 2015  2:02 pm CT
    Posted by: David W.,

    Field's has always been an important part of Chicago to me – I have been in the State Street Macy's only once, for an event that I simply had to attend, but this one visit strongly reinforced my view that we need Marshall Field's back.

    Date: Wednesday, August 12, 2015  7:32 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Jim McKay,

    Edited out of the press release (because of space constraints: If Mr. Marshall Field were alive today and lost his store and the right to use his name on his store, he'd come back anyways, better than ever--better emporium, better name. He wouldn't wait around, begging for his rival to relent.

    Date: Wednesday, August 12, 2015  7:00 pm CT
    Posted by:,

    (CHICAGO-August 13, 2015)

    Contact:        Jim McKay and Leslie Singer,
    Phone:      312.662.8980
    Email:      regards AT FieldsFansChicago DOT org


    The grassroots organization FieldsFansChicago announces an independent campaign to bring Selfridges to Chicago. The campaign is named "Selfridges: Come Home To Chicago".

    Through the generations, the histories of two world-class, beloved emporia, Chicago's Marshall Field's and London's Selfridges, have separated and re-converged. With this as inspiration, FieldsFansChicago seeks to encourage the Selfridges Group to work with Chicago's citizens and civic leaders to establish an international retail experience in Chicago that re-captures the heart and soul of Marshall Field and Company that has been missing during the past nine years.

    Harry Gordon Selfridge started out at Chicago's Marshall Field and Company on State Street, where he played a pivotal role in defining and making Chicago's world-class emporium a unique retail experience beloved world-wide throughout the 20th century. Eventually, Selfridge translated and replicated that experience into London's own world-class emporium, Selfridge & Co. on Oxford Street. Highly regarded as both a Chicagoan and Londoner of great civic stature, Mr. Selfridge's legacy extends to both cities.

    Today, Selfridges is considered "Best Department Store in the World" as voted by the Intercontinental Group of Department Stores (IGDS). Historically, the DNA and soul of today's Selfridges springs from Chicago's Marshall Field and Company. Reciprocally, the last great renaissance at Marshall Field's on State Street was in the early 2000s, when it interpreted and implemented a Chicago version of Selfridges Oxford Street "stores within a store" concept.

    While Macy's currently exists in the former Marshall Field's store building on State Street, Marshall Field's is still overwhelmingly missed. People want more than Marshall Field's nostalgia and historical markers at State Street: they want the Marshall Field's experience restored as a vibrant, contemporary, world-class emporium. Surveys of over 2,000 shoppers from 2009-2012 showed that 4 out of 5 overwhelmingly prefer Marshall Field's to New York's Macy's.

    The State Street store burned to the ground twice. Yet, Mr. Field rebuilt again and again, each time better than before. With that as inspiration, FieldsFansChicago embarks on courting and encouraging the Selfridges Group and its leader, Toronto's Galen Weston, to open a new world-class Chicago emporium that recaptures the ethos of Marshall Field's. is mobilizing with fervency to recruit Selfridges to Chicago. Our first effort was an October 2014 lecture at the Chicago Cultural Center on Mr. Selfridge's history in Chicago. Our latest effort is the extension our highly popular free button campaign with a new design featuring the "Selfridges Come Home to Chicago" slogan. Other efforts will continue with our bookmark/flyer campaign; rallies; lectures; social media campaigns; and other activities. (Details on the buttons can be found here.

    For further information, please contact via email at or phone Jim McKay or Leslie Singer at 312.662.8980 is grassroots collection of concerned citizens. It is solely responsible for its activities including the content of this press release. It is independent and in no way connected with outside organizations such as Selfridges Group, Macy's, Bloomingdale's, Macy's, Inc. (formerly Federated Department Stores), Marshall Field's, etc.


    Date: Wednesday, August 12, 2015  2:38 pm CT
    Posted by: State Street Observer,

    A lot of stories about how Macy's fell short this past quarter. Lack of tourism - State Street, anyone? - would be an example.

    Macy's is also opening a web site for sales in China with Alibaba. The red star logo should be a perfect fit with China!

    The hens are coming home to roost!

    Date: Tuesday, August 11, 2015  8:27 pm CT
    Posted by: State Street Observer,

    Reminder: Macy's will have their Q-2 earnings call tomorrow morning at 9:00 A.M. ET/ 8:00 A.M. Chicago Time. This is 90 minutes earlier that it has been. Here's the link to listen:

    Date: Saturday, August 8, 2015  7:06 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Gary C.,

    Just a correction regarding the discussion on Macy's Woodfield, The walls were constructed in 1987 to create fantastic enviornments for mens sportswear. The blank wall across from the escalator had a large oil painting until about 2005. Unfortunately the the enviornments on the other side of that wall are now bland and not so fantastic!

    Date: Friday, August 7, 2015  10:50 am CT
    Posted by: FieldsFansChicago Webmaster.,

    PATRICA PERKINSON: Please privately email webmaster at about your two recent posts. Confused about which should appear--or merge. Thank you.

    P.S. Field's supporters are adamantly and repeatedly for Marshall Field's returning as an experience that is way unique and international class. We want more than a Marshall Field's sign on a Macy's.

    Date: Thursday, August 6, 2015  10:27 pm CT
    Posted by: Gayle S.,

    Regarding Woodfield, Wow--that center basement always had beautiful stuff. I remember a big Lladro showing there once. With all the bedding, it looks like a Kohls now... (no offense meant to Kohls).

    Date: Thursday, August 6, 2015  10:36 am CT
    Posted by: Aaron M.,

    Alan Gordon was the head wine buyer for Marshall Field and Company. He was well-known and highly respected in the food and wine industry.

    Date: Thursday, August 6, 2015  8:45 am CT
    Posted by: Jim,

    The saddest laugh I got was about the time Macy's and Alfani arrived in Chicago, Walgreens, of all places, started selling belts and socks with another name that was clearly a cheeky knock off of Alfani knocking off Armani. (Gail even sadly commented about Alfani in either the Wall Street Journal or in MarketWatch--I forget which.) Given that Walgreens was based in Chicago area at the time, and that I know some Walgreens people watch FieldsFansChicago, I couldn't help but think they were poking at Macy's. Tangentially, when Walgreens acquired Duane Reade, they very much paid attention to us and the rest of the information around Macy's failed conversion from Marshall Field's. That's why you still see dual branding for Walgreens and Duane Reade even though Duane Reade has traditionally been a somewhat loathed institution in NYC.

    Even more tangentially, Macy says it's stores in Chicago are doing very well--and for them to consider that is a very low saturation of Macy's stores in the Chicagoland area. Remember that in Los Angeles, California, and a number other markets Macy's has time or three times a number of Macy's per person that they do in Chicago. In other words, enough coupons and approaching the Kohls JCPenney crowd is enough to maintain some of the business at the stores.

    Date: Thursday, August 6, 2015  8:17 am CT
    Posted by: M.N.,

    Macy's own labels are a joke. The one I find the cheesiest is Alfani, which, I guess, is supposed to make people think it's like Armani. It's the dumbing down of America.

    Date: Thursday, August 6, 2015  6:30 am CT
    Posted by: Marc J.,

    And the Marshall Field's wines were actually not bad. Always enjoyed the wine shoppe at State and in Oakbrook. Macy's is just uninspired, unspecial, and unexciting.

    Date: Thursday, August 6, 2015  1:23 am CT
    Posted by: Alfred I.,

    Bring back Marshall Field's, and its wine buyers!

    Re: Woodfield Macy's. As they'd say on "Star Trek: The Next Generation," it's time to free No. 111 from the Borg. Here's to the once and future Marshall Field's!

    Date: Wednesday, August 5, 2015  10:50 pm CT
    Posted by: MediaPost,

    Macy's Launches Private Label Wines

    "Dining at Macy's will be enhanced for our customers when they choose one of our new Macy's Select wines," Wolfe says in a release.

    This is the third private label program launched by KDM Global Partners on Macy's behalf, initially under the Marshall Field's banner and again for Macy's in 2007. The KDM line of Marshall Field's wines includes a Pinot Noir and a Brut Sparkling wine. KDM also works with other retailers including 7-Eleven.

    Date: Wednesday, August 5, 2015  5:49 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Jeanne W.,

    Re: Woodfield Macy's. If I didn't know any better I would think I was shopping at Sears.

    Date: Wednesday, August 5, 2015  4:32 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Peter W.,

    They probably walled up the view from the second level into the central atrium at Macy's Woodfield so people won't throw themselves over the edge at how sad and depressing it looks.

    Date: Wednesday, August 5, 2015  10:50 pm CT
    Posted by: Stephanie L.,

    Macy's Woodfield: What a shame...

    Date: Wednesday, August 5, 2015  2:35 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Timothy E.,

    Responding to Jim's post, Macy's is all about cutting back, shrinking, reducing, and eliminating everything and anything they possibly can - well, except - perhaps - for cheaply made women's ready-to-wear. Sheesh - why don't they just throw in the towel and go out of business altogether? Or, just operate a mediocre chain of stores in dreary strip malls, selling women's mid-range clothing? Talk about trashing a birthright.... :-(

    Date: Wednesday, August 5, 2015  2:15 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Jim,

    Visited Woodfield today. Most of the display windows off the center court were covered over with Macy's logos. What a waste. Consider the entrance at Field's Woodfield and compare with any other anchor's entrance in Woodfield or most malls. All the others (Nordstrom and Lord and Taylor to Sears and JCPenney) have one big wide entrance, almost like an open garage door. The entrances from the parking lot for these other stores are like typical store entrances--standard doors with maybe a revolving door. Marshall Field's was different and the centerpiece. They built this giant formal loggia with a series of windows inviting one in, two entrances flanking either side. It's like a mini-State Street. It's similar with the interior. You have more than a cut through in the center of the upper floors that makes it easy to install a single bank of escalators. Clearly at Woodfield it is a late 1960s/early 1970s Mid-Century modern interpretation referring to State Street with the grand columns, and central atrium that actually allows light into the store and to easily see the type of merchandise on each floor. (Now significant portions of the vistas from the second floor into the central atrium are walled off.) Even the exterior entrance at Woodfield on the north (actually northeast) side of the store has an area for dropping off customers and a central exterior courtyard that is grand, civic and communal. And remember when you could look down to the lower level of the atrium and see all sorts of classy crystal and other high-end wares? Now it's just mediocre bedding as the primary focus of this formerly grand space. Architecturally, it's a great store that has been dumbed down to the level of a Kohl's. (To their credit, Macy's/Bloomindale's did finally replace the worn carpeting throughout the store.)

    Date: Wednesday, August 5, 2015  10:50 am CT
    Posted by: Joan Y.,

    I just responded to this story. Why do our K-8 schools' programs have to be "infected" with product placement? I do not like Macy's/Bloomingdale's values of low pay for employees and destruction of local department stores. Why should our kids be seduced by a corporation before they are mature enough to decide on their own whether to act as a tool for furthering the Macy's/Bloomingdale's brands?

    On With The Show: Macy's Popular "Yes, Virginia The Musical" Returns With $100,000 In Grants

    Date: Tuesday, August 4, 2015  11:34 pm CT
    Posted by: State Street Observer,

    Macy's will have their Q2 earnings call on Wednesday, August 12 at 9:00 A.M. ET/ 8:00 A.M. Chicago Time. This is 90 minutes earlier that it used to be. Here's the link to cast:

    Date: Monday, August 3, 2015  6:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Fionna W.,

    We were in Chicago last week, from Philadelphia. WE MISSED MARSHALL FIELD'S! Why have the same store everywhere???

    In fact, it's not just Macy's, it's most stores!!!!! Traveling somewhere and shopping doesn't matter anymore since the same stores are everywhere!

    Today's retailers are shooting themselves in the foot by mass-producing.


    Date: Sunday, August 2, 2015  3:32 pm CT
    Posted by: gle,

    It is really inspiring to see what Nordstrom's plans to do. If there is a market for Nordstrom as an upgraded tourist destination, there should be just as much a market for a Selfridge's in Chicago or a return to Field's.

    Date: Thursday, July 30, 2015  1:42 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Jim H.,

    If not Field's then I wish someone would revive the old Field Gear clothing brand in all its glory.

    Date: Thursday, July 30, 2015  12:46 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay,

    Thanks for this find, Michael!

    As many of you know and as pointed out in the Seattle Times article, this was originally the Frederick and Nelson flagship. Frederick and Nelson was modeled after Marshall Field's and, when -- was it Frederick or Nelson? -- wanted to retire after the death of the other, they insisted on selling to Marshall Field's. That sale resulted in what evolved into Frango mints coming to Field's and Chicago. It's also interesting that the Nordstrom overhaul in Seattle is based on Selfridges in London which is based on State Street. Moreover, Field's last rebirth, successfully in progress when Macy's killed Field's, was based on Selfridges all the way back in 2003-2005.

    When we have conducted our surveys in 2009 through 2012, we noticed that when we've been in the vicinity of Nordstrom on Michigan Avenue, we noticed a significant increase in people who were former Field's shoppers who now refused to shop Macy's and moved to Nordstrom instead.

    In the coming weeks, you will be hearing more about our efforts to court Selfridges into coming back to Chicago.

    Date: Thursday, July 30, 2015  11:53 am CT
    FB Posted by: Michael R.,

    Nordstrom aims high with downtown flagship remodel

    The downtown Seattle store and its counterparts in Chicago and San Francisco are getting an expensive makeover in hopes of creating an "international destination" experience that will leave tourists talking.

    Speaking to reporters during a tour of the two remodeled floors, Nordstrom cited as inspiration the Galeries Lafayette in Paris, London's Selfridges and other famous European department stores.

    Some 40 percent of sales on Chicago's Michigan Avenue, one of the world's top shopping wonderlands, come from visitors to the city, according to Neil Stern, senior partner at McMillan Doolittle, a retail consultancy.

    "Creating more of a destination experience makes a lot of sense," he said.

    A makeover of Nordstrom's Michigan Avenue store will be complete this fall, in time for the holidays.

    Date: Tuesday, July 28, 2015  1:15 pm CT
    Posted by: J.H.,

    Gilford Says Don't Believe The Real Estate Hype: Slashes Macy's From Buy To Sell

    Date: Sunday, July 26, 2015  1:15 pm CT
    Posted by: gle,

    I have always noticed Macy's ads, whether I want to or not. You get hit in the face with them like the weather. They have never managed to impress me, however. I still want my Marshall Field's and so do a lot of other people I know. Macy's is getting referred to now as "that store that should be Field's."

    Date: Saturday, July 25, 2015  10:23 am CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay,

    Macy's spent $1.6 BILLION on advertising last year.
    Cincinnati Business Courier
    This is what makes it such an uphill battle to get coverage favoring a return to Marshall Field's. Still, it happens--that's how much Field's means to people. BTW: If you consider the out-of-pocket expenses of all of our grass roots members, donated vacation time and total dollars spent on restoring Field's have maybe maxed $10,000 annually and average of maybe $6,000. (Maybe some of you have another way of looking at that--please suggest.)

    Date: Friday, July 24, 2015  8:57 pm CT
    Posted by: Esther M.,


    Date: Friday, July 24, 2015  6:29 pm CT
    Posted by: Out There Somewhere,

    I agree:

    Not using Marshall Field's brand is a huge waste of Macy's assets. When J.C.Penney's had it's mis-steps three or four years ago, Macy's could take advanatge of that. Now J.C. Penney's is catching up. I think We're starting to see Macy's decline. The jump in stock is just the activist investors wanting the Real Estate value realized.

    Date: Thursday, July 23, 2015  7:15 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay,

    A lot of hype this week about Macy's expanding their same-day delivery to more cities so as to compete better with Amazon.

    However, Didn't Marshall Field's have same-day delivery over a decade ago? Remember the Field's-wrapped London taxis that would do the deliveries? This is hardly all that new for Macy's to be doing it, although they are doing it through a partnership.

    Date: Tuesday, July 21, 2015  1:50 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Jim M.,

    Macy's still has a few good national brands that didn't abdicate after the downgrade to Macy's, but "Marshall Field" beats "Alfani" and "FieldGear" beats "CharterClub" hands down.

    Date: Monday, July 20, 2015  5:52 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Timothy E.,

    (Who buys apparel from Macy's, anyhow? Yuck.)

    Date: Monday, July 20, 2015  5:42 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Steve G.,

    Interesting article.....
    Amazon takes aim at next target: Macy's

    Date: Monday, July 20, 2015  5:35 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Darrid M.,

    One of the biggest problems with Macy's is that they have forgotten their own heritage which used to be good.

    Date: Monday, July 20, 2015  4:40 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Stephanie L.,

    [Regarding the "Macy's Chicago" purses and other tourist items]


    Date: Saturday, July 18, 2015  1:14 pm CT
    Posted by: gle,

    Yes, this is definitely interesting news Jim!

    Date: Thursday, July 16, 2015  7:13 am CT
    FB Posted by: Garland P.,

    The real estate becomes more valuable if some of the individual regional department store brands return, even if most of the chain stays Macys

    Date: Thursday, July 16, 2015  6:48 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY,

    I do not pretend to understand the workings and reasons, but with a relative nearing retirement age as Kodak imploded, it looked to me like Kodak was consuming its own body to survive. It did not work. Suggesting that a large corporation devour/divest its own limbs for money to send to investors is obscene.

    I am sure this just shows my lack of comprehension of "economics" but that is because, in part, I cannot get my mind around the concept of "economics"as a method of obtaining income by pursuing "bottom lines" that destroy otherwise useful and functional businesses simply to wring a little more cash from the carcass. Think piranha. Is a stripped human corpse OK because piranhas spotted opportunity and the human in question was just one more ordinary, expendable guy of no particular merit? Ho-hum?

    I pictured that real-estate carnage scenario with 111 N State when this all began. It makes me sick to even think of it. Should I encourage its ruin to put a few more bucks into some portfolios? Isn't that what money is all about? Mightn't that just as well be what that fancy big building on State Street devolves into? In time... a gutted dive along with everything else in Center City. But who cares about that? Macy's investors will have gotten a little fatter and can move on to the next prey. Borg indeed.

    Date: Wednesday, July 15, 2015  6:22 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Alfred F.,

    Thought-provoking; thanks, James!

    Date: Wednesday, July 15, 2015  6:03 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Jim McKay,

    Activist Knocks on Macy's Door
    Starboard wants retailer to spin off its real estate, valued at $21 billion

    Activist investor Starboard Value LP on Wednesday said it had accumulated a stake in Macy's and is pushing the 157-year-old retailer to spin off its real-estate holdings. Starboard estimates that the move could boost Macy's share price by more than 70%.

    Shares of Macy's rose 7.9% Wednesday, its biggest percentage gain since November 2013.

    Other investors have been urging Macy's to find ways to extract value from its vast real-estate holdings, which comprise more than 800 stores it either owns or leases across the country, including its famous Herald Square location in New York City. Starboard Chief Executive Jeff Smith valued Macy's real estate at $21 billion. Before Starboard's disclosure, Macy's market value was $22.5 billion, meaning its retail operations weren’t highly valued by investors.

    Starboard, a fund managing roughly $4.8 billion, believes the company could separate its real-estate in strong-performing malls and enter into lucrative sale-leaseback transactions with its trophy properties, which in addition to Herald Square includes stores in Union Square in San Francisco and on State Street in Chicago.
    (Continues at Link above.)
    Of course, some of us wrote to Starboard Value to encourage them to pursue maximum shareholder value by reuniting the State Street store with the Marshall Field's brand and experience. The reality is something good OR bad could happen in terms of our cause to bring back Marshall Field's. Most likely, on the surface, not much will happen. But we can hope and try.

    I commented after the article in the limited space permitted:

    Starboard should pressure Macy's to unlock value existing in the dormant Marshall Field's trade names when packaged with the Chicago State St. flagship. Despite being a huge store, State St will always underperform as Macy's and majorly repel customers until it is again Field's.

    2005 SEC 10K filings reveal great unrealized value. May Dept. Stores listed Marshall Field's trade names as $419M before Macy's acquisition/merger. At the same time, Macy's & Bloomingdale's tradenames totaled $377M. (May Dept Store's other 12 trade names combined for under $190M in 2005.)

    Weston's Selfridges Group is one such operator that can pay for and run a single destination store like under-realized State Street location. Combined, Field's assets could easily net $2.5 B or 10% mkt cap. (Macy's keeps their Chicago flagship on Michigan Ave).This would maximize return.

    Date: Wednesday, July 15, 2015  5:59 pm CT
    Posted by: Annette M.,

    A Happy Return!

    The PABST sign in downtown Milwaukee has been dim for almost 20 years. Today it was turned on again as it was announced that Pabst Brewing is returning to Milwaukee.

    Don't give up Chicago. Marshall Fields can come back!

    Date: Tuesday, July 14, 2015  12:47 pm CT
    Posted by: mikea ,

    Heard the bad news yesterday the downtown Pittsburgh store is closing. A great grand old store that really needed renovations on some of the upper floors. It was scaled back to have a small home store on 5 and 6.

    I guess Macy's is caving into the wall street analysts selling the whole building and not retaining a store like they promised they would. I can see some of the old downtown closings St.Paul, Houston, St.Louis where the area was not viable for a downtown store. However Pittsburgh is a vibrant downtown with new buildings shops and more housing moving in. This current management with Jeff Kantor is looking for nothing but the bottom line and scale back to satisfy analysts. This is really a blow to downtown Pittsburgh. Surprised the city did not offer Macy's some incentives to stay

    Date: Monday, July 13, 2015  10:53 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Timothy R.,

    Not sure they can do much with the Marshall Field's [State Street] building because of its landmark status. But other cities with grand old department stores should see this as a dark sign. Macy's is a mall anchor store and is run as such. They have no idea how to unlock the value of a nice full service downtown department store.

    Date: Monday, July 13, 2015  10:06 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Alfred F.,

    Very sad for Pittsburgh! But NO--the Chicago State Street store must not ever close, but be rescued from the destructive clutches of the M---- borg (see Star Trek) and reborn as Marshall Field's.

    Date: Monday, July 13, 2015  9:07 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Rich W.,

    If they closed [Field's on State Street], they would sell it to property developers to turn it into mixed retail/condos. Same thing they seem to be planning for their downtown Brooklyn store, former flagship of Abraham & Straus.

    Date: Monday, July 13, 2015  7:39 pm CT
    Posted by: Donald,

    macy*s being protested (once again) with customers tearing up their macy*s credit cards and threatening to boycott macy*s stores for taking the political stance against Donald Trump.

    Date: Monday, July 13, 2015  7:33 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Stephanie W..,

    Re: Sean S.

    i really hope so and bring back marshall fields

    Date: Monday, July 13, 2015  7:28 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Sean S.,

    Pittsburghers to say goodbye to Macy's Downtown

    Clearance sales at the Downtown Macy’s start next week, giving Pittsburghers a last chance to pick up a thumbprint cookie at the Arcade Bakery and try on shoes at the historic site where the city has been shopping since the late 1800s.

    Will Chicago be next????

    Date: Monday, July 13, 2015  4:08 pm CT
    Posted by: Paula S.,

    We getting ready to have Nordstrom's open here at Mayfair. Ever since we lost Marshall Field's, we've had a void. Nordstom won't stand in for Field's completely, but it is sure beats Macy's! For those of you in Illinois who don't know, Mayfair was built by Marshall Field's and is Milwaukee's Old Orchard or Oak Brook Center. Too bad Macy's never appreciated what they had in Field's. They lost a lot of money for their stupidity.

    Date: Monday, July 13, 2015  4:06 pm CT
    Posted by: Kezandra T.,

    Let's look at the list of downtown stores (most all former flagships) that Macy's and Federated has closed. * marks since Macy's bought Field's in 2006:
    • Atlanta (both Davison's and Rich's)
    • Boston* (Filene's, closed while Jordan Marsh remains)
    • Houston* (Foley's)
    • St. Paul* (Dayton's--Minneapolis flagshop remains)
    • Honolulu* (Liberty House)
    • St. Louis* (Famous Barr)
    • L.A. (Bullocks Wilshire)
    • and...who am I missing????????

    Date: Monday, July 13, 2015  1:09 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay,

    Macy's announced it is closing and selling the former Kaufmann's flagship in downtown Pittsburgh. Closing sale will end in September. There will be no final Christmas. Under Kaufmann's or Macy's, this ends 125 years of continuous operation.

    Date: Sunday, July 12, 2015  11:58 pm CT
    Posted by: Mary S.,

    Marshall Field's named among the stores Appleton, WI misses the most--they still have Macy's, but want Marshall Field's to come back!

    Date: Sunday, July 12, 2015  9:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Richard M.,

    They should have kept the old names and the old stores instead of Macy's. I was always at marshall fields. Love you marshall fields

    Date: Saturday, July 11, 2015  4:05 am CT
    Posted by: Gerry T.,

    Macy's needs to fix their mistake. I bet Macy's is doing all it can to hide the fact that getting rid of Field's on State Street has not lived up to its hype as saving the cost of different shopping bags and ads.
    30 Years Ago Coca-Cola Brought Back Its Original Forumla.

    Date: Thursday, July 9, 2015  6:52 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay,

    Marshall Field and Company played a role in the creation of Marina City.
    Marina City Granted Landmark Status

    Date: Wednesday, July 8, 2015  3:42 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete,

    How about bringing back Field's? Why all this effort inventing new concepts when there's one experience that's overwhelmingly beloved.
    Will Macy's Initiatives Help it Return to the Growth Trajectory?

    Date: Tuesday, July 7, 2015  12:01 am CT
    Posted by: S.W.,

    They had a concert this weekend with band billing themselves as the Grateful Dead. But it was missing the main figure, Jerry Garcia. It wasn't the Grateful Dead at all but a cash grab under a name.

    It reminded me that Marshall Field's return should never be a Marshall Field's sign and bags with what otherwise is a Macy's. And Marshall Field's beat Bloomingdale's ANY DAY!

    Date: Saturday, July 4, 2015  CT
    Posted by:

    Happy Fourth of July!

    Date: Friday, July 3, 2015  10:28 pm CT
    Posted by: T,E.,

    One less thing to boycott.

    As a result of Heinz's acquisition of Kraft, Terry Lundgren is no longer a Kraft board member as of Monday. So no need to boycott Kraft products on that count any more.

    Terry Lundgren is still on the board of Proctor and Gamble, so I still boycott their products which give Terry Lundgren a cushy extra stream of income.

    Date: Thursday, July 2, 2015  7:25 pm CT
    Posted by: Robert H,

    I was in Chicago 2 weeks ago and saw the macy chicago bags an shirts I saw these on 7 between the walnut room and the North light well there was also several Marshall Fields bags, tee's sweatshirts and mugs. These were done in good taste with the Fields script, clock they even used the logo "as Chicago as it gets"! When I saw these all I could think was they'd sell a lot better at Fields. Just doesn't make sense what a waste. Take that macys chi town junk to water tower and run macys there. And bring Marshall Fields back to state street THIS MAKES PERFECT SENSE!!!

    Date: Thursday, July 2, 2015  1:42 pm CT
    Posted by: Bob,

    Whatever you think of the Donald Trump controversy, it's clear that a issue can sit for years and then all of sudden something happens! Donald Trump has been making odiferous remarks for decades. The Dump-Trump petition has been around for years. But only in the past month did things change. Dump-Trump gained a third of its million signatures just in the past week.

    Maybe something will happen that will suddenly cause Field's to come back. I'm counting on it.

    Date: Wednesday, July 1, 2015  9:02 pm CT
    Posted by: Steve G.,

    "Hell hath no fury as a Donald scorned!"

    Date: Wednesday, July 1, 2015  8:11 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay,

    mike a:

    To put it mildly, you have been a curmudgeon of our cause and generally supportive of Macy's and not supportive of our cause to bring back Marshall Field's--so much so that your letters have even appeared in newspapers' "Letters to the Editors" section.

    As is often the case, I don't agree with your post. It doesn't reflect my values and those of us behind this site -- but your words are featured so that others know where you stand and so they can consider that when they read your many other posts.


    Date: Wednesday, July 1, 2015  4:41 pm CT
    Posted by: mike a,

    Macys' today decided to cave in to activists and dump the Donald Trump line. The line was not the best merchandise and they have not been emphasizing it that much. However for a major company to dump a line of clothing, because they caved in to a group of activists is wrong.

    Dump the line because it does not sell or the quality is bad. Companies be it Macy's NBC etc letting a small group of activists who did not like Trumps words control companies is wrong. It is not as if he said anything that yes some illegals that come here bring crime drugs etc. True all illegal immigration has risks and should be kept to a mininmum. Nobody knows what illegals coming into the USA their backround is.

    Yet on the flip side Canada won't let in people who have had a DUI or DWI less than 10 years ago. Go figure!!!

    Date: Tuesday, June 30, 2015  8:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay,

    Was in State Street today. Two things of note:

    One, they have new "Macy's Chicago" bags, t-shirts, sweatshirts, etc. They feature "Macy's Chicago" in the same typeface as the 1910's R.H. Macy's plaques at Herald Square. They also show a line drawing of the Marshall Field's clock with a five-point red star at the 12:00 position. They also have bags that are similar with the word "Chi-Town" scrawled across the side. The "i" in "Chi-Town" is dotted with a Macy's red star. Historians will note that "Chi-town" was originally a derogatory term used by New Yorkers in the 1950s to describe Chicago. These days, that negative connotation is greatly reduced.

    Second, they are servicing the masonry on the State Street facade. But what's longer-term is the replacement of every other American Flag with a Macy's flag.

    On our sister Facebook page, the shirts, flags and bags have generated dozens of negative comments.

    Date: Tuesday, June 30, 2015  12:38 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay,

    Regarding the previous post by JamefromCA:

    This is an interesting story about how Macy's starting to have problems. I hear the problem is the tourists who they are now losing. After talking to over a 100,000 former Field's shoppers on State Street, we know why the store has been diminished as a tourist attraction and is been devalued as a shareholder asset. Want to visit Macy's flagship in United States? You visit the one in New York City, not the one in Chicago. If you have a login for Yahoo, be sure to leave comments. (Thanks Jame)

    Notice that this explains a downgrade in Macy's, Inc. stock.

    Date: Tuesday, June 30, 2015  8:13 am CT
    Posted by: JamefromCa,

    Interesting article

    Macy's seems to be hurting again.

    Date: Photos taken: Sunday June 28, 2015  posted Wednesday, July 1, 2015 8:00 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay,


    Sunday, June 28, 2015
    Chicago Pride Parade

    Signs calling for the restoration of Marshall Field's were walked up and down the 2.5 mile parade route. While there were thousands of cheers, the following are among those who called us back to have their pic taken with our sign and say, more than ever, Chicago wants its Marshall Field's!

    ©2015 ©2015 ©2015
    ©2015 ©2015 ©2015
    ©2015 ©2015 ©2015
    ©2015 ©2015 ©2015
    ©2015 ©2015 ©2015
    ©2015 ©2015 6.30.2015 ©
    ©2015 ©2015 ©2015
    ©2015 ©2015 ©2015
    ©2015 ©2015 ©2015
    Some things to mention about these photos:

    - Macy's said they were going to be in the 2015 parade in Chicago and other cities at their website. I saw no Macy's float in this parade whatsoever. (Maybe there's another parade in Chicagoland? But this is the big one.) Bloomingdale's, on the other hand, I saw listed at the 2015 Pride Parade's website on Wednesday when the lineup finally was published. And one thing I didn't realize until I talked to somebody today, was that apparently Bloomingdale's was in the parade last year, but we didn't see it on the lineup last year.

    I walked all around the staging area today and didn't see the float at all. I did see the others on the lineup in the order they were in as published earlier this week.

    - Almost everyone featured in these photos APPROACHED ME ABOUT HAVING THEIR PHOTO TAKEN. In a few cases, they chased me down to have me come back for the photos. Many more people expressed enthusiasm for having Field's return -- they just didn't request a photo op with the sign.

    - You'll see me in some of these because they requested that I pose in "selfie" mode--my personal preference is not to be in them.

    - Throughout the carried the signs on the sidewalk behind where the crowd was standing. Most of the crowd on my side of the street didn't see the signs because they were looking away towards the parade. So the response was even more remarkable.

    Regardless if Macy's/Bloomingdale's is in next year, let's plan to be out there. If we have two or four on 6/26/2016 that would be great--one for each side of the street and someone to take photos. Of course, it be great if we had Field's back then we could cheer on Field's--heck, perhaps even Macy's.

    Date: Monday, June 29, 2015  6:16 pm CT
    Posted by: gle,

    Thank-you to Field's fans who participated in Chicago's Pride Parade on Sunday, and for the beautiful sign!

    Date: Friday, June 26, 2015  8:38 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay,

    Help Bring Back Marshall Field's
    at This Sunday's Pride Parade!

    Bloomingdale's is listed as being in this Sunday's Chicago Pride Parade. As in past years when Macy's has appeared, some of the Field's Fans want to distribute Field's buttons and flyers on the parade route. We always received an overwhelmingly warm reception! Another reason everybody want's Marshall Field's back because it's been such a part of Chicago's Gay history.

    As most of you know, Bloomingdale's is Macy's sister store and was Field's arch-rival going all the way back to the late 1980s. Macy's, Inc's actions have long suggested that Macy's probably got rid of Field's in part to help its Bloomingdale's business.

    If you wish to help the Field's Fans this Sunday from Noon to 2:30 pm, please phone 312.662.8980 or email, (replace AT with an @ symbol) preferably before Sunday so there's enough supplies.

    Help bring back Marshall Field's!

    Date: Thursday, June 25, 2015  6:18 pm CT
    Posted by: Holly,

    I was in Columbus this past week. I was surprised that a mall (Tuttle Xing) that we went to had TWO MACY'S! How ridiculous is that?!?! That's approaching a monopoly!

    Date: Wednesday, June 24, 2015  10:29 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim,


    You mean you want State Street to look tricked out as a casino? That's what Herald Square looks like. You have to be kidding.

    Date: Wednesday, June 24, 2015  1:22 pm CT
    Posted by: mikea,

    Was in NYC last weekend. Stopped in Herald Square to see how the renovations are coming. The store is about 60% done and two floors are closed off. What is done looks great!!!!!! I think they will need another year to finish. On thing, the old wooden escalators that are not walled off look so out of place in such a modern store. I think they should realize those escalators which some were broken need to be replaced with modern working escalators to match the décor of the store.

    If they bring some of the new design t State Street it would really enhance the store. I see they are working on the exterior once again.

    Date: Monday, June 22, 2015  8:05 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete,

    The fact that Wall Street Journal published a story that was 100% positive about Macy's probably means something's really up with this real estate deal. Where there's smoke there's fire.

    Date: Sunday, June 21, 2015  CT
    Posted by: FieldsFansChicago,


    Date: Saturday, June 20, 2015  9:55 am CT
    Posted by: gle,




    Why would anyone buy CHICAGO Black Hawks items from NEW YORK's Macy's????

    Sports teams have ups and downs, but Marshall Field's was always a winner!

    Date: Thursday, June 18, 2015  6:35 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay,

    The Wall Street Journal
    Macy's Real Estate Has Shareholders Salivating

    Macy's owns some of the world's most valuable property and is being urged by investors to unlock that value. The department store chain is studying the situation, but doesn't want to be saddled with leases
    As a subscriber, I was able to post a brief response:
    "Huge pent-up Macy's, Inc. share holder value exists in the dormant Marshall Field's trade names when packaged with the State Street flagship. Despite being a huge store, State St will always underperform as Macy's and repel customers until it is again Field's.

    2005 SEC 10K filings strongly suggest much unrealized value. May Dept. Stores listed Marshall Field's trade names as $419M before Macy's acquisition/merger. At the same time, Macy's and Bloomingdale's tradenames totaled $377M. (May Dept Store's other 12 trade names totaled under $190M in 2005.)

    The greatest return for Macy's investors would be to sell the Marshall Field's brand and trade names combined as a package with the State Street store to another operator. Sold together, Field's assets could easily net $2.25B for stock holders or 8-9% mkt cap. (Macy's keeps a Chicago flagship on Michigan Ave) Who would buy? For one, prior to Macy's acquisition of Field's, Chicago Tribune had rumors of interest by Weston's Selfridges Group."

    (Note: Due to a technical error, this post did not appear correctly until 1:15 pm, Mon, June 22, 2015.)

    Date: Tuesday, June 16, 2015  8:29 pm CT
    Posted by: Paul,

    Macy's is said to have a red-star balloon in next Sunday's Chicago pride parade.

    Date: Sunday, June 14, 2015  3:19 pm CT
    Posted by: Robert H.,

    Karen you bring up such a good point something that I never thought of. No I have NEVER heard anyone excited about Fields becoming Macy's. I think everyone knew we were loosing something far better than what we were getting/have. Most stores are ment with excitement when they come to a new town but not when the kill of a local favorite! I have to think if the macys executives knew then what they know now we'd still have fields at least state street.

    Date: Saturday, June 13, 2015  11:30 am CT
    Posted by: Jo,

    Uhhh...didn't Macy's sell off May's tux business 8-9 years ago because it wasn't a core business? Now it is...part of the bridal registry biz. Does Lundgren know what he's doing?

    On second thought, I guess he does. Macy's needs someone to sell tuxes and suits and tailor them better than they can. It's not a strength, just like how they aren't strong in selling like sunglasses and sports team hats and shirts and the like. This all would have been a slam dunk for Marshall Field's.

    Date: Friday, June 12, 2015  6:21 am CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay,

    Walter Loeb has a new story on Bloomingdale's head Tony Spring.

    What's interesting is to note that Mr. Spring started with Bloomingdale's and Federated, fresh out of College in the 1980s. He's pretty much worked nowhere else in his career--not that he hasn't had a wealth of experiences and accomplishments. But what this story supports is that Federated (Macy's, Inc.) has a pretty closed and inbred culture. More than a few say that Field's will come back after Lundgren retires in a few years. I don't think so. There's no way someone like Tony Spring and others who are next generation of leaders and Macy's/Bloomingdale's have moved up the ladder if they were supportive of Field's return. It will be something external from Macy's that causes a shift.

    The CEO of Bloomingdale's Is A Gem in Troubled Waters
    I hold the position that if Federated didn't have Bloomingdale's, we'd still have Field's.

    Date: Thursday, June 11, 2015  9:17 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Darrid,

    (At Northbrook Court)

    What a mess! Leftover Christmas Frango mints! Yummy!

    Date: Thursday, June 11, 2015  4:59 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    Macy's is pairing up with the founder of Menswarehouse to sell suits and offer their suits. They also will have a network of independent tailors who will come to offices and homes and tailor suits in a way that's like Uber.

    Field's used to offer these services with more cachet. So Lungreed gets rid of that and then, when Macy's fails, gets some middle of the road shop to come in and replace it.

    With all the other leased out shops and departments, it's like Macy's is becoming a mall operator.

    Date: Tuesday, June 9, 2015  4:59 pm CT
    Posted by: Memphis Shopper

    We used to look forward to coming to Chicago to shop at Marshall Field's. No reason to go there as Macy's. Sure, there's the Walnut room, but the rest of the store is so sad that it's not enough to compensate.


    Date: Monday, June 8, 2015  8:21 pm CT
    Posted by: karen K.

    Everything else aside, have you heard of anyone who has been excited that Marshall Field's became Macy's?

    All I can think is that Macy's spends a great deal of energy covering up and spinning facts about what is actually an overall failure.

    Karen in Inverness

    Date: Friday, June 5, 2015  7:21 pm CT
    Posted by: Vicki Howard

    I've written a book on the decline of American department stores that might interest all of you. Marshall Field's and Macy's feature quite prominently in my book, From Main Street to Mall: The Rise and Fall of the American Department Store. The epilogue covers the protest rallies for Field's that organized.


    Vicki Howard
    Associate Professor of History
    Coordinator of Museum Studies Program
    Hartwick College
    Oneonta, NY 13820

    Editor: History of Retailing and Consumption>

    Author: From Main Street to Mall: The Rise and Fall of the American Department Store>

    Date: Friday, June 5, 2015  6:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    In response to Douglas's post, it is true that spending from abroad is down because of the bad exchange rates--it's just not Macy's and Bloomingdale's. I DO think there would be an impact even if State Street and Water Tower were still Marshall Field's. However, as Field's, there would still be a much larger base of domestic customers. Regardless of tourism, these stores would still be more productive and profitable as Marshall Field's.

    As Douglas suggests, why not different brands for different stores. Hilton has offered all sorts of brands from Hampton Inn to Waldorf Astoria to designate their different hotel experiences, but you stil know it's a Hilton Hotel. (Even the Palmer House and The Drake retained their marquee names as Hilton Hotels.) I've brought this up at previous Macy's stock holders meetings. And who has been on the board of Macy's? A Hilton Exec.

    Date: Wednesday, June 3, 2015  1:18 pm CT
    Posted by: Douglas A.

    Does anyone else find it ironic that macy blames lower sales on declining tourism? Did anyone in macy top management realize that converting all the regional department stores would dilute the value of the macy name? In other words, when macy was centered on Manhattan and suburban stores, the store was associated with New York? Now that macy stores are everywhere, they are nothing special. Even visitors to New York realize that macy is no more unique than JCPenney or walmart.

    Think of other cities too. Would a visitor to Boston, Chicago, Atlanta, Miami want to seek out a macy store? Highly unlikely. It's like different regional department stores would be worth a visit, but now there's no reason for tourists to visit a macy when they are traveling. Why bother?

    Also laughable is the plan to establish some macy stores as "premium" outlets. Again, why didn't they keep the top stores in each market as "premium" and operate them under their legendary name--Marshall Field's, Lazarus, Rich's, Filene's, Bullocks, then operate the second tier stores under the macy label. Their new plan will only confuse shoppers. So which macy store is THIS--the premium or the value one? Do they carry Waterford or Martha Stewart? Do they have the One Day Sale and coupons here?

    Seems that macy now has an identity crisis. Their stores are no longer a tourist attraction--they discarded the popular regional names as well as their well-known affiliation with New York City. Their market image is also unclear--are they upscale or discount operators? In trying to be everything to everyone, macy has no clear vision of who they are. They attract neither the upscale nor the value shopper.

    Date: Tuesday, June 2, 2015  2:19 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Reuters reports that hedge funds are taking stakes in Macy's, rumored to be asking Macy's to sell Harold Square and other key stores and then lease them back in the long term. This sort of accounting activity is a sort of stock manipulation ploy which I, for one, am glad that Macy's is opposed to. But if they really wanted to unlock stockholder value, they'd sell Marshall Field's flagship and the brand Marshall Field's to Selfridges.
    "Reuters Exclusive: Hedge funds to Macy's: Sell your real estate"

    Date: Monday, June 1, 2015  1:18 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete S.

    Was surfing around and found some interesting stories from ten years ago, as well as in recent years. Something to note is that when the merger was approved, Marshall Field's was not designated to become Macy's. That happened four weeks after the deal was approved and closed. It sure shows that they knew Marshall Field's was special compared to the rest of the store banners.

    On top of that, I don't think Macy's ever came close to living up to their long-term promises to customers back when they came up with this idea of killing off local department stores:

    Federated To Convert 330 Stores To Macy’s

    After Smooth Sales Talk, Stores Take Macy’s Name

    Farewell To Hecht's Familiar Brand

    Out with Filene's, in with Macy's

    The Real Reason Macy's is Closing (Former Famous-Barr Flagship and May Department Stores Headquarters)

    What To Do With 1.2 Million Square Feet In The Railway Exchange Building (Former Famous-Barr Flagship and May Department Stores Headquarters)

    Date: Sunday, May 31, 2015  1:18 pm CT
    Posted by: William W.

    In the 1970's and through 1990's there was a union that was organized within Marshall Fields. Does anyone know the name of the union? I know the Teamsters tried to get in but did not.

    Date: Saturday, May 30, 2015  12:58 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    I think at this point whatever Macy's says to impress anyone, no-one takes seriously. Their track record is obvious.

    Something I have noticed, however, is that some people still go to the Walnut Room for special occasions because they consider it the only part of Field's that is still there. So why wouldn't Macy's try to capitalize on something that might help their sinking ship (such as restoration of the fountain), if they actually had the sense to figure out customer loyalty to the Walnut Room. BUT, my friends who cling to the Walnut Room usually come home disappointed, and say they have just been to "THAT STORE THAT SHOULD BE FIELD'S!"

    Date: Friday, May 29, 2015  8:03 am CT
    Posted by: Andrea W.

    Just checking in with this site. We really miss Marshall Field's and Co. Those Macy's people should listen to their customers.

    Date: Thursday, May 28, 2015  9:56 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Gayle

    Chris Reynolds--thanks for your detailed and obviously keen observations about Macyland! I believe you are right on the money. I remember Macy's saying they needed to "reeducate" us, and then later saying that they were writing off Field's shoppers because we were apparently nothing more than nostalgic and overly-emotional morons who would die off soon. (I think their marketing department phrased it more gently, but that was the takeaway message). I hope that someday, somehow, MF's gets resurrected. I don't believe Macy's is capable. Maybe Selfridges? Even if they don't bring back the name, they could replicate the shopping experience....

    Date: Thursday, May 28, 2015  9:37 am CT
    Posted by: Jim

    In recent years, I haven't heard the terms "re-educate" and "resistant" in their parlance. However, a few years back I would hear those terms from Macy's execs--I'm especially thinking of CFO Karen Hoguet in her various quarterly conference calls a few years back. Also, put "Macyization" and "name change" on that list of Orwellian terms they use. If it's just a "name change", how can there be much to "re-educate" about and for customers to "resist"?

    Date: Thursday, May 28, 2015  8:52 am CT
    FB Posted by: Chris R.

    They didn't say those words when they turned on the fountain. Remember that they are sales people. But those are the words they actualy do use in their strategies, management huddles, and so on.

    Date: Wednesday, May 27, 2015  12:27 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Garland P.

    good earth did he really use words re-educate and resistant? wow... creep-ola

    Date: Wednesday, May 27, 2015  11: 23 am CT
    FB Posted by: Chris R.

    I'm a former employee from about 9-10 years ago, but my spouse has a vendor connection.

    Viewed the event from afar. It was like a cross between a scene from the Stepford Wives and an Amway convention.

    Food service was started 125 years ago at Marshall Field's by Mrs. Hering and H.G. Selfridge. Macy's started their own food service some 10-15 years later. Let's face it, the Walnut Room is no longer as special as when it was Field's.

    Culinary Council celebration, food service anniversary, and the American Icons are all hype. But are those the ultimate motivations behind why they tweaked the fountain and why Terry Lundgren showed up?

    Based on the past four years, I say it's Terry's latest dance mis-steps in his tenuous relationship with Rahm Emanuel and Chicago. Unlike Daley, Rahm Emanuel is insistent on Marshall Field's coming back to State Street as part of Chicago's image as a global city. The two aren't cozy, to say the least.

    The clocks only got repainted after Emanuel won the election. MF would have routinely kept the numerals in top shape. I think not maintaining the numerals was TL's way of saving a few dollars and, moreover, poking Emanuel and demonstrating that his conquest of the store. Roger Ebert said that Emperor Lundgren planted his flag on State Street. It's quite a symbol, as we all know. Since Emanuel won another term, Lundgren probably conceded that the clocks can't be let go another four years without further alienating customers.

    Lundgren comes to Chicago for this particular weekend but isn't a guest at the mayor's inauguration less than 48 hours later?? My take: It's Lundgren's way of attempting to get the mayor's attention, but don't think Lundgren is humble. Lundgren thinks all that he's done is a huge olive branch when its really just a few leaves and, actually, Lundgren killed our olive tree in the first place.

    "Setting the stage for the return of the MF name" ???? No. Period. Macy's thinks there's no stores greater than Bloomingdale's and Macy's. Even if Macy's is conscious that it was a mistake to kill off Field's, world corporate culture dictates that you bury, paint over, or otherwise cover up such big mistakes. "Hide that body!"

    "We have the utmost respect for Field's history and traditions." Translation: "We're salespeople. We'll say whatever it takes to make people feel less guilty when you buy Frangos, but Marshall Field's will remain ancient history." They are willing to take baby steps as they "re-educate" the "resistant" Marshall Field's customers. Note: "Re-educate" and "resistant" are Macy's words. Those who think Macy's is inching back to Field's are very naive. They laugh at the thought.

    Does Macy's deserves a bone or an concession that they are trying to reach out? Even a drop of appreciation puffs up their ego, cementing in their minds that they don't need to bring back Field's

    Date: Monday, May 25, 2015  CT
    Posted by: Field's Fans Chicago

    Honoring Those
    Who Gave Their Lives
    for Our Country.

    Date: Sunday, May 24, 2015  8:56 pm CT
    Posted by: T.H.



    Date: Friday, May 22, 2015  6:08 pm CT
    Posted by: Emily D.

    We miss Marshall Field's immensely. Macy's does not compare. This noise that Macy's honors Field's is just a bunch of talk. What a bunch of phoney baloney people.

    People see through that.

    What a strange time we live in when companies are led by egos that are valued more than the customers wants and desires.

    Date: Wednesday, May 20, 2015  10:09 am CT
    Posted by: Anna P.

    Happy 189th Birthday to Potter Palmer, founder of what we knew as Marshall Field's and Company, and, of course, the Palmer House. Born May 20, 1826.

    Date: Tuesday, May 19, 2015  4:49 pm CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    All this Macy strutting makes me wonder if they have not yet figured out who and what they are-- upscale, mid-scale, chic, ubiquitous, exclusive............. where can they be headed for except Banality?

    Field's managed to attract a wide range of clientele by keeping its high standards at the fore, not by scraping bottom to keep costs down. At least that is how it looks to me.

    Date: Tuesday, May 19, 2015  2:03 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Dan A.

    What a great and totally compelling effort

    Date: Tuesday, May 19, 2015  12:36 pm CT
    Posted by: mikea

    To Phillip

    Rebranding the top 150 stores to Marshall Field's?? Really. Field's tried to work in other markets, Dallas, Houston, San Antonio, Milwaukee, Columbus. With the exception of the legacy Mayfair , Fields' brand did not last in the other markets, the stores were sold off by Target. We at this time do not know how upscale macy's plans on those top stores. Most likely they would not be competing with Neiman's , Saks or Nordstrom, or their Bloomingdale's. They would probably upscale to more like Lord & Taylor or some of what Nordstrom sells. They may bring back the brands they carried when they first took over Field's. For a the first few years, they still continued to sell some of the higher end brands. However State Street has downgraded a lot of the high end brands in Women. They are just in the 28th shop a much smaller place than they used to be.

    Date: Monday, May 18, 2015  6:31 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    Glad to see our signs and our people still out there at the shareholders meeting! THANK-YOU FOR GOING TO CINCINNATI FOR THE STOCK HOLDERS MEETING!

    Date: Sunday, May 17, 2015  7:50 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Kathy S.

    [Re: Timothy E.'s post:]

    Commitment to maintaining Field's traditions such as the Walnut Room? Then take the wine bar out. It is not in keeping with the dignity or tradition of that room. You want a wine bar? Find somewhere else to put it.

    Date: Sunday, May 17, 2015  11:45 am CT
    FB Posted by: Garland P.

    [Re: Timothy E.'s post:]

    Glad they did it. Setting stage for return of mf name.

    Date: Saturday, May 16, 2015  9:48 pm CT
    Posted by: Philip eichler

    Ok,mikea,keep your knives in the drawer until you think this one through. If Macy's wants to re enter the upscale market, they need a new brand. I would propose these upscale stores be branded Marshall Field's. It's common knowledge that the main line Macy's are no different than an outlet store. A store cannot occupy the outlet space and upscale space under the same banner. It would create absolute confusion for the consumer.Are we at the coupon Macy's or the good Macy's? And all those coupons would be worthless at these upscale stores. I say that because it's the vendor that usually excludes its products from cheap promos.Would ads have to be very different? Of course they would have to be. Training ditto. Everything would need to be different.

    From the vendors side,how is upscale Macy's going to get brands? When Macy's seized State Street, Neiman's, Saks and Nordstrom had a field day grabbing the brands Field's had an exclusive. While it appeared to many that Macy's was dropping these brands, in reality most of these brands was bailing on Macy's. In addition over the last few years, aspirational brands and luxury brands have been closing doors, not opening them, attempting to shore up their brand's value. Why would any of these vendors want to open in a Macy's? And these 150 stores locations are in malls that already have the likes of a Neiman's or Saks, why would they wish to compromise their position at Neiman's for the very down market Macy's? Like all of Macy's recent whimsical ideas when examined, it really does not hold water.

    Date: Saturday, May 16, 2015  3:06 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Sara B.

    [Re: Timothy E.'s post: ]

    Give them credit? Am I missing something? Is there more than a ring of water at the top? Does the lower part also have water streaming? As it is, more than a few North Shore homes and some middle of the road hotel lobbies have something comparable. Macy's declined to say how much they paid for tihs. Given the modesty, wouldn't surprise me if the contractor did it pro-bono so they could add The Walnut Room to their resume.

    Date: Saturday, May 16, 2015  3:01 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Sara B.

    [Re: attending stockholders meeting:]

    You keep going!

    Date: Saturday, May 16, 2015  2:45 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Tim E.

    [Re: activation of the Walnut Room fountain:]

    Very brief presentation - essentially a Macy's Mgmt. feel good pep-rally. The gist of his comments was reiterating Macy's commitment to upholding Marshall Field's great retail legacy.... a part of which was maintaining such wonderful traditions as the Walnut Room.

    All pretty predictable - but makes for a nice publicity stunt for the 10 pm news.

    And yes - it does in fact look quite nice. Even better than I was expecting. Gotta give them credit for restoring this treasure and doing what it takes to be able to have it operating for the first time. :-)

    Date: Saturday, May 16, 2015  12:18 am CT
    FB Posted by: Kerry B.


    Date: Friday, May 15, 2015  11:12 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Danel Lynn S.

    You guys are awesome!

    Date: Friday, May 15, 2015  9:30 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Gayle S.

    Huge thanks to Jim, Frank, and Darrid for driving all the way to Cinci to speak for our cause!

    Date: Friday, May 15, 2015  4:27 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Gail H.


    Date: Friday, May 15, 2015  2:19 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Jeanie D.

    You brought tears to my eyes. I am with you all on spirit.

    Date: Friday, May 15, 2015  2:17 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Tina T.

    Thank you. I hope you make some headway.

    Date: Friday, May 15, 2015  1:14 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Timothy E.

    Very glad that you guys are able to be there.

    Date: Friday, May 15, 2015  CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Today was Macy's, Inc.'s annual stock holder meeting at Macy's, Inc. headquarters in Cincinnati. Remember that "Macy's, Inc." is the former Federated Department Stores company. For almost 80 years, it has been the parent of Bloomingdale's; it acquired R.H. Macy's circa 1992-93; May Department Stores in 2005; and Bluemercury spas just since the beginning of the year.

    Three people--from Chicago, Detroit and Cincinnati--came to represent Macy's stockholders who want to see the return of Marshall Field's to State Street. Although one (representing someone who has been a Macy's stockholder for several years) was denied admission, two of us, including myself, participated in the post-meeting "questions/comments" section.

    I'm paraphrasing in the following rough highlights of what I said to the audience of maybe 150 or 200 who appeared to be mainly Macy's and Bloomingdale's associates.

    I brought up how last weekend some of you contacted me asking if I would yet again attend and speak up for Field's; I also acknowledged that clearly in past years Macy's has said no way to restoring Marshall Field's.

    That said, I congratulated Macy's on their efforts that produced a financially successful year from a stockholders' vantage and supportively mused that with Cuba opening up, Macy's would be a firecracker of great entrant to Havana given their understanding of the Hispanic market. With regards to Marshall Field's, I applauded their (finally) repainting the Great Clocks and commented that the updated Walnut fountain sounded interesting. I continued that those things were good and people want more than nostalgia, they want an contemporary, vibrant Marshall Field's experience, not a name and some historical makers. (At this point, it was clear some in the audience including Macy's execs that I recognized were laughing.)

    I've heard Mr. Lundgren and others say no again and again to this so I understand that from previous years, Macy's doesn't want that. Yet, some Field's supporters are taking new steps. A certain group of the Field's supporters are turning their efforts to reaching out to Selfridges and the Weston family to open a Chicago Selfridges flagship run in the spirit of Field's. As you probably know, Selfridge started out from Marshall Field's and people are now reacquainted with Selfridges and its connection through the PBS TV show. (I can't remember if I also said—but if I didn't I meant to say that Field’s was informed by Selfridges for it's successful 2003 makeover at State Street.)

    People are organizing to recruit Selfridges with buttons, rallies, lectures with same fervency that they have using for Field's. Now personally, I'd much rather see Macy’s restore Marshall Field's in name and character, but that's what people are doing and I said at previous stockholder meeting that i would let you know about these things first. I don't recall any response.


    After myself, Frank Loomis of Cincinnati spoke. (None of this is Frank's exact words—I’m summarizing.) Frank is a Cincinnatian who has credentials as an antique professional who even hosts an antique show on Cincinnati radio. Frank spoke about Marshall Fiield's clock logo brass buttons going for $11 a piece; the high demand for Marshall Field's goods on eBay; thanks for the clock and restorations at State Street. Frank showed off his prize Marshall Field’s Wedgwood plate. He closed with a plea to bring back Marshall Field's. Frank’s comments all drew favorable reaction from the audience.

    I left the meeting and the building immediately, but Frank tells me that he later engaged in an enjoyable conversation with Lundgren and others about Wedgwood.

    Back in 2008, four Field's fans came to the Macy's stockholders meeting and posed with our Marshall Field's signs out in front of Macy's headquarters. We got the signs and posed with them after lunch. On our way to take the photo, we were approached by more than a few locals who commented on them. Some didn't understand the signs, but others who approached us started out with words like, "YES!! I totally agree--Macy's is no match for Marshall Field's...we used to go to Chicago for Marshall Field's! We miss it!"

    Below is a (so-so) photo that a passerby kindly took of us.

    Thanks to all who supported us in this--especially the "core Field's Fans" who advise us, especially Gayle, Gloria, and, most of all, Frank and Darrid.

    Date: Friday, May 15, 2015  6:36 am CT
    FB Posted by: Susan NY

    Isn't it amusing that Macy's is thinking of pushing "best stores" "upscale"? Seems to me they had a best-of-the-best one they pushed downscale and they keep its head under water. Maybe that is why they are "restoring" the tradition of the Walnut Room fountain.....

    But I don't recall a fountain there either--it must really have been buried. As for 125 years of fountain repression, if the Walnut Room was installed in 1907 it won't be 125 years old until 2032. Maybe the fountain was just there to begin with and they put some tables around it when they thought that would be fun.

    Those wacky Macy's folks are from another time/space continuum where facts don't match up like they do for us in this one. I wonder how they will decide, for example, which are the "best" stores since they have not yet figured out where 111 N State belongs in the firmament.

    Date: Thursday, May 14, 2015  3:12 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Jim

    (In followup to my post yesterday, it's important to note that it's not just Macy's: Kohl's and Nordstrom also fell short. JCP actually did better than expects in some key ways.)

    Macy's to Push Best Stores Upscale

    Macy's Inc. plans to push its best stores upscale, as it works to squeeze more growth from a slowing department-store business.
    Chicago tourists are still dismayed at the loss of Marshall Field's on State Street.

    They had a really unique, international destination. While they still consider it one of their secondary flagships (next to Herald Square) it's only Marshall Field's building but a different store in side.

    Chicago customers prefer Marshall Field's to Bloomingdale's; Macy's has a hugely under-realized asset until they restore Marshall FIeld's back to State Street.

    One other point: If Macy's goes up scale, how will that impact their Bloomingdale's stores? Word on the street was often that Marshall Field's had to go in Chicago because it was too close to Bloomingdale's in the quality and assortment of merchandise.

    Aren't coupons and clearance items huge incentives for getting people in the door? When they reduced coupons several years ago, Macy's was hit badly and brought them back. It's good that they are testing Macy's Backstage only in a small area (NYC). I think it will hit the clearance merchandise incentive to go to a "Platinum" or "B Tier" Macy's.

    Date: Wednesday, May 13, 2015  11:29 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Jim

    Overseas tourists in Chicago hurt Macy's results
    Macy's CFO Karen Hoguet said this morning that it was not only Chicago (i.e. State Street AND Water Tower) but also "tourist" stores in NYC, San Francisco and Las Vegas as well.

    Regardless, restoring Marshall Field's would be a slam-dunk for Macy's and its stockholders. They have TWO Chicago flagships!

    Macy's is also phasing out supplying Aeropostale with items. Started by the old R.H. Macy's and eventually separated off, I didn't realize Aeropostale and Macy's still had a relationship.

    Date: Tuesday, May 12, 2015  5:11 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Jim

    Claire: It's fair to reserve judgement until we see it in action. Will it dribble? Or be spectacular? But stuff like this is bread crumbs compared to what would really please the public. (A complete return to Marshall Field's.)

    Date: Tuesday, May 12, 2015  5:05 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Claire O.

    I apologize in advance if this offends anyone here. I think this is pretty cool news!

    Date: Tuesday, May 12, 2015  4:51 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Jeane W.

    " It is a privilege of Macy's to continue the tradition of Marshall Field's. We've been given a treasure and Macy's is committed to keeping that treasure going." So says Andrea Schwartz, Vice President of Media Relations for Macy's.

    Did their attorneys write that for her?

    Date: Tuesday, May 12, 2015  4:02 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Tim E.

    I'm not sure when the current (non-operating) fountain was put into place, but it certainly is not original to the room. It looks like they had some sort of lily-pond 'water feature', but it certainly wasn't what's there now!

    I only see the current fountain appearing in pics from the 70's onward. Even as late as 1960 it wasn't there:

    Date: Tuesday, May 12, 2015  3:16 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Walnut Room fountain to flow for first time in 125 years

    ABC7 Chicago:

    Date: Monday, May 11, 2015  10:28 pm CT
    Posted by:
    Sandy H.

    Was thinking of my mom over the weekend and how we loved Marshall Field's! Field's was beloved. She would be devastated to have it become that sorry store, Macy's.

    Date: Sunday, May 10, 2015  CT
    Posted by: gle


    Date: Saturday, May 9, 2015  7:34 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Jeanie W.

    I think the last sentence of the article pretty much sums it up.
    The question will be, perhaps, whether in hindsight (Macy's) might have done more to preserve its rights in its "heritage brands."

    Date: Saturday, May 9, 2015  2:44 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Jim McKay

    Good explanation from New York Law Journal of the case over the rights to Marshall Field's trade name. Depending on context, may require registration or a subscription:!/article/1743311328

    Date: Thursday, May 7, 2015  6:27 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    WOW. Lundgren admits to Macy's being barely, if at all, distinguishable from bottom feeders?

    Bottom feeding has nothing to do with Field's. For this Macy's needs to possess the Field's name?

    And good point: why go into competition with yourself? Is a kind of robotic clone needed to harvest enough to live on at the bottom?

    Somehow I find the premise that America is a bottom-feeding nation scary, not to mention destructive. This man in a powerful, influential position is setting his vision as low as possible, expecting to extract personal fortune and glory in sludge he thinks is the best we deserve. Thanks.

    And more brilliance revealed --- Mr. Let's-Do-Regional-Sludge disdains petty regional (read "provincial") character? And we are not supposed to get our knickers in a twist when he swans in and stomps on our petty regional faces to bring our lives down to his standard.

    Date: Wednesday, May 6, 2015  12:46 pm CT
    Posted by: mike a

    I see Macy's is going to open 4 test off price stores WHY??? The clearance and sale items in the stores are great values, what do they want the customers to start going to other stores other than the main ones. Most likely the outlet stores will probably be like the Bloomingdale's outlets which sell 10-20% merchandise from the stores and 80-90% bought just for the outlets. This will still take sales away from the main stores. It is not like Bloomingdale's, Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, Saks that are so high priced they need outlet stores for the general public. Most Macy's merchandise is geared for the general public unless these outlet stores will be like a Target or Dollar general/.

    Also they just started this Plenti rewards program which is really not good. Most likely all you get back is 1% of your purchases. The old way allowed as much as 3% back which is standard with credit cards. Bon-Ton has the best rewards program a 20.00 reward coupon used on purchasing of 50.00 or more after each 200.00 spent with the Bon-Ton card that is 10% back in rewards very good. This PLenti program is lousy!!!!

    Date: Wednesday, May 6, 2015  9:52 am CT
    Posted by: C.C. Chicago

    Here is more questionable jewelry from Macy's own circular: Diamond Necklace: 1 ct. t.w. rose cut in 18K gold over silver plated brass (disclaimer: All carat weights [ct. t.w.] are approximate;) Dyed Green Jade Bracelet, etc. These are being sold as fine jewelry!

    More and more, Macy's reminds me of Goldblatt's. It's like Goldblatt's has taken over our beloved Marshall Field's State Street store. (I don't think that even Goldblatt's would have sold costume jewelry as fine jewelry.) Macy's motto should be: LET THE BUYER BEWARE!

    Date: Wednesday, May 6, 2015  12:29 am CT
    Posted to FB by: John L.

    Re: Delta Sky Mag cover story: Macy's is a New York City store with a NYC mentality. It is not welcome in Chicago. I do not shop at Macy's (but was a regular at Field's).

    Date: Wednesday, May 6, 2015  12:09 am CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    To follow up on Richard in Houston's comments, we all know that T.J. Maxx was Zayre's new name after Zayre redefined their business model and got rid of their unprofitable departments. Macy's claims--when it's to their advantage-- that it is the same as Marshall Field's. Who ever thought that they would see the day that "Marshall Field's" (emphasize the quotation marks) was trying to play catch-up with Zayre? Thanks to Macy's, that's what we apparently have.

    Of all the stories on this, I found the one in the Washington Post was the most interesting from our perspective because of the quote from Terry Lundgren--I bolded what I thought was the key phrase:

    Chief executive Terry Lundgren has said he hasn't always felt this type of business was the right strategic move for Macy's.

    When it came to starting an off-price offshoot, "I was the obstacle," Lundgren said in April at a retailing conference in Tucson. "Because I said, 'You know what? Macy's price points are too close to the off-price world.'"

    But Lundgren said his innovation team, led by Sachse, convinced him there may be an audience for such outlets. Sachse has been working on the concept for about six months with a team of about 20 leaders who have experience working at off-price competitors such as TJMaxx, Nordstrom Rack or Saks Off Fifth.

    I don't like to "crawl inside people's heads" and claim to entirely understand them. Yet, Mr. Lundgen himself has, in a partronizing tone, called me "emotional" for wanting Marshall Field's back (Macy's 2008 sharehodlers meeting). Even if it is "emotional" on the customers' part, a lot of evidence suggests to me that Mr. Lundgen has an emotional attachmemt to having his way regardless of what customers want. Customers are hugely willing to shop Marshall Field's and it's unique shopping experience which was different from Macy's. That's why Marshall Field's tradenames were so valuable. And if shopping weren't emotional, we'd all wear uniforms and sack cloth.

    The rest of the Post story is at:

    Date: Tuesday, May 5, 2015  10:48 pm CT
    Posted by: Richard in Houston

    Time (EDT)Macy's Inc.10:0011:0012:001:002:003:00

    By Angela Chen

    The stories will be based in and around New York City

    Macy's Inc. said Tuesday that it will open four discount stores in the fall, the latest move in the retailer's restructuring efforts.

    The discount stores, called Macy's Backstage, will be located in and around New York City and will have clearance goods from the retailer. The stores won't accept Macy's (M, -1.21%) coupons and won't be driven by promotional events.

    Umm... I thought Macy's WAS a discount store. They are always being compared to Kohl's and Target. Fields, nor the other regional stores such as Burdine's, Bullock's or Foley's, were every listed in that category.

    Date: Tuesday, May 5, 2015  10:48 pm CT
    Posted to FB by: Steve G.

    Delta's May 2015 SKY magazine; it's a real eye opener. Cover story is Terry Lundgren. "STAR POWER: The Merchant of New York: Terry Lundgren on Why the Fashion World Loves Macy's."


    His hand-up-the-cow moment at Macy's happened after the acquisition of May. "We had 14 different names," he says. "Marshall Field’s in the Upper Midwest. Filene's in Boston. Foley's in Texas. All family names. All of them mercantile exchanges that started in their downtowns, just like Macy's and Bloomingdale's. But I knew the regional stores were not working. There was emotional attachment to those stores, but there’s a difference between emotional attachment and actually shopping at the store."

    Date: Monday, May 4, 2015  1:48 pm CT
    Posted by: C.C. Chicago

    After seeing the piece on CBS news with Pam Zekman, about the "rubies" which are made of lead glass "filled" something or other, I think Macy's knows EXACTLY what they're doing. I wouldn't buy a gem stone from them or even gold right now. Ms. Zekman filmed at the Macy's on State Street. How depressing to think that was once Marshall Fields, which we could all trust to offer the finest of merchandise, no matter what.

    Date: Monday, May 4, 2015  6:38 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    I feel so reassured now that it is clear we Field's fans are still cared about by Macy's. I was in danger of losing that warm fuzzy feeling.

    Date: Sunday, May 3, 2015  9:28 am CT
    Posted by: Joan H.

    Macy's will have their Q1 earnings call on Wednesday, May 13th at 9:00 A.M. ET/ 8:00 A.M. Chicago Time. This is 90 minutes earlier than past such calls. Here's the link to the info:
    Will someone from Field's Fans attend the stock holders' meeting on May 15th? I sure hate for them to think we don't care anymore.

    Date: Sunday, May 3, 2015  6:55 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    I am no fan of Macy's but I don't see the point of smirking about their being "caught" selling glass or doctored rubies as real gemstones, for a hundred dollars or so. Clue: you don't get what you don't pay for. Naive customers abound and Macy's is taking advantage of them-- but purchasers are getting their money's worth, more or less. It would be quite another matter if Macy's charged 6 figures for imitations.

    The clerks' misleading assurances are the problem, given the safeguards purportedly provided to inform the customer. Where was that critical little tag during the transaction? For bringing unfavorable publicity to Macy's (If the staff is indeed trained to tell the plain truth) those wily liars should be fired -- a really effective and quick way to "reaffirm" their training.

    Date: Sunday, May 3, 2015  1:13 am CT
    Posted to FB by: Jeanie W.

    Re: The CBS2 investigative report on Macy's "Rubies," Macy's statement is nothing more than evasive misleading rubbish.

    Date: Saturday, May 2, 2015  11:30 pm CT
    Posted by: gayle soucek

    The story about Macy's selling fake rubies made me laugh. After all, we already knew that Macy's couldn't recognize a true gem while they held it in their hands, right? They proved that in 2006....

    Date: Saturday, May 2, 2015  8:53 am CT
    Posted by: via C.C. Chicago

    Did you hear that commercial yesterday on Newsradio? It featured Pam Zekman talking about her latest investigative report. A "big downtown department store" selling jewelery that isn't what it might seem. If you're like me, you thought of Macy's.

    And of course it was Macy's.

    The following link explains it all. Not surprising. When did you hear about Marshall Field's ever doing this? Never.

    Date: Friday, May 1, 2015  5:49 pm CT
    Posted by: A Field's Fan

    Macy's Pulls the Plugs Twin Cities' Glamorama. Glamorama originated at Dayton's over 25 years ago. Glamorama will continue at Chicago, L.A. and San Francisco and may be added in Miami.

    Date: Friday, May 1, 2015  4:38 pm CT
    Posted by: Paula

    It's a given that Macy's doesn't want anything that used to be Marshall Field's to be as good as it once was. Why would they want to remind people that Marshall Field's was better than Macy's OR Bloomingdale's???

    The Marshall Field's bags that they sell are chintzy compared to the quality of anything Field's sold. Aside from the logo, most of the bags for sale at State Street have cheap vinyl and weired color schemes like black or antique white. Marshall Field's T-shirts I saw were the wrong shade of green. Marshall Field's sports Jerseys and T's are SOOOOOO Macy's. Field's would have had a polo or golf shirt with an embroidered Field's clock or logo or Marshall Field's dress blouses and shirts. Macy's offers cheap, inauthentic souvenirs when everyone wants the real thing.

    Given that they destroyed Marshall Field's, why would anyone expect quality Frangos or classy tributes to Field's by Macy's and Bloomingdale's? The best homage would be to bring back. They have no intention. As the Field's guy said, Macy's and Bloomingdale's has contempt for Marshall Field's and Chicago.

    Date: Friday, May 1, 2015  6:26 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    Tsk tsk, Mike A.

    Yes, Hershey's or any other chocolate of a certain age, and ill-kept, gets chocolate bloom and loses its charm. Looks like some points were missed.

    Eric did not make an issue of the exchange process, and did not quarrel with the method of dating. He did not blame Blommers for the bad candy. As his Frangos proved to be of the same date as the others still on offer, he must not have kept his around overlong before opening the box. Who among us would not choose to rip the cover off within seconds of receiving the gift?

    With the taste buds teased and happy memories aroused, attempting to replace the gift of unexpectedly bad candy (note his loyalist observation: "from a misguided soul") is not a despicable act of betrayal. Trading for fresh Frangos, the last remaining shred of the Field's experience, is a rational act more to be commiserated with than censured.

    The matching pile of outdated Frangos suggests those hordes at the Mall are not duplicitous Field's fans sneaking into M-land to buy them, or said pile would not be aging undisturbed in its niche. Unless there is a huge supply of old candy to replenish a quickly-depleted display.

    I would rather the "whining" continue than have everyone lie down and roll over under the Macy foot.

    Date: Friday, May 1, 2015  1:51 am CT
    Posted by: Denise P

    Marshall Fields was my life. Put my heart and soul in it. EVERYTHING. My blood bled GREEN.Greed and poor leadership ruined it. So sad.

    Date: Friday, May 1, 2015  12:11 am CT
    Posted by: Eric Bronsky

    Yeow! Did I infer that I actually exchanged or purchased something at Macy's? The fact is that I returned the box of Frangos (which someone had given to my wife and me as a gift) for a refund.

    As for shelf life and flavor, some food purveyors and retailers are more fastidious about quality control than others. 'Nuff said.

    Thank you, "MIKEA," for making me laugh, and I'll be sure to say hello the next time I'm "shopping" in Macy's (if I ever actually BUY something from Macy's, it won't be within this lifetime).

    -- Eric

    Date: Thursday, April 30, 2015  11:20 pm CT
    Posted by: mike a

    You so-called "Field's Fans" are a hoot! You whine and whine about Macy's, insinuating that they are less than honest when you should look in the mirror. DO you even read this web page like you claim?

    First, Phil. Macy's courting Millenials? That's been going on for years--so has the whining here about that! Now Philip wants us to think it's something new? And guess what? Beauty new? Estee Lauder has been Macy's top seller for years. Beauty has been the main attraction at department stores for years.

    Then Eric Bronsky complains about Frangos. Guess what? Blommers only makes the raw chocolate for some Frangos. They don't make Frangos. If that's the way Blommers keeps chocolate, fine. But they don't make Frangos. It's been discussed again and again here that the boxes have date of manufacture with Julian numbers. This is common in the food industry. The first two digits are the year followed by the day of the year. Regardless of date, any chocolate can go bad in a month if, for example, a customer buys it, keeps it in a hot place and then returns it. It doesn't need to be 16 or 18 months. Instead of dates, how about flavor? Doesn't taste right? Bring it back! This is nothing new. Happened under Field's too, including the white haze that would appear.

    Someone truly boycotting Macy's would return the product for a full refund with receipt. They wouldn't exchange it. Oak Brook was packed last Sunday. Do you know why? It was because it was full of Field's shoppers who rant that they boycott Macy's but then they sneak in and buy Frangos and anything else. That's why Macy's is here to stay. Field's shoppers shop Macy's anyways. Right, Eric!? Say hello the next time you're shopping in Macy's.

    Date: Thursday, April 30, 2015  7:55 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    Re: Sandy's "Are you serious? Macy's has ALWAYS acknowledged and deeply respected Marshall Field's. And now it's part of Macy's. That's the best honor a store can get!"


    Date: Thursday, April 30, 2015  2:07 pm CT
    Posted by: GENA UHLEIN

    I miss the quality clothing I could get at Marshall Fields at Mayfair Shopping Center in Wauwatosa, WI. I first ventured into that store in 1978 and loved shopping there. If I only knew that They would be gone years later I would of bought some more of the colorful and ooh so soft sweatshirts they sold. Macy's will never live up to what Field's was. On a recent visit to that store which now is a Macy's I found that the Customer Service that the Sales Clerks give now is little to be proud of, first trying to find a sales person then the attitude some of them have about working.......wish for the Fields stores to still be here.

    Date: Wednesday, April 29, 2015  11:15 pm CT
    Posted by: Eric Bronsky

    Since 2009, several Field's Fans have posted comments on this blog to the effect that Frango candies don't taste quite the same as when they were made in-house at Marshall Field's on State Street.

    Quite recently, a well-intentioned but misguided soul brought my wife and me a 1 lb. box of sugar-free Frango Mints. In the past, we could not discern any difference in flavor or mouth feel between the original and sugar-free varieties. But the contents of this particular box did not taste fresh.

    Luckily a gift receipt was taped to the box, so we brought it back to the Marsh ... uh, Macy's in Old Orchard. On a sunny weekday afternoon, this entire store was D-E-A-D. Walking through the lower level, we observed that Macy's has walled off the space where the food court used to be. Seeing what they did with this once-vibrant space was depressing.

    The sales associate we interacted with turned out to be a Field's alumnus. With considerable candor, he explained that each box of Frangos has a stamped "code" indicating the approximate date of manufacture. It turns out the candies we were returning had been boxed at least 18 months ago. No wonder they were less than fresh!

    Craving our one-time favorite confection, we would have preferred to exchange this box for a fresh one. The associate gamely dug through a large pile of sugar-free Frangos to find a box with a more recent date. And, guess what? EVERY box was 18 months old.

    According to Marlene Stauffer, Director of Quality Assurance/Research and Development at Chicago's Blommer Chocolate Company, the recommended maximum shelf life for milk chocolate is 16 months. Read her carefully researched report at

    If the above source is credible, Macy's should promptly inventory Frango candies at ALL of their stores and discard every box whose shelf life exceeds 16 months.

    -- Eric

    Date: Wednesday, April 29, 2015  6:34 pm CT
    Posted by: Philip eichler

    Gosh,every 3 to 6 months Macy's has a new strategy. Now it is millenials. Six months ago it was beauty.

    The new millenial Strategy is a joke. First, 19% of all millenial males live in their parents basement. They claim that they are going to use bridal registry as the gateway to this group. The bridal registry, a Field's invention has been gutted by Macys. Only the largest stores have a registry so where are the kids in small cities going to sign up? Plus, it is said millenials want an authentic experience. ...that is the last thing to describe Macy's and it'fake brands?

    Date: Monday, April 27, 2015  7:58 pm CT
    Posted by: Eric Bronsky

    I'm just back from a trip to NYC. Brimming with nostalgic memories of Macy's Herald Square (pre-1994) and curious to see this store's recent remodeling, I donned a pair of comfy shoes and rode the subway to 34th Street.

    The R.H. Macy & Co. flagship store is indeed historic and enormous, and begs to be explored. But have I ever bought anything from them? Nope. In the past, I've viewed this store as being closer in quality to a Carsons or Penneys than Field's. The department stores along New York's 5th Avenue corridor always seemed more tasteful and refined.

    Bright sunlight glinted off the impeccably polished brass Macy's plaques, in sharp contrast to the tarnished plaques at home that say Marshall Field & Co. (MESSAGE TO MACY'S: Now that you've spruced up our clocks, will you kindly restore our Fields plaques, too?)

    Inside, the store was chaotic, jam-packed with hordes of tourists and bargain-hunters speaking various languages. The main floor, previously Art Deco, is now clad in Macy's BSBW (Basic Sterile Bright White). You have to look harder to find the few elements that reveal the building's past. Improbable though it may seem, the Herald Square Macy's still maintains several of the building's ancient wooden escalators in operating condition. Another thing unchanged to this day is the woefully inadequate number of public restrooms.

    In addition to (ugh!) McDonald's are a duo of surprisingly upscale (for Macy's) full-service restaurants. Oddly enough, the centerpiece of the Herald Square Cafe on the 2nd Floor is a clock face (with Roman numerals) which bears a more-than-passing resemblance to the iconic timepieces that we all know and love.

    On the 6th floor, amid souvenirs of New York, I was surprised to find a large display of Frango candies. Why, most Noo Yawkers probably don't have a clue what those are! LOL!

    My advice to Field's fans visiting New York is to go to Macy's if only to experience the clattering 1902-era escalators (they're fun to ride, and it's free). But save your hard-earned money for really fine stores like Bergdorf Goodman or Saks Fifth Avenue.

    -- Eric

    Date: Monday, April 27, 2015  12:51 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Was at Oak Brook Center Saturday and again on Sunday. Horrible weather on Saturday--the mall was dead. Beautiful weather Sunday--the mall was hoppin'. It seems like most stores had "Friends & Family 25% off this weekend" -- Macy's and Lord and Taylor among them. I don't think I ever saw Marshall Field's offer a 25% off coupon like Macy's now does for Friends and Family. It seems Macy's needs to do that. Consider how much more busier Marshall Field's would be with such a discount.

    Selfridges Group runs other stores including in at least nine Canadian cities, not to mention in Ireland and the Netherlands. Selfriges Group has a rep for acquiring historic department and specialty stores and maintaining the individual character of each. Their Canadian stores are run as Holt Renfrew stores -- except they continue to run one store in Montreal as the historic Ogilvy. Selfridges didn't need to "Macyize" and subsume the identity of Ogilvy. But that's not all. Aside from overseeing Selfridges Group, the Westons also control the largest food store and pharmacy chains in Canada; a bank; all sorts of baking interests; and other ventures. The Westons are no strangers to Chicagoland: for over 40 years, their U.S. grocery business was based in Chicago. Some older Field's Fans will recognize National Foods which was theirs. Most recently, they were behind the "President's Choice" products that Jewel-Osco used to sell until it was acquired by Alberston's. So today's Selfridges isn't all that distant from Chicago as it might seem if it were just a threesome of department stores. And while they don't own the UK's Primark, Selfridges partners with them and Primark is already expanding into the USA.

    There's a lot if's, to say the least. But if Selfridges wanted to get into the U.S. market, given the Selfridges Group's history, Chicago would be the very logical starting point.

    Date: Sunday, April 26, 2015  9:43 pm CT
    Posted by: Richard in Houston

    Sandy to gle: Are you serious? Macy's has ALWAYS acknowledged and deeply respected Marshall Field's. And now it's part of Macy's. That's the best honor a store can get!

    Give me a break Sandy. The only reason they have Marshall Fields [nostalgia] merchandise (as well as the other regional stores like Foley's, Bullock's and Jordan Marsh) is due to the lawsuit that is pending with Strategic Marks. It was not until SM purchased the old trademarks (after years of no use by Macy's and were long expired) that they put started selling those cheap lunch totes, t-shirts and bags. It was done just to say they were using the trademarks. Macy's has never had any care for Marshall Fields or any of the other regional stores. Now that the suit has been referred for trial it would be nice to see them slapped with punitive damages for using someone else's trademarks.

    Date: Sunday, April 26, 2015  5:35 pm CT
    Posted by: mikea

    I went to State Street last week. The clocks look nice and they are again renovating parts of the third floor. Friends and Family has started and yes the Oakbrook store today was jammed. The whole mall except for Sears looked like it was Christmas shopping season.

    I really wonder if Selfridge's would come to the USA? They have only a few stores in London. Opening branch so far away from their home base is very costly and risky.

    Date: Sunday, April 26, 2015  1:44 am CT
    Posted by: MF Fan

    Went to State street store today for first time in a year and a half. I see glimpses of the fabulous Marshall fields store it was and am shocked saddened by what it has become. So dirty empty void disentegrating. Sad. Ghost town. I miss the joy that was just to be in that thriving beautiful store that is no more.

    Date: Saturday, April 25, 2015  10:12 pm CT
    Posted by: Robert

    Really Sandy? I think the highest honor would have been to run the state street store as MARSHALL FIELDS and expand on what was started with the store with in a store concept. Examples Mertz apothecary, Wrigleyville sports both unique to Chicago both left macys. And let's not forget all the other vendors to leave Burberry, Dolce and Gabbana they must not consider being part of macys an honor. Also let's not forget Marshall Fields state street WAS Chicago's third highest tourist destination talk about an honor!!

    Date: Saturday, April 25, 2015  9:26 pm CT
    Posted by: gayle

    Still laughing at Sandy's post! Wait...wasn't that sarcasm? Oh yeah, Macy's has respected Field's, like when they advertised MACY'S 150 year anniversary in Chicago, or MACY'S Culinary Council, or MACY'S Glamorama, or MACY'S Flower Show. And let's not forget how they respected Field's by letting the stores fall into pathetic disrepair, including the State Street clocks and plaques. And I thought it was a really classy touch when they stated a few years ago that they were no longer trying to reach Field's shoppers, who had streamed away in droves when Macy's brought their shoddy merchandise to town. And in the first few years, when Frangos barely even mentioned Field's, and most associates outside of Chicago knew nothing about them. Way to go, "honoring" your victim...

    Date: Saturday, April 25, 2015  2:21 pm CT
    Posted by: Sandy

    gle: Are you serious? Macy's has ALWAYS acknowledged and deeply respected Marshall Field's. And now it's part of Macy's. That's the best honor a store can get!

    Date: Saturday, April 25, 2015  1:24 pm CT
    Posted by: Joan

    Interview with Terry Lundgen! This guy sure loves to say "my" as in "me, myself and I" a heck of lot. "My Team" ---- how about "Our Team" ??????? I don't see how Macy's can last post-Lundgren. I predict that a lot of skeletons will come out of the closet.

    With an attitude like a dictating king, it's not surprising that it was "off with Marshall Field and Company's proverbial head!"

    Date: Saturday, April 25, 2015  12:15 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    Re: Eric's post of April 19, Macy's now advertising handbags and T-shirts with Field's logo: AT LEAST THEY ARE BEING FORCED TO ACKNOWLEDGE FIELD'S AGAIN.

    Date: Friday, April 24, 2015  11:48 pm CT
    Posted by: Sarah K.


    This is my first post. I've been milling through the pages and posts here. So many people feel as we do.

    One thing struck me as strange. I read about someone who has saved Frangos from Field's that they stockpiled and froze so they wouldn't have buy them from Macy's. PLEASE DON'T EAT THOSE! They can't be any good anymore!

    I sure hope we get Field's back.

    Date: Wednesday, April 22, 2015  1:24 pm CT
    Posted by: D.M.

    The idea of Selfridge's coming into Chicago is very intriguing! I miss Field's a lot, but maybe this could be the happy ending that Chicago is waiting for.

    Date: Tuesday, April 21, 2015  8:43 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    On our sister Facebook page, there's been some discussion that's very supportive of the idea of Selfridges opening in Chicago. Of course, H.G. Selfridge opened his first eponymous store here in Chicago. After its brief existence, it became the Carson, Pirie, Scott and Co. flagship on State Street. Michael D. posted the following link detailing that history: This was also the subject of last fall's event.

    Date: Sunday, April 19, 2015  3:49 pm CT
    Posted by: A Field's Fan

    The Missus and I went to da Loop this past Saturday. Having some extra time on our hands, we dared to nose around 111 North State. Our visit was bittersweet. Beyond the cracked marble floors, jumbles of tawdry merchandise, and out-of-service escalators are many wistful reminders of the spirit and beauty that was once Marshall Field's.

    Oh yeah, we saw the enshrined water fountain and also went up to the 7th floor to see the new dark green wailing wall. But just inside the Wabash & Washington corner of the main floor, we were amused to find a whole array of handbags, tote bags, shopping bags, football jerseys, etc. conspicuously emblazoned with Marshall Field's script logo. Similar items in the same display wore the Macy's logo.

    This display came about in response to the legal challenge from Strategic Marks LLC. Bear in mind that over the past decade, Macy's intentionally erased all but a few token links to its predecessors. Nonetheless, the ersatz Field's items do have a nostalgic appeal and just might outsell the Macy's-branded stuff. Check out the many heritage-branded items currently on Macy's website:,Sortby,Productsperpage/Dani%20Accessories,ORIGINAL,40?id=46015
    And ...,Sortby,Productsperpage/Spirit%20Activewear,ORIGINAL,40?id=255

    -- Eric

    Date: Saturday, April 18, 2015  12:09 am CT
    Posted by: A Field's Fan

    Was walking north on Michigan Avenue earlier this evening and stopped for the light at Chicago. Next two me were a couple, maybe in their mid-30s. She says, "It's actually criminal what they did." He say, "Marshall Field's was so much better." She: "Macy's is everywhere. Just a crime."

    I couldn't help but interrupt and ask where they were from. They said Kansas City. I assured them that the vast majority of people miss Marshall Field's.

    Date: Friday, April 17, 2015  11:59 am CT
    FB Posted by: Dan A.

    They have to be exposed, ridiculed by the press and cajoled by the public into doing the right thing. This area of moral responsibility is alien to this "Alien's" business model.

    Date: Friday, April 17, 2015  11:24 am CT
    FB Posted by: Jim M

    As I posted elsewhere, what is sad is this: Marshall Fields used to do this on a routine basis and there was no hoopla surrounding it. Macy's finally breaks down and does the right thing, and there's actual news coverage of this. Is it supposed to be shocking that Macy's actually takes care of such an iconic piece Chicago history? This all says the answer is "yes. "

    Date: Thursday, April 16, 2015  8:38 pm CT
    FB Posted by: gle

    Oh, and here's a link to the April 15 "Chicago Tribune" article about the clock restoration on State Street, complete with nice photos. There is a comment blog.
    Addition Friday, April 17, 2015, 5:12 pm: Letters to the editor of the Chicago Tribune can be sent to Be sure to include your name, city, state and phone number, along with the phrase, "FOR PUBLICATION."

    Date: Thursday, April 16, 2015  8:27 pm CT
    FB Posted by: gle

    I saw the news coverage about tidying up of "the great clock" on State Street last night. It showed a guy up on a ladder painting. I guess it is still important if they put that on the news.

    I also noticed that any time the news says anything about the building they add that the store was purchased by Macy's, as if nobody figured that out yet.

    Date: Thursday, April 16, 2015  4:46 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Eric B.

    Well, I'm glad to see that someone "cleaned their clock!"

    -- Eric

    Date: Wednesday, April 15, 2015  5:46 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Gabriel M.

    Since Macy's closed the former Famous Barr flagship in St. Louis, the Macy's plaques have all been removed, but they left behind the Famous Barr plaques.

    Date: Wednesday, April 15, 2015  9:19 am CT
    FB Posted by: Zabella C.

    [Re: Repainting the numerals on the clock.] PRAYING that they hired a quality craftsman to do the work...and that they don't get botched up............

    Date: Tuesday, April 14, 2015  6:31 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Jim McKay this is the excitement that happens when they simply restore the Marshall Field's clock--#Macys : Just think of the excitement (and profits) if the COMPLETE MARSHALL FIELD'S EXPERIENCE was restored!

    Date: Tuesday, April 14, 2015  6:23 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Sandy W

    Saw the scaffolding this morning. Hoped that is what they were doing!

    Date: Tuesday, April 14, 2015  5:40 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Sherry A.

    I was on a FB thread dedicated to this....wonderful news!

    Date: Tuesday, April 14, 2015  4:43 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Jeanie W.

    More eye wash for the lawsuit [with Strategic Marks].

    Whatever the reason I am happy for the attention it is finally receiving.

    Date: Tuesday, April 14, 2015  4:15 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Melissa R.

    I wish the Selfridge's people would take over

    Date: Tuesday, April 14, 2015  3:54 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Edie C.

    And the crappy merchandising with overstuffed tables and racks with shoddy stupid products in the aisles. It's awful!

    Date: Tuesday, April 14, 2015  3:28 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Jack K.

    Don't go tossing any rose nose gays their way just yet!

    Date: Tuesday, April 14, 2015  2:45 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Gabriel M.

    There is just so much illwill towards Macy's in general. They have destroyed their image. Macy's is the bully of the department store world.

    Date: Tuesday, April 14, 2015  11:49 am CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    A friend sends a photo of repairs to the Great Clock being made this morning. I wonder who is paying for it?

    Regardless, the past couple years of people complaining about this--from here, various Facebook groups, and likely in writing direct to Macy's headquarters--really did make a difference. Keep it up!

    Date: Tuesday, April 14, 2015  5:52 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    oooohaaaah!! Head on a platter! Perfect!

    Of course we are emotional. That is what made Field's alive and what makes Macy's dead--no emotion.

    And who are they kidding re emotion anyway? When they put a cash cow's head on a platter, that was just normal bottom-line tending in the High Corporate World?

    Date: Monday, April 13, 2015  9:42 pm CT
    Posted by: gayle

    I laughed at the Fortune article that said "...shoppers RESENTED Macy's..." They really shouldn't have put that in the past tense. Clue: shoppers STILL resent Macy's, and will continue to do so until they return to our city what they have stolen.


    Date: Sunday, April 12, 2015  5:12 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Diane L.: Thanks for offering your perspective that captures much for more than a few.

    Many spend so much time arguing that Macy's is not the same as Field's. I sense that Federated/Macy's, Inc. knows that even if they don't say so. R.H. Macy's was also acquired by Federated -- flagship store is Bloomingdale's. When I go back and read the Chicago Tribune and other publications of the mid- to late-1980s and the story of when Bloomingdale's entered Chicago, it seems obvious to me that Field's was downgraded into Macy's so as to get rid of Bloomingdale's arch-rival. It's clear that was not only a (spiritual/cultural) hostile takeover, it also was, as Roger Ebert said, a 'conquest' and State Street is a trophy, a proverbial head on the platter.

    Date: Sunday, April 12, 2015  CT
    Posted by: gle



    Date: Saturday, April 11, 2015  3:44 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Mark M.

    ...Even when Target Corp bought and combined Fields, Daytons and Hudsons, they kept the names. People weren't happy, but the local identities at least got a nod so that loyal customers didn't revolt. We lost so much and so did Macy's, if only they had understood the value of what they were purchasing and destroying. And I couldn't agree more, "Hostile" is the word, no matter how the business end of it was conducted.

    Date: Saturday, April 11, 2015  3:39 pm CT
    FB Posted by: AFI

    Marshall Field's had a series of ads back in the '60s that featured the tagline, "Marshall Field & Company: There's nothing like it back home." The ads in the likes of "The New Yorker." I was growing up in the NYC suburbs--and the tagline "There's nothing like it back home" really tugged at my heartstrings!

    Date: Saturday, April 11, 2015  3:17 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Rita J.

    Diane L: You are the 1st person to finally put it into words for me - Hostile Takeover. Since the day Macy's took over I have never been back into the store, either Chicago or Woodfield. To me it was a matter of principal.......they still would have made their Millions had they left Marshall Fields as is.

    Date: Saturday, April 11, 2015  3:02 pm CT
    FB Posted by: Diane L.

    Went to an estate sale today and found a kindred spirit. One of the women running the sale noticed I was buying an old Lord & Taylor box and began to reminisce about Marshall Fields! (and we're in Ohio) She used to have family in Chicago and immediately brought up the great flagship lady on State St. Had a great conversation about how wicked Macy's hostile takeover is. Mean spirited to say the very least. It was somehow comforting to talk with someone who feels as passionately about this as I do, in Ohio. Usually the person I'm speaking with gets that glazed look in the eyes when I start to rant. Not this time! I can't be in Chicago very often these days and want to thank this wonderful group for your perseverence. THANK YOU, from the bottom of my heart!

    Date: Thursday, April 9, 2015  11:39 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    In follow-up to Pete's post, that is correct. The board, Forgotten Chicago, doesn't like controversies so they took the thread down. However, it now seems that the past two or three years of complaining have paid off. Apparently, scaffolding has been erected around the State/Washington clock and it looks as if repairs are about to commence.

    In separate news, a friend of our grass roots group also points out that Macy's has erected a plaque above one of the store's original, albeit nonfunctional, water fountains. The plaque features the "Marshall Field and Company" logo with the following, "This drinking fountain is no longer in service. The current historic State Street structure was erected in 1907 Many of the architectural details such as this drinking fountain are considered treasures of a time gone by."

    Date: Thursday, April 9, 2015  5:23 am CT
    Posted by: Pete

    Last week, a nostalgia board on the Facebook Groups had a discussion about the disrepair and disregard by Macy's of the Marshall Field's clocks. Over 200 replies to the thread in just over a day. Amazing!

    Date: Tuesday, April 7, 2015  10:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Field's Fan

    Article in Fortune by Phil Wahba nixes the idea of Macy's buying a southern-regional department store that is for sale because:
    Macy's, the biggest U.S. department store operator, bought May Department Stores a decade ago in a $17 billion deal that turned it into a national department store chain. But it spent years digesting some of the regional retailers it bought -- notably, Marshall Field's in Chicago, where local shoppers resented Macy's for years. It also closed overlapping stores, and sold off some businesses, such as the Lord & Taylor chain. It's not clear Macy's would want to go through that again anytime soon.

    The story can be found at

    Macy's, Nordstrom in the market to buy Belk? Don't kid yourself

    Date: Monday, April 6, 2015  9:05 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Stopped by both Macy's on State Street and Bloomingdale's Home Store at Medinah Temple this past Saturday.

    Bloomingdale's Home Store was very nice and elegant. While I counted less than a dozen customers in the entire store on Saturday afternoon, I will say Macy's is capable of running a clean store, albeit lacking soul. Why bring that up? Because it shows Macy's COULD run the former Field's store with cleanliness and upkeep if they wanted to. But back to my hypothesis, then Field's would compete with Bloomingdale's, and, well, "b" can't compete.

    Also stopped by Macy's Flower Show on State Street, Ninth Floor Wabash. My opinion is that this year's show was better than last. Last year, the fauna was pretty commonplace. This year, it was a little more exotic and with more detail to each of the rooms. I know many miss when the flowers were all around the store, but I personally prefer the impact of having the flowers all in one place where they can also remain at a decent cool temperature. Many of the Marshall Field's novelties displays from the visitors center on the lower level were relocated to be part of the entry sequence to the flower show area.

    While I was there, I also noticed that they have taken an entire wall on Seven, opposite where they have the story of Marshall Field's, and have added another tribute to Field's. The wall is painted hunter green with a "Marshall Field and Company" logo in the upper left hand corner. Displayed are a few uniforms from Marshall Field's employees sports teams, along with a sample of Marshall Field's shopping bags through the years. Again, a crumb when everyone would like the seven-course meal. I suspect it was motivated to counteract the legal issues with Creative Marks.

    Macy's has the "it" brand but is too egotistical and proud to admit that the customers overwhelmingly want Marshall Field's. Some years back, Terry Lundgren criticized me as being "emotional," rather than presumably rational about the change to Macy's. Pretty "Grinchy" if you ask me. Not giving what the vast majority of customers want is even more emotional, if you ask me.

    Date: Saturday, April 4, 2015  11:42 am CT
    Posted by: gle





    Date: Thursday, April 2, 2015  9:45 am CT
    Posted by: Sheree L.F.

    Macy's made so many promises and they have never kept one. Look what has become of this treasured landmark. I long for the feeling you got when you entered one of the best Department Stores in the world. I long for the quality and service.

    Date: Thursday, April 2, 2015  7:47 am CT
    Posted by: K.A.E.R.

    I have never stepped into a Macys and never will. I miss Marshall Fields. SMH.

    Date: Wednesday, April 1, 2015  6:19 pm CT
    Posted by: Susan R.

    I respect your energy and I would love to see Marshall Field and Co. come back. But given how well Macy's stock is doing, I don't see that happening any time soon. On the other hand, with Macy's doing so well, they could afford to try and make a lot of people happy by bringing back Field's. If only....

    Date: Tuesday, March 31, 2015  5:26 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    Yes, making excuses for dumping Field's because times have changed does not fly. Field's went through all kinds of ground shifts until Macy's decided it was to be trashed. I still maintain it is the victim of a vendetta and their intention to be Top Dog, now that there is no significant competition to make them sweat.

    Apparently some New York City brain trust has decided our local supermarket may no longer offer cheesecake and certain other items in its bakery because we don't want them. I guess NYC knows best what we rubes like or don't like.

    I have to move to downsized quarters now, and my pile of ancient Field's gift boxes retrieved from all corners of our empire is going with me! Silly or not, whether or not I have to stash them under the bed. I am even keeping my deceased husband's mended, ratty old Field's terry cloth robe, his pet. So there, Macy's.

    Date: Monday, March 30, 2015  7:42 pm CT
    Posted by: Zelda

    Hi Field's Fans,

    The more I see of Selfridge's in the Mr. Selfridge series, the more I miss Marshall Field's. Selfridge took what was wonderful about Field's and brought it to London, so that Londoners could enjoy what we enjoyed for so many years. Yet, over the years, Selfridge's, like Field's, was not the same Selfridge's as it had been when its founder was alive. When I visited London in 2001, it was shabby/genteel. But it has been brought back to its former glory, a benefit to everyone. Oh, if only!

    Your friend in Field's,


    Date: Monday, March 30, 2015  6:34 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Bloomberg stories today on the web and Newsradio Chicago 780 AM/105.9 FM about how Kohl's stock is now outperforming Macy's stock. As we discussed before, one rarely heard Marshall Field's discussed in the same breath as Kohl's and JCPenney. Yet, those are the competitors primarily mentioned when discussing Macy's.

    Date: Monday, March 30, 2015  1:27 pm CT
    Posted by: J.O.

    I saw that Ford will bring back the Lincoln Continental this week after 13 years! It's because the customers want it. Why can't Macy's give the customers what they want? MARSHALL FIELD'S!

    Date: Sunday, March 29, 2015  7:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Mark W

    I miss Marshall Field and Company a good deal. It was part of my childhood , and I worked there in college. Its food was always on the table and Frango Mints were always given as gifts. When the store closed, a part of me died. If Audrey Hepburn could feel great at Tiffany's, for me it was always Field's. I do not come back to this site as often as I should, but I appreciate your fighting the good fight. Thank you, Mr. McCay.

    It is my hope that some well to do investors will buy the name from R.H. Macy and launch a new Field's . I'm a believer a reborn Marshall Field and Company is the penicillin the retail industry desperately needs.

    Date: Sunday, March 29, 2015  9:23 am CT
    Posted by: Huh?!? Macy's you are NOT welcome!

    Ad for Frango Mints in this morning's Chicago Tribune has the headline, "WELCOME TO MACY'S!"


    Date: Friday, March 27, 2015  5:17 pm CT
    Posted by: Yvonne

    I remember eggs that were sort of like jelly beans, but I think one type was called a 'thrush' egg and it was brown and maybe brown sugary in flavor and another was yellow with orange specks on it. Honestly can't remember the flavor but it was always in my easter basket and would like to find it again, if possible.

    Date: Friday, March 27, 2015  10:06 am CT
    Posted by: Robin P.

    I remember as a preteen traveling on the train from peoria to Chicago just for shopping trips to Marshall fields. It was a great adventure and was like entering fairy land. We would dress up in special clothes because it was a special place. Just gazing up at the tiffany ceiling made my best friend an I giddy.a wonderland to be sure. I still remember lunch in the walnut room. I thought it great that the salad had pomegranate seeds on top! Also as naughty young girls we would drop sugar cubes from the balcony onto shoppers below. Oh the special wondrous memories of Marshall fields.PLEASE BRING THE STORE OF MY YOUNG MEMORIES BACK!!

    Date: Wednesday, March 25, 2015  9:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Macy's CFO Karen Hoguet blames changing interests of Millenial customers away from lipstick and fashion towards electronics as the reason for a plateauing in Macy's growth. I dunno, but why did Macy's alienate fiercely loyal Marshall Field's shoppers (Millenial, Baby Boomer, Depression Era) by dropping the very valuable Marshall Field's brand and experience?

    Here's a link to the story:

    Date: Tuesday, March 24, 2015  3:29 pm CT
    Posted by: A book enthusiast

    I have been reading several books on the history of Chicago, and notice that the name Marshall Field's often comes up even if the actual topic has nothing to do with the store. Bits and pieces of evidence show Marshall Field's was involved in numerous Chicago projects and causes, in addition to more well-known endeavors such as the Field Museum and Merchandise Mart. Early Chicago was a big, dirty chaotic immigrant town. However, Potter Palmer and Marshall Field developed a main business district that became an example as a cultural destination. Obviously business persons such as these would feel a sense of ownership and responsibility for what was their city, something an entity like Macy's might not readily understand. If Field's wasn't contributing funds to a project, they might send a representative to sit on a board or attend a meeting to express an opinion. Field's wasn't just a big store sitting there, it was part of the fabric of an ever-evolving city. When we say "Field's is Chicago," there is more to the sentiment than just a slogan.

    Date: Tuesday, March 24, 2015  2:28 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    A friend of mine sent me the hardcopy (paper) version of the "Tribune" article about the purchase of the former Field's warehouse. I think it is interesting that the article kept referring to the building's past as part of Marshall Field's. Obviously the name is still worth noting. And I like the fact that the new owners are calling their development "The Fields."

    Date: Monday, March 23, 2015  12:17 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    Those are fantastic photos of younger-generation St. Patrick attendees who want their Marshall Field's back!

    I watched the "Selfridge Celebration" Sunday night followed by "Secrets of Selfridge's." Part of the "Secrets" mentioned that Selfridge's started to decline in the 1990's, and then the Weston family purchased it and restored it to success. Wouldn't it be great to see that happen with Field's!

    Date: Sunday, March 22, 2015  8:25 am CT
    Posted by: Ann R.

    I see that Macy's is having the flower show again. Last year, it seemed like most of the flowers they had were comparable to what you could find at Walmart or Jewel the day before Easter. So sad to miss Marshall Field's.!

    Date: Friday, March 20, 2015  10:57 pm CT
    Posted by: (NWHBR)

    I'm dubious of Strategic Marks' efforts. Reincarnation of Marshall Field's as a 100% online store would fall somewhere between disappointing and catastrophic. In 2004, an Iowa-based direct marketing company acquired the dormant Montgomery Ward brand, re-launching it as a 100% online store. It struggled. In 2008, Wisconsin-based Colony Brands (aka Swiss Colony ... you know, the mail-order purveyor of everything sausage and cheese) acquired the brand. So far, has managed to keep afloat. But it's Montgomery Ward in name only. Buying stuff online, though convenient, will never match the immersive, interactive and one-of-kind experience that was Marshall Field's.

    Date: Thursday, March 19, 2015  9:15 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim M

    Two Items:

    Mr. Selfridge: A Celebration

    This will air on Channel 11 this Sunday 3/22 at 6:30 PM as well as twice on WTTW Prime next Monday 3/23 at 2:30 PM and Thursday 3/26. Since it is pledge season, look for a lot of local historical discussion as well as, well, pledge requests.

    Season Three of the Masterpiece Class Series "Mr. Selfridge" (based on the real story, set at Selfridges airs in Chicago on Sunday, March 29th.

    From the WTTW link posted above:

    "Mr. Selfridge: A Celebration is a PBS Pledge celebration of the first two Seasons of Mr. Selfridge and a sneak peek at Season 3! The program will feature 'behind the scenes' footage and key interviews with the actors and production personnel integral to the series. TVG"

    Former Marshall Field's warehouse gets new life

    Field's name gets second chance on Northwest Side warehouse

    (Features link to Field's Christmas commercial from about a dozen years ago or so; also references the Olson Rug factory and warehouse for which this complex was best known.)

    From Tribune link above:

    "Marshall Field's is long gone from Chicago but a pair of developers is trying to keep part of the name alive with the redevelopment of a sprawling 1.5 million-square-foot complex and about 22 acres at Diversey Avenue and Pulaski Road..."

    Date: Thursday, March 19, 2015  2:48 pm CT
    Posted by: S.V.

    I rememembered the other thing about Dayton's that got expanded to Field's! SANTA BEAR!

    Dayton's launched the annual Santa Bear collectible each Christmas starting in the mid-1980s. It carried on to Marshall Field's. Macy's killed Santa Bear in 2007 or 2008. How sad! Then Macy's offered the Aflac Duck! An insurance mascot for Christmas! How lame is that!

    Date: Thursday, March 19, 2015  2:36 pm CT
    Posted by: John

    I enjoy reading these views. I am 4th generation, native-born Chicagoan and miss Marshall Field's so much. The State Street store is a mess. I also never thought at 40 I would live to see the day both Carson's and Field's gone from State Street. I still remember when Dayton Hudson bought Field's and turned the bags brown. HELL TO PAY for that one and they quickly went back to green.

    I blame the government as well for allowing the sale of May Company to go through. They should have denied it.

    Date: Thursday, March 19, 2015  12:06 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim M

    It's pretty certain that tomorrow at 4:00 pm Chicago time is the cut-off time to own Macy's, Inc. stock in order to be admitted to this May's stock holders meeting which will presumably be held in Cinci. It's nice to go to the meeting and say that one wants Marshall Field's, but such pleas are often dismissed as "nostalgia" when in fact there is such current relevancy to Field's return that could boost Macy's, Inc. stock. A better approach is to point out some pithy realities about the value of the Marshall Field's brand, especially when used at State Street, relative to "M" stock value. Doing the latter really drives home the message to a room that consists mostly of beholden Macy's employees as well as some clueless stock holders and institutional investors who don't want to rock the boat.

    Date: Thursday, March 19, 2015  8:00 am CT
    Posted by: S.V.

    Dayton's did start the current flower show tradition that spread to Marshall Field's Downtown. That happened when Dayton's took over Field's and made it Dayton's. Except they kept the name. But years ago, Field's also had flower shows and the like.

    Dayton's also brought to Field's the Marketplace for foods and Applause for a Cause which became Fash Bash in 1999 and Glamorama in 2003. Now Glamorama is sponsored by Macy's in Minneapolis, Chicago, L.A. and San Francisco.

    Dayton's did copy some things from Field's back in the day. They copied The 28 Shop to make Dayton's Oval Room. Restaurants like the Oak Room were modeled after Field's and the Walnut Room and other 7th Floor restaurants.

    After Dayton's took over in 1990, they also started rotating Christmas store displays between the flagships.

    There's some more things, but I can't think of them right now. I will post them when I think of them.

    One thing is of a great consensus. People didn't mind Dayton's all that much becoming Field's because it actually maintained and even increased in quality.

    Since becoming Macy's, it's gone downhill with little a mature lady can like or wear. Minneapolis misses Dayton's and Field's.

    Date: Wednesday, March 18, 2015  11:01 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    In response to Gayle:

    Exactly my point! I always listen to the quarterly conference calls with the investment community, hosted by Macy's CFO Karen Hoguet. Ms. Hoguet constantly implores that the cornerstone of its growth is catering to "the Millennials"--exactly the kind of shoppers shown in these photos. Yet, Macy's ignores the overwhelming pleas of Chicago millenials--restore Marshall Field's! This is a disconnect and shortcoming of current Macy's management that Macy's stockholders should take note of and request immediate attention.

    It would be great if someone brought this up at the stockholders meeting.

    Date: Wednesday, March 18, 2015  8:03 pm CT
    Posted by: Gayle

    I think the most interesting thing about Jim's warm reception at the St. Patrick's Day parade is the age of the participants. Look at the pictures--these folks who are screaming "Marshall Field's" appear to be teens to twenty-somethings. Hardly the nostalgic old-timers that Macy's thinks will fade away....could it be that ALL ages want Field's to return in name and quality?

    Date: Monday, March 16, 2015  2:03 pm CT
    Posted by: Jeff

    Mentions Marshall Field's and this site, Macy's stockholders meeting:
    He revived Astro Pops, then Hydrox cookies: Now Newport Beach man is fighting Macy's to resurrect other old brands


    Date: Sunday, March 15, 2015  3:04 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay was again out for Chicago's annual St. Patrick's Day parade on Columbus Drive through Grant Park. Over 200 bookmark flyers were distributed to enthusiastic Field's supporters and boosters. Below are a few photos. I was blown away by how everyone who posed for photos screamed "Marshall Field's" before I could even finish my sentences. I was truly blown away!

    As always, Chicago STILL wants its Marshall Field's!

    Date: Saturday, March 14, 2015  1:05 pm CT
    Posted by: gle


    Date: Thursday, March 12, 2015  5:22 pm CT
    Posted by: Robert M

    Interesting post from MIKEA. I've never thought about the success of Bloomingdale's in Chicago, as I've always focused on Macy's. I don't see TV commercials...and it's like they are invisible. Has Macy's ever released sales figures on their Bloomingdale's stores in Chicago? The suggestion of converting them to Fields (along with State Street) is a brilliant idea.

    Date: Tuesday, March 10, 2015  9:08 pm CT
    Posted by: Samantha

    I see that Macy's is having a flower show again this year. I know Field's used to have it, but did Macy's used to have it at the NYC flagship? Did Field's ever have a flower show before it was bought out by Target?

    Date: Saturday, March 7, 2015  10:28 am CT
    Posted by: Hoping


    Date: Friday, March 6, 2015  8:38 am CT
    Posted by: MIKEA

    I agree Bloomingdale's in Chicago is hard for me to believe they can make profits. Every time I go in any of the stores ie 900 North Old Orchard the store is dead. Macy's should turn all three Bloomingdales' mainline stores in to a Field's run by Bloomingdales. They most likely would be Bloomingdale's with a different name. A name that would respond better in this market for high end merchandise.

    Starting up a whole new store Field's would be to costly. Macy's is consolidating merchandising again this year not expanding the divisions.

    Date: Thursday, March 5, 2015  8:50 pm CT
    Posted by: P.H.

    Macy's Trying To Keep Others From Using The Brands It Bought And Then Abandoned

    Date: Monday, March 2, 2015  11:49 pm CT
    Posted by: Mary N.

    We miss Field's so much. Chicago is not the same.

    Date: Monday, March 2, 2015  4:20 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    Story about an early building by the architect of Marina City makes reference to the "Marshall Field's clock" as being iconic of Chicago.

    Date: Saturday, February 28, 2015  9:34 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Was at Old Orchard earlier today. The store looks more and more like a big Kohl's. Marketplace is gone with just a Frango and candy counter, although they have a Rick Bayless casual dining near a first floor entrance. Pretty sad when one considers what it used to be as Field's.

    Also walked through Bloomingdale's. I have no idea how this store can be profitable. It was Saturday afternoon and it seemed as if there were more clerks than customers. It seeme even relatively dead when I've walked through right before Christmas.

    Macy's has pages of newspaper advertising for--what?--two Bloomingdale's stores plus a home store? National TV ads for Bloomingdale's? I don't recall the last time I saw TV ads for Bloomingdale's, period.

    The stronger brand should survive. And that stronger brand in Chicago is Marshall Field's. (Heck, keep the Bloomingdale's outlets at Rosemont and Schaumburg.)

    What Macy's should have done -- and should do -- is have Water Tower and State Street as Marshall Field's. Take 900 N. Michigan and make it Macy's with Medinah as Macy's Home Store, if they are that bent on having Macy's in Chicago.

    Then they could get some real advertising bang for their buck. This could be the start of realizing the highest and best use of these stock holder assets.

    Date: Friday, February 27, 2015  7:49 pm CT
    Posted by: Anne P.

    Macy's Tries Again To Win Back Trademarks From Man Who Resurrected Astro Pops And Hydrox


    But Strategic Marks has countersued, claiming that Macy's had abandoned the trademarks, and citing the Lanham Act again. Under that act, a mark is considered abandoned if it isn’t used in the three years. In fact, claims Strategic Marks, Macy's is the one doing the infringing on the marks it obtained, by selling vintage brand T-shirts and tote bags on

    In a Feb. 5 press release, Kassoff said: “Macy's had not used most of these trademarks in over 15 years and, by law, they lose them if not used in three years or more.”

    That echoes the sentiments Kassoff expressed to Consumerist back in June of last year (we reached out to Kassoff today seeking comment on the latest lawsuit, but have not heard back).

    Date: Wednesday, February 25, 2015  10:08 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Macy's, Inc. (formerly known as Federated Department Stores), parent of Macy's and Bloomingdale's, had their FY 2014 Q4 and FY-end conference call with CFO Karen Hoguet. Across the entire chain of 840 stores, they had a good year overall and continued positive trends.

    What was most interesting from our perspective was that Macy's is exploring new avenues of growth. One of these might be Macy's-branded outlet stores along the lines of Bloomingdale's Outlets, Sak's Off-Fifth, Neiman-Marcus Last Call, etc and competing with TJ Maxx, Marshall's, etc. Best of luck to them, but it's interesting to note that a year ago or two, Ms. Hoguet previously stated that Macy's highly-promotional business operations meant it was hard for them to be more discount than they already were. OK--things change and they want to try something new, just like with Bluemercury. Fair enough. But how about Marshall Field's return to State Street? It would an easy, no-risk, revenue-heightening way of expanding and dramatically increasing business and stockholder value.

    Date: Tuesday, February 24, 2015  9:03 am CT
    Posted by: Shawn H.

    I was in the State Street location only about 6 months after the change to the Macy's brand. It was in the winter and a Macy's employee got on the customer elevator with her mop bucket sloshing gray water all over the elevator floor. This NEVER would have happened under the Marshall Field & CO. name. I still miss the brand, the Chicago pride, and the elevated level of customer service that was SO important. Pardon the pun.

    Date: Sunday, February 22, 2015  10:22 am CT
    Posted by: mikea

    I cannot believe this university of Michigan survey ranking Dillard's so high. They are the worst store for customer service. Their return policies are horrible!!!!!. If you buy a Clearance item they give you ONLY 3DAYS to return it!!!! Regular returns I think are like 30-45 days. Macy's takes anything back now almost like what Field's did years ago.!!!! Even Wal-Mart has a better return policy than Dillard's

    Nordstrom yes has the best Service!!!!

    Response from the webmaster:
    University of Michigan did not decide the rankings. It is a consumer survey. Your experience is individual.

    Date: Saturday, February 21, 2015  10:49 pm CT
    Posted by: David S

    Had To Share: Just got back from a Gallery Opening in Hallandale Beach Florida, one of the Artists just flew in from Chicago...Ofcourse we chatted, and I told her how much I've always loved chicago, but that it's just not the same without Marshall Fields.....She quickly shared that "we all feel that way" - I will never stop missing Fields...Ten years later, and if it came back tomorrow, i'd book the first flight out.....of course I wouldn't mind if Burdines came back too.....

    Date: Saturday, February 21, 2015  2:11 pm CT
    Posted by: Bob C.

    R.H. Macy's comparable to Wieboldt's??? How dare you!?

    Wieboldt's was MARSHALL FIELD'S for the middle class from post-WW II until about 1980 when they started struggling. R.H. Macy's was a dump by comparison! Now Bamberger's was comparable to Wieboldt's, but--surprise!!!--they went downhill after being converted to R.H. Macy's. The first time I went to Macy's in the 1970s, all I could think was what a chopped up, dirty, HUGE store! But Wieboldt's was a fantastic balance of class and value.

    Date: Friday, February 20, 2015  10:29 pm CT
    Posted by: Richard in Houston

    When Macy's came to Texas in 1984 they opened 4 stores here - Deerbrook, Willowbrook, Baybrook and The Galleria as a flagship store. They went head to head with Foley's and Joske's. The Macy's in that era was a much more upscale retailer than its current incarnation. The stores back then were well stocked with high quality merchandise. They were well merchandised, had quality visual displays, restaurants and provided very good customer service. Fast forward to today - Dillard's took over all of the branch stores as RH Macy sold them in their bankruptcy. Dillard's has since remodeled all of them and they do exceptional business. The Galleria was the only location that was kept and they let it run into the ground. It was truly in very sad shape. I could not believe Lundgren and his cronies would allow it to go so downhill in a world class international destination mall like The Galleria. It was torn down a few months ago. They had the former Foley's and the old Macy's operating under the Macy's banner.

    Date: Friday, February 20, 2015  8:28 am CT
    Posted by: Lurker FYI

    Macy's will have Q4 2014 results and FY 2014 review conference call this Wednesday, February 24th at 10:30 a.m. You can listen live on the web at It seems really late this year.

    Date: Thursday, February 19, 2015  11:15 pm CT
    Posted by: mikea

    I agree with Jim's comments on Bergners and Carson Pirie Scott. For all practical purposes except for name Carson's became Bergner's. Currently Carson's is a Bon Ton with a different name.

    However R.H. Macy in the 1980's was no way like a Wieboldt's. My first experience was in 1984 at Herald Square. The store was very much like a better unique Carson's and even had higher end merchandise like country corner antiques than it does today. The Cellar marketplace level carried much more variety and unique merchandise than the cellar area in Herald Square does today. They even had a replica of P.J. Clark's in the Cellar. The store was not as updated in renovations as it is today, but it had good quality and unique merchandise at great prices. It was no way like a Wieboldt's which can maybe compared to a Kohl's or a low end JC Penney.

    The old R.H. Macy from the 80's and early 90's was much better than the Federated Macy's of today.

    Date: Wednesday, February 18, 2015  8:18 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    University of Michigan's American Customer Satisfaction Index for 2014 has been released including scores for the "Department and Discount Store" category.

    Congratulations to Macy's which has gone up from 76 in 2013 to 79 in 2014. By comparison, Dollar General beat Macy's last year by four points but this year Macy's beats it by five. Macy's also is congratulated for its tie with Dollar Tree.

    I'm reminded of about 8-10 years ago, when a similar national survey (not by ACSI) had Marshall Field at number 3 in customer satisfaction, just below Norstrom. Keep in mind that Marshall Field was only in the Great Lakes area while Nordstrom was already national. Just think that Field's had a national rep like that. Macy's at least several notches farther down on that list. (I'll have to dig it out.) Here are the 2014 results. The rest of the information and story can be found at

    • Average: 77
    • Nordstrom: 86
    • Dillard's: 81
    • All Others: 81
    • Kohl's: 80
    • Target: 80
    • Dollar Tree: 79
    • Macy's: 79
    • Meijer: 78
    • J.C. Penney: 77
    • Dollar General: 75
    • Family Dollar: 75
    • Sears: 73
    • Exchange: 68
    • Walmart: 68

    Date: Tuesday, February 17, 2015  7:12 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Analyst says Macy's may have problems maintaining its 2% comp sales. The Barclays analyst, Joan Payson, thinks that Macy's much praised OmniChannel strategy may struggle to maintain the 2% comp store increases. 2% is roughly what a store should increase to keep pace with inflation and maintain profitability. From the perspective of Field's, this matters because Field's (actually 18 Field's stores and over 40 Dayton's and Hudson's stores) was averaging 2% comp sales and it was a huge justification for ditching Field's. Acquiring Bluemercury could also be a strategy to get give Macy's, Inc. more growth as it plateaus at 2% comps.

    Date: Monday, February 16, 2015  9:08 am CT
    Posted by: Pete

    Macy's has announced its latest spring flower show in the March issue of Chicago magazine. It will be held Sunday, March 22 through Saturday, April 3rd (day before Western Easter) at State Street. It is called "Art in Bloom".

    Date: Saturday, February 14, 2015  12:59 pm CT
    Posted by: Just Noticing

    Considering the excuses Macy's has made over the years for not being a stellar performer, I have never heard anyone mention any of them as the reason they don't shop at the State Street store. I have NEVER heard anyone say I don't shop at Macy's because the weather in Chicago is too bad, the economy is bad and I no longer have money, etc. The only thing people tell me is that Macy's is nothing but cheap junk and Field's was a real store.

    Date: Saturday, February 14, 2015  12:49 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    I'm not surprised if Macy's is expanding its beauty operations. About the only action I see on a regular basis at the State Street store is at the free makeover counters. At least there are a few customers there who seem interested.

    Regarding the shift in management let's hope change is good--for a change. It's something to keep an eye on.

    Date: Friday, February 13, 2015  10:19 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Regarding Jan K.'s post:

    Actually, what happened was that in 1988, Bergner's had opened a massively remodeled store in Randhurst's former Wieboldt's space. Wieboldt's went out of business the year before.

    A little over a year after that, Bergner's bought Carson's which already had a location in Randhurst. That Carson's dated back almost 30 years and needed remodeling.

    So they changed the name of the new Randhurst Bergner's to Carson's since they recognized that Carson Pirie Scott was a much more valuable name. The old Carson's space was leased to J.C.Penney.

    Eventually all Carson Pirie Scott stores were remodeled to look like Bergner's and Carson's merchandise was replaced by that of Bergner's. Bergner's only kept the name and eventually used it for the parent company's name.

    For the most part, the great Carson Pirie Scott that competed head-to-head with Field's for decades went away around 1990 when it became the more dowdy and less hip Bergner's in every way BUT name. (It's sort of how Dominick's became Safeway in every way but name.)

    In downstate Illinois, where there were both Carson's and Bergner's in the same town, the Carason's stores were converted to the Bergner's name as well as interior and merch. There, many Carson's shoppers cut up their cards and refused to shop the stores that were newly converted to Bergner's. That foreshadowed what happened 16 years later when Macy's got rid of Marshall Field's.

    BTW: For Chicagoans who aren't familiar with R.H. Macy's prior to the 1990s 1980s, R.H. Macy's was a lot like Wieboldt's and definitely not like Marshall Field's.

    Date: Friday, February 13, 2015  9:31 am CT
    Posted by: Jan K.

    I miss Marshall Fields!! I still have one of the buttons passed out years ago at the State Street Store! I remember when Bergner's bought out the Carson's store at Randhurst (Mt. Prospect, IL) ... they changed the name and quickly found out that the Carson name had value and changed it back. Why can't Macy's understand this simple concept? You can tell if the name has value when you realize that people have actually saved their green MARSHALL FIELD's bags and boxes - can't say that about Macy's!

    Date: Thursday, February 12, 2015  10:21 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Story in suburban Tribune paper about missing Marshall Field's.

    Be sure to add a comment about on the right side of the article's page:

    But here's the big difference for me and I think a lot of people: My Fields credit card had a permanent spot in my wallet and I'd always park near or walk through my "go-to" store if I was nearby.

    Now, I have no desire to use my converted Macy's credit card and will visit a dozen other stores before thinking of going there.

    Date: Thursday, February 12, 2015  4:13 pm CT
    Posted by: Richard R.

    Regarding Jim's last post: We all know Marshal Field's has enormous Brand equity at least here in Chicago. It is gratifying to see that it;s obvious to Macy's that the brand has worth, and also gratifying that this underscores and publicizes Macy's complete failure to leverage the brand asset.

    Date: Thursday, February 12, 2015  1:12 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    "The law says that a trademark shall be deemed abandoned when it has been discontinued with no intent to resume use," said Joseph Dreitler, a Columbus attorney who practiced trademark law for Procter & Gamble Co. and U.S. Shoe in Cincinnati before starting his own firm. Three years of "consecutive non-use carries a legal presumption of abandonment," Dreitler added.

    What's in a Name? Macy's, Inc. Asks California Judge to Decide"

    Date: Thursday, February 12, 2015  7:02 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    Do you suppose they could reorganize the management team without Lundgren? No- I guess not, he is clearly such a model of a modern merchant general.

    From what I have seen here, I am imagining Field's (it will always be that to me since I don't have to witness the Macyhem) in a terrible, compromised state. Is it so far gone it would require going to the studs, as it were, to get it back into its glory?

    And why spend money on a here-today-gone-tomorrow spa chain when you have a gem to polish? Never mind the answer, it is a rhetorical question.

    Date: Wednesday, February 11, 2015  3:14 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    L. GRAND...LiMACK Looking to contact a couple of people who used to post as "L. Grand" and "LiMack" on our blog...are you lurking out there? Thank you!

    Jim, jjmckay at

    Date: Sunday, February 8, 2015  4:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Meant to also point out a few days ago that Macy's has reorganized its senior management team. I think this is the most radical change I've seen in several years, perhaps as far back as circa 2007-2009 when Macy's, Inc. digested MayCo and Marshall Field's. Makes me wonder whats up. Seems rather restless.

    Here's a brief story outlining the changes and also the Bluemercury acquisition

    Date: Friday, February 6, 2015  12:30 pm CT
    Posted by: Heather

    Hello all!

    Heard a commercial on newsradio about Macy's latest weekend sale. It made me mad just to hear and I thought I'd vent here. I. WILL. NOT. SHOP. AT. MACY'S!

    Glad you are still trying.

    Date: Wednesday, February 4, 2015  6:28 am CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Macy's, Inc. is buying the luxury beauty product and spa chain Bluemercury. There are 60 locations in the USA, including in Chicago's Wrigleyville/Lakeview neighborhood near Southport and Addison and in Lincoln Park near Halsted and Webster. Other locations are in the suburbs. This is the first major acquisition by the parent of Macy's and Bloomingdale's since the deal with May Department Stores ten years ago that included Marshall Field's. Macy's, Inc. intends to greatly grow the chain through both stand-alone locations as well as incorporating some into Macy's locations.

    In a lot of ways, Bluemercury sounds to me like a competitor to Ulta and Sephora--maybe it's a little more upscale. This also gives Macy's a proprietary beauty product brand that's "Only@Macy's".

    Macy's says it made the acquisition to further growth and complement its department stores. Fair enough. An interesting fact is that Macy's, Inc. paid $210 million for this acquisition. That's still about half the appraisal of the Marshall Field's family of tradenames as listed in the May Department Stores 2004 SEC 10-K filings. A lot of money lost with mothballing the Marshall Field tradename. Bringing back Marshall Field's would be a fantastic way to further growth and complement its existing stores.

    I've already received my first email that someone is boycotting not only Macy's and Bloomingdale's, but now also Bluemercury. So it goes.

    Here's a link to one of many stories about this.

    Date: Sunday, February 1, 2015  5:39 pm CT
    Posted by: M.H.

    I saw in Crain's Chicago Business that Hyatt is creating a new hotel brand under the "Centric" name. How come Macy's can't have three brands---Macy's, Bloomingdale's and Marshall Field's? It would take nothing away from them and only add more.

    Date: Friday, January 30, 2015  3:49 pm CT
    Posted by: Kathy Sue King-Watters

    It will only be worthwhile if the Fields traditions return with the name, at least to me. I go to State Street once a year for lunch by the tree and every year it seems they drop more traditions. Heartbreaking.

    Date: Friday, January 30, 2015  6:40 am CT
    Posted by: Susan B.

    I've always thought it was ego on the part of Macy's (as opposed to business sense) to get rid of the Marshall Fields name.

    Date: Thursday, January 29, 2015  11:37 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Macy's Is In Court Again

    A leader like Macy’s has to defend itself for many reasons. In March Macy’s will find itself heading to court once again. This time because management forgot to shore up its portfolio of old department store name brands and...
    My response to Walter Loeb's new piece...(if you can't see the article or my comments, go to the Forbes site. Thank you.)
    I think it was good to roll some of these stores into the Macy's banner--for many it wsa an upgrade.

    But in the case of Marshall Field's it's a different story. It's a huge loss of stockholder value. Right before the Macy's and May Department Stores ("MayCo") merger, MayCo SEC 10K filings showed Marshall Field's trade names with a value of $419 Million. By comparison, the ten or so other MayCo trade names (Filene's, Foley's, Robinson-May, etc) PLUS Lord and Taylor and the bridal brands had a COMBINED value of $162M. About the same time, Federated (now Macy's, Inc.) listed Macy's and Bloomingdale's tradenames as $376M. This is not my opinion--this information is the companies' official legal estimates filed with the SEC. Even at half its value, Marshall Field's as a trade name was worth way, way more than a dozen other names combined.

    Recent informal surveys of 400-800 Chicago shoppers still find the Marshall Field's is preferred for the State Street flagship by a ratio of 4:1. When Macy's discusses Marshall Field's it really means 62 stores with about 40 being former Daytons and Hudsons locations. Macy's says the legendary State Street flagship is profitable. However, consider that the store inherited some of Carson Pirie Scott's business and is getting an estimated $1.9M annual property tax cut, both which would have occurred under Field's--except they wouldn't have lost all the Marshall Field's customers.

    Many of these stores are better now as Macy's--but the exception is Marshall Field's. Macy's would realize significant stockholder value, great increased good will, and a lot less legal hassles, not to mention great respect, if they restored the single Chicago State Street store to being Marshall Field's."

    Date: Thursday, January 29, 2015  7:32 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim Taylor,

    Why shouldn't they? Those service mark/trademarks have long since expired. It would be great to see brick-and-mortar stores down the road, as competition is everything in retail. Having fewer choices isn't good for anyone (except maybe stock holders). Without competition, retailers become rather stagnant (amongst other things) and don't really give anyone much reason to shop their stores.

    Date: Thursday, January 29, 2015  7:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Thanks for the article which is new, although we have discussed Mr. Kassoff and Strategic Marks before. They are claiming rights to the service mark (store name). Macy's disputes this. The case has been deferred for about three years or more, but appears to be finally going to trial this March 2.

    Talking about store names, keep in mind, again, that Marshall Field's trade names were valued at $419M in its last year while Macy's and Bloomingdale's trade names were valued at $376M combined. While the set of other May Department Stores don't entirely correspond to the set of other names to which Strategic Marks is laying claim. However, that said, the other 10 or so May Department Stores names, plus Lord and Taylor, were valued at $162M. What a waste of Macy's stock holder value.

    Date: Thursday, January 29, 2015  7:03 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim Taylor,

    I'm not sure if you're all familiar with the company Strategic Marks, but you should get familiar with them. They fought Macy's and now own the rights to the Marshall Field's name, and they are in the process of bringing it back. Check it out for yourselves at

    Those service mark/trademarks have long since expired. It would be great to see brick-and-mortar stores down the road, as competition is everything in retail. Having fewer choices isn't good for anyone (except maybe stock holders). Without competition, retailers become rather stagnant (amongst other things) and don't really give anyone much reason to shop their stores.

    Date: Monday, January 26, 2015  7:38 am CT
    Posted by: Paul G.

    I have to agree with those who think the plaques should be given over to Detroit civic organizations. This comes off to me as some sort of weird P.R. gimmick. Macy's has a second degree of separation from Hudson's.

    We really miss Field's. Quality has suffered under Macy's. Bloomingdale's is simply cold. Why do New Yorkers think everyone wants to be like New York?

    Date: Saturday, January 24, 2015  8:46 pm CT
    Posted by: Michael D.

    At least Macy's appears to get this one ...or...???
    Macy's to Save Historic Hudson's Plaque

    Date: Friday, January 23, 2015  9:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    I would love to see Marshall Field's return to State Street, updated as it surely would be, for 2015.

    Regarding Macy's, Inc. vs. Stragtegic Marks, I've seen this case be put on hold over and over again during the past few years. I still think it can be postponed again.

    I do hope it's appreciated by Strategic Marks that in 2004, SEC filings indicated that Marshall Field's brand was valued at $419M; a dozen May Department Stores brands--including some of those listed plus Lord and Taylor--were valued at $162M COMBINED; and Macy's and Bloomingdale's brands--including mothballed Federated brands like Rich's and Bon-Marche--were valued at $376M COMBINED. (Clearly Macy's doesn't appreciate the value of the Marshall Field's tradename.)

    Again, I'd love to seeMarshall Field's return to State Street, updated as it surely would be, for 2015.

    Date: Thursday, January 22, 2015  5:30 pm CT
    Posted by: Richard in Houston

    The countdown has begun! The trial date against Macy's is set for March 2nd. Marshall Field's is among the trademarks that have been purchased by Strategic Marks, LLC to bring back. Foley's, of course, is one of them as well. Here is a link to the site: I have been in discussions with the CEO for several years. I believe they have a really good chance of winning the case. If that occurs, Macy's will likely have to pay punitive damages for using the old trademarks without permission on their "brand heritage" part of their website. Let's hope for a positive outcome of the trial so we can see our regional stores return.

    Date: Tuesday, January 20, 2015  9:39 pm CT
    Posted by: James Covert, New York Post

    Macy's plots to keep unused brand names on the shelf

    “Every single community in the country has said, 'We miss our local department store,' whether it was Robinson's-May in Los Angeles, Marshall Field's ...

    Date: Sunday, January 18, 2015  5:19 pm CT
    Posted by: C.J.

    I'm reminded of Jackie Kennedy who said that Cape Kennedy needed to be restored back to its original name, Cape Canaveral. She appreciated the gesture of naming it after her husband, but hated that it replaced by a name that was there for generations and beloved by the locals.

    If only Macy's could have that kind of class like Jackie Kennedy.

    Date: Wednesday, January 14, 2015  11:15 am CT
    Posted by: State Street Watcher

    The third season of Mr. Selfridge starts airing the last Sunday in March. Should be interesting. The show airs earlier in the United Kingsom. The new season there starts Sunday, September 25th.

    Date: Tuesday, January 13, 2015  5:29 pm CT
    Posted by: Tamara H.

    Our family missed Marshall Field's so much. Macy's is not the same. Please bring it back. Until it does come back, I will NEVER shop Macy/s.

    Date: Monday, January 12, 2015  3:11 pm CT
    Posted by: Tim N.

    Outrage as Cadbury's "secretly" Changes Creme Egg Recipe
    I always like these stories that have parallels to what happened to Field's. New owner buys out brand, makes changes, makes customers angry. It doesn't sound like the British are too happy with Kraft Foods right now. But this kind of thing happens all the time. I know in the US all you have to do is change the ingredient list and it is up to the customer to notice. At least these days, things like this can go "viral" causing a lot more people to take notice.

    [Comment and correction: Contrary to the above linked article, Cadbury is owned by Mondelez International and not Kraft Foods. Mondelez is the result of 2012 spin-off of Kraft. Macy's Terry Lundgren is a member of the Kraft Foods board but not a member of the Modelez International board.]

    Date: Sunday, January 11, 2015  3:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Good to hear from, you Jimmy Gimbels.

    A few points in followup:

    * I also remember Mr. Lundgren saying that he was going to greatly reduce the promotions under Macy's. I seem to recall that the complaint was that Field's was too promotional, but in reality, I think that was under the end of Target and primarily under the year or so of May Department Stores. Regardless it was never to the extent that you now see at Macy's. In his interview a few weeks ago, he now indicates an opposite strategy--but just think how much better if Field's was given this mega-amount of promotion.

    Lundgren seems to relish his role and the benefits that come with it. While restoring the store’s luster, he makes no apology for Macy’s promotional posture, one of the industry’s most rigid. “Macy’s is a promotional department store. That’s who we are and will always be. The level of promoting this year is not dramatically different from last year or the year before and won’t be next year. We are clearly doing what the customer wants,” he said. The customer clearly wants a return to Marshall Field's in style, service, quality, ethos, and, of course, name. But congratulations to Lundgren on his successes outside the long-time Marshall Field's market.

    * $26 for Frango's down to $19? The Friday and Saturday before Christmas, we had reports of $5.99 for a standard $21-$24 1 pound box of Frangos in the usual flavors, complete with gift wrap. Nice price and all, but stockholders: when did Field's ever need to be that desperate?

    - Regarding the outlet stores, it's an interesting possible shift. I forget if it was a streamed conference call or streamed media event, but not too long ago, Macy's CFO, Karen Hoguet responded to an analyst question about the possibility of Macy's outlets by saying thet Macy's promotional atmosphere is already comparable to outlet stores. Maybe people have a perception of outlet stores and they think that would help them.

    Date: Saturday, January 10, 2015  4:39 pm CT
    Posted by: bettepage

    Career made me move from Chicago in the late 80's. Went to MF as a child and worked there part time to help with college at NU.

    Sad to hear it's been so Macied. They did the same here with Emporium - the California local MF.

    Macy's is so tacky. really sad we can't have anything nice anymore.

    Date: Saturday, January 10, 2015  4:36 pm CT
    Posted by: bette page

    2006 Radio spot on NPR: "The Store Formerly Known as Marshall Fields"

    Date: Friday, January 9, 2015  4:03 pm CT
    Posted by: Jimmy Gimbels

    Oh my friends. It has been too long since posting. Please forgive. Just some random thoughts about those wacky people at Macy's.

    1. Macys has one promo after another during the holiday season. Gee, didn't the once claim that Fields was a failure because they advertising too much and had too many coupons. Of course, we all now Macy's does not have couponsÖthey have shopping passes.

    2. Frango mints are now $26.00 a pound? Whaaaaat? Of course they are put on sale at $19.00! What ever happened to the organic Frango mints Macys boasted about?

    3. Macys announced they are looking into opening outlet stores. Seriously. They see how Saks Off Fifth and Neiman Marcus are making a killing with outlet stores. Macys wants in.

    4. A new Macys opened by my house. I love it. I always have a place to park near a door because shoppers are parking by the other department stores. So few shoppers that the entire mens department has one salesperson, and one poor lady has the watch over linens, bath, housewares, luggage and kids. Once again Macys serves up no customer service.

    6. it's been a while since I took a grand tour of Macy stores. So during the holiday season, I was horrified at the condition of the stores in Vernon Hills, Schaumburg, and Chicago downtown.

    7. Horrors. The former Gimbels store at Southridge Mail in Milwaukee was converted into a Macy's It opened with great fanfareÖ.but the customers are largely staying away.

    I hope you are all well. And always remember, jimmy gimbals visits Macys so you don't have to.

    Date: Friday, January 9, 2015  1;08 pm CT
    Posted by: Philip Eichler

    The annual store closing lists are coming out. Macy's is closing 14 stores, none are former Field's, though the former Hudson's at Northland is closing. ( I think Jim predicted that one).

    Penney's is closing about 40 stores, and Sears/K-Mart no one quite knows, as the numbers keep sliding around.

    However, Sears has announced it is leasing 750,000 square feet of space to Primark in malls in the northeast. Primark is a junior department store based in Ireland with a few hundred stores throughout the UK and parts of Europe. (It's Irish stores trade under the Penney's moniker, no relation to JCP)Primark is known for its cheap chic style and lack of promotions and it looks like Sears is leasing them space in some prime locations. Since Primark's stores will only take a portion of the Sears space, Sears will still maintain a presence in these malls. With Macy's focus on cheaper merchandise, this is not good news for them.

    Date: Friday, January 9, 2015  12:03 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Macy's will close at Northland, stripping mall of last anchor

    This was Hudson's first store outside the downtown flagship and one of the first malls in the country. Northland Mall and this store opened over 60 years ago and influenced the construction of Oak Brook Center. The same architect also designed Randhurst. The closing is far from Macy's fault. The community around it radically changed in the past few decades. At over 500,000 sqaure feet, the store is larger than Oak Brook and Old Orchard, although in recent years, whole areas and even a floor was sealed off.

    Nevertheless, what is telling are these sentences from the article:

    The closure will leave eight Macy's in the greater metro Detroit area. The retailer says it has about 790 total stores.

    In the last several years, Macy's has reduced its staffing significantly at metro Detroit stores. It's not unusual to hear shoppers complain about difficulty finding sales help in the understaffed stores.

    Late last year, the size of the Macy's at Oakland Mall was reduced, as the retailer walled off part of its third level. Parts of the Eastland Store have been closed down.

    All of this side, Macy's is considered by many on Wall Street to be by far one of the most successful retailers this past holiday shopping season.

    Date: Thursday, January 8, 2015  7:49 am CT
    Posted by: Lara H.

    We do not shop Macy's and Bloomindale's. Have not setfoot in the stores since Marshall Field's is gone. Good to see efforts to bring it back.



    N. Bennington, VT.

    Date: Tuesday, January 6, 2015  12:19 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    Here's a link that lists insider trading at Macy's.

    Date: Monday, January 5, 2015  6:23 am CT
    Posted by: Mel. F.

    Glad to hear that I'm not the only one who buys second hand Marshall Field's branded clothing off Ebay. Salvation Army too. The quality is far superior to what Macy's sells currently.

    Date: Sunday, January 4, 2015  2:33 pm CT
    By mikea

    It seems that The River Oaks Macy's may be the next Chicago store to close. The River Oaks mall is getting worse every day. There was a murder at the mall entrance a couple of months ago on a Saturday.

    Both Sears and Carson's have closed their stores. I have heard that shoppers are wary of going there for safety concerns.

    The area is turning into a haven for gangbangers and crime.

    On another note, I was at State Street on the 2nd of January. As usual Macy's seems to take Christmas down so fast for what reason I do not know. They did have SIX BROKEN ESCALATORS. That should not happen in a store with such a large customer volume. There were so many people including small children walking up and down the broken shutoff escalators. The current store manager needs to take better proactive care of the store. When Linda Piepho ran State Street it was a better managed and decorated store especially at Christmastime.

    Just before Christmas I was at the downtown Pittsburgh store the old Kaufman's. The store is in bad shape. It is a large store, but needs work on the upper floors. There was not much customer traffic, so I can see why they downsized the store. However there is redevelopment in the area surrounding the store. The Old St.Louis downtown store was in better shape than the current Pittsburgh store is.

    Date: Saturday, January 3, 2015  8:59 pm CT
    By S.K.

    We missed Marshall Field's this past Christmas. So what else is new? What can be done? What is wrong witH Macy's? Why don't they listen?????????

    Sharon, Racine, Wisc.

    Date: Saturday, January 3, 2015  8:22 pm CT
    By Richard in Houston

    Watched a documentary of Selfridges which covered Fields quite a bit. I was elated to purchase a genuine Marshall Field cashmere men's sweater in the Field's green this Christmas on EBay. The quality still shows in this fine product that was marketed by one of the finest stores in the world. I am still dumbfounded that Macy's chose to eradicate such a fine establishment. Fields was our Selfridges and was internationally known. BRING THEM BACK!!

    Date: Friday, January 2, 2015  1:47 pm CT
    By gle

    I am always encouraged to see the new posts on this blog.


    Date: Thursday, January 1, 2015  7:11 am CT
    By Susan NY

    Welcome back. Phew.

    As time marches on, our culture shifts bit by bit. As one post-er my age noted, I also hope the Return comes pretty soon!

    Our generation is beginning to realize we occupied a golden period in history, a very good one despite the obvious bad things that characterize every era. I hate to think the party is over but the rule of ruthless corporate greed seems to be only increasing. It's like a live gel that gets pressed down here and just squishes out somewhere else, still blobby and slimy, and bigger. Like a horror movie.

    Keep the dream moving along and remember that it is intimately related to issues of education, the arts, and anything else creative. Support the nurturing of a reflective and observant population! Money-grubbing is a notoriously ageless and dehumanizing human motivation; a dead soul does not "get" Marshall Field's!

    Date: Thursday, January 1, 2015 

    Happy New Year!


    Date: Wednesday, December 31, 2014  10:12 am CT
    By Jim McKay

    Support for Marshall Field's return to State Street remains great. To be sure, there are those who have resigned themselves for settling for less with Macy's when they would rather have Field's. But our past survey results appear steadfsat. Just for Starters, we passed out several thousand bookmark-style leaflets/flyers under the clock this past holiday season. There was not one person who heckled or disagreed that Field's should come back. As a recent Chicago HIstory Museum members party everyone talked about how they want Field's to return. And that's just the beginning.

    Still, What pretty much everyone knows is that 111 North State Street is maximized in so many ways when its run in style, format, spirit, ethos AND name as Marshall Field's.

    It's sad for Macy's stockholders because bringing back Marshall Field's to State Street would in no way diminish Macy's or Bloomingdale's. In fact, there are a significant number people who refuse to shop Macy's anywhere when they otherwise would because of what happened to Marshall Field's.


    A new web site and blog is in the works for our site as we continue our grass-roots quest for Field's return. Submittals to the blog have, for the most part, not been possible in the past couple of months. What follows below for the past six weeks or so of items are items that some have emailed in to our attention rather than actual blog posts that have been customary since about eight years ago. This is due to technical issues which have yet to be resolved. We're a small site of volunteers with a limited budget and full day-jobs. Please don't misunderstand that our small organization size means that interest in Field's has waned. Yes, in the general population, there are those who have resigned themselves to Macy's, but the vast majority of Chicago shoppers--indeed the world--wants the return of Marshall Field's.

    If you have an item that you'd like to see here and the posting feature/button above does not work, please email your item to info at

    We'll see that it appears here.


    As noted in our recent newsletter, new events and initiatives that look both backwards and forwards at Marshall Field's are planned. Your support and participation is encourages, warmly welcomed, and appreciated.

    Date: Tuesday, December 30, 2014  8:00 pm CT
    By: Jim McKay

    This past holiday season, passed the 173,000 mark in the number of bookmark-style leaflets/flyers distributed on State Street and similar locations. Please note that this does not include all those that were distributed by those of you who printed your own and distributed elsewhere.


    In the next week or two, Macy's, Inc. will announce which stores will be closing for under-performance. This is an annual occurrence. It's important to remember that closing seven or eight or even a dozen stores is not usually a negative thing from the perspective of Wall Street. Quite to the contrary, from Wall Street's perspective it's considered healthy. Of course, that's not the case for an individual mall or downtown, especially when one thinks of recent years' closings in St. Paul, Houston, etc. If Macy's closes 30 stores then it's a different story. Sometimes, even good stores close if the landlord wants too much rent. (As an example, long ago, I worked at one of the top locations of a major discount chain. While the location was among the top ten grossing stores out of 2,000, the store's rent and crime problems were at such levels that the store eventually closed.)

    That said, the rumors--and they are just that--would indicate that the most likely of former Field's stores to close in the coming years would be Louis Joliet and River Oaks. Then again, if Macy's has to keep its store open as terms of a lease, then they would. The former Hudson's at Northland in Southfield, MI is often on the rumor list. That store has an interesting history as its opening in the 1950s in some ways signaled the beginning of the end of the Hudson's downtown Detroit flagship.

    Date: Thursday, December 25, 2014 

    Merry Christmas!

    Date: Wednesday, December 24, 2014  7:08 am CT
    By: Pete

    Macy's Karen Hoguet is named CFO of the year by the Wall Street Journal:
    Ranking the Top 20 Finance Chiefs
    As Markets Roar, CFOs Find Their Place at the Top

    Date: Monday, December 22, 2014  9:11 pm CT
    By: Judy S.

    There are two things I live for and am sticking around until they become real. One is the Cubs winning the pennant and the other is Marshall Field's back on State Street. I'm in my early 70's so something better happen pretty quick.

    Being an elevator operator is no great feat and surely nothing to brag about, but in my case I do. I was honored to be chosen to wear that tailored, smart looking uniform. I met many interesting people and certainly learned about the store from top to bottom. I will always hold that store dear to my heart because of the class it exuded....especially during all the holidays.

    If I lived in Chicago, I would certainly show up under the clock and pass out leaflets. Please continue your fight. Judy Scrafford

    Date: Monday, December 22, 2014  8:31 pm CT
    By: Sharon

    Still Marching and trying to get her back!  I'm not the only one by far!

    Date: Monday, December 22, 2014  7:40 pm CT


           Newsletter No. 40

           Monday, December 22, 2014


           Thank you for reading the 40th edition of
           the newsletter. 

           May the holiday season find you happy,
           healthy and blessed with abundance. 

           Please help by forwarding this newsletter
           on to family, friends and other interested parties.


              IN THIS NEWSLETTER:

           - What The Ladies Want...MARSHALL FIELD'S

           - SPECIAL REGARDS: "Marshall Field and Selfridge"

           - Upcoming Events for 2015: " Last Christmas at Field's" and More...

           - Our 2014-15 Christmas & Holidays Season Flyer/Leaflet

           - New Books With Marshall Field's Content
           - YouTube Videos Celebrate Marshall Field and Company

           - on Facebook & Twitter

           - Read & Write For Our Blog

           - What YOU Have Already Accomplished:
              Thoughts & Thanks at Christmas & the Holiday Season

           - How to Add or Remove Your Email Address From Our List


           What The Ladies Want...MARSHALL FIELD'S

    Appreciation, adulation, adoration and respect to our Marshall FIeld's Ladies who met under the Great Marshall Field's Clock on Saturday, November 8, 2014.  They simply couldn't allow the Great Tree in the Walnut Room be lit without reminding Macy's and Bloomingdale's what the ladies REALLY want.

    What do they want? 

    When do they want it?


    The Marshall Field's ladies passed out hundreds of our bookmark-style flyers while everyone stopped to agree that things have never been as great as when 111 North State Street was Marshall Field's in style, service, quality, and ethos, not to mention name.

    A huge regards to you, Marshall Field's Ladies!

    It's all but a certainty that our Marshall Field's Ladies--and gentlemen--will convene in even greater numbers next November 7, 2015--or when the Great Tree in the Walnut Room is lit--ideally to celebrate the return of what four out of five Chicago shoppers want--Marshall Field's.  It's certain they will be out there.  Plan on joining them.  Details to follow in future newsletters.

    Forget "My Macy's," Chicago--indeed the world--continues to say "I want 'My Marshall Field's!'"


           SPECIAL REGARDS: "Marshall Field and Selfridge"

    A very special "thank you" to all who attended, spoke, and otherwise made possible our 2014 Annual Fall Event, the lecture/panel discussion Marshall Field and Selfridge, that was held on October 30th at the Chicago Cultural Center.  Our guest and wait lists far exceeded our capacity.  We express our apologies to anyone on our wait list who was unable to attend.

    Thanks to Gayle Soucek, Jim McKay and Alfred Imhoff for presenting the content of the 100-minute program.  Special thanks to all of the audience members who asked questions or offered their own questions and commentary, a significant portion of which came from Marshall Field's alumni.  We hope to have a movie of the event's highlights available on YouTube later this winter.
    . extends immense thanks to Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events' (DCASE); Chicago Cultural Center; IIT Community Affairs and Outreach Programs; and especially the Illinois Humanities Council for making this event possible.

    Illinois Humanities Council
    Twitter: AT ILHumanities

    IIT Community Affairs and Outreach Programs
    Twitter: AT IITCommunity

    Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events
    Chicago Cultural Center
    Twitter-DCASE: AT ChicagoDCASE
    Twitter-Chicago Cultural Center AT ChiCulturCenter


           Upcoming Events for 2015:
          "Last Christmas at Field's" and More...

    Into the 21st Century, Marshall Field and Company was revered as a world-class emporium and uniquely-Chicago cultural institution.  All of this was possible thanks to the amazingly talented and dedicated geniuses who made sure that "There is no place like Field's."  In the coming year, we will have more events showcasing those who are the contemporary Marshall Fields, Harry Selfridges and John Shedds in our midst.  In doing so, we look to celebrate the amazing people of Marshall Field and Company who brought so much sheer joy to millions of us. 

    In the early planning stages are two events in the same vein as our recent "Marshall Field and Selfridge" panel discussion.

    Third Quarter 2015
    One event in the works for later in 2015 is a discussion featuring alumni from the Marshall Field's of the 1990s.  Keep in touch with our newsletter and social media for updates as speakers, guests and details are announced.

    Holiday Season 2015
    Last Christmas at Field's will be an overview of everything leading up to the 2005 holiday season and Marshall Field's. Our curators are actively seeking your slides and footage to contribute to a show of images, movie footage, and music recalling the last time we were at Marshall Field's for the holidays with the hope of meeting again some day under the Great Clock for the holidays at Marshall Field's.  If you can assist our curators, please email curators AT or call 312.662.8980 

    Saturday, November 7, 2015 (Tentative)
    This will likely be the day that the Marshall Field's Ladies meet under the Great Clock to pass out flyers and rally for the return of Marshall Field and Company to its rightful place on State Street.  Ladies and gentlemen, plan to be there in support of Marshall Field's.

    Stay in touch for more news about our upcoming events in 2015.


           Our 2014-15 Christmas & Holidays Season Flyer/Leaflet

    Please see for the complete Adobe Acrobat PDF of our 2014-2015 Christmas and Holiday Season flyer/leaflet.  Instructions for printing and distributing your own can be found at  Although the flyers feature Santa, we're sure you will find them pertinent to distribute year-round for all sorts of occasions and circumstances.

    As the distribution of flyers/leaflets surpasses 173,000, we thank all of those who have made it possible, especially Lucie, Judy, Mike, John, Doris, Zelda, Alfred, Gail, and, as always, "gle".  The vast majority of these flyers have been distributed under the great Marshall Field's clock at State and Washington where the reception has been overwhelmingly positive over the past eight years.


           New Books With Marshall Field's Content

    Please consider the latest additions to the long list of books that in one manner or another connect with our quest to restore Marshall Field's on State Street.

    What the Lady Wants: A Novel of Marshall Field and the Gilded Age (New American Library/Penguin Group, 2014) by Renee Rosen is the story of the romance between socialite Delia Spencer and Marshall Field.  The novel starts with the backdrop of the Great Chicago Fire of 1871; carries through the rise of the robber barons; and ends with the death of Marshall Field in 1906.  While the writing is fiction, the book is based on Ms. Rosen's exhaustive research of artifacts and papers made available through the generous cooperation of the Chicago History Museum and the Newberry Library archives.  Released only weeks ago, the book has already garnered much acclaim from the likes of Rick Kogan, the Chicago Tribune, and New City.  Rosen's attention to historical detail is immensely revealing to anyone with an interest in Chicago, U.S., and world history of the late 19th Century.  The book is widely available at on-line booksellers as well as bricks-and-mortar bookstores across Chicagoland.  Stay in touch with, the Chicago Tribune's Printers Row, and other similar book reviews for upcoming appearances by Renee Rosen in support of What the Lady Wants.

    Mr. Selfridge in Chicago: Marshall Field's, the Windy City and the Making of a Merchant Prince (History Press, 2015) by Gayle Soucek is due this April.  This book highlights and expands on the areas Ms. Soucek presented during our recent "Marshall Field and Selfridge" panel discussion while also providing new information and artifacts.  You don't have to be a fan of the ITV/PBS "Masterpiece Classic" television show "Mr. Selfridge" to be fascinated by this book which promises to consider rarely covered aspects of Chicago and international history.  Mr. Selfridge in Chicago... is available for pre-order now at and, among other booksellers.  Soucek is also the author of two other best-selling books of interest to fans of Marshall Field's:  Marshall Field's: The Store That Helped Build Chicago (History Press, 2010) is among the publisher's most popular titles.  Now in at least its fifth printing, this is also the first History Press book to be issued in hard cover and limited edition.  (Says a lot about Marshall Field's as well as the book, doesn't it?)  Soucek is also the author of Carson's: The History of Chicago Shopping Landmark (History Press, 2013).

    Unpredictable Webs  (Greenleaf Book Group Press, 2013) by Darlene Quinn is another in her series of "factional" books based on the real-life consolidation of local department stores under Macy's.  This installment of Ms. Quinn's "Webs" books is of special note because the story is set against the backdrop of outcry and controversy as an internationally renowned Chicago emporium is subsumed by an out-of-town retailer.  Darleen Quinn writes from her immense experience as part of the management team of Los Angeles' internationally celebrated Bullocks Wilshire department store where she worked with Terry Lundgen, the current CEO of Macy's, Inc.  We hope that the intriguing story line of Ms. Quinn's award-winning "Webs" books is soon translated into a captivating, ratings-grabbing television series.  Ms. Quinn's books are available in print and electronically through the likes of,, and other booksellers.

    Do you have a new book that is relevant to restoring Marshall Field's as Chicago's modern, internationally renowned, 21st-century emporium?  Please submit information about your book to info AT for consideration as a topic in our future newsletters, blog entries and social media posts.


           YouTube Videos Celebrate Marshall Field and Company

    While we at look to the future and the "21st Century Marshall Field's for a 21st Century Chicago," the end of year is the most popular time to look back with nostalgia.

    Chicago author and videographer Eric Bronsky has a new video featuring the historic holiday windows of Marshall Field and Company's State Street flagship.  The video, produced under his "Electropickle Productions" banner, also intersperses a few Macy's windows for comparison.  The new video is at

    While there, be sure to check out Bronsky's immensely popular YouTube video, "Marshall Field's Christmas Memories" at ; With over 150,000 views, it's a bona fide hit.

    And lest cynics think Field's best years were long ago, consider our own video of more contemporary content.  It was only nine years ago that the recently reinvented and reinvigorated Marshall Field's on State Street was demonstrating new heights.  Check out our special 2012 YouTube video celebrating the last Christmas at Marshall Field's State Street flagship in 2005.  Intended as a love letter to the season and to all who made Marshall Field's so special, its message is timeless and rings true today, nine years since the last Christmas gift from Marshall Field's. Marshall Field's was awesome to the very end.  The full version of the video can be viewed at ; (There is also a link to special edited version for those with smart phones instead of computers and tablets.  It is at )

    Please share this video with your family and friends via Facebook, Twitter, email and other social media outlets.


  on Facebook & Twitter

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    Twitter  |  "FieldsFansChgo"  |


           Read & Write For Our Blog

    READ COMMENTS AND NEWS from fellow Field's lovers--that would be about four out of five Chicago shoppers.

    POST YOUR COMMENTS AND THOUGHTS on Marshall Field's past, present and future--

      The URL is


           What YOU Have Already Accomplished:
           Thoughts & Thanks at Christmas & the Holiday Season

    [ The following is repeated from our previous newsletter No. 32 dated Friday, December 23, 2011. ]

    About three weeks ago, we received a moving blog  post from someone named Robert who claimed to have worked at Marshall Field's in the Twin Cities (Minnesota) area.

    Robert's opinion:

    "I used to work at Marshall Field's which became Macy's North. It's good to see the movement still rolling onward. We loved Marshall Field's. It was the best place to work. We all woke up looking forward to the day and went home satisfied, even on those rare days that were less than stellar.
    I'm writing to congratulate all of you on what you have accomplished. Marshall Field's may not be back at State Street or your favorite suburban location. But take heart. The spirit, while muted, lives on because of you.
    If you customers had not protested, the difference would be much worse. Please don't stop. Whether they admit it or not, Macy's put the brakes on reducing other flagships as well because of your protests. You made them take time to learn some things they would not have. If it weren't for your outcry, today's State Street store would [might] now be just three or four floors plus the lower level. They would have even considered closing the store and redeveloping it like Carson's.
    Macy's has also become better because of your fight. While Frangos never really caught fire nationwide, your pressure caused Macy's to reconsider their customer service and store quality. They realized that there were many things about Field's worth keeping. For example, food service was [headed] for a great reduction, even at the flagship store on State Street. Now, influenced by Field's, Herald Square is being bettered...
    Terry Lundgren will still be at Macy's helm for a while.  However, I assure you that many of his current peers would jump at the opportunity to return Marshall Field's to State Street.  That message needs to be sent to Macy's board, and, moreover, its institutional stock holders.  [FieldsFansChicago's] report comparing Field's to Duane Reade, F.A.O. and Berdorf-Goodman is right on the money.  And it's the money that talks, not the memories.  (Sorry to you people who carry on.)
    More than a few in retail realize the massive potential that still exists in Marshall Field's. It could take a while, but it will be back someday."

    We here at believe much of this is true. 

    In a recent interview, one of the organizers at was asked if they were going to write a book on Marshall Field's and the experiences of the past five years: Would it be a historical book of nostalgia or a business case-study or perhaps another photo book? 

    The response? It would be a book about faith.

    As we share another Christmas and holiday season without Marshall Field's, we also know that Marshall Field's --"The Store of the Christmas Spirit" --still lives on in all of us.  At the climax of Dr. Seuss's How The Grinch Stole Christmas, the citizens of Whoville still didn't have their Christmas decorations, gifts, trees and other items returned, but they kept the faith and continued onward.  The Whos practiced the spirit of Christmas any ways.  It was only then that the Grinch's heart was finally moved.  The Grinch returned the Christmas stuff and even joined the Whos in celebrating Christmas.

    While real-life is no perfect storybook tale, the truths are real.  The minions of Field's lovers continue to celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, and the season with the great spirit of Marshall Field's in our hearts, while we also look forward to the future.

    For the past several years, we've done surveys so we can know whether to continue on.  For the past three years, the numbers have held quite steadfast: an overwhelming four out of five Chicago shoppers STILL prefer Marshall Field's to Macy's and Bloomingdale's.

    Macy's advertising campaign tells its customers to "Believe" and promotes making wishes come true.  With millions making a huge wish for the return of Marshall Field's.  Macy's could provide no greater wish than to see that Chicago's Marshall Field's was somehow restored to State Street in name as well as in its unique spirit of quality and service.  The good will and publicity generated would be immense to Macy's executives and shareholders and priceless to customers.

    We continue to believe in our city and the store that was so iconic of Chicago's unique spirit.  We know that you will too.  Thank you.


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    This newsletter and the activities and events described within have NO affiliation whatsoever with Macy's, Inc. (formerly Federated Department Stores, Inc.), May Department Stores Company, Macy's, Bloomingdale's, Marshall Field's, Selfridges Group, the Marshall Field Family, the Field Foundation of Chicago, etc., and the views and opinions expressed here represent only those of the writer.


           END OF NEWSLETTER No. 40


    Date: Sunday, December 21, 2014  10:34 pm CT
    By: Jim McKay

    Thanks to all who made leafleting a success under the clock in the afternoon both yesterday and last Sunday, Saturdays, since Black Friday and on Black Friday. Although our time there was 90 minutes each session, over 600 fliers were distributed. Everyone who responded was enthusiastic about Field's.

    For more details on the leaflets and how to print your own, please see

    Date: Saturday, December 20, 2014  11:32 pm CT
    Posted by: MIA F.





    Date: Friday, December 19, 2014  8:09 pm CT
    Forwarded from by: FROM WWD.COM

    [ From Women's Wear Daily. ]

    Women's Wear Daily Newsmaker of the Year: Terry J. Lundgren
    Two weeks ago, Macy's in the South Coast Plaza in Costa Mesa, Calif., had a surprise visitor: the company's top executive.

    "I don't tell anyone I'm coming. I call the store manager five minutes before I get there," Terry J. Lundgren, Macy's Inc. chairman and chief executive officer, told WWD.

    It could have been a kind of homecoming, considering that, as a young executive, Lundgren managed the store from 1981 to 1983, when...

    Date: Tuesday, December 16, 2014  4:20 pm CT

    Happy Hanukkah!

    Date: Saturday, December 13, 2014  7:00 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Earlier today, the Chicago History Museum held its annual Holiday party where the theme was Marshall Field's. Among the many, many highlights was an exhibit by Amy Meadows on Field's store windows; a mock-up of a Marshall Field's window where you could have your picture taken; and food based on recipes from the Marshall Field's cook book. After the conclusion of the party, Renee Rosen gave a wonderful lecture on Marshall Field, inspired by her new novel, "What The Lady Wants." Aside from a wonderful time, everyone expressed how much they want Marshall Field's to come back.

    Date: Thursday, December 11, 2014  6:05 pm CT
    Forwarded from by: FROM WWD.COM

    [ Extensive coverage of Renee Rosen's book, "What The Lady Wants" was in yesterday's Women's Wear Daily. ]

    Renee Rosen Relases Marshall Field Book

    Date: Thursday, November 27, 2014  CT

    Happy Thanksgiving!

    Date: Wednesday, November 26, 2014  2:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Eric Bronsky

    This time of the year always brings wistful remembrances of very special trips downtown, where our main destination was invariably Marshall Field's. My newest YouTube video, Marshall Field's Christmas Windows, revisits some of those hallowed memories:
    A similar video I produced a few years ago titled Marshall Field's Christmas Memories soared off the charts. Considering that it's been viewed more than 145,000 times, it obviously struck an emotional chord with Chicagoans who prefer Field's over Macy's. Field's fans, please help this one to go "viral," too, by sending the link to everyone on your list and sharing through social media sites!

    -- Eric (aka "Electropickle Productions")

    Date: Tuesday, November 25, 2014  12:50 pm CT
    Posted by: mikea

    I was in State Street on Friday the 21 of November. The windows are nice, look good, and that is about it for Christmas at the store.

    The first floor decorations are horrible. Large green covered pillars and giant stars . Gone are the wonderful Christmas trees decorated in red and colored ornaments. The beautiful green garlands that adorned the walkway on State Street side. The nice trees and greens that adorned the Wabash side. These were mainly Macy's own decorations since they took over the store. These new do not match they Believe theme that they are using once again.

    The tree in the Walnut room is so high tech , it is not even a Christmas Tree. The tree changes colors and colored spot lights. It goes from Field's green to blue, purple, red , white. It takes at least 1/2 hour to see the whole display. What ever happened to doing a classic Christmas Tree in the tradition of Christmas? The blue/purple segment looks like it is a Halloween tree. Instead of spending a lot of money on this high tech eye hurting display they could have changed the decorations on the tree, made it more like the theme of the windows. Whoever coordinated Macy's windows and decorations is a real idiot!!!!!

    Date: Saturday, November 22, 2014  3:30 pm CT
    Posted by: Elizabeth Z.

    I've noticed that Federated/Macy's started selling five items with the Marshall Field's logo on them. There is a t-shirt, a Frango tin, two tote bags (different colors), and a lunch bag. I ran across that while searching for Marshall Field's Collectibles. (I don't shop at Federated/Macy's.) I do wear a Marshall Field's cap a lot (bought at Field's) and get a lot of comments on it. Most people miss shopping there - especially at Christmastime.

    Date: Tuesday, November 19, 2014  8:41 pm CT
    Posted by: Nick A.

    Dear Marshall Field & Co fans..

    Please don't blame "Macys" is not R.H. Macy and Co. that did this.

    Once upon a time R.H. Macy and Co. itself was a wonderful traditional historic store..oh my we loved it. When you walked in it you felt the link to the stores traditions of Olde New York.

    But when Federated Department Stores took it over.. the personal individual old time service was purposely destroyed. Racks of clothes filled the isles that were once spacious and ment for browsing

    It is the mega corporate organizations that are at fault..which incidentally Americans enpower by going to them to shop instead of individually owned shoppes.The great department stores were owned by a small group..or family of individuals with a human character that was projected on to they're business.They're belief system dominated,and it was a human one. What is dominating now is an inhuman..calculating system of base business,that is not human..and because of it..the human experience and humans suffer.

    Many who can easily afford to support US/European made quality..craftsmanship/product not. They focus only on the bottom line,and that takes all the fun & quality out of the living.

    In London there is still Selfridges and they're Tea Room..


    Date: Monday, November 17, 2014  7:00 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Thanks for your patience while we rebuild the blog. Below you will find some of the posts that were emailed in. Most are below...some of the dates and times may be off. Please contact me with correction. Immense apologies for any omissions or not having the capability to post during October. If you post right now, it will appear, but it may take some time. There are also several items that people asked in private emails that they be posted on their behalf (EB's Video for one) and those are forthcoming. Thank you for your patience.

    A few other announcements:

    1) Yes, we will be leafleting under The Clock again this holiday season on Black Friday and on select weekend time slots as arranged by the volunteers. Please email info AT for more details.

    2) We will be sending out a new newsletter in the next ten days. So far our topics are a recap of the "Marshall Field and Selfridge" lecture/panel discussion and Renee Rosen's book, "What The Lady Wants." If you have other ideas or submittals, please email me.

    3) Thank you to all who attended "Marshall Field and Selfridge". Our guest list was more than 65% over capacity but it worked out OK. We hope to have a recap and a video of at least highlights, if not the whole event, on the web.

    4) If you follow our Facebook page, there are photos of our "Give the Ladies What They Want" leafleting under The Clock at State and Washington on Saturday, November 8th; this year's Great Tree in the Walnut Room; photos of the windows on State Street and the interior decor as well.

    Best regards for a blessed holiday season.


    Date: UPDATED on Sunday, November 16, 2014  CT from an earlier post
    Posted by: Renee Rosen

    If anyone's interested I will giving a series of presentations about Marshall Field--the man and the store--in conjunction with the release of my novel "WHAT THE LADY WANTS" coming from Penguin/NAL as follows:
    November 16th, 2014 - Chicago, IL
    After Hours with Rick Kogan
    WGN AM 720 Radio 10:30PM

    November 19th, 2014 - Lake Forest, IL
    Lake Forest Book Store 11:30 -1:30
    The Grille Restaurant on Laurel
    181 E. Laurel
    Lake Forest, IL 60645

    November 21st, 2014 - Evanston, IL
    Mather House
    The Mather
    425 Davis St, Evanston, IL 60201
    (847) 492-7400

    December 4th, 2014 - Chicago, IL
    Chicago History Museum Speakeasy
    Details to come
    Chicago History Museum
    1601 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60614
    (312) 642-4600

    December 6th, 2014 - Woodstock, GA
    FoxTale Book Shoppe 3:30
    106 Main St. #138
    (770) 516-9989

    December 18th, 2014 - Chicago, IL
    Mather House Cafe
    Mather House Cafe
    3235 N. Central Avenue, Chicago, IL 60634
    (773) 205.3300

    [ Additional news and information about Renee Rosen and her books can be found at ]

    Date: Sunday, November 16, 2014  4:26 pm CT
    Posted by: J.E.

    VERY PROUD OF YOU ALL! Glad you are so diligent in working for the cause.

    Date: Friday, November 14, 2014  4:26 pm CT
    Posted by: JasonM

    Went to Macy's State Street recently. Wow that place has changed a lot. It just doesn't have any magic to it. It is very standard mall-like store. The architecture is still amazing but the store itself has a lot to be desired.

    We have not shopped at M since the takeover. Nothing. Not even a Frango mint.

    Date: Thursday, November 13, 2014  11:26 pm CT
    Posted by: Eric B.

    Macy's inattention to building maintenance has been discussed in this blog before. On November 13, an ABC7 News I-Team investigation revealed that the Marshall Field's building was among several downtown landmarks that failed building inspections in recent months. See the full report at

    -- Eric

    Date: Wednesday, November 12, 2014  4:29 pm CT
    Posted by: Wall St. Watcher

    Macy's released their 3rd quarter results today. Their sales were down but they made a profit by slashing costs. The latter is not a surprise to those of us who knew Field's. Customers be damned.

    Date: Tuesday, November 11, 2014  1:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Brad

    I have not been back to Marshall Fields since Macy's bought them.  It utterly makes no sense to force a sub-par brand on such a jewel of a store.  Clearly, Macy's marketing is made up of buffoons.

    To let the Marshall Field's brand go, as well as prostituting the Frango Mint brand just shows that Macy's hasn't a clue.

    Bring back Marshall Field's!!!!!

    Date: [ A Message From October. ] CT
    Posted by: Drew

    To J. Sherry and Patricia:

    Thank you for informing us that Kaufmann's was a "good" regional store or that you may have never heard of it. Chicago has always been a world class city and host of many world class attractions; Pittsburgh has been a mid size industrial city now experiencing growth and renewal. While Kaufmann's was a beloved regional icon, Marshall Field's was an international destination. Just as there is no comparison between the cities, there is no comparison between the department stores; most people realize that.

    I have been a frequent contributor to this blog and have included info about how the Red Star is downgrading its stores in the Pittsburgh area. I also enjoy reading about how the department stores are changing in other areas--unfortunately not for the better.

    May I state that I am personally offended by your comments specifically about Kaufmann's. As thousands of others, I am upset by the loss of Marshall Field's--as well as other regional stores--and I thought blog readers might be interested in what's going on here. Don't ever think that Chicago area stores aren't going to be further downgraded. What they are trying in smaller markets will some come to you!

    Marshall Field's and Kaufmann's were NOT in the same league--and most everyone interested in department stores realizes that, but your smug and condescending posts were totally unnecessary and demeaning. Field's WAS better, so what's your point. I hardly think those associated with Marshall Field's found it necessary to degrade others in order to enhance their own reputation.

    Date: Sunday, November 9, 2014  1:48 pm CT
    Posted by: A State Street Spectator

    I thought the response to Field's Fans' leafletting on State Street Saturday, November 8 (the day Macy's lit the Christmas tree) was really encouraging. I couldn't believe the number of people who gave us thumbs up as they passed by. It was great to see our pro-Field's workers still out there.

    Channels NBC 5 and Fox 32 News did show quickies of the tree lighting, with the celebrity for Make A wish Foundation, but not much else. WBBM radio interviewed a guy who said that even though people want Field's, Macy's IS continuing the tradition with the tree lighting. I wonder if he was an assigned rebuttal.

    I can't believe the ugly gray ornaments hanging down the center of the main aisle on the first floor! That has got to be the worst in decorations I have ever seen. The windows aren't too bad this year, but I wouldn't come all the way from someplace else just to look at them. Traffic in the store just before they lit the tree was a good curious trickle with a short line to the Walnut Room, but not the mobs I remember from days of yore/Field's.

    That's the eyewitness report from State Street on Saturday, November 8, 2014.

    Date: Thursday, November 6, 2014  10:41 am CT
    Posted by: Art

    I was a Marshall Fields Shopper. (grew up in Chicago for 40 years) Now I live in Orlando Florida. The Florida Store is now Macys. Dillards is More like Marshall Fields: the quality and sales, personnel too. 

    Date: Wednesday, November 5, 2014  1:48 pm CT
    Posted by: Eric B.

    Chicago Tribune columnist Phil Rosenthal made the following observations in his article about the opening of a Shake Shack (a NYC-based burger chain) in Chicago: "It wasn't that long ago when travelers might make a point to visit Marshall Field's here, and Chicagoans away from home would want to browse Burdines, Jordan Marsh or Foley's. They're all Macy's now ... It's more proof you can travel the world over and, increasingly, feel like you never left home."

    The entire article appears at

    -- Eric

    Date: Monday, November 3, 2014  9:32 pm CT
    Posted by: Eric B.

    What would it take to bring back Marshall Field's? In all probability, an investor who has the ability to make a deal with Macy's. At last week's superb program on Marshall Field and Selfridge, it was mentioned that Selfridges' current owner Galen Weston made a bid to purchase Field's back in 2004.

    Other investors out there have had success in bringing back once-popular brands. The return of a Dominick's-caliber grocery chain under the Mariano's banner is a triumph for Chicagoans. Here's a link to a Washington Post article about C. Dean Metropoulos, who rescued Hostess Twinkies and other household brands from the brink of oblivion:

    So, you see, there IS hope for Field's!

    -- Eric

    Date: Sunday, November 2, 2014  3:39 pm CT
    Posted by: A State Street Spectator

    Thank you for "Marshall Field and Selfridge" October 30 at the Chicago Cultural Center! Having viewed all of "Mr. Selfridge" on PBS (as well as being a devoted former Field's customer), I enjoyed all the rare photos and the narrative discussion. Wonderful research! I would love to attend more such events, and still want my Marshall Field's!

    November 1, 2014

    Dear Reader:

    Our blog has been experiencing technical difficulties. Currently, what you submit will be received by us but will not immediately appear. We plan to have a new and upgraded blog available in mid-November. Received posts will appear then. There is a period in October where we did not receive posts. Please accept our apologies and thank you for your patience and support.

    Date: Monday, September 29, 2014  1:20 pm CT
    Posted by: mikeea

    I was in State Street the last two Fridays. It seems they are continuing to do small renovations. Handbags being redone along with parts of the 3rd and 4th floors. They have signs all around the third floor stating we are responding and changing to what our customers want. They have moved the St.John shop inside the 28th shop along with furs. the 28th shop is shrinking its merchandise. Whereas the more moderate and trendy younger fashions are taking up more space in the store. The renovated food court looks nice, but broken escalators are still around and being repaired. Holiday Lane is up nothing much different than the past years, except a much smaller offering of Martha Stewart items.

    They need to replace the floor tiles on the first floor. Broken, cracked looks horrible.

    Date: Sunday, September 28, 2014  12:46 pm CT
    Posted by: Drew

    Poor Mr Lundgren isn't optimistic about the upcoming holiday season:;_ylt=AwrBEiT0QihUBDMAO5uTmYlQ
    Our country is facing challenging economic times to be sure. But Terry's great macy*fication of the nation has had a negative impact. How many good paying jobs were eliminated when all the department store divisions were consolidated? How many malls were hurt when one of the "competing" stores was shuttered? How many communities lost merchantile, sales, payroll and other tax revenues when you shut down stores and warehouses? Maybe you saved a few bucks on shopping bags and advertising, but what was the long term effect on various aspects of the American economy?

    Also, Terry, you took some of America's best loved department stores and eliminated quality merchandise, popular services and amenities; in their place you offered a cookie cutter, down market, same old, nondescript, uninspired, chain store. In other words, you took away whatever made shopping special and created another JCPenney/Kohl's/Target/Walmart.

    Sorry that your infatuation with "celebrities" hasn't been the sensation you expected it to be. Martha Stewart and Donald Trump are a sorry replacement for the quality brands offered at the regional stores.

    By the way, you were also foolish to get rid of the various gift catalogs produced by Marshall Field's. Oh that's right...the merchandise was unique and interesting so it wouldn't fit the macy*s model of commonplace and bland.

    Date: Saturday, September 27, 2014  6:29 pm CT
    Posted by: S.R.

    I see Nordstrom is building a store in New York City. It will be the second tallest structure in NYC and maybe even North America, topping the Sears Tower. Macy's is too down market to be to concerned about, but I think it will JUST KILL Bloomingdale's a few short blocks away. Such a tall building will be such a big draw to tourists from around the world.


    Date: Friday, September 26, 2014  9:01 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Just a reminder that an RSVP is REQUIRED for admission to the lecture event, "Marshall Field and Selfridge" at 5:30 PM on Thursday, October 30th at the Chicago Cultural Center. Although we have co-sponsors, from FieldsFansChicago's perspective, this is our annual event in support of the return of Marshall Field's. Be sure to be there. Seats are fast filling up -- At least 90% capacity is taken, last I checked. To sign up, go to or follow the link from the main page of

    Best regards,


    Date: Wednesday, September 24, 2014  9:01 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    I was in the NYC flagships of both Bloomingdale's and Macy's over the weekend. Some observations:

    - Bloomingdale's was well staffed. I was there around noon on Sunday. The store was relatively quiet to what I imagine it much be on a Saturday afternoon. What struck me was the number of staff ready to wait on me. It was very impressive--but it also struck me that since Field's on State became Macy's, the staffing didn't even come close to what it seemed to be. Moreover, both critics of Macy's as well as Macy's themselves have to admit that they COULD run Field's as it should be run on State Street. Someone else recently mentioned and I agree: what is basically two full locations of Bloomingdale's (900 N Michigan/Shriners home store and Old Orchard can't possibly match the excitement that would be Marshall Field's restored to State Street.

    - It was my first time inside the newly renovated floors at Macy's flagship at Herald Square. Other floors and sections are still being remodeled. For a Monday morning, the store was packed. I don't think I have seen Field's packed like that on an average September Monday morning in decades. There were some nice touches--Macy's Arcade looks nice. But, overall the main selling floor at Broadway/34th feels more like a casino than a classy department store. It was overwheming with video screens everywhere. Huge video screens and loud music all over. I sure hope this isn't the direction of State Street, but I fear it is. In terms of food options, Macy's has in recent years had mainly middle of the road, franchise offerings for restaurants. However, they have added a new more upscale restaurant, Stella Trattoria, that is sort of an answer to the Walnut Room. While it doesn't have the grand historic space surrounding a central volume space like the Walnut Room, it sure seems like the Walnut Room is what they were attempting. Don't go there expecting Circassian walnut paneling, but it is pretty classy. Situated along Broadway on the 6th(?) floor, it sort of like having just the western part of the Walnut Room along State Street.

    Date: Monday, September 22, 2014  7:27 pm CT
    Posted by: Anne S.

    Ryan Seacrest Menswear? Seriously? Hey, he's a pretty good TV personality but what does he know about designing clothes? Macy's has replaced real designer names with stars and what they like. I'll give that Tommy Hilfiger is a real designer. So is Martha Stewart. But for crying out loud--Ryan Secrest? Carlos Santana? Madonna? Donald Trump? Marilyn Monroe? Style&Co? INC? ALFANI?

    Give me a break.

    (Response from Jim:
    Marshall Field's was among the first to carry Donald Trump's clothing line.)

    Date: Sunday, September 21, 2014  5:59 pm CT
    Posted by: Frances H.

    Field's was one of a kind.

    I can only think that the head of Macy's had no idea was Chicago and Marshall Field's was all about. No way did he understand that people would ferociously stand up for Marshall Field's with such longevity. There's got to be a kind of denial on his part and his board of directors and staff that it was a huge mistake.

    When oh when will the wrong be righted?

    Date: Friday, September 19, 2014  7:02 pm CT
    Posted by: Anne S.

    I just read a story, I think in the New York Times, about the Brooklyn Bridge. Despite being antiquated and never designed to be part of an interstate highway, engineers, politicians, building experts, everyone agrees that it should never be changed. As one engineer put it, "(The Brooklyn Bridge) is New York. It's who we are. It's part of our legacy."

    The exact same is absolutely true about Chicago and Marshall Field's. Shame on Macy's for ruining that!

    Date: Friday, September 19, 2014  4:03 pm CT
    Posted by: Janiece K.

    You guys Rock! MARSHALL FIELD'S!!!!!

    Date: Wednesday, September 17, 2014  9:26 pm CT
    Posted by: NY Joan

    This is an interesting, sort of odd place on the Internet. With the ongoing sample of comments, years later, it's safe to say that Macy's still gets letters in support of Marshall Field's. Any reduction in the stream of letters is, in no doubt, due to sad resignation of the poor, dear customers, rather than a subsiding in interest and enthusiasm for Marshall Field's return. It's sad when greed and ego rule.

    It's curious to read that Terry Lundgren has sold so much stock. As the earlier post suggested, will he ever repurchase?

    Date: Monday, September 15, 2014  3:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Anne S.

    I remain skeptical that Field's will return. That's the kind of world we live in today. The best is not cherished. Still, I eagerly look forward to the Selfridge lecture in October.

    Date: Sunday, September 14, 2014  4:01 am CT
    Posted by: David H.

    The jokes write themselves.

    (n.b. its an unofficial, unsolicited design)

    Date: Friday, September 12, 2014  3:09 am CT
    Posted by: Polly Gone

    Been online to order the new iPhone 6. Marshall Field's had customer brand loyalty that could only be rivaled by Apple. BRING IT BACK!~

    Date: Thursday, September 11, 2014  9:54 pm CT
    Posted by: Richard in Houston

    I was at a technology conference in New Orleans this week. There were folks from all over the country there, as well as Chicago. Guess what came up in conversation (and all the diners at our table were men)? Marshall Fields! There was discussion of the blandness of Macy's and the obliteration of other regional stores. The fellas at the table do a lot of traveling and it was nice to visit other cities and sample their unique restaurants/cuisine as well as shop at their regional stores. We all concurred that Field's was an INTERNATIONAL destination as well. Plenty of guys said if Marshall Field's were brought back they would blow Macy's away.

    Date: Wednesday, September 10, 2014  8:59 pm CT
    Posted by: Jon C.

    Thinking of that horrible day when we lost Marshall Field's. Still miss it.

    Date: Wednesday, September 10, 2014  5:28 pm CT
    Posted by: :-/

    Hey Field's Fans! Thinking of eight years ago when we marched around the store. When even the clerks gave us thumbs up through the windows. There was no store like Field's and there's never been a response to match the customer outpouring when Field's went away.

    Still missing The World's Greatest Store here! Nowhere else was there such diversity, something for everyone, always special. Yes, I read here now and then about someone missing their local store that became (shudder) Macy's. Really, tho, where are the rallies and large scale talk? There's a reason the conversion of those other stores was announced by Macy's months before while the switch to Field's was announced after the government passed the deal. Field's still remains a missed opportunity by Federated to this day.

    What goes around comes around and we can continue to hope and look forward to that amazing day when Chicago finally gets its Marshall Field's back. But it sure is hard to wait!

    --Retired Marshall Field's employee

    Date: Tuesday, September 9, 2014  8:29 am CT
    Posted by: J. Sherry

    Kaufmann's was a good regional store and they did do good things in our community. Still, Marshall Field's was THE STORE to go to. I don't put them in the same league. It's really too bad what Macy's has done.

    Date: Tuesday, September 9, 2014  4:29 pm CT
    Posted by: Denise

    It's been a while. I have not shopped one iota in Macy's. Marshall Field and Company, we miss you!!!!!!!!!

    Date: Tuesday, September 9, 2014  7:34 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    Oh wow! Those murals are amazing but no wonder they were gone in a generation....the risk of going way trendy is that the effect ages fast. Yea Classic! (A certain Tiffany vault has been able to survive thankfully!)

    I am glad the murals are together in a good place, and hope they will not just disappear someday at a curatorial whim, but perhaps even find permanent installation somewhere safe.

    Whatever fault you may pick with the Robber Barons and other magnates and entrepreneurs of the Victorian and Edwardian least they understood and valued a certain amount of noblesse oblige, cultural excellence, and to coin a term, entrustment.Today we have some, too, who do Good Things, thankfully--- but Macyfolk seem to not have sprung from that root. They are a bit weedy--everywhere and so what.

    Date: Monday, September 8, 2014  11:52 pm CT
    Posted by: Patricia

    No offense meant--but I never heard of Kaufmann's until Field's went away and some people started talking about it. It probably had local charm and all, but I don't think many people traveled the world to shop, eat and just experience it.

    The world needs a little Marshall Field's. We still need it and we still need it now! More than a store, it's part of Chicago!!!!!!!!!!

    Date: Monday, September 8, 2014  2:56 pm CT
    Posted by: "Marlowe"

    I had no idea that there was such a group as this. I'm glad there is. Looking to be at the Culture Center at the end of October.

    Date: Monday, September 8, 2014  12:49 pm CT
    Posted by: Suzanne

    I used to prefer Frangoes to Fannie May. But I've not had a Frango since! NEVER!

    Date: Sunday, September 7, 2014  11:01 am CT
    Posted by: Drew

    Like Chicago's Marshall Field's, Pittsburgh's Kaufmann's was a cultural center as well as a department store. Like Field's, the Kaufmann's family supported the arts and was actively involved in civic improvement. Here's an interesting article about murals commissioned by the Kaufmann's for their flagship downtown store:

    How sad that both iconic landmarks have become uninspired, bland, utilitarian, generic chain store outlets. How sad that communities have lost stores committed to bringing culture and excitement to shoppers.

    Date: Sunday, September 7, 2014  7:34 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    "Ten" years ago a mighty Chicago icon was mugged, kicked around, and left for dead. Meh.

    Boy, that gives me bad goosebumps.

    Yes, wouldn't it be nice to have a mighty Chicago icon, like, say--ohh-- a spectacular downtown shopping destination. Naaahh-- never would work. Macy's got it right the first time.

    Date: Saturday, September 6, 2014  10:39 pm CT
    Posted by: Robert H

    I find it very interesting to hear of the new deal with neiman marcus in Manhattan since you all probably know they also own bergdorf goodman. Also that lord & Taylors parent company also just bought saks. Now I know new york is a much larger city but this still begs the question of why would have been so out of the question for macys to run bloomingdales and Marshall fields in Chicago? It's obvious fields was way more of a destination especially on state street. Personally I think it makes perfect sense to have two stores that would seem to just compete with each other but turn around and use it as a way to differentiate a company.

    Date: Saturday, September 6, 2014  11:07 am CT
    Posted by: Philip Eichler

    A month or so ago, I commented on Macy's rather unimpressive visitor's website. Well, that appears to have been temporary, as they now have a much better visitor's website. Question is: why would a company the size of Macy's even bother with the temporary site? The new website, ties in with the new visitor's centers, which are located in 12 other stores besides State Street. State Street is the only visitor's center in fly over country, all are on the coasts or in tourist heavy locations like Las Vegas. Many great features such as a drop down list of each store with floor by floor offerings, etc. There are a couple of odd things though. They list the Culinary Council under Ionic Events at Philadelphia and Union Square, but not at the birthplace of the council in Chicago. Also, made no mention of Culinary Council restaurant concepts at State Street, which I find odd. Why create them if you're not going to flaunt them? However, for now, it at least shows some commitment to the continued business at a few urban locations. Unfortunately for our Kaufman's fans, your former flagship did not make the cut.

    Date: Friday, September 5, 2014  7:25 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    We now have bookmark-style flyers available for our October 30th lecture and panel discussion, "Marshall Field and Selfridge." They can be downloaded here at Instructions for printing can be found at

    Special thanks to those who donated printing for 2,000 flyers that will be distributed on State Street and elsewhere in the coming weeks leading up to the event.

    Date: Friday, September 5, 2014  7:19 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Here's the photo of the boat from 2007 Venetian Night to which R.T. referred. It has been on our homepage gallery for the past six of seven years and is a favorite.

    Date: Thursday, September 4, 2014  7:05 pm CT
    Posted by: Meanwhile in NYC

    The NY Times says that Neiman Marcus will open a Manhattan store at 10th and 31st, not too far from Macy's Herald Square at 34th and 7th. Bloomingdale's is more of a competitor.
    Neiman-Marcus to Join the Manhattan Elite®ion=top-news&WT.nav=top-news

    Date: Tuesday, September 2, 2014  6:19 pm CT
    Posted by: R.T.

    After a several year absense, Chicago has started up Venetian Night again. While there is a theme this year, back several years ago, entrants made their own boat themes. The one with Marshall Field's was really cool since it was right after Macy's had did away with it.

    Date: Tuesday, September 2, 2014  11:39 am CT
    Posted by: Linda R.

    I can't imagine the Chinese shoppers wanting Macy's. We sure don't!

    Date: Sunday, August 31, 2014  11:29 am CT
    Posted by: Pete

    Macy's CEO Terry J. Lundgren sells 550,000 shares (M)

    Macy's (NYSE:M) CEO Terry J. Lundgren sold 550,000 shares of Macy's stock on the open market in a transaction dated Wednesday, August 27th. The stock was sold at an average price of $62.35, for a total transaction of $34,292,500.00. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now directly owns 413,334 shares in the company, valued at approximately $25,771,375. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC...
    Wow! "Mr. Macy's" sold off over half his stock. Maybe he has something like an upcoming option to purchase new Macy's stock at a cheaper price or some other strategy so he makes a tidy profit. Then again, could he be running away?????????????? Remains to be seen.

    Date: Sunday, August 31, 2014  11:04 am CT
    Posted by: Pete

    ChicagoNow story talks about the recent Glamorama event benefitting Ronald McDonald House. Can't criticize Macy's for helping that cause. Still, remember when Field's hosted Glamorama? It filled the Chicago Theatre, about 3500 seats. Harris is nice, but only 1500??? Another indicator that Macy's isn't as popular as Field's. Where is the stockholder outrage that the Field's name isn't being maximized in value?????

    Here's a link to the story:

    Date: Friday, August 29, 2014  3:11 pm CT
    Posted by: Luann

    continue to dine at Macy's downstairs cafeteria because the food has been delicious, retaining Field's menu, and a number of the food servers date back to Field's. Field's yogurt, in my opinion, is beyond compare. This summer, Macy's remodeled the cafeteria, and moved the hot food variety section to a smaller area, offering less choices, doing away with the favorites that drew me. Most disappointing, is the loss of the yogurt, one of the last vestiges of Field. I mentioned the losses to a few of the workers who, by the way agree, and told me to tell Macy's. When I was inquiring at the Info Desk where I could get a comments card, the girl behind the counter told me she was just a vendor, but said she was curious about what my comments were. I explained the cafeteria changes, and she replied in an unfriendly manner, "Field's was 10 years ago." Actually, it's just short of eight years, but if you don't want to know what the proverbial lady wants, why ask?

    Date: Thursday, August 28, 2014  4:52 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Reflection on what Marshall Field and Company meant to gentlemen in Men's Book Chicago:
    "Field's Day" by Jessie Sardina, August 20, 2014
    The legacy of retail forerunner Marshall Field lives on in Chicago.

    - See more at:

    Date: Wednesday, August 27, 2014  8:52 pm CT
    Posted by: Mary S.

    Hello Field's Lovers!

    I saw a Choose Chicago tourism presentation recently where it was mentioned that Chicago needs more iconic experiences to differentiate it from the likes of New York, Washington D.C. and Los Angeles. Marshall Field's was pretty darn iconic. Now all we have is another Macy's. Stinks!!!

    Date: Monday, August 25, 2014  5:05 pm CT
    Posted by: Retail Watcher reports that Macy's appears to be close to opening stores in China. I guess having the red star as their logo is a start, but given how they don't understand Chicago's culture, I don't see how they can even begin to understand Chinese shoppers.
    "Macy's Said To Be Near Deal In China"
    Oh, yes. Four months to Christmas. I won't be shopping at Macy's. Please bring back Marshall Field's!

    Date: Sunday, August 24, 2014  4:45 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Keeping the faith that Chicago's Marshall Field's returns some day, we always say, "In retail, anything can happen."

    That may sound quaint, but a story in Crains Chicago Real Estate demonstrates that maxim. Due to mergers, reorganizations, acquisitions and closures, Jewel-Osco is set--at least temporarily-- to become the owner of three Mariano's locations -- Cumberland/Higgins, Park Ridge: Damen/Chicago, Ukranian Village; and Sheridan/Foster, Edgewater -- as well as a Whole Foods store that will open on Broadway at Elmdale. Safeway owns these stores and leased them to Mariano's and Whole Foods when they shut down Dominick's. Since then, Safeway itself became the target of a purchase by Jewel-Osco's paren. No worries for now for Mariano's and Whole Foods loyalists: not only do the stores' leases expire in 2034, Jewel and Safeway's combined parent are selling the stores to real estate investors. But to the average customer, who knew? It appears that the stores being sold to appease anti-trust regulators. Jewel's had to sell stores in 2006 when their parent was acquired by the owner of Cub Foods. So some twist in that spirit could make it such Field's comes back.

    Tangentially, even though Federated/Macy's, Inc. sold Lord and Taylor = seven years ago, Macy's retained ownership of some L & T locations until they were sold to L & T a couple of years ago. During that period, L & T leased certain of their stores from Macy's.

    Date: Friday, August 22, 2014  12:38 pm CT
    Posted by: Maria H.


    I just want to say we miss MArshall Field and Company and wish Macy's would let it come back. Please keep trying.

    Date: Thursday, August 21, 2014  8:51 pm CT
    Posted by: State Street Watcher

    Visited State Street today. They are redoing the handbags section in the center of the north lightwell, first floor. It's all walled off. They also have these generic Macy's posters on the wals in the old classy seventh floor visitors center. They are posters that you see at every Macy's store, often near credit offices or the rest rooms. Missing Field's here, still.

    Date: Tuesday, August 19, 2014  11:52 pm CT
    Posted by: M. R.

    Something to consider with retail stores. Its not enough for a store to just make as much as it did the year before. They actually need to make 2% or 3% more each year to keep pace with inflation and also reflect population increases. A 1% increases usually means they are losing ground. 2% increases were what Field's was supposedly doing according to the Trib when Macy's killed it.

    Date: Monday, August 18, 2014  10:54 am CT
    Posted by: Clare B.

    Happy 180th Birthday to Marshall Field! He was born on this day in 1834! BTW: Potter Palmer was shown in Wikipedia as born on May 20, 1826.

    Date: Saturday, August 16, 2014  3:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Karen K.

    Looking forward to the Field's - Selfridges lecture. Will any relatives from their families attend? I guess that they will not announce themselves.

    Date: Wednesday, August 13, 2014  7:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    According to
    "In reporting its second quarter earnings results Wednesday morning, Macy’s cut its full-year sales outlook, saying that the sales decline from the snowy first quarter is too steep a deficit to fully overcome in the next six months. Macy’s reported $6.3 billion in second quarter revenue, a figure that is in line with the analyst consensus and marks a 3.3% increase over revenue reported this time last year. Net income came in at $292 million, resulting in earnings of 80 cents per share — an improvement over the year-ago quarter’s 72 cents per share but growth that failed to meet the Street’s 86-cent per-share earnings estimate.Comparable store sales increased 3.4% during the quarter."

    Date: Wednesday, August 13, 2014  11:01 am CT
    Posted by: Sarah W.

    How many of you remember the ice cream parlor at State Street? We were trying to remember the flavors. Does anyone remember some of them?

    Date: Tuesday, August 12, 2014  2:18 pm CT
    Posted by: A news watcher

    I saw that Terry Lundgren apparently came to town for Glamorama. I wonder how many of the stores in the area that he checks out when he is here. Is he ever seen at Bloomingdale's?

    Date: Tuesday, August 12, 2014  8:43 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    I am on a closet clean-out mission again and guess what, I found yet another little Marshall Field gift box--from the glossy white-and-gold days. Probably held a piece of costume jewelry. Funny how just a bit of cellulose, and another, and another, can weave themselves into the significant fabric of your life.

    Maybe our culture now precludes nice boxes and personal service but something about that seems very wrong. A venue presenting merch that you check out automatically and lug home in a plastic sack does not engage the spirit at all--just a shrug and a so-what, anyplace will do.

    Life will go on without Field's but we are missing a precious bit of goodness in an often humdrum existence. Moreover, LSS, I have seen the argument convincingly made that a shared and valued commercial experience can unite a widespread community--as in the Revolutionary War. As so many here have indicated, shopping is not just a matter of buying stuff. I am grateful to have had the Field's experience--at least we had that taste of civilized glory for a while.

    Date: Monday, August 11, 2014  8:55 pm CT
    Posted by: Drew

    Check out the web site:

    Most of the in store restaurants highlighted are located in former Marshall Field's locations. It's laughable (and sickening) that the Red Star takes credit for establishing these fine eateries--when in fact the Red Star closed so many in store restaurants when they took over all the regional department stores. If a person didn't know better, it would seem that the Walnut Room was a long standing Red Star tradition.

    IF the macy*mart board of directors had any business sense, they would have used the Field's model of food service and marketing. Make the premier locations in each market a "destination" with the popular regional nameplate which would stock better merchandise and offer enhanced services; make the regular locations macy*s which would stock basic, everyday merchandise.

    What the folks at Red Star are doing now sends a mixed message--are they trying to be Kohl's/JCPenney or Bloomingdale's/Nordstrom? A mass market/discounter or a better department store?

    Response from Jim, the Webmaster:
    I believe this is a legacy web page mainly for restaurants in former Dayton's/Hudson's/Field's stores except the one listed in Florida. Macy's and Bloomingdale's have other restaurants such as Forty Carrots in Bloomingdale's stores, the new Stella 34 Trattoria at Herald Square, a Cheesecake Factory at the top of Union Sqaure and many others. The new Stella 34 Trattoria is thought by some as an attempt to bring to the flagship a restaurant that is of comparable quality as Field's State Street Seventh Floor offerings.

    Date: Friday, August 8, 2014  3:29 pm CT
    Posted by: A news watcher

    It is all over the news that the customers had their voice in convincing Walgreen's to keep its headquarters in the U.S.  Wouldn't it be great to see Macy's exercise a wise choice and listen to the voice of customers--we want Field's on State Street.

    Date: Thursday, August 7, 2014  8:19 pm CT
    Posted by: Amy H.

    They have all these commercials from Messay's at the holidays where they splice clips of old movies of stars saying "Macy's." It's never clear if the likes of Bob Hope and Lucille Ball are making cracks about Messay's or what. The clips are too short.

    Truth be told, there's plenty of references about Marshall Field's and they are always of the highest esteem. What caught my ear recently was Judy Garland's version of the song "Chicago" from the award winning album of 50+ years ago, "Judy at Carnegie Hall." On it, she brassily sings a bit about Field's: "Let me cool my heels right down at Marshall Field's..."

    But lest you think that's old stuff, Rufus Wainwright has his own contemporary recording of "Chicago" recorded in 2006. He sings the same words about Marshall Field's!

    If you want to hear both, the part about Marshall Field's happens to be sample clips for BOTH recordings at iTunes store! Check BOTH versions from 45 years apart.

    I'm BLOWN AWAY!!! Indeed, they do a lot of things in Chicago, like Marshall Field's, hat they don't do down on Broadway, like Herald Square Messay's. That's why Marshall Field's was so much better!



    Marshall Field's.


    Date: Wednesday, August 6, 2014  10:36 pm CT
    Posted by: i_miss_the_regional_nameplates

    Hey Scott and Field's Fans:

    Speaking of Disney World, in 2003 Disney celebrated the 75th anniversary of Mickey Mouse. As part of the celebration, Disney commissioned famous people to decorate 75 Mickey statues. One of these artists was Brian Matson, an art designer at - where else? - Marshall Field's! Here is a picture of the Field's Mickey:

    Disney is also known for its pins and pin trading, so these Mickeys were made into pins. The Field's Mickey is listed as "Pin 30738," and you can read more about the celebration here:

    Finally (sorry, one more link), Lorus created a limited edition line of "Field Mouse" watches; only 500 were produced. I do not know if this coincided with the celebration; anyone have more info on this item? While not on sale through this link, Amazon has a picture of the watch:

    As for the "Marshall Field's and Selfridge" event, sorry I live far from Chicago, but this event is sure to be world-class! Best wishes on a successful event and a future full revival of Field and Co.!


    Date: Wednesday, August 6, 2014  1:26 pm CT
    Posted by: mikea

    As Far as Drew's post about other Macy's closing. It would not surprise me to see the River Oaks store closing in the future. Already Carson's and Sears have left the mall. River Oaks also has lost it s upscale customers and it is ranked as the worst shopping center in Chicago area for car thefts. If JCPenney were to close Macys;' would be the only anchor left. The whole area around River Oaks has gone down dramatically. Lincoln Mall on the verge of closing completely, Park Forest closed torn down. The only healthy mall is Orland but Orland is really Southwest suburbs.

    Interesting to see what the CEO of Bon ton 's plans are. A Belk /Bon ton combo would possibly work. Bon Ton's stores are very much like Belk. Most Belk stores unless they are flagships are a cross between Bon Ton and JC Penney and Kohl's. Still sad to see that Carson's not ever planning to return to downtown.

    Date: Tuesday, August 5, 2014  12:53 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    I am registered for "Marshall Field and Selfridge," and look forward to it!

    Date: Tuesday, August 5, 2014  5:46 am CT
    Posted by: Scott Nelson

    I am a former Chicagoan that grew up shopping at Marshall Field's. I loved shopping at the State Street store as well as the Oak Brook and Orland Square stores. I just received yesterday a Marshall Field's t-shirt. I wore it today and stopped by the Mall of Millenia here in Orlando, Florida. As I was walking through Macy's, I did get some stares from Macy's employees that were old enough to remember a name like Marshall Field's. While in the mall though, I was stopped about 7 times by people asking me where I got the short and how they loved shopping at Marshall Field's when they were in Chicago. I thought that was fascinating since this is Orlando, Florida. I work at Walt Disney World so I do know we get a lot of Chicago area tourists, but to actually be stopped and asked about my t-shirt was amazing since most people just walk on by.

    Date: Monday, August 4, 2014  4:52 pm CT
    Posted by: C. C. Chicago

    To Bob & Ann:

    My favorite alternative to Frango Mints is Fannie May's Mint Melt Aways. As for Raspberry Frangos, I don't remember the taste, but I like Ghiradelli's Raspberry filled Dark Chocolate Squares.

    Date: Sunday, August 3, 2014  7:59 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Drew: Thanks for posting. Sounds to me that the Macy's in York, PA that is closing is in a struggling mall that is being redeveloped. With over 800 stores, it's not only routine but demonstrates health even if they close up to 20 stores or so a year. That's normal. On the other hand, closing a former Field's location, especially one that once was a very profitable store, is news. With all due respect, this is not, especially from the perspective of our cause.

    Date: Saturday, August 2, 2014  7:55 pm CT
    Posted by: drew

    Wonder if any other Red Star stores are slated to close?

    Date: Friday, August 1, 2014  7:38 am CT
    Posted by: State Street Watcher

    Macy's will have their second quarter earnings conference call on Wednesday, August 13 at 9:30 am Chicago Time.

    Date: Thursday, July 31, 2014  9:58 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Bon-Ton, the parent company of Carson's has a new CEO in Kathryn Bufano. Bufano is not only a Chicagoland native, she also earned her bachelors from Illinois and her Masters from Lake Forest College. She comments that she has been a loyal Carson's shopper for decades, although she has also worked years ago at Macy's, Dress Barn and Sears and most recently comes from Belk. For those who don't know, Belk is a family-owned regional department store chain in the Southeast that is viewed as being very healthy.

    It's melancholy to contemplate if someone from Chicago like Bufano was in charge seven or eight years ago. Would Carson's on State have returned after the renovation if she was Bon-Ton's CEO during the last decade? The one year Carson's co-existed with Macy's on State Street, Carson's beat the pants off of Macy's, according to more than a couple of rumors. What if that competition was sustained?

    Then again, consider where she is in her career and how she is coming from Belk, I can't help but also think she is preparing Bon-Ton and Carson's for sale to the likes of Belk or Dillards. "Belk, Carson's and Co.?" That could explain why BONT stock went way up last Thursday. That's the day Bufano's appointment was announced. BONT's previous CEO Brendan Hoffman is a relatively young guy who came from Lord and Taylor three years ago and suggested disappointment that there was no Carson's flagship; the previous CEO Bud Bergren was with BONT for years and made the decision that Carson's should not return to State Street after the store was closed for major renovation in 2007.

    Also, I visited State Street this week. The old visitors center on 7 is still vacant and not replaced with anything yet. "MikeA" said that I would think much more of the new basement visitors center when I saw the computerized visitors kiosks. No. I was not impressed. I don't go to Field's to use a computer and I wasn't impressed with them as computers no kiosks.

    But there was a wonderful suprise outside: I was thrilled to see that after almost nine years, an official landmark designation plaque on the base of one of the great columns by the 111 N State entrance. Here's a photo:

    Date: Wednesday, July 30, 2014  11:53 am CT
    Posted by: Lisa T.

    Not able to register for the Field/Selfridge talk. Can't get the link to work. Suggestions?

    Response: Try this link instead:

    Please contact me at jjmckay at if you still have problems. Thank you. Jim McKay

    Date: Monday, July 28, 2014  10:22 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Been reading a couple of books by Marvin Traub, the mastermind behind Bloomingdale's in the 70s and 80s and into the early 90s. "Bloomingdales: Like No Other Store" (1992) and "Marvin Traub: Like No Other Career" (2008). Mr. Traub passed away two years ago this month. Great reads. The first book reads like a memoir but most fascinating is the second book which is like scrapbook. Three parts caught my eye as far as Field's fans go. They are on Phil Miller (highly regarded by many Field's alumni); a paragraph on Marshall Field's and Chicago; and section, almost an addendum, on helping to make the deal with Terry Lundgren to open a Bloomingdale's in Dubai. Will write more when I have time to contemplate the writing. Taub comes off as a real merchant with a heart and brains too.

    Date: Saturday, July 26, 2014  12:14 pm CT
    Posted by: Bob and Ann

    Looking forward to the event with Marshall Field and Selfridge.

    What is everyone's favorite alternative to Frango mints? We'd especially like to know about candy similar to Raspberry Frangos. Thank you for your advice.

    Bob and Ann,

    South Holland, Illinois

    Date: Friday, July 25, 2014  6:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Sandra

    Just checking in.


    Date: Friday, July 25, 2014  4:42 pm CT
    Posted by: Paul. W.

    Good to see this is still going.

    Keep up the good work. Even if they don't bring back Field's, it's not good to let them think most people don't care.

    Date: Thursday, July 24, 2014  9:07 pm CT
    Posted by: I Love Field's, I Miss Field's

    I received the email about October. Looking forward to this. I keep hoping Field's will come back, but we live in such an evil world. Even good stuff doesn't seem to make sense to the powers that be. There's always some spin that supposedly makes it right to do stuff like killing Field's.

    Date: Thursday, July 24, 2014  3:02 pm CT
    Posted by: NICHOLE



    Date: Thursday, July 24, 2014  11:48 am CT
    Posted by: M.W.

    Thank you for the email message about the event. Why, O'Why, doesn't Macy's understand that they are sitting on a gold mine that is called Marshall Field's???????????

    Date: Thursday, July 24, 2014  5:23 am CT
    Posted by: Mary Ann J.

    I can't attend the talk on Selfridge and Field coming up. I live in Florida and it's too far. I hope the show is held again for a repeat performance. Are the Selfridges and Fields invited to come? They should know about this.

    Sorely missing Marshall Field's here. Won't shop Macy's or Bloomingdale's EVER! I tell all my friends.

    Date: Wednesday, July 23, 2014  10:53 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    I'm all signed up. Three months away. Wish we could say the same for Field's return.


    Date: Wednesday, July 23, 2014  9:09 pm CT
    Posted by: Longing in Hinsdale


    I was so glad to hear about the Marshall Field and Harry Selfriges event in October. I am looking forward. I just wanted you to know I like to hear from you and I plan to go.

    Date: Wednesday, July 23, 2014  8:52 pm CT
    Posted by: FieldsFansChicago


            Newsletter No. 38

            Thursday, July 24, 2014


            A Discussion with
            Gayle Soucek, James McKay & Guests

            Annual Fall Event
            5:30-7:30 p.m.
            Thursday, October 30, 2014
            Chicago Cultural Center

            Presented by
            Illinois Institute of Technology Office of Community Affairs

            Part of
            The Collaborative City,
            A Program of the
            Illinois Humanities Council
            In Partnership With
            Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE)


    A Discussion with
    Gayle Soucek, James McKay & Guests

    The new ITV and PBS television series "Mr. Selfridge" has popularized the story of London retail magnate Harry Gordon Selfridge.
    But so much happened BEFORE Selfridge got to London, when "Mile-a-Mnute Harry" met "Silent Marsh."

    This panel discussion considers Selfridge's previous 25 years in Chicago at Chicago's Marshall Field and Company, when "Mile-a-Minute Harry" met "Silent Marsh." Who--Field or Selfridge?--contributed what to the success and the evolution of Chicago's Marshall Field's? And what aspects of Marshall Field and Company inspired and informed London's Selfridge and Co.? How did Chicago's history have a giant impact on London's history? How could two men of completely opposite sensibilities influence both retail and women's rights. To this day, historians cannot totally agree. 

    This diverse panel, supplemented by slide images, will discuss and debate the relationship between two distinctly different merchant princes and how they transformed not only retail, but society. The last third of the discussion will engage the audience in this discussion, hopefully generating fresh conclusions and new hypotheses for future consideration. 
    Gayle Soucek is a historian and author of a diverse collection of books about Chicago and Midwest history including "Marshall Field's: The Store That Helped Build Chicago" (2010, History Press) and "Carson's: The History of a Chicago Shopping Landmark" (2013, History Press).  Gayle resides in the Chicago area.

    James J. McKay has been an administrator and faculty member of architecture and design at UIC, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and, currently, the Illinois Institute of Technology where he is a director in the Community Affairs department.  He also co-founded the grass roots organization James lives in Chicago.

    Other panelists and guests may be featured. 

    The discussion will be moderated by writer and Marshall Field and Company alumnus Alfred Imhoff.  Alfred is a Chicago native currently residing in Washington, D.C.


    This event is presented by FieldsFansChicago,org and the Office of Community Affairs at the Illinois Institute of Technology as part of The Collaborative City, a program of the Illinois Humanities Council, in partnership with the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE).


    There is no charge for the event.  Seating is very limited.  Please reserve your place as soon as possible via the Illinois Humanities Council's web site,, at Update 8/8/14: This link is now fixed.

    If after submitting an RSVP you find that you are unable to attend, please kindly follow instructions that you received at the time of registration or email info AT  so that your place may be offered to others on our waiting list.

    This newsletter, the event described, and other associated activities and events described within are not in any way sponsored by and have NO affiliation whatsoever with Macy's, Inc. (formerly Federated Department Stores, Inc.), May Department Stores Company, Macy's, Bloomingdale's, Marshall Field and Company, the Marshall Field Family, the Field Foundation of Chicago, etc.  The views and opinions expressed here solely represent only those of the writer on behalf of


    Date: Tuesday, July 22, 2014  9:38 pm CT
    Posted by: Steve, Warwick, NY

    Was reading a history book about the legendary NYC music club on Bleeker Street. It's over 50 years. After many years, there was an ownership issue. The guy who ran The Bitter End was kicked out. He opened another club just like it and called it The Other End. After a while he got The Bitter End back. Maybe that can happen here.

    Date: Monday, July 21, 2014  1:02 pm CT
    Posted by: mikea

    Posters still keep thinking that State Street might eventually close. Macy's has just renovated the food court and introduced new menu options. Also a new handbag shop will be opening on the first floor. Who knows what will happen in 10 years. Chicago's crime wave could spread to downtown and Michigan Avenue thereby killing tourism and residential development.

    Date: Monday, July 21, 2014  5:48 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    Macy's already has a lot to answer for, whether or not it chooses to recognize its folly. What a kick in the gut it has given American merchandising. As saying goes, with friends like that, who needs enemies?

    Date: Sunday, July 20, 2014  4:19 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Christyn and Philip: Thank you for the WWD update. Here's a link to one of the versions of the story for those with access:
    Macy's Rethinking Brooklyn Unit's Future
    Sounds like one scenario is that they move into a new store elsewhere, while another suggests that they might stay in a scaled down store either in a renovated version of the store, or a new tower that replaces it--would they do a "facade-ectomy"--where they keep the facade and build above, maybe salvaging key architectural features and re-incorporating them into a new building? That would be revealed when and if there's an official announcement.

    Date: Saturday, July 19, 2014  1:04 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    It's always encouraging to see the posts continue on this website. I look forward to a "Marshall Field's and Selfridge" event.

    Date: Friday, July 18, 2014  4:42 pm CT
    Posted by: Philip Eichler

    In response to Janice's question on Sunday hours at State Street, it was under Target that the store opened on Sundays, so that would be the early 90s. Perhaps someone who worked there has an exact date. However, under Batus, the store was open one Sunday a month starting in the mid 80s. It was dubbed "Super Sunday" and offered incredible sales for that day only. Usually, it was merchandise they just wanted to really just get rid of and truly was a one day sale. It was always packed.

    Date: Friday, July 18, 2014  11:58 am CT
    Posted by: Sandra G.

    It always makes me smile to see the MARSHALL FIELD'S CLOCK on the front page of the Chicago Tribune. This week, that's happening.

    Date: Friday, July 18, 2014  10:49 am CT
    Posted by: Philip Eichler

    Another flagship bites the dust. Earlier this week, it was reported in Women's Wear Daily that Macy's has abruptly stopped the renovation of its Brooklyn flagship and is selling it to a developer to convert to apartments. Macy's is considering a lease back of a smaller space. This area of Brooklyn is rebounding quite nicely with new stores (many are outlets, like Nordstrom Rack), so Macy's was going to renovate this location. The 840,000 square foot building was I believe the former Abraham & Strauss flagship, so of course, Macy's has little empathy for the preservation of this location.

    Date: Wednesday, July 16, 2014  9:38 pm CT
    Posted by: Christyn

    Working in Chicago's retail scene, we hear all the time how people miss Marshall Field and Company.

    I've been following with interest the banter about Macy's long term plans for State Street. It is apparent when I pass through that store that Macy's is doing all it can to squeeze juice from the fruit. While it could be much more lucrative to run the store as it should be, as Field's, I don't think Macy's collective ego will let that happen, even if it means lesser or no profits.

    Downtown Brooklyn is on the upswing. One of the anchors is the old Abraham and Straus store. It has some nice architecture and much hoopla was made back about 18 years ago when the store was converted to Macy's. There were plaques posted suggesting how the store becoming Macy's was simply natural. With the economic, cultural and social renaissance of downtown Brooklyn, Macy's announced it was planning an extensive remodel of the downtown store. The elevator lobby is spectacular. Of course Macy's covered some elevators with retail displays. After seeing that in Brooklyn, it's no surprise that there are closed off escalators and close elevators at State Street.

    So to this guy who keeps insisting Macy's will not radically alter State Street, check out the story in today's Women's Wear Daily. Rumors are flying fast and furious that Macy's will redevelop the Brooklyn store with a lot of condos and probably the obligatory ground floor retail spots. You think there be a Subway sandwich shop or Chipotle or both? The story says Macy's will either build a whole new, smaller store in Brooklyn or Macy's might move back in to a significantly downsized store. Think of the old Meier and Frank in Portland. In the case of the latter, the store was largely gutted with a hotel added on upper floors. The downscaled Macy's is nondescript. That's what I think will happen to State Street in a few years. And I agree with the view that Macy's wouldn't mind closing it. It just won't happen under Terry Lundgren because he would be blamed. Why? Macy's already has another flagship at Water Tower. State Street is not worth their trouble, from a Macy's vantage, of course.

    It's all very sad what Macy's has done to Field's.

    Date: Wednesday, July 16, 2014  12:12 pm CT
    Posted by: mikea

    In response to Jim on the Visitor's Center. Years ago Field's had the Visitor's Center in the Pedway then moved it to the 7th floor. I know the service desk on 1 has been closed since the first of the year. Probably in response to Macy's cost cutting at every location.

    The new Visitor's center is in line with and larger than the new one at Herald Square. Herald Square not only does passes, but arranges tickets tours etc. Macy's is doing the same thing in Chicago, expanding not contracting the visitor's center.

    FYI I was in the LA area last week and stopped at two Macy's locations one in Century City and the other downtown. Both stores were merchandised very poorly compared to the Chicago stores. The downtown store will be undergoing a complete renovation soon, but Century City near Beverly Hills is a poor example of a high end area Macy store.

    Date: Tuesday, July 15, 2014  8:22 pm CT
    Posted by: Gloria M., Chevy Chase, MD

    Every couple of years we looked forward to visiting Chicago and shopping at Marshall Field and Company. No more. Macy's is all over Maryland, where we are from. Why go all the way to Chicago to visit the store we have down the street. Also, I did USED TO LIKE Macy's, visiting their store sometimes in New York. No more either. A bunch of schmucks!!!! BUt that's too nice a word.

    Date: Monday, July 14, 2014  12:44 pm CT
    Posted by: Erin Richardson

    I was cleaning out my attic and found a ton of old Marshall Field's gift cards. There is no money on them but cool keepsakes for Marshall Field's fans. Please message me if anyone is interested in them. Thanks

    Erin Richardson
    erinrichardson23 AT

    Date: Monday, July 14, 2014  4:28 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    "Stuff'? Lots of it? Is Ms McNair using but one oar on life's ocean? There is also lots of stuff available for the taking in dumps, if that is what this is about.

    Date: Sunday, July 13, 2014  10:29 pm CT
    Posted by: Joan of Arc

    I agree with Jim's remark. Clearly MikeA has a connection to Macy's, directly or indirectly. For someone who thinks bringing back Marshall Field's is a bad idea and that we're all nuts, he (she?) sure spends a lot of time defending Macy's. Why bother with with us small minority of those who don't get it? Well, because it's true, Chicago misses Marshall Field's, fiercely.

    Like many of us, I won't drink that Kool-Aid and I won't shop at Macy's. If Macy's had come to Chicago organically, I'd probably shop it like it's other MOR competitors. But because they killed off Field's--NO WAY!!!!

    Date: Saturday, July 12, 2014  11:54 pm CT
    Posted by: Katie McNair

    I don't understand all the fuss. The stores stayed open. You can still buy lots of stuff. Why are you people still complaining. Don't you have something better to do???

    Response from Jim:

    With that logic, why are you wasting your time checking out this site and posting your comments?

    Date: Friday, July 11, 2014  8:07 am CT
    Posted by: Janice Hopkins

    I'm doing a paper on Marshall Field and Company. I have noticed that in photos of the 1890's store at State and Washington, there is a different clock than the one that is there today. Do you know where this clock is now relocated to? Is it still used? Were any parts recycled for the current clocks?

    Also, does anyone remember when the big store on State Street started being open regularly on Sundays? I think it was in the 1990's when it changed.

    Thank you.


    Date: Wednesday, July 9, 2014  9:29 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    We tentatively have a late September date for our annual fall event, "Marshall Field and Selfridge." However, that date might get reassigned to October due to space availability. We should for sure next week. Sorry for the delay.

    Date: Tuesday, July 8, 2014  12:37 pm CT
    Posted by: mikea

    In response to Jim's comment about the visitors center being relocated to the Cellar area. It is much better to have a larger much more accessible visitors center. The 7th floor was not easy to reach for tourists. Also in the Pedway was not a good location. The pedway closes early during the week and is not open most weekends. Also it is used mainly for inclimate weather and during the winter months mostly by locals. The Kiosks were put there by the City not Macy's.

    Also Jim what inside information do you have that you know that Terry Lundgren's successor will consider or close the State Street Store? Terry may not leave for years and the whole retail and economic climate can change by then. Maybe if the crime spreads to downtown and scares away shoppers and tourists the store may close as stores closed in other cities ie St.Louis, Richmond, I would think they would close the downtown Minneapolis, Miami, Seattle stores before State Street. Macy's would not continue to spend money on State Street if they were considering closure in the foreseeable future. I know some Field's fans would still prefer it closed than have the building a Macy's. However unless you have inside information, I do not know how you can continue to make that claim about State Street.

    Response from Jim:

    Didn't know about the Kiosks being provided by Choose Chicago. Not sure I understand or have heard of the possibility of the pedway as a location for the visitors center. The two visitors centers by the Burnham Fountain and on 7 were classy and great. Again, the design of the new one is generic. No one--not even I--said that Mr. Lundgren's successor would close State Street. We don't even know who that is. What I do know is that part of the reason we went in to full force here in 2006 was there were reports from a good source that Macy's would consider closing State Street. Given the precedence of other downtown flagships, I think the same is possible here as well after 2020 when I suspect Mr. Lundgren will retire, given Macy's "Age 70" retirement policy. What concerns us is the lack of spending and upkeep at State Street--the slow whittling away and deferred maintenance. The consolidated visitors centers are effectively yet another cut from closed elevators and escalators to the worn numbers on the Marshall Field's clocks to the unpolished plaques.

    Date: Monday, July 7, 2014  7:08 am CT
    Posted by: In Georgia

    Today is my sister's birthday. She passed away a few years ago. She loved Marshall Field's with a passion.

    In Atlanta, we were somewhat indifferent when Davison's became Macy's since for years it was advertised as a Macy's store. We always had Rich's for the better stuff. In some ways, Rich's was like Marshall Field's. But later, Rich's became Macy's and they closed the Davison's stores that previously had been Macy's. They also closed the downtown flagships, even though Atlanta is a major city with a vibrant downtown.

    But we totally couldn't believe it when Macy's got rid of Marshall Field's. How foolish to get rid of such a well-known, beloved store!!!! We have never set foot in a Macy's since. MACY'S!!! BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

    Date: Sunday, July 6, 2014  5:32 pm CT
    Posted by: Richard in Houston


    I disagree with your assessment that Macy's pulls out of downtowns because they are failing. Foley's Downtown was always busy. Houston has an excellent theater district, the Toyota Center and Minute Maid Park with tons of new housing going up. They never intended on keeping the old Foley's flagship open. Not only did they sell it right after they took over (it was paid for and owned by Foley's when it was built by Federated in 1947) but they let it go downhill in its merchandise and housekeeping as well. Now downtown has no major department store. We are hoping for a win for Strategic Marks, LLC in their suit against Macy's on the their purchase of the trademarks of Field's, Foley's and many others for his intent to eventually bring them back to their respective regions.

    Date: Sunday, July 6, 2014  5:03 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Later this week, we will have details and dates for our Fall event, "Marshall Field and Selfridges." There may need to be a date and time tweak from what you may have heard.

    Thank you.


    Date: Saturday, July 5, 2014  1:01 pm CT
    Posted by: Nancy

    Saw the Macy's Fireworks show for a bit last night. Was very nice. Why can't they understand that Field's is another feather they could add to their cap????


    Date: Friday, July 4, 2014  7:29 pm CT
    Posted by: R.T.

    Macy's Firework show with Miley Cyrus singing the National Anthem? Please! At least she didn't twerk it. An oh yes, sponsorship by Kool Aid which is what Macy's management drinks when they think that Chicago likes Macy's!

    Thhhppt!! ACCCKKKK!

    Date: Friday, July 4, 2014  10:01 am CT
    Posted by: R.T.

    FoX Chicago reports that Chicago is the Number 1 place to see the Fourth of July Fireworks. Number 2 is NYC which is by Macy's. Little clue, Macy's, Chicago's department store Marshall Field's is also better. How long before you think some Macy's executive will call Fox and complain?

    Date: Wednesday, July 2, 2014  6:43 am CT
    Posted by: Nancy S.


    I will buy Frango Mints, but nothing else. Ever. Not from Macy's. Not even in New York City. Never. Ever. Never Macy's.

    Date: Tuesday, July 1, 2014  6:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Darla

    Eight very sad years since became Macy's. We miss you Marshall Field's. We miss you. We can't wait until you come back!


    Date: Sunday, June 29, 2014  8:26 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Wore a "Time to Bring Back Marshall Field's button and passed out flyers at the Pride Parade--only had a few dozen. Every single person who spoke to me talked about how they missed Marshall Field's. There was no hesitancy. That button sure is a conversation starter. Be prepared to talk if you wear one.


    Date: Saturday, June 28, 2014  10:23 am CT
    Posted by: Pete

    Was watching Letterman and some other late night TV. Macy's sure sponsors shows with a huge image attachment to NYC. Makes sense. Just, they don't get that Chicago is so NOT NYC.

    Carry on! Vive le boycott!

    Date: Thursday, June 26, 2014  9:59 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Have had inquiries about this weekend's Pride Parade. In the past, we have handed out buttons and bookmark flyers with a much favorable response. Macy's does not seem to be participating this year nor sponsoring anyone else. Still, I will pass out some flyers. If you ever need flyers, see our link above to the leaflets (i.e. flyers/bookmarks).

    Date: Thursday, June 26, 2014  8:08 pm CT
    Posted by: L.K.


    It's been a while but was reminded of you today. Tribune Letter to the editoreference to the exodus of customers when Marshall Field's became Macy's. Will Walgreen's new owner consider the huge loss of customers?,0,5607578.story

    Date: Wednesday, June 25, 2014  11:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Julie R.

    Glad to see this cause still going! Marshall Field and Company was Chicago's Best Brand. It makes me sick to see it gone. It's a crime.

    I just ordered a used copy of the Marshall Field's cook book. Can't wait for it to come.

    Date: Tuesday, June 24, 2014  9:27 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Macy's had added an additional eleventh director to their board, Annie Young-Scrivner. Hailing from Canada, Ms. Young-Scrivner is now a Vice President at Starbucks and President of their newer Teavana division. No one resigned from the board so Ms. Young-Scrivner is an addition. Based on promotional activity for Teavana in the past couple of months, wouldn't surprise me as to why she was asked to join Macy's--perhaps to lure a very influential Field's fan. Best wishes to Ms. Young-Scrivber. And oh yes, please bring back Marshall Field's to Chicago's State Street. You'll be a rock star.

    BTW: Many do not know today the reason that State Street Field's and now Macy's a couple of Starbucks locations. When Field's added Starbucks, they weren't at all common like they are today.

    Date: Sunday, June 22, 2014  8:25 pm CT
    Posted by: A Reader

    Been seeing ads for Glamorama here and there. It just doesn't seem as classy as when Field's did it. Granted, charity benefits are great. Why don't they do it at the Chicago Theatre anymore? The Harris Theatre is OK but much smaller. Saw the ad in the Tribune.

    Date: Saturday, June 21, 2014  11:59 am CT
    Posted by: Pete

    There's a new fictional book coming out based on the romance of Mr. Marshall Field I and his second wife, Delia. It is by Chicago author Renee Rosen. She is featured as one of Chicago's top 50 authors in a recent edition of "NEW CITY" newspaper.

    Here's a link. Scroll down a bit. Her pic is there too. The book is due later this year.

    Date: Thursday, June 19, 2014  9:51 am CT
    Posted by: Drew

    A similar article could have been written about the MANY in-store restaurants shut down by the Red Star:
    The restaurants and their special meals are a unique attraction; yet another valuable asset squandered in Terry's quest to create a chain of nondescript, uninspired discount outlets.

    Date: Wednesday, June 18, 2014  8:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Anne R., New Lenox

    We still miss Field's and will NEVER shop at Macy's ----- WHAT A TRAVESTY!!!! The stores are horrible. And you can't find help! They dress like it's a funeral. NO MACY'S FOR US! OR ANYONE WE KNOW!

    Date: Wednesday, June 18, 2014  7:29 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    "mikea": I wouldn't expect State Street to close under Lundgren. Too much pride at stake. But his successor would seriously consider it.

    As for the visitors centers at State Street, the previous two that just closed were quite nice and consistent with the historical character of the store, complete with those giant light up Field's clock and a real Chicago feel. The people who work the new center are most likely very nice, but the decor and design could be most any store or any trinket shop. Yeah, like I want to go to the Marshall Field's historic department store to use a computer like the tablet I have like the smartphone I have like the computer I have at home. Yeah. Right.

    Date: Tuesday, June 17, 2014  10:23 pm CT
    Posted by: mikea

    I saw on the news today about the new visitors center in the State Street store. It has been up for about a month, but the kiosks and the other services were not running. It is a good change to move and expand it like they did at Herald Square. They are also doing some minor work to the food court. They need to redo the flooring on the first floor.

    In response to Jim's post about State Street going the way of Pittsburgh or St.Louis. If that would happen, the downtown area in Chicago would have to really go downhill. St.Louis downtown is a disaster. If it not were for the Cardinals and sports and special events, there is nothing to downtown St.Louis. Most retail is gone except for small stores. Downtown Pittsburgh is falling. Lord & Taylor closed, Saks closed. A once mighty retail center is now limited to Macy's. A sad fact most downtowns except for New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Seattle are very limited to what they used to be.

    Date: Monday, June 16, 2014  3:04 pm CT
    Posted by: Drew

    Downtown Pittsburgh was a flurry of activity this past weekend. The annual Three Rivers Arts Festival, Pridefest Celebration, and other activities drew large crowds. New office buildings are being constructed and downtown living units are being built or being proposed. Nearby South Side and North Shore neighborhoods are enjoying a a resurgence of housing, restaurants, shops and employment. Surrounded by all this growth, the last remaining department store downtown continues to shrink.

    The downtown Red Star has become tattered and rundown. Floor tiles are chipped and cracked, carpets worn and frayed, fixtures worn and chipped. Aside from the addition of styrafoam stars and a minimal bit of paint, nothing has been invested in the store since Kaufmann's was downgraded into a discount store. The wide assortments of merchandise at varied price points is long gone. The Polo, Tommy Hilfiger and Nautica departments are exactly the same as Kaufmann's left them---albeit with less merchandise. Lots of empty spaces and display racks spaced widely apart. The seasonal theme is American Icons--the same as last year. Very uninspired plastic frames with generic pictures.

    I was chatting with a salesperson who kindly offered assistance. I said the merchandise was pitiful and the salesperson agreed. "This is the WORST it's ever been. All we get is low end junk. Downtown is building up yet we're not getting what customers want." Also the employees don't know if Arcade Bakery, gourmet foods, cards and stationery, Bradley's Books or the few remaining amenities will survive the imminent downsizing of the store.The store is no longer a destination since it offers nothing special.

    There WERE three glass display cases in the men's department on 2 filled with Kaufmann's memorabilia. Old pictures, advertisements and artifacts acknowledged the original tenant of the massive building.

    It's sad that Red Star was able to take over so many viable, popular stores and downgrade them to nondescript discount venues. As mentioned on this blog, Red Star has closed several downtown flagships. It seems they are letting some of their remaining flagships fall into disrepair--perhaps as a prelude to closure. I've noticed that several suburban Pittsburgh Red Star stores are also being downsized--selling floors are reduced in size and merchandise selections are cut back. Why would they remake successful, popular, profitable department stores into Kohl's wanna be's?

    I would think that the former Marshall Field's flagship is also a victim of neglect and will suffer the same fate as other downtown stores in the near future. It is no longer a destination for shoppers as the unique products and services are removed; this begins the downward spiral. Why go out of the way to venture downtown and pay for parking to visit a boring cookie cutter version of the local mall store. Why would tourists, conventioneers, and traveling business people bother to go to the same store that can be found anywhere USA?

    Note from the webmaster: Regarding this or ANY post, Macy's employees or anyone else are always welcome to disagree with and offer their own opinions. Corrections are welcome but it also should be noted that this is a block promoting why Marshall Field's should return. Macy's already has a huge website with a giant staff to reflect their views and offer no space to our views there.

    Date: Sunday, June 15, 2014  4:17 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    We've been following Kassoff for some time now. Tracking online court dates and docs, it appears that this has been dragging out for three or four years. Just think--all the millions Mr. Lundgen, Macy's execs and Macy's Board of Directors are spending to NOT profit from a highly valuable brand that the word "popular" only begins to describe.
    The Mad Genius Behind The Rebirth Of Hydrox, Astro Pops And Maybe Marshall Field’s


    Stepping way from Kassoff’s candy-and-cookie quest, there’s an interesting list on his LinkedIn profile of 21 regional department stores, including some very well-known ones, that no longer exist under their original names.

    He wants to bring these back as online stores and to test them out as pop-up stores in the regions where they were once dominant retailers.

    “I want to bring back the regional flavor, the regional buyers, the regional feel of these communities,” says Kassoff, “because what they did, is they ripped out the heart of each one of these communities. They lost a lot of money — if you add up the sales, they lost a lot of sales when they went to Macy’s because now Macy’s is just some big ass brand from New York.”

    Just like his candy ventures, his retail brand adventure began with research into once-popular trademarks that have not been used by the companies that claim to hold those marks. Every ten years, the companies affirm to the Trademark folks that they are indeed using those marks, but if you can prove that it’s years since the mark was actually used in commerce, it could be up for grabs.

    That’s how, Kassoff claims, he got the trademark to Marshall Field’s, the once-beloved Chicago-based department store chain that Macy’s parent company purchased in 2005 and subsequently converted to Macy’s stores.

    According to Kassoff, Macy’s Inc. (formerly Federated Department Stores) hasn’t been on the up-and-up with its trademark filings.

    “They weren’t using these trademarks,” he claims. “We have proof they weren’t using these trademarks… Macy’s went to the Trademark Office and said, ‘No, no! These are ours! These are ours! We started it! This has our heritage! It’s our heritage!’ And the Trademark Office said, ‘Sorry, but you’re not using it. You haven’t used it in years.’”

    Kassoff now lists Marshall Field’s, along with dozens of others, in the portfolio for his business called Strategic Marks.

    But Macy’s isn’t letting go that easily; it’s filed a federal lawsuit to keep him from using the trademarks.

    He also says that, in the wake of his trademark claims, Macy’s began selling items branded with the logos of Marshall Field’s and other long-dead department stores that the company had acquired over the years.

    Consumerist reached out to Macy’s for a chance to comment on claims made by Kassoff during this interview; as of the publishing of this story, we have not heard back.

    Plans for these stores to re-enter the consumer world are on hold while the two parties fight over the trademark in court.

    Date: Sunday, June 15, 2014  CT
    Posted by: Field's Fans


    Date: Saturday, June 14, 2014  7:17 am CT
    Posted by: Paul

    The Father's Day/Mother's Day Council announced its annual awards. This year it's Bloomingdale's President Tony Spring, along with New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, Vinec Camuto and Curtis Martin. Among those recognized last year were Macy's, Inc. CEO Terry Lundgren and Bill Clinton. With so few Dads in the U.S.A., I'll bet that one of next year's awards will default to Macy's President Jeffrey Gennette or another Senior Macy's management. I mean REALLY.

    Date: Thursday, June 12, 2014  4:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Saw this blurb on Google News and then in Macy's is going to play the national anthem in all of their stores this Flag Day. Like many of us here I am proud to display the US Flag, especially on flag day--so good for Macy's. Yet, surely Macy's realizes that Lord and Taylor has done this EVERY MORNING for generations? Macy's should send out a press release for when they do it every day--not just a for a one-day publicity stunt.

    Date: Wednesday, June 12, 2014  7:39 pm CT
    Posted by: A.K.

    We miss Field's.

    I don't even go in the store. Not even for a Frangoe Mint!!!!!

    Date: Tuesday, June 11, 2014  5:38 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay





    When "Mile-a-Minute Harry" met "Silent Marsh"--
    So much happened before Selfridge got to London..."

    [ Details Forthcoming ]

    Date: Sunday, June 8, 2014  10:04 pm CT
    Posted by: Paul S.

    Wouldn't surprise me if getting rid of all old downtown locations is Macy's idea. Except Harold Square and San Francisco Square. I remember reading in the Wall Street Journal or New York a few years ago that there were rumors of Macy's replacing the 34th Street store. Nothing is sacred except the almighty buck with these Red Star Jokers. The rub is that that attitude ultimately results in failure.


    Date: Sunday, June 8, 2014  5:38 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Regarding Drew's post about continued downsizing at the former Kaufmann's flagship in Pittsburgh, that's what exactly concerns me about Field's. They may not shutter State Street during Terry Lundgren's tenure since that could be a matter of perceived pride. However, I think it's a matter of time albeit a few years off. Look what happened in Atlanta. They pretty much closed both the Rich's and former Davison's flagships at the same time--that would be like closing the former Field's and Carson's together. And consider what they did in St. Louis. They went from nine or ten floors to three--and then they closed. Sell to competitors? No way! They wouldn't want to see them do better. Their community interest seems simply as far as how it helps its tax and stock situation.

    That's why our efforts continue to make a difference. We have helped to slow the deterioration at State Street.

    Date: Friday, June 6, 2014  7:29 pm CT
    Posted by: A Field's Observer

    I forget where I saw it, but I have to agree. Mariano's Taste Makers is like the second coming of the old Field's Culinary Council which has not been the same since Macy's took over.

    Date: Friday, June 6, 2014  9:28 am CT
    Posted by: drew

    The last remaining Downtown Pittsburgh department continues to shrink as macy*mart plans a further downsizing:
    The former Kaufmann's flagship was reduced from 12 selling floors to 6, merchandise offerings were pared back, and services were eliminated. Even the remaining 6 floors were understocked with many vacant areas blocked off. By eliminating the breadth of assortments and depth of merchandise, there becomes less incentive to travel downtown. Although a small candy/gourmet department and card department remain on the Arcade level, the elimination of these will cause downtown workers to go elsewhere.

    With empty space in the former Marshall Field's flagship store, perhaps additional downsizing and conversion of retail space to other uses lies ahead. macy*mart is competing with Kohl's and JCPenney; they have no idea of how to operate a better department store, demonstrated by their constant elimination of anything that made shopping somewhat unique.

    Date: Thursday, June 5, 2014  4:24 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    The Rain on Macy's Parade: How Greed, Ambition, and Folly Ruined America's Greatest Store

    Ed Finkelstein, head of R.H. Macy's passed away at age 89 this past Saturday. Condolences to his family and loved ones.

    His passing reminded me of a really great book that sets the stage for what eventually happened with Marshall Field's. This book is sort of comparable to "Star Wars: The Phantom Menace" where it's explained, or at least suggested, how certain people started out and how and why they changed. For example, it suggests how and why Terry Lundgren went from being head of a highly esteemed regional specialty department store (Bullocks Wilshire) that prized itself on not being Macy's to...well, you know what happened in our story.

    This book presents a thorough Wall Street-style discussion of competitors R. H. Macy & Co. and Federated/Bloomingdale's from the mid 1980s into the 1990s when both separately went bankrupt because of bad merger deals. It ends in 1994 when Bloomingdale's parent acquired R.H.Macy and Co. and decided that its long-term strategy would be to acquire department store chains and remake them under the Macy's brand. While the Macy's name survived, R.H. Macy's people were largely pushed out of the key positions. It was Federated's culture, ethos and people that would predominate the merged company. If you attended Macy's, Inc. stockholders meeting in 2014, you actually encountered more than a few people mentioned in this book. An implication is that more than a few of the people at today's Macy's have been there for decades--their entire professional career.

    The author used to cover retail, but now he writes on publishing business for the Wall Street Journal. A great book.

    The book is out of print, but you can find copies online for a couple of bucks.

    WWD also had a story on Finkelstein's passing. The story featured comments from Terry Lundgren, CEO of Macy's, Inc. In light of the story as outlined in Trachtenberg's book, I thought Mr. Lungren was pretty graceful in his memorial comments.

    Date: Wednesday, June 4, 2014  11:14 pm CT
    Posted by: Carol H.

    I have NOT even entered a Macy's store since the change and WILL NOT. EVER! As a matter of fact, my family traveled to Chicago a couple of years ago. We walked past Marshall Field's on State Street store on the way to the Park. I did feel tears well up in my eyes as I walked by.

    Date: Wednesday, June 4, 2014  6:41 pm CT
    Posted by: Josephine S.

    Living abroad, I've just realized that this site exists about Marshall Fields. I like what you're doing. I'm behind you. It's still shocking. I can't believe it's gone and should be brought back forthwith!

    Date: Monday, June 2, 2014  6:29 pm CT
    Posted by: G.F.H.

    It appears that Macy's has dropped the optical shops from all the Chicagoland Macy's stores. It used to be with Field's that you would go and get designer frames to go with your designer outfit. Macy's doesn't have that kind of clientele, I guess.

    I did hear they still have optical at other stores, like 34th Street in N.Y.C.

    More and more generic. That's what these stores have become as Macy's. Bring back Marshall Field's!!!!!!!!

    Date: Sunday, June 1, 2014  10:34 pm CT
    Posted by: Mark, Minneapolis

    Nice to catch up here. Wish we had Field's tho. Long for the day when this site isn't necessary.

    I'm very active in Minneapolis-St. Paul's economic development. Downtown Minneapolis is really on the move. I keep thinking of back to about ten years ago when Linda Ahlers and then, briefly, Frank Guzetta was in charge of Marshall Field's and then Macy's North. Remember them???

    While Guzetta was more of a placeholder, they were at least astute enough to realize that a vibrant downtown retail scene in Minneapolis would also help the former Dayton's flagship. They even went as far to encourage the likes of Nordstrom to try and find a location near by. They were astute enough to realize that it would also draw business to Marshall Field's/Dayton's. Macy's seems as if they could care little. They seem to view another store like Nordstrom as competition that should be kept out, lest it take away Macy's business. Hard to believe, but they come off as that insecure.

    People still bitch and rant at parties about how Macy's doesn't measure up to Dayton's or Marshall Field's. As far as most are concerned, Macy's is just another big box store.

    Date: Sunday, June 1, 2014  2:02 pm CT
    Posted by: Shirelle M.

    Marshall Field's holds many happy years of memories for me and my family. From the time I was a little girl well into being an adult, my grandmother would take me to Marshall Field's twice a year… For my birthday we would get all dressed up - shop and browse followed by lunch in the Walnut Room. It was a very special occasion!

    At Christmas time we got all bundled up and would peer into all the magical window displays. Followed by some shopping and of course lunch in the Walnut room!

    When I grew older tables turned and it was me who took her to Field's for a day of shopping and lunch.

    While my grandmother has passed many years ago, the many warm and happy memories of our "special Fields days" together remain clear and strong.

    Macy's does not even come close. Even the Walnut Room is a ghost of itself. Why do they try hard to make something what it is not when what it is is so great!

    Date: Friday, May 30, 2014  11:19 am CT
    Posted by: Ann

    Macy's Chief Financial Officer presented a couple of days ago at CitiBank's Global Consumer Conference in NYC. Karen Houguet, CFO of Macy's, talked all about Macy's long-term plans and their competitors. A lot of it was good, but I couldn't help but shake my head at one point. When asked about the competition, she said that Macy's competition was Target, J.C.Penney, Kohl's, Belk, Bon-Ton, Dillard's and Sears.

    When it was Marshall Field's, the competitors you'd associate were Nordstrom, Lord and Taylor, Saks, Neiman Marcus, Bloomingdale's, Lord and Taylor and Carson's (which is Bon-Ton).

    Yes, Macy's did take Field's downmarket. Just think if they would have kept Field's and its customers.

    Date: Wednesday, May 28, 2014  4:43 pm CT
    Posted by: R.J.



    Date: Tuesday, May 27, 2014  12:17 pm CT
    Posted by: James McKay

    "London's Selfridges Beats Macy's as World's Best Department Store"
    Oxford Street favourite wins retail crown award for third year running.

    This was my response:

    Living here in the USA, know that Macy's doesn't even come close to Selfridges or a number of other US department stores. According to more than a few surveys, Macy's often doesn't rank in the top ten of USA retailers in terms of service. Chicago had Marshall Field's for 154 years. Marshall Field's is where H.G. Selfridge not only got his start, but also made an indelible impression. (The flagship locations of both Selfridges and Field's are eerily similar in architecture, both designed by the same person--Burnham with significant input from Mr. Selfridge.) Field's store was about as good as Selfridges until Macy's bought and converted it in 2006. Everyone -- except Macy's--wishes Selfridges would somehow buyout the former Marshall Field's store and restore it to Marshall Field's. How about it Selfrdiges? Galen Weston could do it, but it probably would mean being an activist shareholder or making a hostile takeover.

    Date: Monday, May 26, 2014  12:17 pm CT
    Posted by: Philip Eichler

    In light of the changes made at the State Street visitor's center, I decided to check out the State Street website. Sure enough, it has been dumbed down. For those unfamiliar, Field's created a visitor's website for State Street after the last renovation. the site had options for both individuals as well as group visits, brief history of the store, shopping highlights, dining, etc. Macy's copied it for what they considered their four flagship locations. The new site Macy's has launched has a generic sort of cartoon at the top of the page that includes what appears to be the Brooklyn bridge, the Sears Tower, Golden Gate bridge and some unidentifiable images. For State Street, there is a very brief paragraph about the store, then a list of all the events throughout the year and what it cost to view the events on a group tour. That tour list is followed by more generic description of the restaurants in the store. Where as they used to list eateries such as Frontera Fresca that are Culinary Council concepts, such listings have been deleted. The link to the Walnut Room menu and reservations doesn't work. This page looks like it is from the earliest days of the internet, not today. In comparison, if you look at any of Galen Weston's stores (Selfridge's, Holt Renfrew, Ogilvy, among others) or the iconic Liberty of London, there are portions of their regular shopping sites devoted to exploring and reinforcing the store and brand experience. These sites have updated seasonal you tube links, seasonal shots of the store windows, how to videos, meet the staff videos. All sorts of things that make the brand special. Macy's has taken the opposite approach: let's take what already makes a place special (111 North State)and make it as generic and uninspiring as possible. What a loss!

    Date: Sunday, May 25, 2014  8:00 am CT
    Posted by: A Field's Fan

    Happy Memorial Day
    Thank you to All Who Gave All!

    Date: Saturday, May 24, 2014  10:59 pm CT
    Posted by: G.S.

    Was in the State Street store today after the Memorial Parade. It was deader than a doornail. The store was dirty. The only nice touch was the flag. How can they claim they are a success, these Macy's people???????????

    These are odd times that we live in. Why can't they give the lady what she wants?

    Date: Thursday, May 22, 2014  5:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Renee L.

    WoW!!! I'm thrilled to see this site is still continuing its support for Marshall Field's revival even though its been a number of years. I'm sure Macys never thought everyone would STILL wante Field's back. BUt that just shows you how little they understand the brand and its value.

    Hey! I get that Macys is in the business to make money. It has stock holders to answer to and dividends to pay out. Given that, why would they squander such value of the good will of Field's? How can they consider it effective to build a force of resentment by a substantial amount of consumers. You have an iconic department store and brand identity! Why fritter it away????? This is one of the best jewels they have ever purchased and they treat it like a door stop.

    I know they say the store is making money, but like others, its apparent that's simply based on deferred maintenance and cut, cut, cut. That only works for so long.

    Imagine if they would have kept some of the best flagship stores in tact. Macy's not only would have shown great tact, they would in fact be dearly beloved. Instead, they demonstrate contempt for the customers.

    Maybe some day, Macy's will have an enlightened CEO who knows more than just two tricks--Macy's and Bloomingdale's.

    Date: Wednesday, May 21, 2014  10:23 pm CT
    Posted by: gayle


    I recently received a beautiful brochure in the mail from a company selling high-end adventure cruises. Imagine my surprise when I opened the advertisement to see the words "Give the lady what she wants!" This company began their advertising--the most critical first paragraph that must catch a potential buyer's attention--with a tribute to Marshall Field! Basically, they said that Field was world-renowned for his superior service and quality, and that they were doing their best to emulate his philosophy. So here, about 8 years after Macy's kicked the brand to the curb, a completely unrelated business has enough faith in what Field's stood for to launch an obviously expensive advertising campaign on the strength of what that brand still means to people. And it appeared that it was a national campaign, not one just geared to Chicago. Can you image the value of that brand and its associated image? Obviously Mr. Lundgren cannot. As a former Field's shopper, it makes me sad. As a Macy's shareholder, it makes me angry.


    Date: Tuesday, May 20, 2014  8:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Fan from Romeoville

    Do follow this site. Thank you for whoever goes to Macy's and asks for Marshall Field's.

    Date: Sunday, May 18, 2014  4:02 pm CT
    Posted by: Mary C.

    I don't think asking Terry Lungren to bring back Marshall Field's will work. He's way too stubborn.

    Will say it's rather gutsy. Terry Lungren is a complete cyborg like figure. Reminds me of the scary face that the Wizard of Oz put on.

    You never know.

    Date: Saturday, May 17, 2014  10:09 am CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Yesterday, I attended Macy's annual stockholders meeting at Macy's, Inc. HQ in Cincinnati where I was able to speak for about three minutes.

    I would guess that the vast majority of the maybe 100 in attendance were Macy's staff, execs or associated. The meeting is conducted from a "Wall Street" perspective--after all, it is a stockholders meeting. My three minutes acknowledged their successes of the past year. Fact is that they are about the only department store stock up significantly this year and that they also have a data and internet strategy that is better than most. They could fix some of Target's problems instantly. I made some cheeky comments along the lines, "But would Macy's want to run another chain?"

    I know some of you are inclined to focus on Field's nostalgia. However, I see our primary cause as focussed on the future. With that in mind, the gist of the second part might be summarized as, "Given your successes and talents in the past year, surely you are talented enough to bring back Field's." I can understand how many of you disagree with that view, but again, consider the context and you can sense where I'm coming from. (Of course, the implication would be that they must not be that talented if they don't bring back Field's.) I have different insights, but will save based on responses.

    No other stockholders made comments or asked questions.

    Best regards to all and especially Gloria, Frank, Zelda, Eric, D., David, Lucie and, most of all, G., for their support in my attending.


    P.S. Yes, it was fascinating to see the Field's clock on the front of the Tribune all week.

    Date: Friday, May 16, 2014  7:17 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    It's been very cool to see the Marshall Field's clock on the masthead of the Chicago Tribune. I wonder why they chose it for this week?

    Date: Thursday, May 15, 2014  8:18 pm CT
    Posted by: May K.

    Hello Field's Fans!

    We recently wrere visiting the Emerald Island, and, of course, shopped in Dublin. While there, we shopped in a store called Brown Thomas. It has a lot of class just like Marshall Field's did before Macy's ruined it.

    So when I was paying for a blouse I purchased, the clerk asked me where I was from. Clearly I didn't sound local!!!!! (-: After telling her that I was from Chicago, she responded, "Oh! What a horrible thing they did to Marshall Field's! We were shopper there some years back and looked forward to our return visit. We were shocked to see that it had become Macy's. What a waste of a great retailer!" ( I do specifically remember the word "waste" in her comments. )

    It's such a shame that such an amazing and iconic institution has been lost.

    Date: Wednesday, May 14, 2014  5:58 pm CT
    Posted by: J.K.

    Pleas keep up the great work. We enjoy Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, and Dillard's stores quite well and refuse to shop at Macy's or Bloomingdale's. They say Mcy's is doing well, but i don't believe them. While you are at it, see if you can't get us Field's back here in Dallas, too!

    Date: Wednesday, May 14, 2014  10:01 am CT
    Posted by: Seth W.


    Date: Monday, May 12, 2014  5:59 am CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    I was in the State Street store today. Recently, I wrote about how the visitors center had moved from the first floor opposite the Burnham Fountain to a new non-descript space in the center of the lower level. It now appears that the visitors center on the 7th floor has been closed and consolidated into the basement. All I saw today was the beautiful service counter and shelves of wood now empty. The Marshall Field's logo t-shirts have been moved to the basement visitors center as well. I've always thought Marshall Field's and T-shirts are a kind of oxymoron. Field's always had more class than t-shirts. At least the Marshall Field's T-shirts would be more imaginative if Field's designed and sold them.

    Little by little, Macy's is widdling down what used to be Field's. I'm all for change and reinvention--as was Field's. But that change always had to be better. Macy's is not better.

    Date: Monday, May 12, 2014  7:01 am CT
    Posted by: A Spectator

    Macy's will have its quarterly earnings call this Wednesday. You can listen on line at Macy's corporate site for investors. It's pretty certain they won't bring up Marshall Field's.

    Date: Sunday, May 11, 2014  1:29 pm CT
    Posted by: A.J.

    We miss Marshall Field and Company immensely. The clothes were the best quality and always fit right. I also like to buy the private label shirts for my husband at Lord and Taylor. They are indeed similar or identical to what I would get at Field's.

    Getting rid of Field's just didn't make sense.

    <> Anna

    Date: Saturday, May 10, 2014  9:01 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Further updates from a couple of weeks ago. I was back in the Woodfield store and Macy's did bring the Frango shelves out from against the wall displayed them more prominently in front of the food service area. Perhaps this was to bring prominence for Mother's Day sales. They also had more Frangos displayed along the eastern escalator on the first floor. Mean while, I don't see how the furniture store on Meacham and Golf stays open. There's few cars in the lot even on weekends.

    Date: Thursday, May 8, 2014  1:11 pm CT
    Posted by: C.H.

    Like some others, I have to agree with those taking a liking to Mariano's. The buzz around the store and with the staff reminds me of the joyful service I used to get at Marshall Field's!

    Date: Wednesday, May 7, 2014  8:04 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Wrote a bit how maybe Target could hire Terry Lundgren or acquire Macy's. Macy's does do a good job on their e-commerce and cyber-security. Of course, that would free things for Field's to come back, right?

    Date: Tuesday, May 6, 2014  7:29 am CT
    Posted by: Tom T.

    I really wish that they would have kept it Marshall FIeld. Every body I know misses It. When will these companies learn?

    Date: Sunday, May 4, 2014  10:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Vanessa S.K.

    Was in Lord and Taylor Old Orchard a week ago. Had a conversation with the clerk about how Lord and Taylor became my favorite department store since Field's has been gone. I asked the clerk how she thought Macy's was doing. She said, "Their stock is doing great, but almost never a day goes by since the change without a customer complaining about Macy's and how it's not as good as Field's." She said they were happy they escaped Macy's and that she doesn't see Field's coming back simply because the stock is doing well, even though the Macy's in the mall isn't as good.


    Date: Sunday, May 4, 2014  4:01 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    "neighborhood shopper": I agree--and on top of that Terry Lundgren would be a hero.

    Date: Saturday, May 3, 2014  9:37 am CT
    Posted by: A neighborhood shopper

    The excitement over the opening of my neighborhood Mariano's reminds me of that at the opening of Selfridge's on the PBS mini-series. I think if Selfridge's was a grocery store it would be Mariano's. I wear my Marshall Field's button (the one with the clock that says time to bring back Marshall Field's)on my new Mariano's bag to go shopping--they go perfectly together. Now we just need to return Field's. There would be a hundred times the excitement.

    Date: Friday, May 2, 2014  6:27 am CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    The FY2013 proxy and report has a photo of the Ralph Lauren Polo department, just off the new atrium. I'm not sure that they have ever featured a photo taken in State Street in previous reports. Still it's a far cry from being noticeable that it's in State Street (not the most iconic shot--you have to know to look for it-- and let alone the clock and all the days as Field's.

    Date: Wednesday, April 30, 2014  2:34 pm CT
    Posted by: Nancy E

    I remember back in the 60s, Marshall Fields made a wax figure filled with chocolate that you had to dig out. One in particular was a gray mouse. Does anyone else remember these?

    Date: Monday, April 28 2014  7:29 pm CT
    Posted by: Sharon K.

    When they switched to Macy's from Field's, not having to have special bags was supposedly a big deal and saver justifying things. Yet, if you buy any gifty things like crystal, they do in fact have special bags, boxes and tissue paper that's silver and white rather then the usual red and white. They could easily do the same to have special Field's bag. Terry Lundgren is all like the Grinch saying there's a bad Christmas light on the back of the tree. That's why he has to take it away. BALONEY!!

    Date: Sunday, April 27, 2014  10:40 pm CT
    Posted by: Kenny Barrone

    Is Macy's really a company that could bring back Fields and the Fields experience? It would have to be someone else I think.

    Date: Sunday, April 27, 2014  10:30 am CT
    Posted by: Stephen G.

    agree with the comment that Lord & Taylor's Black Brown brand of shirts for men is the closest you will come to what Marshall Field's sold, and I have also felt that they may be made by the same garment maker because the quality and fit are so close. Macy's has noting even close to compare!

    Date: Friday, April 25, 2014  4:51 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Macy's, Inc., formerly Federated Department Stores and parent of Macy's and Bloomingdale's stores) has made its fiscal proxy statement and annual report available at its investor web site, Follow the links from the right side of the page.

    Date: Thursday, April 24, 2014  11:49 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    Terry Lundgren to Receive Drexel University's prestigious Westphal Award on May 28:

    Date: Wednesday, April 23, 2014  4:46 pm CT
    Posted by: Philip Eichler

    A note about Pete's post concerning Lord and Taylor's Black Brown 1826 private label. Black Brown refers to the colors historically used at L & T's store for men, 1826 the year of their founding. I believe the main reason for the quality is Black Brown is designed by Joseph Abboud, a designer known for well made products. There is a Field's connection; when Abboud left Ralph Lauren as head of menswear to start his own line, where was the first stand alone department devoted to his clothes? 111 North State Street, of course! Unfortunately, Dayton's quickly dismantled that department when they bought Field's, but over time, reintroduced pieces from his collection.

    Date: Monday, April 21, 2014  9:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Renee

    A really lovely story about a recent Marshall Field's lecture by Leslie Goddard--but the attendees comments are most touching of all.

    Date: Sunday, April 20, 2014  11:04 am CT
    Posted by: Pete

    The online version of today's Chicago Tribune has a story about WGN starting television service. They show a photo of their mobile unit or something. It's from State Street and shows Marshall Field's in the background. March 22, 1948. What a great building!,0,3070039,photo-article-update.photogallery
    Happy Easter everyone!

    Date: Saturday, April 19, 2014  9:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    After seeing how Marketplace was closed at Old Orchard, I stopped by Woodfield and Oak Brook to see what was going on there.

    At Woodfield, there is still the food service counter in the corner of the basement. However, the Frango department has been significantly downsized from what it used to be year-round. When you used to come down the west escalator to the basement, there was a whole area of Frangos along the escalator wall. That has been replaced with Martha Stewart kitchen wares. The Frango's have been moved over to the food service area, only on shelves along a wall adjacent to the rest rooms. The wall is maybe 8-10 feet long. There are a few other Frango displays around the store, but Frangos have been greatly downsized to what they have at Old Orchard. I have to wonder if Marketplace (which they have renamed) will go soon as was the case at Old Orchard.

    Oak Brook still has a decent-sized Frango area in a niche near the escalators and the former Marketplace area. The food service appears to be similar to the basement food court at State Street, although there is less seating.

    It seems Macy's is slowly eroding at the food traditions that were at Marshall Filed's suburban stores.

    Happy Passover, Happy Easter.


    Date: Friday, April 18, 2014  7:10 am CT
    Posted by: Anne S.

    Our family misses Marshall Field and Company so much. Shopping was dignified and it was a reason to come to Chicago. Macy's is blahhhh.

    Someone should restart the letter writing campaign. I remember that they had one back when they made the change. It should be tried now.

    Date: Thursday, April 17, 2014  8:29 pm CT
    Posted by: Ogden

    Dear Field's Loyalists:

    I was so disappointed by the flower show at State Street this year. Remember when the flower show was all over the building? Everywhere, but especially the main floor and seven, were incredible displays of exotic color of every variety. As someone else pointed out, this year's flowers were predominated by the kind of common flowers that you see for sale in a local grocery store floral shop before Easter. The one big display on nine didn't make up for the overall diminished effect.

    I am requesting that the following be kicked up to bold in large type:

    Marshall Field's -- FIVE STARS

    Macy's -- ONLY ONE STAR

    Until next time, call me...


    Date: Wednesday, April 16, 2014  6:14 pm CT
    Posted by: A Chicago shopper

    My neighborhood just got our Mariano's, and everyone as excited as a kid at Christmas. The store is beautiful and busy.

    I think it's interesting how Safeway trashed Bob Mariano when they bought Dominick's, and now Mariano's name is ALL over the place. Everybody says Mariano's has the quality and service.

    This is a good sign that Field's can come back. Don't customers want quality and service in any business? Yes they do! Mariano's proves it!

    Date: Wednesday, April 16, 2014  5:23 pm CT
    Posted by: gle




    (Yes, I believe Spring can come back too)!


    Date: Tuesday, April 15, 2014  6:39 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    In response to Drew's post, I've heard supporters of Field's restoration come down on both sides of the minimum wage issue. However, I understand that one way Macy's saved expenses at former Field's stores is by giving retirement packages to more than a few long-time full-time employees and replacing them with less experienced part-timers who are paid much lower. Last I heard, my understanding is that Macy's in Chicago pay more than the current minimum wage and more than Carson's.

    Date: Tuesday, April 15, 2014  2:24 pm CT
    Posted by: drew

    So Lundgren is against raising the minimum wage to avoid cutting jobs. What about the THOUSANDS of jobs that have been lost since he took over; didn't he eliminate something like 2,500 jobs just this year?
    Lundgren believes that HE is worth the outrageous salary he is making. All he did was "magically" create yet ANOTHER nationwide chain of nondescript discount department stores to compete with JCPenney, Kohl's and Target.

    Date: Monday, April 14, 2014  8:38 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    I miss Marshall Field's brand dress shirts. A good substitute has been Lord and Taylor's Black Brown brand shirts which I swear are made by the same people as the Field's men's shirts. They just as perfectly and have great detailing and stitching.

    Marshall Field's had clothes that really fit to a T.

    Date: Sunday, April 13, 2014  1:13 pm CT
    Posted by: Ed G.

    I am glad this site keeps going. I check in from time to time.

    As far as Macy's new President, there's another possibility. It's kind of odd to have the same person hold all these three positions for so long, over ten years. Perhaps some stock holders behind the scenes want the leadership divided. Gennette is a long-time insider clearly loyal to Lundgren. Making Gennette President could be going through the motions of having the titles shared, but in reality, Gennette is probably a runner stamp. Just speculation.

    That said, Macy's is just another store. Really miss Field's.

    Date: Friday, April 11, 2014  8:29 pm CT
    Posted by: Mark, WI

    To put it bluntly, Macy's sucks.  The more I look at their crummy clothing, not to mention their haphazard stores, the more I am reminded of the quality and style of Marshall Field's clothing.  I have a suit from Field's and some ties, along with the Field's bags and boxes they came in.  I am proud of the things I bought at Field's, and I will never discard a single one.  Never.

    I wish you the best in bringing this great store back to life. Proud to spread the word.

    Date: Thursday, April 10, 2014  6:21 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhh sigh.

    Just when you think they can't sink lower, they do. I don't understand how anyone can think Macy's equals Field's in any way except for occupying the same earthly footprint. Big deal.

    Even the lesser department stores here in NY state are so bland and uninteresting, or so trendy and silly, that I lost interest, years ago. I am old enough to recognize the general loss of quality without commensurate lowering of price. Meh.

    Date: Wednesday, April 9 2014  8:52 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    There's been some problems with the blog over the past several weeks. I'm in the process of getting the posts from late February through today restored as best that I can. Look for more posts to be restored in the next day. These will cover March 18-April 9, 2014. Thank you for your support and patience.

    Best regards,

    Jim McKay

    Date: Tuesday, April 8, 2014  7:24 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Walked around the State Street store this afternoon. There have been some changes.

    Last week, I noticed that the visitors center in the new atrium, opposite the Burnham Fountain was gone. This is where they had the large maybe three-foot diameter light up Marshall Field's clock. You can still see the same or similar clock replica up on the 7th floor. This visitors center has been replaced by a new one that sells Chicago souvenirs -- and lot of Macy's bags-- on the lower level center/south, west of kitchen utensils and small appliances and north of the greeting cards. The visitors desk is much larger. but it's backed not by a Field's clock. Instead, it shows Chicago's skyline with a Macy's logo and the stylized printing of the word "Chicago" from "Choose Chicago." It's kind of weird. Macy's red star, as many of you know, is tied to the history of Dutch and NYC sea merchants. For hundreds of years, the red star is a symbol of NYC. Just like the many "Macy's Chicago" bags they sell, there is so much irony is having a symbol of New York dominate something that supposedly promotes Chicago. The space itself isn't all that special. Yes, it's shiny and new, but take away the superficial posters and the decor is such that it could be a gift shop that is anywhere. Really too bad as Macy's whittles away at what was and could still be a first rate, unique destination making more money than it is now, not to mention benefitting and inspiring people. I'm sure there will be some favorable P.R., but then one thinks about what was taken away and one realizes what has been lost.

    Another change is that it appears Wrigleyville Sports is out at State Street. It appears that a leased Lids sports apparel shop has been added opposite InFields. The Lids shops are being added to select Macy's stores nationwide. They did a huge promotion at Herald Square around the time of the Super Bowl. Again, shiny and new--but not all that unique.

    Date: Sunday, April 6, 2014  12:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Nancy

    Target has Fieldcrest towels on sale this week. I'm stocking up! Glad that they kept the Marshall Field brand.

    Date: Friday, April 4, 2014  7:12 am CT
    Posted by: Pam Q.

    Mariano's grocery has been all the rage here in Chicago. The new grocery chain run by former Dominick's head is sublime. I've heard a few times among people and the news and even on twitter that Mariano's compares favorably with Field's.



    Date: Thursday, April 3, 2014  9:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Comments on a few recent posts:

    -- Immediately following the season premier of "Masterpiece Class: Mr. Selfridge", WTTW11 aired a special 30-minute documentary--twice in a row--on the history of Harry Selfridge, his start and the modern day Selfridges. Good overview, clearly a P.R. piece from Galen Weston Limited, the current owner of the store. Galen Weston is based in Canada. The bulk of the documentary is, understandably, Selfridges in London. It opens with a couple of minutes about Harry Selfridge's difficult life growing up in Michigan and then moving to Chicago where he worked for Marshall Field for 25 years. It's mostly accurate, but it does leave out some details--such as talk about his Chicago store--and gets the photos wrong when it talks about the Marshall Field's where Harry worked. Nevertheless, it's a good source.

    -- Regarding the flower show, I do check it out every year. How can bunches of flowers NOT be gorgeous!? In a number of ways, it makes a lot of sense to have much of the show concentrated in one spot. Doing so provides maximum visual impact; lures viewers and potential customers to travel through the store to the ninth floor; and the whole store does not have to be kept at below average temperatures to keep the flowers from wilting, something the employees appreciate while also saving energy.

    I thought Macy's two-page ad spread for the flower show looked wonderful. It was spread across the center two pages in the Chicago Tribune and was gorgeous. Yet, I don't think the show was as nice as the ad.

    Yet, in a lot of ways, this isn't all too different in spirit from the Christmas store windows of the past couple of years. Remember last Christmas, people were thrilled and excited to see what seemed to be Marshall Field's depicted in the windows. But then when you stopped to think about it, you realized that it was rather sad that people were excited about something -- Marshall Field's--that should be a given. The windows wouldn't be all that exciting if Macy's hadn't taken away Marshall Field's in the first place. Moreover, save for the "Marshall Field and Company" plaques in one scene, Macy's wouldn't mention Marshall Field's and substituted "111 N State" instead. And then you realize that the budget was significantly less than what used to be spent on the windows, all the while realizing that the Herald Square (34th Street) flagship in NYC had a gigantic budget by comparison. What seemed great at first, ended up feeling like leftovers and taking what we could get of what we really wanted.

    It's just my opinion, but there's a similar spirit to the flower show. The flowers look great--most flowers do. But then you realize that there really wasn't that much that was exotic and it seemed that concentrating them allowed them to have fewer flowers overall. Fuschia azaleas, tulips, gerberas, tropical house plants and handful of others predominated. Nice, but there're everywhere. And then it seemed a lot of the set for the show was recycled from previous years. And if they didn't concentrate the flowers, there'd be fewer flowers than a few years back. And then I realized that they no longer support Chicago's Annual Flower Show at Navy Pier. Thinking of Christmas, I wondered how did Chicago's show compare with the budget for the show in NYC. So again, Macy's seems to slowly switch out what was so great about Field's and people start settling for what isn't quite as good as it used to be, settling for Macy's instead of Field's.

    -- Did some research on Jeffrey Gennette. Save for a couple of stints, he's been at Macy's for the past 30 years. Mr. Lundgren is saying he will still be around for years. Mr. Gennette will especially focus on taking on more responsibility for private label merchandise. Given that the new President is in his early 50s and the CEO won't be going anywhere for a few more years, I read it as simply giving Gennette something to keep him from going elsewhere so he can advance his career. I am simply speculating as outsider, but I don't think much of anything will be different in the immediate future. Just my two cents.

    Speaking of private labels and lines, I sure wish I could buy a Marshal Field's labeled dress shirt. Ditto for Field Gear which always fit perfectly.

    Best regards.

    Date: Tuesday, April 1, 2014  6:57 pm CT
    Posted by: Alex in Reno, NV

    Marshall Field's is so important to me! You guys rock! Play ball!

    Date: Tuesday, April 1, 2014  4:15 pm CT
    Posted by: Rhonda M.

    Give the lady what she wants! Marshall Field's!

    Date: Monday, March 31, 2014  4:15 pm CT
    Posted by: E.

    As you surely know, I am NOT a fan of Macy's and I will not buy anything in their stores. Wandering through what used to be Marshall Field's proud flagship on State Street is depressing. However, this past Friday I put on my blinders and breezed through the store to view Macy's annual Flower Show, which I have to admit was very pretty. This year's theme is The Secret Garden.

    Nowadays, the Flower Show is set up in space on the 9th floor that's normally vacant except for special exhibits. Much of this floor currently houses the Human Resources Department and some executive offices, but many years ago the housewares and appliance departments were located on 9. Some escalators and elevators still service this floor.

    Date: Monday, March 31, 2014  3:46 pm CT
    Posted by: Philip Eichler

    Jeffrey Gennette has assumed the role of president of Macy's, while Terry Lundgren remains as ceo and chairman. Thus, it might appear that Terry Lundgren's successor has emerged. Gennette has been in retail for three decades, most recently has held the title of chief merchant for Macy's. Previously, he was the head of Macy's West and Macy's Northwest. I find his background promising, however, he is also now the chief of private brands. That additional position says to me that there will be more Alfani than less.

    Date: Sunday, March 30, 2014  6:50 pm CT
    Posted by: Renee

    When Harry Selfridge worked at Marshall Field's, his nickname was Mile-a-Minute Harry.

    (Tonight starts the second season of Mr. Selfridge on PBS. The second season has already aired in the UK.)

    Date: Sunday, March 30, 2014  4:42 pm CT
    Posted by: Carol

    Missing Marshall Field's here in California! Won't shop Macy's anywhere. Just plain wrong what they did to that store!

    Date: Saturday, March 29, 2014  4:10 pm CT
    Posted by: A State Street Spectator

    I got to Macy's "Secret Garden" flower show Friday after work. It is definitely a secret, being all the way on the 9th floor and you have to walk through several areas of springtime gift shop items (t-shirts, soaps and candles, gardening books, etc.), special drawings, and works by a chalk artist before you finally arrive at the exhibit area. The exhibit did appear well done and generally tasteful. (Though I did not like one display showing blue mannequin legs sticking upside down in a pond with flowers on the feet.) A wide variety of foliage nicely filled a rather small space, and most of it still looked fresh after being up a week. The flowers seemed better cared for than when the exhibit sprawled down the main floor aisles. However, I still remember and miss the Marshall Field's flower show that was like an explosion of spring on the main floor and never seemed to wilt.

    Happy Spring to Field's Fans!

    Date: Thursday, March 27, 2014  6:56 pm CT
    Posted by: JasonM

    Chicago's unique language. Look at #13 :) Miss it so much.
    22 Words That Have A Completely Different Meaning In Chicago

    Date: Tuesday, March 25, 2014  10:26 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    The second season of Mr. Selfridge starts this Sunday. Not crazy about the melodrama, but love seeing a building that looks and feels like Marshall Field's.

    Date: Tuesday, March 25, 2014  1:42 pm CT
    Posted by: Anne Kraus

    Sarah Jessica Parker is introducing a new line of shoes. The "Sex and the City" star's shoes will be at Nordstrom--not Macy's. Guess that says a lot about the New York based retailer.

    Date: Saturday, March 22, 2014  1:42 pm CT
    Posted by: A PBS watcher

    Harry Gordon Selfridge's Chicago connection and Marshall Field's recently came up on "Ask Geoffrey" on PBS "Chicago Tonight."

    According to PBS expert Geoffrey Baer, Selfridge began as a stockboy at Field's Leiter & Co. After 25 years he worked his way to junior partner and was given an interest in the store. Selfridge is cedited with well-known Field's innovations such as the exceptional customer service, uncluttered displays and tempting bargains. He was also behind the tea service that developed into the Walnut Room. In 1904 Selfridge left Field's and sold his interest, and purchased the Louis Sullivan building at State and Madison. After 8 weeks he sold his interest in the building to Otto Young. A cartoon shows Selfridige reputed for "carved up" the Schlesinger and Meyer department store and serving it to Carson's.

    Selfridge moved to England with the money from the sale. He then hired architecht Daniel Burnham to design his London store that looks very much like Marshall Fields.

    The PBS drama "Mr. Selfridge" which begins a second season March 30 is sparking interest in Harry Gordon Selfridge, which of course includes Marshall Field's.

    A link to the "Ask Geoffrey" interview is:

    Date: Friday, March 21, 2014  1:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Fields Fan

    All stockholders of record as of the close of today are eligible to attend the annual meeting. It is expected to be Friday, May 16, 2014.

    Date: Wednesday, March 19, 2014  7:18 pm CT
    Posted by: R.K.

    We miss Marshall Field and Company. It was always a reason that we came to Chicago. I wish that they would bring it back.

    Date: Monday, March 17, 2014  8:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay was again out for Chicago's annual St. Patrick's Day parade on Columbus Drive through Grant Park. The parade was more packed than ever and moving around was hard. Nevertheless, over 200 bookmark flyers were distributed to enthusiastic Field's supporters and boosters in the short period of about 20 minutes. Below are a few photos.

    As always, Chicago STILL wants its Marshall Field's!

    Date: Saturday, March 15, 2014  1:44 pm CT
    Posted by: gle


    Date: Friday, March 14, 2014  2:26 pm CT
    Posted by: John M.

    Add me to the Field's supporters' list.

    Macy's TRIED to win me with THEIR shirts...but it's Marshall Field's Field Gear/Big Shirt that was PERFECT.

    Macy's wouldn't even let me know where they were made. I'd have bought a truckload!!

    Date: Tuesday, March 11, 2014  12:29 pm CT
    Posted by: Gail

    Sure appears Frangos are the big bait to get people in the door at Macy's that we're once Field's. With the right coupon and all, you could get Frangos for about $8.75 a box. I like value, but not from Macy's. Field's never had to bait people to shop there.

    Date: Saturday, March 8, 2014  8:57 pm CT
    Posted by: drew

    Along with the TV commercials screaming sale prices on various merchandise and the avalanche of coupons and WOW passes, macy*mart says to me that it is further transitioning to a discount store model.

    Date: Friday, March 7, 2014  7:03 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Old Orchard has discontinued the Marketplace food service on the lower level. The candy counter and Frango area remains. There's an outpost of Frontera on the first floor adjacent to the southeast entrance off "The Cube."

    Remember when Field's was all about food? A sad loss, I can't help but think Oak Brook will be next to lose their food service.

    Slowly but surely Macy's is making the former Field's stores more and more conventional. A real loss to all in the long run, even Macy's.

    Date: Wednesday, March 5, 2014  7:03 pm CT
    Posted by: M.Dresden

    I saw something about Macy's "Week of Wonderful". As Field's, the store was wonderful all the time, year-round, year after year, decade after decade.

    Those fools at Macy's don't recognize a good thing when they have it.

    Date: Monday, March 3, 2014  9:40 pm CT
    Posted by: A.S.

    While in the corporate world, I traveled to Chicago often, and always tried to fit in a visit to Marshall Field & Co. Whenever I could, it was always a treat. Macy's is nothing special. I don't bother to stop there when I come to Chicago. Marshall Field's is missed.

    Date: Friday, February 28, 2014  1:10 am CT
    Posted by: drew

    Another Pittsburgh tradition has been eliminated by macy*mart:
    Interesting how macy*mart takes credit for sponsoring the holiday parade for 32 years. Kaufmann's sponsored the popular "Celebrate the Season" parade through downtown Pittsburgh for many years prior to macy*fication.

    So many traditions and services that made the regional department stores special have been discontinued since the takeover; I suspect additional promises to maintain local favorites will be broken. Someone posted that macy*mart shuttered restaurants in former Marshall Field's locations. How many flower shows and other attractions will soon be eliminated in various communities? Downsized stores with downmarket merchandise selections. Constant coupon promotions and obnoxious TV ads screaming lowest prices of the season at the weekly One Day Sale. Ron Johnson almost destroyed JCPenney with his untested schemes. Terry Lundgren HAS ruined the joy and excitement of shopping by reducing favorite department stores to nondescript,uninspired discount emporiums that can be found Anywhere USA.

    Date: Monday, February 24, 2014  9:13 pm CT
    Posted by: Richard in Houston

    Strategic Marks, LLC and Macy's did not come to any agreement on settlement so they are proceeding to trial. If they win, which is very likely, Macy's will be hit with not only losing the trademarks they let expire, but possible punitive damages for wrongly selling the lunch totes on their websites with logos that were clearly not theirs. This could be a way for the regional stores to be brought back. Is Strategic Marks the white knight we have been hoping for? Time will tell.

    Date: Monday, February 24, 2014  6:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Macy's, Inc. will have its Q4 and end of fiscal calendar year talk TOMORROW MORNING, February 25th at 9:30 A.M. Chicago time.

    As someone else posted, here's the link--you may want to go their earlier to make sure your computer is properly equipped.

    Date: Sunday, February 23, 2014  2:16 pm CT
    Posted by: A State Street Spectator

    I did go through the M-store Friday evening after work. Nothing new to say. Everything seemed very laid-back and transitional like a house that is not tidied up for company. The windows at State and Randolph had "pardon our appearance" curtains, while the State and Washington side still showed "Go Red for Women" displays. In-between windows along State showed flimsy evening gowns that seemed very inappropriate for the weather. Up on "7," the archives room did have two hardcopies and a large stack of author Gayle Soucek's book, "Marshall Field's: The Store that Helped Build Chicago" on its book table. They also had hard and softcover Field's books in the lower level book shop. The usual number of people ambled through the store like they were looking for bargains--no crowds. That's about it for an eyewitness account on State Street during evening rush hour on Friday February 21.

    Date: Friday, February 21, 2014  10:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Mariano's has become such a prototype of how a Marshall Field's could come back. For those unaware, Dominick's was a very popular local grocery store chain that was doing extremely well in the 1990s. California's Safeway purchased it, let go all the local management and, after 14 years, Dominick's folded. Long time followers of the Dominick's story know that it really should have been sold to the former management led by Bob Mariano back in 2002 or 2003. Flash ahead, Dominick's has folded but is resurrected as Mariano's -- and it's slaying Chicago's grocery competition. If you have been to one, you know that it really reincarnates the spirit of what Dominick's was at its peak in the late 1990s, but updated for 2014. While in this case, the name is stuck with Safeway, you go into the re-converted Park Ridge store that opened a couple of days ago and you realize that stores can come back after a hiatus. This store isn't even fully re-converted and already it's packed with customers and a amazing buzz. And this particular store's light show on the facade transcends a remarkable grocery store comeback to be something that Marshall Field's would be proud to host.

    Date: Wednesday, February 19, 2014  3:47 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    This is last minute, but author Gayle Soucek will discuss her books on Marhsll Field's and Carson's this evening from 7:00 to 9:00 pm at the book store in Lincoln Square, 4736 N Lincoln Avenue, just southwest of Lawrence and Western and adjacent to the Western Avenue Brown Line station. People still turn out in droves to hear and talk about Marshall Field's, particular as presented by Ms. Soucek's wonderful book.

    Date: Wednesday, February 19, 2014  12:29 am CT
    Posted by: Robert Mau

    Any conjecture regarding what will happen once Lundgren retires? Do you think a new CEO will be amenable to the idea of reviving local brands? Ideally, Macy's would sell the Marshall Field's name and State Street location to some investor who I'm sure would gladly buy it. I'm assuming Macy's believes they have "won" and Chicago has moved-on after losing Field's.

    Date: Monday, February 17, 2014  9:51 pm CT
    Posted by: A Field's Fan

    Macy's, Inc. will have its Q4 and end of fiscal calendar year talk on Tuesday, February 25th at 9:30 A.M. Chicago time.

    Here's the link:

    Date: Sunday, February 16, 2014  10:11 am CT
    Posted by: Mary S.

    Here's a story about how some grocery stores in California's Bay Area were restored to the Lucky brand after Alberston's abandoned the name several years earlier. The employees and customers alike are all excited. If this is what happens with a discount grocer, just think how excited everyone would be if Marshall Field's returned to State Street:

    Date: Wednesday, February 12, 2014  2:10 pm CT
    Posted by: drew

    The "magic" continues as macy*mart makes more jobs disappear:
    So wasn't Lunkhead being praised for his innovative "localization" program several months ago? Why do so many workers have to be dismissed to "maintain profitability" if they had such an "outstanding" holiday season? I don't know about stores in other regions, but Pittsburgh area macy*mart outlets seem to be downsizing merchandise assortments as selling floor footprints noticeably shrink.

    On the positive side, they seem to be maintaining their stores in this area better. The floors are clean, displays are neat (though uninspired)and more name brands are being stocked. The stores are "okay"--nothing special, certainly not a destination of any sort.

    Date: Wednesday, February 12, 2014  7:38 am CT
    Posted by: Tammy A.

    I recently acquired a typewriter desk that was formerly property of Marshall Fields corporation, and to my dismay it will not fit through my office door! I am listing it for sale. I know that the desk was property of Marshall Fields corporation because there is a metal asset/inventory tag applied to one of the drawers. I do not know exactly how old it is but my guess is 1940's. It is a really cool old desk and it kills me to have to sell it. Please contact me at rubysliperz at if you are interested in purchasing.

    Tammyt A.

    Date: Tuesday, February 11, 2014  5:31 pm CT
    Posted by: Arnold

    Was in Old Orchard earlier this evening. Two things: 1. They have closed the Market Place foods in the basement. You always thought of Marshall Field's as a special place for food. Not really Macy's. 2. They've stooped to being so promotional that I could have bought a 1 lb. box of Frangos for $8.50 with the right promo. Field's never neededto do that to get people in the store. It is a charade that MAcy's is a success in Former Marshall Field's Stores.

    Date: Saturday, February 8, 2014  8:28 pm CT
    Posted by: S.L.

    Macy's has closed Marshall Field's Marketplace in the basement of Old Orchard. There is a sign thanking customers for past patronage. Candy will stay. The food service counter and the seating are closed off. The remaining gourmet food is priced at a discount. Customers are also asked to visit the Frontera Grill on the first floor. Sadly, they keep whittling away at Marshall Field's.

    Date: Wednesday, February 5, 2014  9:23 pm CT
    Posted by: V.Rawlings

    Good to see this still going. Macy's has this "week of wonderful" nonsense after Christmas. Basically they try to extend Christmas season shopping into January. With Field's it was Christmas year round. BRING IT BACK! bring back the LOVE that was Marshall Field's!!!!!

    Date: Monday, February 3, 2014  9:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Some of you asked about the annual Macy's, Inc. stockholders meeting. It is typically held the third Friday in May at 11:00 am, EDT (an hour ahead of Chicago time). Typically anyone who is a stockholder of record by the end of the day on the third Friday of the preceding March (two months prior to the meeting) is eligible to attend. There is a Q & A session upon the completion of the shareholders meeting.

    Date: Saturday, February 1, 2014  6:32 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    I just thought of this. By definition, memories stay with you. A store's best merchandising tool is not the merely the merch, but the memory the customer leaves with. Field's memories (now) are like iron filings longing for the Magnet.

    Well, Red Star?

    Date: Friday, January 31, 2014  8:26 pm CT
    Posted by: Rich


    I Agree with you COMPLETELY -- That first floor was intoxicating and thrilling -- made you want to stay ALL DAY AND explore every inch of that store to not miss Anything!! It was the beautiful grand invitation to unknown and unexpected discoveries--- and almost always -THAT HAPPENED! A TRUE complete integration of visual excitement matched with unbelievable merchandise to give you one excitement after another --unending -- and in ALL departments. AND with Superb expert interested helpful knowledgable staff!

    THERE IS NO PLACE like Marshall Field's

    Date: Thursday, January 30, 2014  11:37 pm CT
    Posted by: PJ., Bay Area, Calif.

    Chicago is our hometown. Field's is our favorite store. Please keep up the fabulous job you guys are doing!

    Date: Thursday, January 30, 2014  7:08 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    I gotta say- regarding bolts of nostalgia -- my nostalgia goes back to the day of the mahogany counters on the first floor. Never mind what they did-that was good-upstairs, but the first floor was the Thriller. Instead of being confronted with a jumble of commonly encountered, if pricey, miscellany upon entering, it was a grand marble concourse of jewel cases that pulled you through in spite of yourself, taking in every goody to left and right, pausing to focus on whatever, or purchase, or plan. Maybe you never made it up the escalator.

    There was such an aura of exaltation to that, a grand, unique, statement of scope and richness that could be comprehended the minute you stepped through the door. Since there were usually good numbers of people all over, it added a sense of happy bees in the hive. Ahh, perfect shopping mood generated! 'Modern' methods may be appealing and enticing in their own ways, but the drama is gone. And one must admit, Field's architectural provision on the first floor demands/deserves drama all the way.

    In short, that unified and concentrated presentation, while now deemed old-fashioned, was neither thoughtless nor ineffective. Got MY shopping blood racing! It may sound silly but I still have exact, fond memories of things I purchased on the first floor, from Jensen to Cadbury (early days!). So one was not just buying stuff. Let the psych people figure it out. I can recall the pleasure like a perfume.

    Date: Tuesday, January 28, 2014  8:31 pm CT
    Posted by: Rich

    I recently ate lunch at a Panera and across the street is Kohl's. I rarely go to Kohl's-- just not my habit- it is ok and I know many many LOVE it. What was SO interesting to me when I glanced over to it was over the front entrance in the windows above the doors, there were big letters that spelled out the word "REWARDS", AND they were in a middle shade of GREEN! Just for a moment I was taken back to the Field mailings that one would receive as a "Rewards" member. I remember the letters, and notifications, and That brought back a flood of memories of the rewards program as well as too many to count memories of Field's itself. Seeing those big green letters took me on a wonderful momentary magical time trip to the 90's and early 2000's and in those moments Marshall Field's, and ALL the things that made it SO special and unique were alive, at least in my mind, for those wonderful few moments.

    Like the commercials used to say-- "There's No Place like Field's !"

    Date: Monday, January 27, 2014  6:54 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Yesterday, the Chicago Tribune had a front page piece about the future of Chicago. This edition of the Sunday Chicago Tribune had the Marshall Field's Clock on the masthead. Then there was a story about what Chicago needed to do to retain its status as an international city. I wrote the following in support of Marshall Field's. If you agree with my comments, I hope you will click "like" in the Facebook comments section that follows.
    There's a multitude of things that contribute to Chicago keeping its status as international city--yes, KEEPING --because it benefits all, rich and poor by creating jobs. We don't have to have or do them all, but what we do, we have to do well, and most of all promote our "firsts." For one, Chicago is the cradle of 20th Century Architecture. Chicago needs to evolve and promote CHICAGO's current rich and innovative architectural talent at the local, national and international level in the 21st Century.

    Also, when I saw the print edition of this story on the front page of the Tribune, there very appropriately was a Marshall FIeld's clock on the masthead. Every international city has an emporium of international repute to showcase a city's wares, cuisine, fashion and interior design. But Marshall Field's was the emporium that served as the model for all others--London's modern Harrod's and Selfrdiges; Paris Bon Marche; Berlin's KaDeWe, even NYC's Macy's, Bloomingdale's and modern Lord and Taylor and many others. We need Marshall Field's back -- not an outpost of an mid-tier NYC store. It's not about buying "stuff"--it's about showcasing to the world the best artisans, designers and wares Chicago has to offer under a Chicago name.

    HOW DOES CHICAGO STACK UP?,0,1679812.story

    Date: Sunday, January 26, 2014  2:11 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    Now that Sears plans to close its State Street store in April, Macy's will have even less competition and more reason to claim they are doing well if their sales go up a few points simply because shoppers now have almost no other option. I am sad to see State Street become less and less. I really have no reason to go there after Sears' liquidation sale except the library, and can even do that in my neighborhood. I hope some sensible entity can realize the potential of a market for a revitalization of State Street. Mariano's is booming because customers value the quality and service it offers. PBS "Chicago Tonight" interviewed Bob Mariano about a month ago, and his attitude toward the importance of customer service was overwhelming. I wish someone like that could set their sights on State Street.

    Date: Saturday, January 25, 2014  1:24 pm CT
    Posted by: Steve

    Womens Wear Daily story that Macy's is remodeling downtown stores starting with Brooklyn, the former A&S flagship that became Macy's in 1996.

    Date: Friday, January 24, 2014  8:14 am CT
    Posted by: Paul West

    Do you remember what the CEO of Macy's said immediately after taking over?  He said that Macy's will "bring quality to Chicago".


    Date: Thursday, January 23, 2014  6:19 pm CT
    Posted by: S.I.

    I wear my Field's button proudly!

    Date: Wednesday, January 22, 2014  9:52 pm CT
    Posted by: Terrence, Columbus, Ohio

    Though I live in Ohio now, when I lived in Chicago MF was my go to establishment.

    Date: Wednesday, January 22, 2014  9:31 am CT
    Posted by: Richard in Houston

    Some of you might already know but Strategic Marks has acquired a total of 21 of the old department store trademarks you remember and discuss here. You might also know they are in the middle of a Federal court battle with Macy's over the marks. Just to update you here, they have a court-ordered settlement meeting with Macy's on February 6th in SF Federal Court. While the judge has asked for this conference, they don't believe anything will come out of it. They are going into the trial with a very strong case against Macy's and feel 100% confidence they will win not only the case, but also their counter claim against them for use of their trademarks on their website without their permission. They have some of the top people in retail watching this case and as some put it, "This will be a game-changer for retail." Below is the list of stores in-question:

    -- May Company

    -- Robinson's

    -- The Broadway

    -- Bullockís

    -- Joseph Magnin

    -- Jordan Marsh

    -- Filene's

    -- The Bon Marche

    -- Abraham and Straus

    -- Burdine's

    -- Riche's

    -- Foley's

    -- Marshall Field's

    -- Goldsmith's

    -- Hecht's

    -- I. Magnin & Company

    -- Kaufmann's

    -- Lazarus

    -- Meier & Frank

    -- Stern's

    -- Strawbridge's

    Date: Tuesday, January 21, 2014  10:12 am CT
    Posted by: drew
    I wonder if the author has a connection to Macy's.

    The praise for Terry's innovations and accomplishments is nauseating. Perhaps he HAS made Herald Square a destination, but most other Red Star outlets are nothing special. Omnichannel marketing---weren't Sears and JCPenney doing that with brick-and-mortar stores and catalogs? Had they not been mismanaged and embraced technology, those stores would have been the leaders in omnichannel distribution today. Restaurants--didn't most major flagship stores offer various dining options for many years?

    So what has Terry done that is so praiseworthy? One showplace store does not make the many nondescript, bland stores with the same nameplate "magic" shopping experiences.

    There was a technical problem that prohibited posting to this blog from Sunday, January 12 through Monday, January 20, 2014. Thank you for your patience.

    Date: Saturday, January 11, 2014, 2013  8:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    In followup to a post from last week, Linda Piepho is no longer with Macy's. Since September, she has headed up Neiman Marcus at Oak Brook Center. I'm sure you'll take the "Field's high road" and join me in wishing her the best.
    It's not appropriate to speculate on private personal circumstance this, but it is curious that Ms. Piepho arrived seven years ago at State Street with much publicity and attention. As I pointed out the other day, you rarely hear about those who run State Street or local Macy's management.

    Date: Friday, January 10, 2014, 2014  4:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Philip Eichler

    An observation this past Christmas: the Christopher Radko annual Great Clock ornaments are still green. The strange silver blue clocks that various posters have commented on are Macy's own knock offs of the clock ornament under their Holiday Lane brand. I have no clue why the knock offs were that color, but even under Field's, the annual clock ornament varied in different shades of green from year to year. This year I noticed they also offered a Frango box ornament as well.

    Date: Friday, January 10, 2014, 2014  12:16 am CT
    Posted by: mikea

    The past weeks utter contempt for their employees/associates exhibits that Macy's will not bring back Field's to Chicago. When they continue to make large profits and had a relatively good Christmas season. They still let go over 2,500 associates. Why would Macy's spend the extra amount of money to start up a new division when they continue to cost cut? Bloomingdales's too will share in the cuts.

    The store closings except for the one in Utah were mainly stores that were either in dead malls or malls going downhill fast. However it is a very sad state of business when Wall Street applauds such a decision and Macy's stock rose when they decide to let people go just to satisfy wall street investors. What a windfall to those who bought the stock years ago at $9.00 a share that now trades for over $53.00 a share.

    I wonder what more cost cutting they can do in the stores to lower customer service? They did not say what positions that would eliminate. They resorted to very heavy discounting in the last quarter of the year which was a windfall for the customers, but in turn costs good hard working associate s their positions. They have also resorted to taking back merchandise even after 180 days with a receipt, almost to the way Field's used to take back items when the store was Marshall Field & Company. Most likely it will be the senior long standing associates that will loose their jobs, since they are the ones that cost the company the most, with the execption of the top executives.

    Date: Thursday, January 9, 2014, 2013  8:39 pm CT
    Posted by: Alex

    Good points in Jim's post. I sure refuse to shop at Macy's or Bloomingdale's because of shabby treatment of Marshall Field's. "Anti-Flagship" it is.

    Date: Thursday, January 9, 2014, 2013  7:47 am CT
    Posted by: Jim

    CNN Money story talks about how Macy's has responded to the successful holiday season by laying off 2,500. It's interesting to note how the comments go to how it was a mistake to get rid of Marshall Field's.

    Date: Wednesday, January 8, 2014, 2013  7:14 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Macy's announced five store closings today, as well as the layoff of 2,500 Macy's employees. Macy's operates about 840 stores so this about 1/2 of a percent of their total store count and not unusual for a chain of its size. None of the stores were former Field's, Dayton's or Hudson's locations. (Please remember that when Macy's talks about Field's and how it was doing, they talk about 62 stores of which over 40 were not Marshall Field's until a rebranding three years before.)

    It seems that the only local impact is that Macy's will combine Macy's North Division (largely former Marshall Field's, Dayton's, Hudson's and Famous Barr stores) with Macy's Midwest Division stretching from Indiana, through Ohio, Kentucky, western Pennsylvania, and western upstate New York. Soft home goods won't need as many local buyers, etc. So far, it all doesn't seem to impact one way or another Field's coming back.

    So what's fascinating is the response to the Chicago Tribune and Sun-Times articles on this. People are using this as a reason to protest again how much they want Marshall Field's instead of Macy's!!! We talk here about the "good will" that was the value of Field's trade names. But clearly the sentiments expressed against Macy's after these stories show how much "bad will" -- indeed negative value" Macy's continues to generate by not restoring Marshall Field's at least to State Street and Chicagoland. Flagships might lose some money, but that money is made up by the good will sales that flagship generates at suburban stores. A term I've coined before is "anti-flagship." Terry Lundgren and Macy's have essentially created an anti-flagship store by not running State Street as Marshall Field's. People probably would be OK with a local Macy's if it weren't for the fact it used to be Marshall Field's and, moreover, they still have ill feelings because of what happened to State Street.

    A couple of stories can be found at these links--please check out and use the "comments" section:,0,5431493.story

    BTW: It's been ages since I've heard anything in the media from Mike Dervos, Linda Piepho and Ralph Hughes. What happened to them?

    Date: Wednesday, January 8, 2014, 2013  8:52 am CT
    Posted by: Bill

    We'd shop Marshall Field's in a minute if it were to come back. We boycott Macy's!!!!

    Date: Monday, January 6, 2014, 2013  7:12 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Regarding the petition referenced by Mike S., there was a petition at from June of 2005 to July 1, 2006 that amassed over 60,000 signatures. Keep in mind that at that time, Facebook was but a startup open only to college students and faculty, Twitter didn't exist, and social media and the internet was yet to grow exponentially to what it has become today. The operator, Nick Potts of Minnesota, shut it down on July 1, 2006 around the same day as when became, but over two months BEFORE Field's officially became Macy's. I'm sure if that petition was not shut down before the climax two months later, it would have garnered tens, if not hundreds, of thousands more signatures. 60K in 2005-06 would be like 6 million today.

    I hope people sign the survey; yet many complications prevent this from accurately reflecting how much people world-wide really do want Marshall Field's to return to State Street and more.

    Date: Sunday, January 5, 2014, 2013  2:20 pm CT
    Posted by: Richard in Houston

    Many of you may not know but Strategic Marks, LLC. is being sued by Macy's for purchasing expired trademarks of the former regional stores that they let expire years ago. They plan on eventually bringing the stores back to their respective markets. Macy's promptly started selling lunch and shopping totes with the old brand names on them from their website once the suit was filed to claim they were using the trademarks for business. Fields is one of them. It is anticipated Macy's will lose this case due to the expiration of the trademarks and lack of use for years in commerce. The trial is set for January in California. If Macy's loses, Strategic Marks will likely be rewarded significant punitive damages. The trademarks involved with the current suit are The Broadway, Bullock's/Bullocks Wilshire, Jordan Marsh, The Bone Marche, Abraham & Straus, Joseph Magnin, Filene's, Robinson's and May Company. Others that may be picked up are Foley's, Marshall Fields, Rich's, Burdines and Lazarus. Keep an eye out for the outcome of the suit. This may be the white knight we have been waiting for.

    Date: Saturday, January 4, 2014, 2013  9:31 pm CT
    Posted by: Mike S.

    Pass this along to everyone you know. This is a petition posted to bring ba k Field's. Sign it asap and tell others to sign it.

    Date: Saturday, January 4, 2014, 2013  7:00 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    Re Gayle's comment on the value of an implicit guarantee of the store name: For sure!

    Today's malls may offer an experience sort of like shopping a wide range of goods at Field's--but there is no sense of an overriding 'vetted' assurance of quality throughout, or dare I say, a consistent personality or presence. That latter part may sound precious, but I think it was a subliminal, powerful aspect of being in Field's. Wherever you roamed in the place, whatever you looked at, it was all part of a larger picture, a great one, that you became part of for a while. You could even take some home. I still have bits scattered around me right here! MMM good!

    Is shopping so important that we should care like this? Maybe not, but once you have had the experience it is hard to imagine a reason for it to be trashed........ in this case the store was greater than the sum of its sections and it felt good to be there.

    Date: Friday, January 3, 2014, 2013  8:18 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Two things:

    * Look for Macy's to announce store closings as they do annually at this time every year, probably this coming week. As long as it's less than say 40 stores total (5% of their stores) and not a "special" store (in the vein of last year's closings at St. Paul, St. Louis, Houston, Honolulu, etc. or a Bloomingdale's), this is typical of a healthy retailer of its size.

    I have no inside info, but if there are Chicagoland locations considered for closing, I'd put Louis Joliet and River Oaks on that list. Also, while technically a Field's for three years before the acquisition by Macy's, I think the former Hudson's at Northland Mall in Southfield, MI would be on a list for closing consideration as well. When I've visited those stores, they appear as if they have pretty low traffic, badly need updating and have other locations not too far away. But in the bigger picture, even busy stores can be losing money and close. Look at how Eddie Bauer on the Mag Mile is rumored to be closing. Other times, badly performing stores have to stay open to honor leaseholds.

    * Macy's has settled its legal issues with Martha Stewart, but Macy's is still pursuing its case against JCPenney. You rarely used to hear about JCPenney being Field's arch-rival. JCPenney is so frequently written about in the media as Macy's arch-rival. Sure says to me that Macy's is not the same as Field's.

    Date: Wednesday, January 1, 2014, 2013  8:18 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    You just can't get away from it.

    I was out for New Year's Eve dinner when I overheard, "With Marshall Field's now as Macy's, there's no reason to go there. We have Macy's in Tennessee."

    Everyone wants Marshall Field's to return.

    Happy New Year!

    Date: Wednesday, January 1, 2014, 2013  CT
    Posted by:

    Happy New Year!

    Date: Tuesday, December 31, 2013, 2013  12:51 am CT
    Posted by: drew

    Business analyst Brian Sozzi says Terry may announce his successor in 2014. We can only hope Terry is indeed on his way out, and the board of directors will select a forward thinking CEO who will appreciate the value of discarded iconic department stores nameplates to shareholders as well as shoppers.;_ylt=A2KJ3CfjZ8JSdw8AuFaTmYlQ

    Date: Monday, December 30, 2013, 2013  5:04 pm CT
    Posted by: drew

    A friend and I visited the downtown Pittsburgh macy*mart store yesterday afternoon, primarily because he wanted to see the Christmas windows. The windows were basically the same as last year. The "Great Clock" which has been a Pittsburgh landmark for over 100 years (not the Kaufmann's clock), ice skating at PPG Place, the my*macy's holiday parade which has been a tradition for 37 years (it was Kaufmann's Celebrate the Season parade--not just another advertising venue), the big mailbox for the letters to Santa, a vintage TV showing "Miracle on 34th Street. Each window had only one animated character; for instance, the PPG window featured a solo ice skater. My friend said he was totally "underwhelmed" by the windows and felt that it wouldn't be worth the time to bring his young son downtown for this. I will say the merchandise display windows along Fifth and Forbes avenues were okay; the presentations were actually decent. The bronze Kaufmann's plaques along the buildings were green; the newer macy*s plaques were also sadly in need of cleaning.

    The store was neat and clean but didn't offer much of a merchandise selection. The store was downsized to six floors, but there were areas of the remaining sales floors closed off. In some places, merchandise displays were spread to fill up space. The fifth floor furniture clearance area was pretty much empty. They could easily close another floor since merchandise assortments continue to dwindle. In the mezzanine level between the young mens and mens departments, they did add a very nice section featuring Pittsburgh sports merchandise.

    We ate at the popular Tic Toc restaurant which was also neat and clean. The menu has been downsized, like the store has been. The food was very good and the prices reasonable. macy*mart maintained some of the "clock" memorabilia and vintage photographs. The restaurant was painted fairly recently.

    I must say overall the store is okay, nothing special, certainly not a destination. The carpeting is badly worn and stained, floor tiles are chipped and worn, fixtures are dated. It's obvious nothing has been invested in the building.

    Date: Monday, December 30, 2013, 2013  1:30 am CT
    Posted by: Jack

    I was pleasantly surprised to see that this site is still up and running, and from what I can tell, thriving. I'm from Columbus, Ohio, formerly home to two Field's stores (one of which has been demolished along with the mall attached to it. The other remains open as part of a mall that actually has TWO Macy's now, thanks to the takeover of Columbus's beloved Lazarus), and I remember visiting the State Street store on trips to Chicago when I was younger. It's a beautiful building and a unique label that unfortunately seems to be lost to history, just like so many others that were "Macy-ated". I'm happy to see that there are still people besides myself who don't like that red star all over everything.

    Date: Sunday, December 29, 2013, 2013  4:03 pm CT
    Posted by: A State Street Spectator

    I am enjoying "Carson's, the History of a Chicago Shopping Landmark" by author Gayle Soucek of "Marshall Field's, the Store that Helped Build Chicago" fame. This narrative includes many Field's facts, and compares and contrasts ways the two stores interacted with each other and with early Chicago. It also provides a multiplicity of information about the evolution of the city. A forward by Ward Miller details complex architectural features of both stores.

    On Christmas Eve I noticed a big stack of "Carson's" at Barbara's Bookstore on the lower level of the State Street store in front of the register. Copies of the paperback edition of "Field's" were also displayed. AND, the hardcover edition of "Field's" has finally made its way to the State Street store on the Christmas book table in the 7th floor archives room. (Last summer a sales associate had told me, "Why would anyone want the hardcover edition when the paperback is cheaper?") Both hardcover and paperback can now be found on the 7th floor archives room.

    Date: Sunday, December 29, 2013, 2013  1:58 pm CT
    Posted by: M., Ohio

    Hello I live in Ohio and I have relatives all over Chicago and when I lived there I loved going to Marshall Field's. There is and never will be a store like that one. It was always the best and I'm like all of you. I want to see it back. That is what Chicago is all about, greatness!! Thank you

    Date: Saturday, December 28, 2013, 2013  12:10 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    Macy's may say Field's is entirely about distant nostalgia, but I disagree. Nevertheless, consider that many retailers do up to 40% of their business in the two months surrounding Christmas. Christmas is one of the most nostalgic holidays there is. That includes the original "Miracle on 34th Street" movie.

    Sounds to me like Macy's deals hugely in the nostalgia business. They'd do well to go back to Marshall Field's even if it was nostalgic. Clearly that's where 40% of their business comes from.

    Date: Friday, December 27, 2013, 2013  6:43 pm CT
    Posted by: A Field's Fan

    Even without Field's today, we have our old memories of nicer ones. There's several good books as mentioned in the last Field's Fans newsletter. Another is Robert Ledermann's newest book,"State Street One Brick at a Time" by The History press.

    I feel its really interesting in that it goes into the man..Field...himself...his second wife[neighbor lady.and widower] Delia Canton....All within the last year of his life...he courted her,married her, his only son died,and his store was completed, but he himself never saw the finished store...It includes Harry Gordon Selfridge, the stores beginnings, menus, employee's rules, his mansion on Prairie Ave., all the special departments, the doorman Charlie, beautiful never seen pictures of the store, etc.etc.

    There's also some other highlights of visiting State street in a happier time with the growth of hotels and shops,movie theatre and of the people behind the glitter of Woolworth, Carsons, the Fair, Montgomery Ward, Goldblatts, Wieboldt's and the Boston store.

    Let's hope Field's returns to State Street!

    Date: Friday, December 27, 2013, 2013  2:20 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    A letter to "Voice of the People" in the December 21, 2013 "Chicago Tribune" poses an interesting dilemma about where to find the "real Santa" now that Marshall Field's is gone. I too remember being told as a kid that Field's Santa was the "real Santa" and those at other stores were his look-a-like helpers.

    Date: Thursday, December 26, 2013, 2013  12:33 pm CT
    Posted by: Barbet, Miami

    I am totally awash in Marshall Field's nostalgia... remembering the delicious hustle-bustle of Christmases past, and the tremendous rôle which our beloved Fields so beautifully played in the joyous holiday spirit!

    The fabulous windows, the gorgeous displays, and - most especially - the extraordinary Marshall Field staff contributed to the holiday merriment; it's amazing how many of these exceptional employees I still remember by name!

    Fields was much more than a store; it represented a uniquely Chicago spirit and way of life which Macy, sadly, has failed utterly to capture. At Christmas we abandoned our favorite Narcissus Room to sit beside the spectacular Christmas tree in the Walnut Room - our annual treat - only to return to the Narcissus Room to lunch beside the lovely fountain and watch the fish swimming as our favorites, Helen or Grace, served our food with the kind of personal sweetness one might expect if we were guests in their respective homes! Fields became part of our extended family, and I remain deeply grateful for the warmth of the memories.

    Thank you - each and every one - for continuing to fight for the return of Marshall Fields. Although I have been living in Florida for many years, I still continue to think of myself as a Chicagoan, and consider Fields to have played an integral part in the treasured memories of my home town!

    Merry Christmas to all of you!!!

    Kindest holiday regards,

    Miami, Florida

    Date: Wednesday, December 25, 2013, 2013  1:12 pm CT
    Posted by: Carol B. K.

    Close to turning 84 years of age, it' been a long time since my last trip to sit on Santa's lap just before Christmas. (And he always fulfilled my wishes). I'm still remembering Marshall Field, its tea room, along with Santa, from here in Cambridge Massachusetts.

    I'm very concerned for all the little girls and boys in my home town, wondering where in Chicago they find Santa Claus. If only they could see the magic that was Christmas time when I was young visiting Santa at his home at Marshall Field!

    Date: Wednesday, December 25, 2013, 2013  12:29 am CT
    Posted by:

    There's No Place Like
    At Christmas.

    Merry Christmas & Peace on Earth to All!*

    (Yes, even Terry Lundgen & all at Macy's.)

    Date: Tuesday, December 24, 2013, 2013  2:10 pm CT
    Posted by: gle





    Date: Tuesday, December 24, 2013, 2013  9:50 am CT
    Posted by: S.D.

    Thank you for the newsletter and for the hard work to restore Marshall Fields.

    Have you seen There is a large section on Fields, including interior directories as well as a lot of information on other department stores in Chicago.

    I was in the State St building recently and I was amazed to see Frango's being sold in "commemorative" Marshall Field tins extolling the virtues,history etc of Marshall Fields. Apparently, Macys has no shame and will make a buck any way they can.(And with that rationale-you'd think they'd realize which name has the most value, but the whole battle has turned into an ego thing with Lunkhead.) Any way-Merry Christmas to all.

    Date: Tuesday, December 24, 2013, 2013  8:26 am CT
    Posted by: Bob G.

    Thank you to all for your efforts in restoring the Marshall Field's stores.

    How many years has it been, now, since Macy's buried the Marshall Field's stores? Eight? It seems like a lifetime ago. Since the buyout, three generations of my entire family, including  in-laws, and I have not set foot in a Macy's store. Nothing short of returning not just the Field's name, but the service, atmosphere, and balance of quality and affordability, will change that for me or most of the people that I know.

    Obviously, Macy's is no Field's. Had Macy's brought some stores to Chicagoland and left the Field's stores alone, I think they would have found that they could do well in competition with Penney's, Carson's, and Sears -- their natural competition. Had they done so, I'd have no qualms with whatever success Macy's might have enjoyed. As it is, though, given their cold disregard for the Marshall Field's tradition held near and dear to the hearts of so many people, I wish they would fail miserably with their Chicagoland stores so that it might precipitate the return of the Marshall Field's shopping experience.

    In the end, let's not forget that the most important gifts of Christmas cannot be found in any store, but in the hearts of loved ones -- so, here's wishing all a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!


    Date: Tuesday, December 24, 2013, 2013  7:56 am CT
    Posted by: Mary A. H.

    Thank you for continuing the quest!

    Date: Tuesday, December 24, 2013, 2013  7:27 am CT
    Posted by: Bob, Washington D.C.

    Excellent update, thank you. Fascinating numbers on the value of trademarks. One wonders if Lord & Taylor has increased in its post-May Company era. Hope so.

    Keep up the good fight -

    Date: Monday, December 23, 2013, 2013  CT
    Posted by:


           Newsletter No. 37

           Monday, December 23, 2013


           Welcome to the 37th edition of the newsletter.  We hope
           the holiday season finds you happy, healthy and blessed with abundance. 

           Please do your part by forwarding this newsletter on to family, friends
           and other interested parties.


              In This Newsletter:

           - SPECIAL REGARDS: Our September 2013 Anniversary Events

           - 2013 Share Holders Meeting: Making the Case for Marshall Field's

           - Marshall Field's & Dominick's: More Just Than a Name

           - Company Files Legal Claim to the Marshall Field's Retail Name

           - Our 2013-14 Christmas & Holidays Season Flyer/Leaflet

           - New Books With Marshall Field's Content

           - on FACEBOOK & TWITTER


           - What YOU Have Already Accomplished:
                  Thoughts & Thanks at Christmas & the Holiday Season

           - How to Add or Remove Your Email Address From Our List


           SPECIAL REGARDS: Our September 2013  Anniversary Events

    A very special "thank you" to all who contributed to our annual September events marking seven years since that very sad day when world-renowned Marshall Field's was converted to Macy's.

    Words are inadequate to express our appreciation to special guest Amy Meadows, principal of Windows Matter.  Ms. Meadows, was the former Director of Windows and Marketing Events for Marshall Field's and Macy's.   She also teaches at Columbia College Chicago.  Ms. Meadows provided an intimate, sneak peek into the design and execution of the famed Marshall Field's animated windows, Main Aisle decor and the Great Tree.  We are grateful to have had this opportunity to pay tribute to the genius and wonder of the talents of Ms. Meadows and her associates.

    The web site for Ms. Meadows' Windows Matter can be found at

    Additionally, we extend immense gratitude for the introductory presentations by Chicago authors Gayle Soucek and Eric Bronsky.  Finally, without the generosity of Zelda, the event would not have happened--thank you.

    We volunteer organizers do extend an apology.  Due to some miscommunication at the conclusion of the lecture events, there was confusion about the time for our annual rally.  As such, all two dozen or so of us were unable to meet under the Marshall Field's clock at the same time.  We  promise better information and look forward to meeting under the clock next year.


    We look forward to future events in the future  In to the 21st Century, Marshall Field and Company was revered as a world-class emporium and uniquely-Chicago cultural institution.  All of this was possible thanks to the amazingly talented and dedicated geniuses who made sure that "There is no place like Marshall Field's."  In the coming year, we will have more events showcasing  those who are the contemporary Marshall Fields, Harry Selfridges and John Shedds in our midst.  In doing so, we look to celebrate the amazing people of Marshall Field and Company who brought so much sheer joy to millions of us.


           2013 Share Holders Meeting: Making the Case for Marshall Field's

    For the sixth year in a row, the case was made at Macy's annual share holders meeting for the return of Marshall FIeld's.  The case was presented by James McKay, a co-organizer at,  during the "questions and answer" segment that immediately followed the Friday, May 17, 2013 meeting at Macy's, Inc. headquarters in Cincinnati, Ohio. 

    While official transcripts of the "Q & A" do not seem to be publicly available, the following is a synopsis of the questions and response.  Corrections and clarifications are welcome and will be noted in our blog, in a future newsletter, or both.

    McKay first congratulated  Macy's Board of Directors, share holders, and CEO, President and Chairman Terry J. Lundgen on a successful year of profitability and increased share holder value, despite a challenging year for other competitors.   Congratulations were also extended in regards to the great success of Macy's "Omnichannel" and internet strategies.

    McKay then asked questions in support of the return of Marshall Fields to State Street.

    * In the SEC 10-K filings from early 2005, just before the merger between Federated and May Department Stores, Macy's and Bloomingdale's trade names are listed with a value of $376 million. Marshall Field's trade names are listed with a value of $419 million.  A dozen of May's other trade names, including the likes of Robinson-May, Filene's, Famous Barr and even Lord and Taylor, are listed with a combined value of $162 million.  Even if overvalued, wouldn't restoring  Marshall Field's trade names and way of doing business to the State Street flagship be the highest and best use,  maximizing the value of  share holder assets?

    * At a previous year's share holder meeting, Mr. Lundgren declared that the State Street store was profitable and performed well.  McKay asked whether that could largely be due  to the store picking up a substantial number of customers from Carson's which lost its lease.   Couldn't  a similar increase have occurred under Marshall Field's?  Furthermore, wouldn't restoring Marshall Field's to State Street bring back disaffected  Marshall Field's customers, further increasing profits?   (The similar loss of competition from Lord and Taylor suggests the possibility of a similar scenario at the Water Tower Place store.)

    * Our annual survey of hundreds of State Street and Michigan Avenue shoppers from each spring during 2009-2012  consistently demonstrated an overwhelming preference for Marshall Field's to return to State Street.  Figures held steady between 78% to 81% in favor of Marshall Field's.  There is much pent up demand for Marshall Field's return to State Street.  Given the success of the past year and the desire of Macy's to try new opportunities, doesn't Macy's have the talent and acumen to seize the great opportunity to give Chicago what it overwhelming wants, Marshall Field's?

    Mr. Lundgren expressed appreciation for the respectful manner in which the questions were presented, but declined to offer a response to the questions.


           Marshall Field's & Dominick's: More Just Than a Name

    The end of Chicagoland's Dominick's grocery store chain has brought up some useful precedences, comparisons and contrasts relevant to our quest for the return of Marshall Field's in name, ethos and style of service and quality.

    Dominick's was a much loved, favorite grocery store in Chicago for the past 85 years, but, unlike Field's, it was not a world-renowned institution that defined Chicago.  Marshall Field's was and is still known world-wide as Chicago at its best in fashion, design, cuisine and culture, the store that helped build Chicago.

    More than a few in the media refer to the switch from Marshall Field's to Macy's simply as a "name change" suggesting that we and the rest of Chicago simply want the Marshall Field's name back. There's much more to it than that.  Safeway demonstrated that just keeping a name and changing everything else simply does not work.

    In the case of the Dominick's, the name and many of the store locations stayed the same, but in most every other way, the stores became Safeway instead.  Marshall Field's locations became named Macy's and we think that these stores have also largely become Macy's inside.  Despite Macy's claims of just a name change, internally they refer to the conversion as "Macyization."   Dominick's becoming Safeway in every way but name is a precedence that supports how just changing the sign back to Marshall Field's and having dark green shopping bags is far from the same as bringing back Marshall Field's.  We stand by the belief that the switch from Marshall Field's to Macy's was more than just a name change.  Chicago wants more than just a Marshall Field's sign on a Macy's store.

    The rise of the Mariano's chain further supports that the way a store is run is just as important, if not more, than what it is called.  Mariano's is a chain recently started by former Dominick's management from its pre-Safeway days.  Effectively Mariano's is a return in every way but name to the Dominck's that Chicagoland loved, but updated to 2013.  Mariano's is wildly successful and was a major factor in the folding of Dominick's.  Some of the most successful Mariano's are in former Dominick's locations that failed.  While customers are sadly nostalgic about Dominick's closing, there's unprecedented buzz and hopefulness that their closing Dominick's will become a Mariano's.

    Topping all of this off, the Sunday Chicago Tribune of December 22, 2013 had a headline story on the major role of activist share holders forcing Safeway to close Dominick's after the retirement of Safeway's long-time CEO who stubbornly refused to sell Dominick's to those who subsequently started Mariano's.  [ The Chicago Tribune story can be viewed at,0,5385403,full.story]

    Marshall Field's and Macy's are indeed different than Dominick's, Safeway and Mariano's.  Theoretically, certain activist share holders could force Macy's to bring back Marshall Field's as a means of unlocking and maximizing value.  At the same time, the reality is that another type of activist share holder could instead make it even more difficult for Marshall Field's to return.

    With that in mind, we know our efforts contribute to the chances that Marshall Field's will come back.  Our efforts continue to demonstrate the immense and substantial value that lies in all that is Marshall Field's.  That value needs to be unlocked and restored as Marshall Field's on State Street and elsewhere as appropriate.


           Company Files Legal Claim to the Marshall Field's Retail Name

    We have become aware of a company that is claiming the legal rights to some of the historic department store names that were once used by Macy's on its stores.  About three years ago, California-based Strategic Marks, L.L.C. filed at the United States Patent and Trademark Office for rights to store names such as Abraham and Straus, Jordan Marsh and Robinson-May.  Strategic Marks holds that Macy's has not operated stores with these names in many years. 

    Macy's has taken legal against Strategic Marks from reactivating and using the names for their retail outlets.  After three years of delays,  Strategic Marks and Macy's will likely be in court in 2014. 

    We understand that the name "Marshall Field's" is not part of this particular case.  However, last Spring, Strategic Marks filed for rights to "Marshall Field's" with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, declaring that Macy's has not operated a department store as Marshall Field's in years. is not connected or related to Strategic Marks.


           Our 2013-14 Christmas & Holidays Season Flyer/Leaflet

    Please see for the complete Adobe Acrobat PDF of our 2013-14 Christmas and Holiday Season flyer/leaflet.  Instructions for print and distributing your own can be found at

    As the distribution of  flyers/leaflets surpasses 167,000, we thank all of those who have made it possible, especially, Mike, John, Doris, Zelda, Alfred,  and, as always, "gle".   The vast majority of these flyers have been distributed under the great Marshall Field's clock at State and Washington where the reception has been overwhelmingly positive over the past eight years.


           New Books With Marshall Field's Content

    We would  like to bring to your attention to a couple of recently released books that in one manner or another connect with our quest for a restore Marshall Field's on State Street.

    Carson's: The History of Chicago Shopping Landmark (History Press) by Gayle Soucek is just out.  It is the perfect complement to  her top-selling  Marshall Field's: The Store That Helped Build Chicago (History Press).  While this book is about Carons's, Ms. Soucek recently related that she found it virtually impossible to write about Carson's without discussing Marshall FIeld's and it's significant influence on Carson, Pirie Scott & Co.  Meanwhile, Soucek's Marshall Field's book has exceeded its fifth printing, including an unprecedented "Limited Edition" hard cover.  Both books are available at many Chicagoland bookstores in the "local interest" section and online at the likes of and

    Unpredictable Webs  (Greenleaf Book Group Press) by Darlene Quinn is another in her series of "factional" books  based on the real-life consolidation of local department stores under Macy's.  This book is of special note because the story is set  against the backdrop of  outcry and controversy as an internationally renowned Chicago emporium is subsumed by an out-of-town retailer.  Darleen Quinn writes from her immense experience as part of the management team of Los Angeles'  internationally celebrated Bullocks Wilshire department store.  The intriguing story line of Ms. Quinn's award-winning "Webs" books is expected to soon be translated into a captivating television series.  Ms. Quinn's books can be ordered through the likes of, and other booksellers.

    Do you have a new book that is relevant to restoring Marshall Field's as Chicago's modern, internationally renowned, 21st-century emporium?  Please submit  information about your book to info AT for consideration as a  topic in our future newsletters, blog entries and social media posts.


           2005: Remembering The Last Christmas as Marshall Field's

    Remember to check out our special 2012 YouTube video celebrating the last Christmas at Marshall Field's State Street flagship, including the Cinderella windows.  Intended as a love letter to the season and to all who made Marshall Field's so special, its message is timeless and rings true a year after the video's creation and eight years since that last Christmas gift from Marshall Field's.

    The full version of the video can be viewed at 
    (There is also a link to special edited version for those with smartphones instead of computers and tablets.  It is at )

    Please share this video with your family and friends.



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    READ THE LATEST COMMENTS AND NEWS from fellow Field's lovers--that would be about four out of five Chicago shoppers.

    POST YOUR COMMENTS AND THOUGHTS on Marshall Field's past, present and future--

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           What YOU Have Already Accomplished:
           Thoughts & Thanks at Christmas & the Holiday Season

    [ The following is repeated from our previous newsletter No. 32 dated Friday, December 23, 2011. ]

    About three weeks ago, we received a moving blog  post from someone named Robert who claimed to have worked at Marshall Field's in the Twin Cities (Minnesota) area.

    Robert's opinion:

    "I used to work at Marshall Field's which became Macy's North. It's good to see the movement still rolling onward. We loved Marshall Field's. It was the best place to work. We all woke up looking forward to the day and went home satisfied, even on those rare days that were less than stellar.
    I'm writing to congratulate all of you on what you have accomplished. Marshall Field's may not be back at State Street or your favorite suburban location. But take heart. The spirit, while muted, lives on because of you.
    If you customers had not protested, the difference would be much worse. Please don't stop. Whether they admit it or not, Macy's put the brakes on reducing other flagships as well because of your protests. You made them take time to learn some things they would not have. If it weren't for your outcry, today's State Street store would [might] now be just three or four floors plus the lower level. They would have even considered closing the store and redeveloping it like Carson's.
    Macy's has also become better because of your fight. While Frangos never really caught fire nationwide, your pressure caused Macy's to reconsider their customer service and store quality. They realized that there were many things about Field's worth keeping. For example, food service was [headed] for a great reduction, even at the flagship store on State Street. Now, influenced by Field's, Herald Square is being bettered...
    Terry Lundgren will still be at Macy's helm for a while.  However, I assure you that many of his current peers would jump at the opportunity to return Marshall Field's to State Street.  That message needs to be sent to Macy's board, and, moreover, its institutional stock holders.  [FieldsFansChicago's] report comparing Field's to Duane Reade, F.A.O. and Berdorf-Goodman is right on the money.  And it's the money that talks, not the memories.  (Sorry to you people who carry on.)
    More than a few in retail realize the massive potential that still exists in Marshall Field's. It could take a while, but it will be back someday."

    We here at believe much of this is true. 

    In a recent interview, one of the organizers at was asked if they were going to write a book on Marshall Field's and the experiences of the past five years: Would it be a historical book of nostalgia or a business case-study or perhaps another photo book? 

    The response? It would be a book about faith.

    As we share another Christmas and holiday season without Marshall Field's, we also know that Marshall Field's --"The Store of the Christmas Spirit" --still lives on in all of us.  At the climax of Dr. Seuss's How The Grinch Stole Christmas, the citizens of Whoville still didn't have their Christmas decorations, gifts, trees and other items returned, but they kept the faith and continued onward.  The Whos practiced the spirit of Christmas any ways.  It was only then that the Grinch's heart was finally moved.  The Grinch returned the Christmas stuff and even joined the Whos in celebrating Christmas.

    While real-life is no perfect storybook tale, the truths are real.  The minions of Field's lovers continue to celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, and the season with the great spirit of Marshall Field's in our hearts, while we also look forward to the future.

    For the past several years, we've done surveys so we can know whether to continue on.  For the past three years, the numbers have held quite steadfast: an overwhelming four out of five Chicago shoppers STILL prefer Marshall Field's to Macy's.

    Macy's advertising campaign tells its customers to "Believe" and promotes making wishes come true.  With millions making a huge wish for the return of Marshall Field's.  Macy's could provide no greater wish than to see that Chicago's Marshall Field's was somehow restored to State Street in name as well as in its unique spirit of quality and service.  The good will and publicity generated would be immense to Macy's executives and shareholders and priceless to customers.

    We continue to believe in our city and the store that was so iconic of Chicago's unique spirit.  We know that you will too.  Thank you.


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    This newsletter and the activities and events described within have NO affiliation whatsoever with Macy's, Inc. (formerly Federated Department Stores, Inc.), May Department Stores Company, Macy's, Bloomingdale's, Marshall Field's, the Marshall Field Family, the Field Foundation of Chicago, etc., and the views and opinions expressed here represent only those of the writer.


           END OF NEWSLETTER No. 37


    Date: Monday, December 23, 2013, 2013  9:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Was in the Old Orchard Macy's tonight. I wouldn't say the Frangos were gone but they had noticeable gaps in the shelves where they would be in the basement. I can't remember Field's ever selling Frangos for around $8-$9 a box with a coupon. Macy's seems to need the draw. Also saw just a couple of Marshall Field's canister Frangos. Both being purchased by Macy's employees.

    I also stopped by Barnes and Noble where I was told that Gayle Soucek's "Carson's" book was selling like hotcakes. It was the same case at the downtown Evanston store according to a clerk: "We're selling a lot of those!"

    Soucek's Carson's book has a lot about Field's in it. For a while, Field's owned the land on which the Sullivan-designed Carson's flagship stands, and of course, Leiter sold Field's State Street store to Carson Pirie Scott briefly until Marshall Field could buy it back; finally, Selfridge's first store preceded Carson's 100-plus year tenure. So much more on Field's in that book--go get it!

    Date: Monday, December 23, 2013, 2013  6:13 pm CT
    Posted by: Glenn S.

    Marshall Fields Lives!

    Date: Sunday, December 22, 2013, 2013  8:33 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Thank you to all who helped making the flyers distribution a success this weekend. Again, EVERYONE wanted Field's back. I was out there for about an hour yesterday, but the rain was so bad, I had to stop. Was out for about 90 minutes late this afternoon and early evening.

    About 400 flyers were warmly received. Not a single naysayer.

    Date: Saturday, December 21, 2013, 2013  3:44 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    The beautiful PBS documentary on Marshall Field's Christmas windows by the late John Calloway was re-broadcast December 20 on Channel 11 at 7:30 p.m. What a joy to see countless archival photos of the tree going up in the Walnut Room, Uncle Mistletoe and Freddie Field Mouse; and to hear memories from former Field's employees (including Amy Meadows) and Field's shoppers. I am so glad this documentary was made and continues to be shown.

    Date: Friday, December 20, 2013, 2013  4:42 pm CT
    Posted by: Bill

    I was a Field's employee for over 25 years. Now I shop Carson's family of stores. Still remember having coffee and breaks in the Walnut room....boy does time fly.


    Date: Friday, December 20, 2013, 2013  12:29 pm CT
    Posted by: A Chicago shopper

    I confess: I don't wear my Marshall Field's pin all the time because I get so many remarks. It's a bit of a distraction in the best possible way.

    Date: Thursday, December 19, 2013, 2013  2:48 pm CT
    Posted by: A Chicago shopper

    It is encouraging to see how people are still so interested in a return to Marshall Field's. I know I am.

    Date: Wednesday, December 18, 2013, 2013  9:26 pm CT
    Posted by: gayle

    Wow, I just saw something in today's business news that really articulates what I've always felt about Field's, but didn't know how to describe!

    A financial analyst from Morningstar was discussing Whole Foods' decision to drop Chobani yogurt from their stores (because Chobani uses genetically modified grain to feed the cattle that provide the milk for the yogurt). The analyst was saying that Whole Foods has always been very successful at selling and promoting small/unknown brands because customers trust Whole Foods to choose good products. Here's his quote:

    "To some extent, you could say it's the Whole Foods brand equity, rather than the brand of the product, that gives the stamp of approval on products in Whole Foods stores," Perkins said."

    Sound familiar?


    Date: Wednesday, December 18, 2013, 2013  9:17 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Macy's has expanded it's schedule of non-stop hours from this Friday through Christmas Eve. For the first time, it includes State Street as well as Union Square in San Francisco.

    Date: Wednesday, December 18, 2013, 2013  5:28 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    Here's to Field's still in our hearts-- the Store of the Christmas Spirit. What a treasure!

    Can't say there is any other store that lingers in the soul like that.

    Date: Tuesday, December 17, 2013, 2013  10:56 am CT
    Posted by: drew

    The Red Star uses questionable tactics when dealing with suspected shoplifters:

    Date: Sunday, December 15, 2013, 2013  7:42 pm CT
    Posted by: Craig Smith

    by Macy's to enter my regional mall - there's always plenty of empty spaces in front of the store. Of course there is a dearth of customers inside, so it's relatively easy to navigate through the store to get into the mall, even past the tables in the center of the aisles piled with junky merchandise. Even Penney's doesn't do this. Once in the mall, I noticed only a couple of shoppers carrying Macy's bags, but at least a dozen shoppers with Carson's bags. Pretty telling where people in the area go to shop.

    Date: Saturday, December 14, 2013, 2013  8:25 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Thanks to all who helped make leafleting a success on State Street today. Several hundred were distributed over about 90 minutes. All were warmly received with many saying how they wish Marshall Field's would return. In general, it was relatively quiet up and down State Street this afternoon. Busy for a Saturday afternoon in September; pretty quiet for 10 days before Christmas. I noticed that Macy's book department is now carrying a book on Carons's by Gayle Soucek, the same author of "Marshall Field's, The Store That Helped Build Chicago."

    If you wish to view, print and distribute our current bookmark/flyer/leaflet, check out

    The actual bookmark/flyer/leaflet is at:

    Date: Saturday, December 14, 2013, 2013  6:17 pm CT
    Posted by: K. Cervantez

    I'm both sad and glad that this site continues. Sad because we don't have Field's back. When will they listen to customers? Glad that people still care.

    It's a sad statement that Macy's has to advertise what's in the former Marshall Field's store. It's a given. This is all about pride. It's pretty apparent that Macy's simply doesn't like Marshall Field's. I hope that it comes back.

    Date: Friday, December 13, 2013, 2013  5:51 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Date: Friday, December 13, 2013, 2013  5:51 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Will be out under the Great Marshall Field's Clock at State and Washington tomorrow (Saturday) starting at 12:15 pm. If you'd like to help distribute flyers or come and get a "Time To Bring Back Marshall Field's" pin-on button, please contact me via email at jjmckay at mac dot com. Or drop on by.



    Date: Friday, December 13, 2013, 2013  4:22 pm CT
    Posted by: A State Street Spectator

    I can relate to Zelda's recent comment. Macy's windows try to evoke the "old days," but then when you go inside the store you can't help but notice the new days are no comparison.

    Date: Friday, December 13, 2013, 2013  12:16 pm CT
    Posted by: Jimmy Gimbels

    Oh me, oh my.

    Remember when those wacky folks at Macy's claimed Marshall Fields was failing because the store relied on too many "coupons." Has anone notices the barrage of coupons that Macy's has gushed this past Fall and holiday season. Oh, that is right...they are called "Shopping Passes", so I guess it must be a different thing.

    True story: Co-worker went to Macy's a with a "Shopping Pass." I know, I know. I tried to warn her. First, she proclaimed the merchandise is the store paper-thin junk, remarked on the lack of any sales staff, and realized the shopping pass applied to virtually nothing in the store. By the way, get out your magnifying glasses and try to read all the tiny type of the back of the shopping pass.


    -Odd: the amount of spring/summer clothes still hanging on the racks at Macy's. Even at clearance prices, the stuff does not move.

    - New Gurnee Mills store: empty during prime holiday shopping times but still a mess. One good thing, the store still makes for close to the door parking for easy access to the rest of the mall.

    - How I miss the hioliday decorations at Fields. Even the branch stores were well turned out. Macy's, again, is using towers of red gift boxes held together by ribbon. Ineresting since the last thing you can get at Macy's is a gift box.

    Date: Thursday, December 12, 2013, 2013  10:21 pm CT
    Posted by: Gayle

    Hi folks,

    As Jim mentioned, I gave a talk on Field's at the Schaumburg Public Library last night. Despite the sub-freezing temperatures, the room was filled--75 people plus a waiting list. Once again, the minute I mentioned Macy's (in a neutral and not even remotely negative manner)most of the people began to boo and hiss. Several of the attendees were ex-Field's employees, and they each shared emotional stories about their devotion to Field's, and the shoddy manner in which they felt they were forced out after Macy's takeover. And, despite what Macy's execs seem to believe, it was not all old people harboring warm and fuzzy memories of bygone days--the crowd was liberally sprinkled with 20-30-and 40-somethings. To a person, they each expressed a strong desire to see Field's return.

    This is the third sold-out talk I have given on Field's in the past six months. One venue had seating for more than 100, and had such a long waiting list that they invited me back. They filled the second lecture as well.

    To put it in perspective, "Marshall Fields: The Store That Helped Build Chicago", was published three years ago, and interest has never waned. My new book on Carson Pirie and Scott was released just a few weeks ago; when I have done book signings for that, the stores invariably put out the Field's book as well, and I wind up signing and selling more of them than the brand new title. People are interested in Carson's and have fond memories; by contrast, people are obsessed with Field's and furious about its demise. I sometimes wish that shareholders could see the faces and hear the voices. Maybe then they would truly understand what Jim means when he talks about "unlocking shareholder value..."



    Date: Thursday, December 12, 2013, 2013  5:38 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    Today's Sneed Column in the Sun-Times tells readers to get over the loss of wrapping paper service at Macy's State Street for the second year in a row. The bit is down a few paragraphs after the story about the CTA cleaning staff.

    Date: Wednesday, December 11, 2013, 2013  7:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Letter to the Editors of the Chicago Tribune at,0,580858.story

    December 10, 2013

    The other day I was in the Loop and thought I would use the opportunity to enjoy the windows at Macy's and see how they compared to the ones I enjoyed as a child. They were lovely and had the traditional movement. The theme this year was the history of this great store. By the second window, however, it became painfully obvious that the name "Marshall Field's" was conspicuously and deliberately missing. The clock, for example, was called the Great State Street Clock.

    How foolish can they be? Macy's is privileged to possess one of the most historic and admired properties in Chicago. They should be turning this to their advantage and touting it as "Macy's Marshall Field's". By continuing to carry a chip on their shoulder and continually disrespecting Marshall Field's they are,by extension, disrespecting the millions who loyally shopped there. When I told one of my friends about the windows she cancelled a planned meal at the Walnut Room.

    Someone at Macy's needs to re-watch "Miracle on 34th Street" and see how Kris Kringle's references to a rival store create good will that actually lead to increased sales. In this case it isn't even a rival, it is an asset they own and are throwing away.

    --Joyce Porter, Oak Park
    Please login with your Facebook account and leave comments. You can also email a "Letter to the Editor" at

    Date: Wednesday, December 11, 2013, 2013  7:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Mary E.-S.

    Missing Marshall Field's all the time!

    I won't even buy Frangos from Macy's. I did try to make my own, but too much work. I keep hoping for the big come back!!

    Please keep trying!

    Date: Tuesday, December 10, 2013, 2013  7:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Zelda

    Hi there, Field's Fans,

    Another Christmas without Field's - the one depressing note in an otherwise happy season. Just walking through Macy's is such a bummer. The tables are packed together at the doors to prohibit shoplifters' escaping! What an attitude for a retailer! And all the greeters: what is this? Walmart? Field's didn't need greeters as it had very classy employees who always treated everyone with respect. If they think they're going to warm us with their nostalgic windows evoking the old days, they're wrong; it has the opposite effect. It does evoke the good old days but then there's that big smack of reality, that they're gone. The Tiffany ceiling is still there, but don't look at the cracked floors and tacky atmosphere. Terry Lundgren thinks he'll win when Jim McKay and the fans are no longer protesting, but he'll never win while we still have a really great store to compare to Macy's.

    All the best,


    Date: Monday, December 9, 2013, 2013  8:40 pm CT
    Posted by: Richard Moreno

    Wish it was still the 80s. While living in San Antonio, loved going to Marshall fields. I loved that place. There's no store like it. Foleys and mervyns were also my favorite stores. Unfortunately all those stores are gone, now stuck with just Macy's. I think we would have a greater selection of shopping like before with those old stores. Whoever took charge now of this company to replace Marshall fields what a mistake.

    Date: Sunday, December 8, 2013, 2013  5:11 pm CT
    Posted by: A State Street Spectator

    I managed get to State Street recently, and noticed much seems to be re-used. The same boring pale green tree with big white stars at the bottom is still in the Walnut Room. The window animations are kind of cute, but I don't think I would make a special trip for them (especially since we've already seen them). I noticed a figure in the new Frango window who appeared to be jiggling and hanging onto a piece of chocolate like she was going to topple. I don't know that was part of the animation or something wrong. There seem to be less book tables from previous years. No tables are at the entrance and exit of the Walnut Room this year. I did find three copies of "Marshall Field's: The Store That Helped Build Chicago" by Gayle Soucek on the book table in the 7th floor archives room, and two copies in the lower level book department. Book shelves by the 7th floor food court had all cookbooks and food items.

    I did enjoy seeing the State Street store in the background of the McDonald's Chicago Thanksgiving Day parade. Since you couldn't see the name on any of the awnings, it looked like perhaps it was still Field's.

    Date: Saturday, December 7, 2013, 2013  8:14 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Thanks to all who made flyer distribution under the clock a success this afternoon. Several hundred were distributed over a total of 90 minutes or so. All responses were supportive of Field's return.

    Thank you.

    Date: Saturday, December 7, 2013, 2013  5:52 pm CT
    Posted by: Ed K.

    BRING IT BACK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    BOO MACY'S!!!

    Date: Friday, December 6, 2013, 2013  6:07 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    I'll be out on State Street under the Great Marshall Field's clock at State and Washington around Noon hour tomorrow, Saturday, passing out our flyers. If you would like to help, please email me at jjmckay at fieldsfanschicago dot org.

    Happy St. Nicholas' Day!

    Date: Friday, December 6, 2013, 2013  11:27 am CT
    Posted by: In Bedford Park

    I think someone else mentioned it. I never saw Frangos so cheap. Macy's must be desperate!!!!

    Date: Thursday, December 5, 2013, 2013  1:28 am CT
    Posted by: Anna P.

    Here's another item to add to the It-can-come-back list. For generations, Albertsons was the West's premiere grocery store. It was also a civic friend of Boise, Idaho. They even sponsored a university which bore its name. Seven years ago, it was bought out. The corporate HQ moved to Minnesota. The university dropped the Alberstons name. This year, the company that bought it was broken up. Now Alberstons has some back home to Boise! By the way, Alberstons is the parent of Chicago's Jewel-Osco. I think they are a pretty good parent, better than Safeway was to Dominicks.

    So hang in there! Miracles DO happen!

    Date: Wednesday, December 4, 2013, 2013  7:29 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Gayle Soucek is giving a talk on her book, "Marshall Field's, The Store That Helped Build Chicago," a week from tonight at the Schaumburg Public Library. There's seating for 75--but don't bother trying to attend. There's already a long waiting list, to hear about a book that came out over three years ago. Not only did Ms. Soucek do a great job on the book, it's another indication of Marshall Field's staying power and popularity. Any other retailer would be overjoyed to have Marshall Field's as an asset.

    Date: Tuesday, December 3, 2013, 2013  9:18 pm CT
    Posted by: John R.

    I worked at Old Orchard in the 90s. Field's was the best. It's so sad to see it now. It's like a competitor to Kohl's or Penney's. Thank you for keeping this up.

    Date: Tuesday, December 3, 2013, 2013  6:08 pm CT
    Posted by: Mike Moran (with editing by Jim McKay)

    Had a good conversation with Jim McKay this evening about the connections between the immensely popular "A Christmas Story" and Marshall Field's. Next to "It's A Wonderful Life," "A Christmas Story" is the most popular Christmas movie of all time, even more than "Miracle on 34th Street." Jean Shepard, the genius behind "A Christmas Story," was inspired in part behind his experience working at Marshall Field's. Jim will get the links to several video clips where Jean Shepard talks about Marshall Field's and a Christmas Story.

    Date: Monday, December 2, 2013, 2013  9:03 pm CT
    Posted by: Meghan K.

    Another Christmas without Field's! It's not the same. I noticed that the Sun-Times was pushing its advertiser, Macy's, in Saturday' paper. Several of the photos had Macy's bags all over. Not much of anything else. At least Macy's is helping them stay afloat. But at what cost to the Sun-Times?

    Date: Monday, December 2, 2013, 2013  5:55 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    I dumped my post yesterday about the spiritual aspect of this movement- maybe too preachy. Ms. Johnson McQueen's post, however, is the reason I decided to say this. She did not retreat to Walmart, Carson's, or Bloomingdale's, for a reason.

    This is not about a mere store, or stuff. We have had preachments for centuries that have blinded us to the reality that stuff matters, at least insofar as it can be a metaphor for spiritual realities, and a facilitator for spiritual growth. I am not alluding to shopping therapy, which I like as well as the next. I refer to being respected by a retailer or manufacturer or designer to the extent that quality is conveyed, aesthetically as well functionally-- with customer delight in mind. Field's was that.

    I don't refer, either, to mere poshness or extravagance. I take the Apple world as the successor to Field's: aesthetic intensity permeates everything they offer-- so along with function, I delight in the (to me) clearly intense and even rigorously edited aesthetic they pursue. That is why an Apple store vibrates with excitement. Everyone there is happy to be a bee in that hive, a moth around the flame. It hits a deep and essential nerve, like Field's used to. I assume everyone has that nerve -- some are dead to it, many are keenly aware, and the rest somewhere in the middle. But that is why this site is still a-hopping.

    As long as the 'argument' hovers on Field's as a nice store, the cause is lost. It was not just a nice or fine or even superlative store; it had a commitment to excellence on many levels that requires digging into the soul, past mere ego or quarterly reports. Field's is waiting for the entrepreneur with the passion or soul to understand that. No mall, no specialty store can do that. Just that gem on 111 N. State.

    Date: Sunday, December 1, 2013, 2013  11:00 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay I thank Philip for his post but also disagree with some points. I will respond at a later date when I can offer the worthy time his post deserves.

    Date: Sunday, December 1, 2013, 2013  4:38 pm CT
    Posted by: Philip Eichler In response to Jim's speculation about Lord and Taylor closing the Water Tower store, I believe it is merely a coincidence it happened under Macy's ownership. In the late 1960s, the writing was already on the wall that Michigan Avenue would surpass State Street as a shopping destination. It was the chairman of Field's that conceived of the idea of Water Tower Place under Field's Mafco division. The actual building was developed in conjunction with Urban Investment. Since it was an entirely new type of development, they were willing to cut deals to sign up retail tenants. Lord and Taylor was in for very little rent and when their lease was up, the current owner, General Growth Properties was more than eager to chop up L &T's space into much more lucrative smaller spaces. Macy's current stats lists 65 owned locations in the North division (their annual report still uses the old divisions and Field's had about that number of stores when they were sold)which would include the Water Tower location. The fact that they own so many stores in good locations with well built structures gives them "staying power" that unfortunately (for us) makes them a much different case than the scenario surrounding the exit of Dominick's from Chicago.

    Date: Sunday, December 1, 2013, 2013  1:22 pm CT
    Posted by: Catherine Johnson-McQueen

    Marshall Fields was a place of refuge for me when I was coming up in the Civil Rights and Segregation Era. My mom worked there for a while and so did I when I was raising my family and attending college. But it was especially important to me as a preteen. You see, I use to hide out there when I was suppose to be taking piano lessons. I loved classical music as a young girl and still do. As a woman of color, I learned a lot from this store. And as I said before, Marshall Fields became 'My place of Refuge' because of my fear of taking piano lessons from the professor. I will write about this experience and hope that all who read it will understand what this store meant to me as a young child until the days of my adulthood. So there is more to the Marshall Fields store on State Street in Chicago, Illinois that meets the eye.

    I do want to say that I am all for the great return......CJM

    The above item was originally posted on Wednesday, November 20, 2013, but did not display properly. Sincere apologies to Ms. Johnson-McQueen.

    Date: Saturday, November 30, 2013  6:03 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Thanks again to all who made a this afternoon a repeat of yesterday's distribution of flyers. Chicago still overwhelmingly wants Marshall Field's to return to State Street. More...later.

    Date: Saturday, November 30, 2013  5:53 pm CT
    Posted by: Sharon T.

    WE NEED MARSHALL FIELDS TO RETURN. Can't someone buy it from Macy's? So many people want it back!

    Date: Saturday, November 30, 2013  12:01 pm CT
    Posted by: Eric Bronsky

    Friday's Chicago Tribune included a feature article about Christkindlmarket by reporter Steve Johnson. Here is a direct quote which needs no further commentary from me:

    "We used to take the 'L' downtown, preferably on the CTA's seasonal 'Holiday Train,' look at the Marshall Field's windows, then head over to the market to look at traditional beer steins and cuckoo clocks but buy only some strudel or schnitzel or, perhaps, a dark beer.

    "Now we do that, except the windows we look at belong to Macy's, and the ritual includes talking about how the Field's windows were way better."


    Date: Friday, November 29, 2013  8:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Thanks to all who helped make a success of the distribution of our flyers under the Great Marshall Field's Clock a success this afternoon. About 400 flyers were passed out over about a 90-100 minute period. All were warmly received. With the shift to Thanksgiving evening shopping, it was like a typical Saturday afternoon instead of the Black Fridays of several years ago when there would be so many people that I would sometimes find myself literally crushed up against the "Marshall Field and Company" plaque. People also did not seem especially interested in the windows.

    Everyone wanted Marshall Field's.

    I walked through the store a bit. It was pretty busy. They have Frangos in Marshall Field's tins all over the Frango shop, near the Walnut Room entrance, and in Holiday Lane where they sell Christmas ornaments. The canisters have the Marshall Field's logo on them but the pricing signage refers to them the "Chicago Clock". Grrrrrr! The store seems to be selling a lot more middle market nick-nacks and gift sets this year than in previous years.

    As I was exiting, I passed through cosmetics. An well-dressed customer about 100 feet away down the aisle seemed engaged in some heated conversation with a clerk. You could hear the customer say something about how the store needed to go back to being Marshall Field's. No kidding.

    We'll be out again tomorrow (Saturday) afternoon, passing out flyers.

    Date: Friday, November 29, 2013  5:28 pm CT
    Posted by: SAMANTHA


    Date: Friday, November 29, 2013  7:38 am CT
    Posted by: Jim

    The thing to keep in mind about the former Wannamakers is that it went bankrupt and out of business. Once upon a time, it was a peer of Field's and Mr. Wannamaker was even good friends with Marshall Field. At one point, John Wannamaker supposedly said, half-kidding/half-seriously, that he'd like to open a Chicago branch. (There already was a NYC branch of Wannamakers.) Silent Mar said fine, but if then he would open a Field's in Philadelphia.

    Many of you know, that the former Wannamakers flagship is an architectural sibling of the older State Street flagship and the younger Filene's and Selfridges flagships. (Only the facade is left from Filene's.) There are differences, most obviously the organ and the eagle, but the resemblence is uncanny. By the 1950s, Wannamakers had significantly declined in terms of quality and was in trouble financially. It was liquidated in the mid-90s and the flagship was acquired by May Department Stores which rebranded it under Strawbridges, Hechts, and finally Lord and Taylor. When Macy's acquired and then flipped Lord and Taylor, they did make an exception and keep the former Wannamakers for use as a Macy's.

    That decision leads to all sorts of questions as to why Macy's couldn't have converted Lord and Taylor locations in Chicago to Macy's and kept Field's. Yes, the stores are smaller, but Macy's is moving to smaller stores. Rent issues aside, it's curious how Lord and Taylor at Water Tower closed when Macy's flipped it, rather than stayed a Lord and Taylor. I could go on and on. The point is that Field's didn't have to go away and Macy's stockholders would not only have benefited, they would be better off.

    Date: Thursday, November 28, 2013  11:40 am CT
    Posted by: drew, Pittsburgh

    How laughable! Terry is crediting himself for "localizing" selections when he had regional department stores that already did that.

    Date: Thursday, November 28, 2013  10:43 am CT
    Posted by: MICHAEL LAWING

    Happy Holiday's CHICago!

    I came from New York in '05 for the 1st protest and am proud to say Miss Macy has not gotten a dime of my $ since.

    Remember the small, unique places that make your City and neighborhood special and patronize them.

    A Fields Fan Forever! Michael

    Date: Thursday, November 28, 2013  CT
    Posted by:

    Happy Thanksgiving!

    Date: Tuesday, November 26, 2013  11:56 pm CT
    Posted by: Steve

    Some photos of Woodfield Mall on the day it opened, September 9, 1971. You will note several photos of "Marshall Field and Company".,0,3198415.photogallery
    It seems every department store chain had a flagship in its day. But another unique aspect of Field's was that each of the suburban stores built through the 1970s would be awesome enough to be a flagship for most any other chain. Old Orchard, Oak Brook, Woodfield and Orland were flagship stores in s certain way. And what other chain has TWO flagship stores downtown in the same city, State Street and Water Tower. Good grief! Even Manhattan has only one Macy's! Why can't they at least let State Street be Marshall Field's and Water Tower be Macy's?

    A bit of Field's trivia. I knew that Evanston and Oak Park opened on the same day in 1928 and closed on the same day in 1986. Until I saw this story, I didn't know that Marshall Field's at Woodfield became Macy's thirty-five years to the day of Field's grand opening, September 9, 2006. Something!

    Date: Saturday, November 23, 2013  7:02 pm CT
    Posted by: Mary A.

    Like someone else pointed out, I don't see how they can have just a couple of Bloomingdales here in Chicago but not have Marshall Fields. I think Bloomingdales was jealous of Marshall Fields.

    I don't shop at Macy's anymore, except for Frangos. And then I buy the ones with Marshall Field's on the box.

    Date: Friday, November 22, 2013  2:55 pm CT
    Posted by: Holly, Florida

    I have moved to Florida from Chicago, and I get nostalgic about the city this time of year.

    Starting from a young age when my parents lived in South Bend, we would take the South Shore to Chicago to go Christmas shopping at Field's.

    When I was a college student at Notre Dame, my grandmother and I would make the trek and we would always have lunch at the Walnut Room. I met my husband in Chicago in 2005 and we were able to secure two of the glass Christmas ornaments of the clock - one for us and one for my folks. My mother keeps it in a china cabinet year round and mine is tied with a bow in a place of honor. I still have stacks of Christmas boxes that I reuse to package presents - the thick green ones. One of my joys was having presents wrapped in the store - they were always so beautiful and I still have the ornaments from the boxes on my tree. We moved to Florida recently only to find that Burdine's, a Florida department store where I started shopping when my parents moved to Florida and I was still up north, had also been sucked up by Macy's. Marshall Field's - particularly the State Street location - was not just a storefront where the name and brands can be changed without really driving to the heart of people's memories and ties to years past.  I refuse to shop at Macy's and have since this happened. God forbid if the situation were reversed and Field's went into NYC and changed the Macy's to Field's at the flagship store. There would have been a coup. I now go to Dillard's in Sarasota, Florida - I only hope that Macy's will keep it's hands out of that store.

    Date: Thursday, November 21, 2013  9:26 pm CT
    Posted by: drew, Pittsburgh

    YAWN! Apparently the holiday windows at Red Star in Downtown Pittsburgh mostly reuse last years displays:
    While last year's displays were an improvement over the 2011 middle school style "construction paper" project, they were nothing worth traveling to see. In fact, many people viewing the windows while I was there found the displays uninspired and children called the animations boring.

    Why didn't Terry call upon his beloved "discount store diva" Martha Stewart to design something more memorable? In their defense, the Red Star holiday displays are nicer than their "competitors" Target, JCPenney, Walmart and Kmart.

    Date: Thursday, November 21, 2013  12:42 pm CT
    Posted by: Lori Blockel


    My great uncle was a salesman for Marshall Fields when they first opened downtown Chicago...I'm sure we all have roots in the history of this great Store..

    Date: Tuesday, November 19, 2013  10:01 pm CT
    Posted by: P.H.

    Keep up the good fight!

    Date: Sunday, November 17, 2013  3:15 pm CT
    Posted by: s.b.

    Recent article that Macy's Inc. has some of the LOWEST PAID employees in the country... under $9/hour. There is a lot of issues in the US and low-wages is one of them (IMO). The gap between the rich and poor is getting to big. I don't know about Field's but I do believe traditional department stores had "career sales associates" who were paid decent wages. I know Nordstrom pays at least 10+/hour. Still not much. Whole Foods 10+/hour. Costco and In-and-Out start at $10.50-$11.00. It shows... these are all much more successful than their counterparts.

    Date: Saturday, November 16, 2013  7:55 pm CT
    Posted by: s.b.

    Marshall Field's State Street really was the very best for the holidays - bar none. I always get the "lost a great piece of Chicago" feeling around this time of year.

    Lots of people visit Chicago (actually record numbers of tourist are coming now more than ever). If you have a chance... please voice your opinion on Yelp about "Macy's on State" perhaps a tourist coming into town will see how down-market the former Field's has gone.

    Hope Field's comes back soon :)

    Date: Friday, November 15, 2013  7:00 am CT
    Posted by: Jim

    I've been in the Cinci Fountain Square several times, including always after I attend the annual Macy's stockholders meeting on the third Friday in May. It is located a couple of blocks from Macy's, Inc. headquarters, about the distance from the State Street store to Millennium Park. The store is modern. although it doesn't have the history that you get from the former Shillito's flagship. Regardless, it's always clean and the associates are pleasant, offering attentive assistance. However, the store has never been that busy when I've been there, over a lunch hour, in the middle of May. Still, you'd think they'd want to have a presence close to their co-headquarters. Macy's doesn't seem to have much of a heart. How would such a closure impact employee and civic morale?

    Date: Thursday, November 14, 2013  9:53 pm CT
    Posted by: drew, pittsburgh

    The Red Star is threatening to leave downtown Cincinnati:
    So how many long-time downtown stores has The Red Star shuttered since it swallowed up all the regional chains? How many MORE downtown stores will be closed in the near future? Why are these stores no longer "profitable" after being converted to macy*s? It is evident little to no investment is being made in the downtown stores-- so what is their plan?

    For example, the downtown Pittsburgh flagship was Kaufmann's top grossing store. Since macy*fication, the building has been downsized from 11 floors to 6 floors-- with sections of the remaining floors closed off, merchandise selections and quality downgraded, and various services discontinued. Lots of empty space with merchandise spread thin. The fixtures, flooring and walls have not been modernized since Kaufmann's renovations in the mid 1990s. Maintenance is minimal. SOME of the suburban stores are being "refreshed" while others are being neglected.

    I would venture that many of the smaller, lower volume suburban stores and larger, underutilized downtown stores throughout the country are slated for closing.

    Date: Wednesday, November 13, 2013  3:04 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Macy's had it's third quarter conference call this morning. Macy's experienced increased profits and has a positive outlook for the holidays. According to Macy's, Inc. CFO Karen Hoguet, sales from its stores in the South and Northeast lead the way.

    Date: Monday, November 11, 2013  CT
    Posted by:

    Thank you
    to all Veterans.

    Date: Sunday, November 10, 2013  11:49 am CT
    Posted by: Dawn L.

    We visited State Street for the last time in a couple of years. It was so sad. It doesn't feel right, especially the cosmetics department. MAcy's made a big mistake. I hope your efforts pay off for us all!

    Date: Saturday, November 9, 2013  11:02 pm CT
    Posted by: Kelly Jon Kovarik

    I lived in Chicago in the late 1980's and on Sunday's I loved to go to Fields for a ice cream and to get ideas for how to set up display's in my own home. Having grown up in a small Nebraska town I loved to see the store and shop there. I now live in Denver, Colorado where we too have Macy's. It does not and will never compare to the store that Field's was ! If a small town hick from Nebraska can see this than it is very obvious that Marshall Field's needs to return to the great city of Chicago. Even though I do not live in Chicago, I still love Chicago and will be there next March. I will think twice before I step foot in Macy's, yet I will admire the Field building from state street.

    Date: Saturday, November 9, 2013  8:38 am CT
    Posted by: M. Housinger

    The Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade is a national institution. Then again, so is Marshall Field's! I can't watch the first because of what happened to the second.

    Marsha Housinger.

    Date: Friday, November 8, 2013  5:48 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    Macy's says that they want to consolidate advertising dollars. Then look at Bloomingdale's! They have a lot of full-page ads for what? Two stores?!! The home store and 900 Michigan are basically one store. Old Orchard is the other and it's always dead, even at Christmas time.

    Just think if they put the same energy into Marshall Field's at State Street. They'd have oodles more business.

    Date: Thursday, November 7, 2013  11:58 pm CT
    Posted by: N.M.

    I think someone else said this and I agree. Maybe Field's reused Christmas windows, but God! They were great windows to see again. Not as much to see with these windows. Look low-budget.

    We made our own Frangos last Christmas. They were as neatly shaped, but they were O.K.

    Date: Wednesday, November 6, 2013  7:19 pm CT
    Posted by: Linda H.

    Not only did Frederick and Nelson insist on selling to Marshall Field, note that they didn't sell to Macy's!!!!!!!!!


    Maybe the C.E.O. will surprise everyone like Mayor Daley and step down!

    Linda--Wayne, IL

    Date: Wednesday, November 6, 2013  12:46 pm CT
    Posted by: A Fan

    I miss Marshall Fields. Every Christmas we still go to State Street, but it's not the same. We just walk through. But I wish Target would have Windows on State St.

    This year we may just stick to N. Mich. Ave.

    Date: Tuesday, November 5, 2013  8:47 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    I also appreciated the PBS show on Selfridge. It was skewed in a certain way--towards Selfridges in London with little info about Chicago. The documentary effectively noted this at the git-go: they started their research in Chicago, but because his name became famous in London, there's little in Chicago about him. That said, if more had been written, the movie would be ammended to show that the first Selfridge's was in Chicago at State and Madison; Selfridge did indeed invent the bargain basement--but at Marshall Field and Company, not at his London store; that his store in London was inspired by the Marshall Field and Company store in Chicago, and so on. But, as the creators implied, this isn't well documented in Chicago. Perhaps the likes of Gayle Soucek, Ward Miller, myself or others should write a book.

    Some "forward-looking" ideas were also distilled from the documentary. A good watch, if you can catch it again.

    Two interesting things about the tree unveiling. While I respect the work of the Chicago talent at Macy's (formerly of Field's) that put together the tree, it's interesting to note that the tree no longer is associated with an international designer like Swarovski, Vera Wang, or even Tommy Hilfiger or Martha Stewart. With Field's it was all about designers and artists. With Macy's the focus is on stars and trying to be "like them." The other point of interest is that Rahm Emanuel was not there, again. Since Macy's took over, Mayor Daley always showed up with Mr. Lundgren for the tree lighting. Except for the 2011 Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce annual meeting, I don't think I've ever seen Mayor Emanuel and Mr. Lundgren at the same event. At the 2011 CCC event, Emanuel just had become mayor so he had to be there; the CCC, at least then, was headed by a senior exec of Pittsburgh's PNC Bank which is part owner of BlackRock which at around 5% is one of the largest shareholders of Macy's, Inc.

    Date: Tuesday, November 5, 2013  5:57 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    hope the beloved vibes of the Walnut Room have managed to transcend the sullying Macy murk. Coming here years ago to the Rochester area from Chicago, and dining in what was the local answer to the Walnut Room (sorry, Sibley's) was SO disappointing. No contest. Nothing like it left now.

    I hope the powerful walnut mystique will see the space through to the day when the store falls into understanding hands.

    Date: Monday, November 4, 2013  7:37 pm CT
    Posted by: Jeanie west driver

    I saw the documentary on PBS. I live in California so I am grateful for the heads up. Well done and quite thoughtful.

    Date: Monday, November 4, 2013  2:30 pm CT
    Posted by: A TV news watcher

    saw the quickie coverage of the tree lighting on most TV news stations. They all seemed to gloss over it simply like it's an event on the calendar, not because it's that big a deal. The American idol star got to sing a few lines of her song, the male celebrity guest had his name mentioned, and the governor and Santa got their faces on camera. That's about it. The tree looked like the same boring one from last year, with those big white bland stars at the foot of it. I was surprised to hear Mr. Lundgren showed up. He was not mentioned on the 3 or 4 news stations I saw. I think the weather gets better coverage.

    On a more interesting note, "The Secret's of Selfridge's" which PBS aired Sunday night at 7:00 p.m. seemed very well-done with a wealth of historical facts and footage. Unfortunately, Marshall Field's part in the picture is not highlighted. Mention is made that Selfridge began as a stock boy at Field's and grew through the ranks until there was no-place to go but London. But that's about it. I also notice that even though the store obviously resembles State Street Field's, NO mention is made as to who its architect was. However, I do think the documentary is excellent and recommend it for its tasteful and painstaking research in many areas.

    Date: Monday, November 4, 2013  8:38 am CT
    Posted by: Lee H.

    The Frango window is obviously a tip of the hat to the famous "I Love Lucy" episode. Cute...but a better reference would be a Marshall Field's or Frederick and Nelson logo somewhere.

    BTW: On the back of the Frango box, Macy's makes it sound like Marshall Field's stole Frangos from F&N by buying them out. The fact F&N actually modeled themselves on Marshall Field and Company. When F&N wanted to retire, they insisted on selling to Marshall Field's!

    I don't think Marshall Field would ever insist on selling to Macy's.

    Date: Sunday, November 3, 2013  7:45 pm CT
    Posted by: Joan Crawford

    I am so grateful to see that you are still working on this project. Thanks for all that you have done. I know that one day "Marshall Field's" will be back.

    Date: Sunday, November 3, 2013  4:22 pm CT
    Posted by: Michael Shotliff

    My first 'real' job was in the Store for Men (first floor) selling wallets, jewelry, and what-nots!! GREAT memories as I lived in Woodstock and commuted daily via Chicago and Northwestern! I got to really enjoy the 'flavor' of the downtown area!! m...

    Date: Sunday, November 3, 2013  12:39 pm CT
    Posted by: R.T.

    The Chicago Tribune had the Marshall Field's clock on today's front page as part of the name heading. It was cool to see!

    Date: Sunday, November 3, 2013  12:09 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    I guess these are two posts about Chicago radio.

    One, CBS News Radio Chicago 780/105.9 keeps running a story about the Walnut Room Tree lighting. It's been like every half hour for the past day. The reporters there are tactful as always. They refer to the Walnut Room. They don't make it out to be that Macy's started the Walnut Room or stupid stuff like that. The customer they interview, you have to assume he's being sarastic because he says the tree wasn't unveiled early enough. It should have been for Halloween.

    The other radio story is simply the wrap over page ad on the front of Today's Chicago Tribune. It's about WGN Radio going back to the great programming that they used to have. The ad read, "Chicago's very own returns to Chicago's very own." I keep hoping the same happens for Marshall Field's. Perhaps the best omen was that the front page of the Tribune had a Marshall Field's clock right next to this ad! YAYYYY!

    Date: Sunday, November 3, 2013  9:28 am CT
    Posted by: Writing from Naperville

    Saw all the hype for the Walnut room tree on TV. Still rooting for Marshall Field to make the big come back!


    Date: Saturday, November 2, 2013  10:56 pm CT
    Posted by: M.B.

    They had the lighting of the tree on TV tonight. Channel 7, I think. Also on newsradio. How early can they get? Are they that desperate? Macy's CEO was there for the lighting. The only politician who would show up seems to be Pat Quinn. A--He's the most disliked governor in the U.S. B--I guess he has to given Macy's has all those downstate locations too.


    Date: Saturday, November 2, 2013  7:54 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Went to State Street today to see the newly unveiled windows. I also spent an hour passing out our holiday season flyers.

    Installation of the window displays seem to be done. All are uncovered. They seem to be mostly the same as last year's windows talking about traditions and features of Marshall Field's on State Street--without mentioning Marshall Field's anywhere except showing replicas of the plaques on a corner scene. The Great Marshall Field's clock is referred to as the "State Street Clock", like last year. As noted, a new window has been added to show a Frango factory. I didn't see Marshall Field's or Frederick and Nelson mentioned. It features two motorized candy worker figurines working at a Frango conveyer belt. They appear to be trying to grab a chocolate Santa that is the exception what is otherwise an assembly line of Frangos. Thirty seconds--maximum should satisfy most people's curiosity about this new window.

    As Amy Meadows has been pointing out in the presentations she gives on the windows, it was quite common for department stores--including Field's--to reuse a series of windows over three years, tweaking some features and adding some variations. That's what's going on here. She also has made it clear that whomever makes the window displays has to work within a certain budget and that can impact the execution. Finally, Some of Ms. Meadows proteges still work on the windows here in Chicago.

    That acknowledged, own opinion is that it would be fine to use the windows over several years--if they were substantially interesting enough. There's some delightful, new details added--like kids being playful in some scenes where they weren't last year. However, the depth and detail of these windows need more substance and detail to hold the interest of visitors over multiple years.

    A question to ask Amy Meadows if you go her next presentation: Macy's and the news calls these the 46th annual holiday windows. Yet, Field's clearly had windows dressed for the holidays back a hundred years to the days of Selfridge and Silent Mar. Does 46 years refer to when the Christmas windows stopped being used to sell merchandise and were solely provided as entertainment?

    The inside of the store may not be fully decorated. That said, what I did see were a lot of boughs and oversize ornaments hung from the ceiling that were wisely placed, but seemed cheap in terms of quality.

    Finally, the trumpets hung from the State Street flagpoles are back.

    I did a quick run through the store to see what was new for the holidays and was surprised to catch a glimpse of Terry Lundgren at a podium in front of the Walnut Room tree. I don't think Mr. Lundgren has been here for the tree lighting in the two previous years--maybe I'm incorrect about that. I didn't stick around--too crowded.

    For about an hour, I passed out about 150 bookmark-style flyers similar to the ones from last year. Everyone was enthusiastic. four different parties stopped for extended discussions. They all shared that they wanted Marshall Field's to return, but wanted to know how it would happen. Using many of our talking points (Tradename value, the fact that the store; while profitable should be much more profitable without the competition of Carson's and Lord and Taylor; How Dominick's is being resurrected as Mariano's, and more. All left convinced. Flyers will be passed out again in the future as we get closer to the holidays. Watch the space above for details.

    Date: Saturday, November 2, 2013  4:11 pm CT
    Posted by: A.J.C.

    Was at State Street MAcy's earlier for the tree lighting and met one of your people handing out sheets of information. We want Fields to come back. The plaques are dirty, tarnished green and black. The numbers have washed off the face of clock at State and Randolph. I remember how Macy's fought over the painting of the clock. Now that they own the real clock, they don't give a damn about it. Good thing they didn't get the painting too. Please keep on trying. Maybe it will work some day.

    Date: Friday, November 1, 2013  3:01 pm CT
    Posted by: A State Street news watcher

    Fox 32 9:00 a.m. News today plugged Macy's upcoming tree lighting with an interview with employee John Jones. Fox said Jones has been involved behind the scenes with the tree and the windows for 20 years.

    A photo shown of a previous window (looked like last year) rather conspicuously included the Marshall Field's sign next to it on the building.

    Especially highlighted was a window showing people watching the Macy's parade(that's from New York)on TV.

    Jones said additional windows this year will include a scene at Randolph and State about making Frangos. They held up a big green metal box labeled Marshall Field's Frango Mints, complete with drawing of the clock, and plugged it as the original window box.

    Jones and the Fox anchor "reminisced" about these wonderful traditions of tree, Walnut Room and windows people have enjoyed since childhood, with special emphasis that for every letter to Santa $1 is given to the Make-a-Wish Foundation. However, Jones closed by touting the wonderful long-time traditions as originating at Macy's on State--with no mention of or credit to Field's even though the name was obviously on the Frango Mint box and the side of the building.

    Almost everyone else knows the traditions originated at Marshall Field's.

    Date: Friday, November 1, 2013  6:17 am CT
    Posted by: Jim

    On November 12 at 7:00 pm, Glenview Library is hosting Amy Meadows for her talk "Marshall Field’s Holiday Traditions: A Behind-the-Scenes Tour." No doubt this will be similar to her presentation that was part of's annual September event. Here's your second chance.
    Marshall Field’s Holiday Traditions: A Behind-the-Scenes Tour — 7 p.m., Nov. 12. Amy Meadows, former director of Windows and Marketing Events for Marshall Field's and Macy's, provides an armchair tour of the design and execution of the famed animated windows, Main Aisle decor, and the Great Tree with archival images, contemporary photos, and memorabilia. The library extends a special thanks to the Glenview Gardeners for generously co-hosting this program and providing light refreshments. Register at, (847) 729-7500 x 7600, or the Reader Services Desk.

    Date: Thursday, October 31, 2013  6:58 am CT
    Posted by: Pete

    They sure run the newspaper ads for the Great Tree a lot. So early!

    Date: Tuesday, October 29, 2013  9:18 pm CT
    Posted by: Meredith

    I noticed that Fannie May has started selling meltaways in Chicago impressionistic painting box, similar to the one that Frangos have come in the past decade. I saw these at Dominick's. I also noticed that there are a lot more flavors of Frangos, seemingly less stock of the traditional mints. Frangos have been promo priced by Macy's like they never were at Marshall Field's. They must be a draw. With the different new flavors and drop in regular mint, I wonder if Frangos sales are not what they used to be.

    Happy Halloween everyone!

    Date: Tuesday, October 29, 2013  5:38 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    Today's Chicago Tribune has a huge ad for the Walnut Room Christmas Tree which will be unveiled this Saturday. Pretty early. Wow! Kinda crazy.

    Date: Monday, October 28, 2013  2:45 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    While the products sold by Dominick's and Field's were obviously dis-similar, I am heartened by the concept of the customer finally winning out in desire for quality and service. My neighborhood is getting a Mariano's and we even had a presentation by Bob Mariano himself. I was very impressed with his customer service attitude. Macy's didn't "get" Chicago any more than Safeway did. Even in hard times, people don't settle for junk. I believe a change for the better is still possible.

    Date: Sunday, October 27, 2013  8:13 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    Glad to see the postings back.

    It struck me that after all this time, the same things essentially being said over and over.

    How long can this madness go on?

    If Safeway has finally caved, presumably it is because it could absorb losses only so long. Given the much larger scale of the Macy's Borg machine, I guess they can hold on proportionately longer. But it is so wrong, so wrong--it cannot prevail forever!

    Date: Saturday, October 26, 2013  6:20 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Thanks for your patience while this blog has been down or otherwise un-updated over the past month. Thanks for emailing in your items but always feel free to use the "post" button above.


    Date: Saturday, October 26, 2013  8:28 am CT
    Posted by: FieldsFan

    Page two of the November 2013 issue of Chicago magazine has a full-page ad for the Great Tree Lighting in the Walnut Room. It will be held next Saturday, November 2, two days after Halloween. The ad suggests that things will be similar this year since virtually the same ad artwork from last year is used again. It says the celebrity tree lighter is to be announced. These ads probably go to press around Labor Day, I guess. On the web it says the tree will be lit by rapper Nick Cannon who is Mariah Carey's husband. Also appearing will be Lauren Alaina, a runner up on the tenth season of American Idol!!!!!!! OMG! Not.

    Date: Wednesday, October 23, 2013  4:39 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    It looks like the case with Martha Stewart and Macy's and JCPenney is coming to a close. Macy's is still suing them, but JCPenney doesn't want to sell the same merchandise that they sell at Macy's. I can't remember JCPenney and Marshall Field ever in the same sentence.

    Whatever. It should be noted that department stores are all having a slide in their stocks because of the shut down and so forth.

    Date: Tuesday, October 22, 2013  7:25 am CT
    Posted by: L.K.R,

    Still missing Field's.

    Do you think it could come back? That would be a dream come true!

    Date: Sunday, October 20, 2013  6:29 pm CT
    Posted by: ST LOUIS

    I passed through a St Louis Area Macy's that used to be Famous Barr. I saw that they already had the Christmas decorations for sale. I saw Godiva chocolates, but no Frangos. They have carried them at this store since it became Macy's. I asked a clerk. She said that they won't be carrying them this year, but I could order on line. I guess Macy's doesn't know how to sell Frangos. I thought they wanted to sell them nationally.

    that's the magic of Macy's.

    Date: Saturday, October 19, 2013  12:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Meredith K.

    I keep reading the stories about "J.C. Penney and it's archival Macy's." I agree that you never heard that about Penneys and Field's. But then, I also thought Macy's was a cut above J.C.Penney. At least Macy's has a higher end, traditional cosmetics department. J.C.Penney's has a cosmetics department that's one cut above Osco Drug!!!!

    Then I saw the cosmetics department at State Street the other day. They gutted it and now it looks like the Sephora department at J.C.Penneys!!! Macy's really does aspire to go down market! They ARE J.C.Penneys' equal competitor!!!


    Don't these people at Macy's realize what they have? How can they ruin it??????

    Date: Thursday, October 17, 2013  9:38 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    I was walking down State Street this evening and took a peek behind the shades in the windows of the State Street store. Through the slits at the edges of the windows, I could see that Christmas windows were being assembled. It looks like the displays will be similar to last year's. (This even happened as Field's, of course.) But I enjoyed seeing that the backs of some of the materials used had "Marshall Field's" stamped on them to identify their owner.

    Date: Wednesday, October 16, 2013  6:27 pm CT
    Posted by: Renee K.

    I cannot believe I have never been on this blog. I love Marshall Field's and genuinely wish Macy's would restore Marshall Field's especially the State Street store to its' original grandeur.

    I know people who have never and will never shop at Macy's unless and until it is changed back! I was recently in the State Street store for research on a project and see that maybe they realize they need to invoke the spirit of the original store, and are trying to do so through their 7th floor display. It is a wonderful homage to Marshall Field and the contributions to Chicago, but it would be better if it were their swan song on their way out.

    They are not keeping it clean. The sconces and scrollwork surrounding the Tiffany ceiling is dusty and dirty. The walls around the historical water fountains is breaking and not being repaired.

    I hope to know when there are more walks, letters or anything else to bring back Marshall Field's. I have a button, but could use more.


    Date: Tuesday, October 15, 2013  7:29 pm CT
    Posted by: R. Gordon

    I heard someone in the news compare Dominick's to Marshall Field's. Since when did anyone come from around the world to shop Dominick's like they did for Field's? NEVER! Yes, I feel nostalgia for Dominick's, but people will move on. In fact, they already have which is why Safeway is going out of business in Chicago. Dominick's went away a dozen years ago as far as I am concerned. Same for many others. That's how they lost 2/3 of their business.

    But the world has not moved on from missing Marshall Field's.

    R. Gordon, Chicago

    Date: Sunday, October 13, 2013  10:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Safeway's exit from the Chicago market offers some interesting comparisons and contrasts with Marshall Field's and Macy's that have served as a case study for some of the core organizers here at Field's Fans. We haven't wanted to outright compare Field's and Macy's and with Dominick's because the latter pair are not in the same league of significance as Field's. (See "s.b.'s" post from yesterday/below.) At the same time there are some lessons to be learned. Here are a few:
    1. Keeping the same name on a store doesn't mean the store stays the same. It's quite common for the media to call the switch from Field's to Macy's a name change and ask if we'd be happy if the name went back to Marshall Field's. After Dominick's was purchased, the store became Safeway in most every way EXCEPT the Dominick's sign out in front and on the shopping carts. In the early 2000s, Safeway Local brands were replaced with Safeway's. The interiors looked exactly like Safeway. The way the checkers and staff addressed the customers was like Safeway--apparently appropriate on Safeway's home turf in California where it is successful, but not in Chicago.
    2. Safeway got rid of Dominick's pioneering "Fresh Store" concept with many ready-to-go meals and took them downmarket with plain produce departments and stores. After they lost enough customers, they started the "Lifestyle" store which were exactly what Dominick's had ten years earlier before Safeway copied them chain wide. Sounds like Macy's getting rid of Field's and then trying to copy some things Field's did but chain wide.
    3. Safeway got rid of Dominick's senior management who really understood Chicago's customers and largely replaced them with execs from California H.Q. Not only did these execs from H.Q. not "get" Chicago, it set the stage for their final downfall which was…
    4. The former head of Dominick's, Bob Mariano, and other senior execs started a new chain, Mariano's, which set up its first locations adjacent to Safeway's best performing Dominick's stores. Two were even in former Dominick's locations that used to be busy. Under Safeway, these stores slowed to a trickle of business. After Safeway closed them, Mariano's picked them up and they are now doing business to the point where traffic backs up from the parking lot into the street on Weekends and holidays. The only new and exciting thing in Chicago retail is Mariano's--everyone wants one in their neighborhood. But what are they? They are simply what Dominick's would have been in 2013 had it not been purchased by Safeway back in 1998. Even the staff dresses like Dominick's staff did before it was acquired by Safeway. Had Safeway kept Dominick's as it was, including the management, they wouldn't be pulling out of Chicagoland today. Safeway's announcement came just hours after Mariano's opened another wildly successful store adjacent to one of the few profitable Dominick's locations.
    In short, Dominick's became Safeway, while Mariano's became what Dominick's would have been in 2013 without Safeway.

    Part of what precipitated this was the retirement of Safeway head Steve Burd who refused to concede to former Dominick's management and customers that they screwed up in the Chicago Market. Mariano and company tried to purchase the stores but Burd declined. Further facilitating the shift was an activist shareholder who obtained over 6% of Safeway. This shareholder pressured Safeway make highest and best use of the Chicago stores. Under Burd, things were painted as rosy for Safeway and Dominick's. After Burd and he addition of the new activist shareholder, reality hit.

    While it did take 12-15 years for Dominick's customers to get their store back--albeit as Mariano's--it did happen. It remains to be seen if Safeway will sell Mariano's some of the prime Dominick's locations as it exits the market, but clearly Chicago customers finally got what they wanted.

    Like s.b., I have to agree that Safeway and Dominick's are not the same as Field's becoming Macy's. With Safeway and Dominick's, the customer finally won in the form of Marianos. With that in mind, some people have suggested, "Do what they did at Mariano's." There's plenty of Marshall Field's talent that Macy's let go that could start a new emporium near, say Water Tower, Oak Brook or Old Orchard. Contrary to what Macy's claims, there have been parties who would love to run Field's as Field's or a store like it. If Macy's doesn't appreciate it, perhaps the next thing is, as described above, is to try Mariano's strategy."

    If a local grocery store can make a comeback, it would be a snap for Field's to come back in spirit and in every other way except perhaps name. Chicago deserves it's own International emporium.

    Date: Saturday, October 12, 2013  5:19 pm CT
    Posted by: s.b.

    Tribune comment from DePaul professor says that Dominick's closing is like the closing of Marshall Field's. This is not true. Field's was an international tourist destination and local favorite for everyday shopping, weddings, special events, etc. It represented Chicago both locally and abroad. Dominick's was an okay grocery store but there was no emotional connection with the consumer like Field's. Also, Field's closed because it was doing pretty good and someone wanted to take out the competition. Dominick's was barely staying alive and was losing too much money so it had to be sold/shuttered. Two very different things. When Macy's eventually closes it will be VERY SIMILAR TO DOMINICK'S... in that it thought it could walk into Chicago-land and just change everything for the worse and consumers would not notice!,0,7555129.story?page=1

    Date: Friday, October 11, 2013  11:28 am CT
    Posted by: drew

    Boscov's is opening a new store in Ohio Valley Mall, which is located outside Wheeling WV. Shoppers are excited about the new store. Evidently Red Star is worried about the competition because they are refurbishing their former Kaufmann's location which hasn't been updated for many years.

    Boscov's is a family owned department store which offers candy and snack foods, toys, lifestyle furniture, giftware, home dec, gadgets, closet supplies, lamps, notions, outdoor living including furnitre and grills, wall art, greeting cards and gift wrap, cleaning supplies, curtains and draperies--as well as apparel and cosmetics. They offer a variety of merchandise at all price price points--bargains galore as well as top quality items.

    Perhaps shoppers are FINALLY tired of the bland, generic "department store" found at every mall throughout the country filled with nondescript clothing and accessories with a limited home store. Boscov's seems to be successful because they operate a true department store.

    Perhaps Red Star might do well to study Boscov's model and to restore some of its locations as "destinations" rather than "just another macy*s.

    Because of technical reasons, this blog/guestbook was unavailable for posting from Friday, October 4 through Friday, October 11, 2013. As such, it was not possible to post.

    Date: Friday, October 4, 2013  6:35 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    Well, it's been a biblical seven years, give or take. Marshall Field's was not just a nice or even plush place to shop. It was an inviting, coherent world of stuff presented with a point of view, a collective effort to offer, graciously, the best and most interesting. The quiet hush of the coat department--- I had just thought of that. The wooly smell of the rug department. (Yes, wool) The smooth gleam of the china department-- the cheese counter-- all kinds of food for the senses as well as just stuff to take home to eat, plug in or put on. The list of what made Field's downtown very special is long and includes of a lot of little subliminal things like quiet, sound, scent, light, spatial relationships, order, materials, etc. Not possible with dead senses at the leadership levels.

    Maybe it's just my sensibilities at work here, but I like the idea of shoes in one place, rugs in another, accessible with the aid of elevators and escalators. The mall aesthetic-- rambling, random, redundant, crammed, often indifferent--for the most part barely just gets the job done, not much else. There is this gem in place, ready to serve, and it is treated like a millstone around the corporate neck.

    I guess they can mess up whatever else they want, but desecrating the exceptional place that was Field's on State Street...... seems a crime against civilization. For the ten millionth time: Macy's, how could you be so dense?

    Date: Friday, October 3, 2013  12:39 am CT
    Posted by: fields shopper

    I hope that a private investor will buy the Chicago store and the Marshall Field's brand from Macy's and restore the glorious store that we once had. I miss the selection of quality items that Marshall Field's carried. Shopping at the store was a true joy.

    I am not at all interested in the Jessica Simpson perfume, Martha Stewart housewares and Snoop Dog cologne that Macy's sells. They can keep their celebrities and their Charter Club turtlenecks.

    Boycott Macy's!

    Date: Wednesday, October 2, 2013  7:19 pm CT
    Posted by: Liz P.

    I was reading how the Drake Hotel stayed the Drake even though there's no one connected with its operation. Isn't it important to be respectful? Hilton clearly got the message. Macy's surely did not. Forever, it will be Marshall Field's even if Macy's forces its lesser ways and wares on the greatest store in the world.

    Date: Monday, September 30, 2013  7:03 pm CT
    Posted by:

    Thanks to all who helped make a success of our annual September event in support of a restore Marshall Field's to State Street…and...

    For starters, special HUGE thanks from all goes to Marianne. Then thanks to Gayle Soucek and Eric Bronsky who talked about their books on Marshall Field's.

    And most of all, thank you to Amy Meadows, former director of Windows and Marketing Events for Marshall Field's and Macy's. She gave a stunningly entertaining and educational survey of displays and windows at Marshall Field's on State from the early 1980s into 2008. And for those wondering if she had anything to say about Field's and Macy's, let it be known that Ms. Meadows kept it strictly professional and focussed on the windows. She did mention that some of her proteges are on the current displays team at Macy's on State.

    In case you missed Ms. Meadows talk, we understand that she will give another talk on November 12 at the Glenview Library. Please check the Glenview Library for more details. We are not connected with that presentation.

    It should be noted that there was some confusion about when the post event gathering of Field's fans was to take place. Thanks to all who were out there in waves of three, four and five.

    We look forward to future events and thank you for your continued support, demonstrating that Chicago--indeed the world--still wants the return of Marshall Field's to State Street. There's no place like Marshall Field's.

    Date: Sunday, September 29, 2013  10:09 pm CT
    Posted by: Michael S.

    Has anyone noticed the Marshall Field's Chicago tin on for Christmas? So odd how they randomly use the Field's name at their convenience.

    Date: Sunday, September 29, 2013  4:56 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    I enjoyed Amy Meadows' fascinating presentation of behind-the-scenes photos, artifacts and memories of her career as Marshall Field's window dresser. This was a unique experience, as were the Marshall Field's windows.

    I was also happy to reconnect with many Field's friends and meet a couple of new friends. And thank you to Gayle Soucek and Eric Bronsky for sharing your books with us again.

    Date: Sunday, September 29, 2013  1:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Drew

    Interesting that Kohl's is offering REAL designer merchandise...
    Perhaps Kohl's is attempting to capture customers disinterested in Red Star's downmarket offerings.

    Date: Saturday, September 28, 2013  10:21 pm CT
    Posted by: Rich

    The genteel and excellent customer service -- the brands and the assortment of merchandise -- so wide in variety -- something for everyone -- finest goods to bargains-- the atmosphere and "flavor" of the company --which WAS able to be reproduced at ALL Field's stores --not just State Street--it was SO posh and refined.

    Federated Department Stores at ONE time, a long time ago, understood that level of retail -- But NOT now.

    The red star store is a "just fine" plain everyday booring vanilla flavorless store without style or elegance. these people would not be capable of the production and performance necessary to reproduce what Marshall Field and Co. did everyday.

    Bloomingdales is little more than Macy's with slightly better merchandise assortment, much higher prices, and attitude, and that was NOT what Field's was about AT ALL. The company that is now Macy's could not even begin to understand what Field's was. Macy's would never be able to reproduce what Field's was, or how Field's conducted their business. It is simply not within their capability.

    The destruction of Marshall Field's was, and remains, a VERY sad and terrible mistake.

    Date: Saturday, September 28, 2013  8:52 pm CT
    Posted by: Alfred in Washington

    Will be there in spirit today with you all for Amy Meadows' presentation, which I'm sure will be wonderful, and the rally.

    Here's to the once and future Marshall Field's!

    Date: Thursday, September 26, 2013  5:47 pm CT
    Posted by:



          T H I S . S A T U R D A Y !



          AMY MEADOWS

          Our Annual September Event
          1:00 P.M., Saturday, September 28, 2013

    "Amy Meadows, former director of Windows and Marketing Events for Marshall Field's and Macy's, provides a sneak peek into the design and execution of the famed animated windows, Main Aisle decor and the Great Tree.  This slide presentation includes archival images, contemporary photos and memorabilia."


    Seating is very limited.  Please reserve your place as soon as possible by telephoning 312.662.8980.

    The location will be steps away from the historic Marshall Field and Company Department Store Building.  

    There is no charge for this event, although donations are welcomed at the event.  

    Further questions?  Simply reply to this email message.


    INTO THE 21st CENTURY,  Marshall Field and Company was revered internationally as a world-class emporium and uniquely-Chicago cultural institution.  All of this was possible thanks to the amazingly talented and dedicated geniuses who made sure that "There is no place like Marshall Field's."

    This presentation is the first in an ongoing series of events showcasing and paying tribute to those who are the contemporary Marshall Fields, Harry Selfridges and John Shedds in our midst.

    We look forward to celebrating the amazing people who brought so much sheer joy to millions of us.  Please join us on Saturday, September 28th.


    After the event, some Field's Fans will converge to rally under the Great Marshall Field's Clock, holding signs in support of Marshall Field's. Signs will be available there. You are welcome to join them.


          How to Add or Remove Your Email Address From Our List

    * To Remove Your Email Address from Our Subscriber List:

    Send email to REMOVE-ME AT  

    Please include the email address you wish dropped if it is not the one from which you are sending the request.

    * To Add Your Email Address To Our Subscriber List:

    Send email to ADD-ME AT

    Subscription requests must be sent from the email address that is to be added to the subscriber list.

    * Switching Addresses?

    1. Send a "REMOVE-ME"  request from either you old address or your new one; 


    2. Send an "ADD-ME"  request from your new address.

    Again, NEW add requests MUST come from the address to which this newsletter is to be delivered.

    *  Please send all bug reports to info AT


    This newsletter, the presentation by Amy Meadows, and other associated activities and events described within are not in any way sponsored by and have NO affiliation whatsoever with Macy's, Inc. (formerly Federated Department Stores, Inc.), May Department Stores Company, Macy's, Bloomingdale's, Marshall Field and Company, the Marshall Field Family, the Field Foundation of Chicago, etc.  The views and opinions expressed here represent only those of the writer.




    PLEASE NOTE: While not part of the event, after 2:30, some of those attending plan to rally holding Marshall Field's signs in front of the store on State Street for a photo op. But that's separate from this event.

    Date: Wednesday, September 25, 2013  4:38 pm CT
    Posted by: Luaann Mary S.

    Thanks to Jim McKay and the others who continue to passionately fight for Marshall Field's. It's seven years since the Macy's takeover, and I still greatly miss the iconic, historical Field's. That's just it, we let an integral part of Chicago's history slip away. I SO long for Field's return, especially at the holidays.

    Keep up the good work.

    Date: Tuesday, September 24, 2013  1:12 pm CT
    Posted by: Mikea

    In response to Jim's comment about cosmetics at the State Street store.

    The remodeled department is inline with what Macy's is doing at Herald Square and other stores. The fact that State street was given a total remodel for cosmetics shows the commitment that Macy's has to State Street. Also they have done some small remodels to Crystal, Shoes and apparel on 3. It may not be the classic look for the store, but it has the potential to bring in more revenue for Macy's and the store as a whole.

    Date: Monday, September 23, 2013  8:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Drew

    It's no surprise that macy*s would revamp the State Street cosmetics departments to look like Sephora, Kohl's or other mass market cosmetics retailer. Even Walgreen's and CVS offer cosmetics sections that look like those pictured. As so many people have said, macy*s is "nothing special" and this remodel demonstrates their commitment to mediocrity. And they wonder why business is down at their "tourist locations." There are macy*s stores everywhere--and the macy*s stores look just like every OTHER store everywhere.

    Perhaps macy*s will replace the few in-store restaurants they haven't closed with McDonald's or Subway, thereby removing any semblance of individuality or uniqueness.

    Date: Monday, September 23, 2013  8:15 pm CT
    Posted by: Drew

    According to this article, macy*s is losing women's clothing shoppers to cheaper alternatives such as JCPenney and Kohl's:
    Some of macy*s "competitors" listed here in women's clothing are walmart and Target. So it would seem that macy*s strategy to capture the "bargain hunter" segment isn't working. By ditching the regional department stores which had a reputation for quality and "better" merchandise, macy*s has positioned itself as just another discount store whose shoppers make purchases based on the lowest price.

    While the regional stores did offer excellent sales and clearances on quality merchandise, they didn't find it necessary to run continuous "One Day Sales" with the "lowest prices of the season" every week nor did they have to flood customers' mailboxes with a plethora of coupons and WOW passes. The quality, selection and service attracted customers to the regional department stores; shoppers who valued these things have moved on to other venues, leaving macy*s with customers only looking for the cheapest price.

    Date: Friday, September 20, 2013  6:55 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    The front of today's Chicago Tribune Business section talks about the huge remodel of the south atrium cosmetics department at State Street. Apparently, the goal is to compete better with Sephora and Ulta and other less premium cosmetics departments.
    More Than Cosmetic Change for Macy's Beauty Department,0,7847053.story
    I posted the following comment:
    Somehow it's kinda sad to see Macy's take a international destination like the former Marshall Field's store and reinvent it to be more like Sephora (J.C.Penney's leased cosmetics department) and Ulta. Not that the two latter retailers aren't good, but Field's was always much more. Clearly this shows that, contrary to what Macy's says, the former Field's stores have gone down market.

    While the displays are are nice and clean, they really could be in any space, any mall, any where--not in what is agreed to be one of the greatest retail spaces in the world, the atrium with the largest Tiffany ceiling anywhere. Similarly sad to see the great columns in the space covered so high up with advertising.

    Date: Thursday, September 19, 2013  6:01 pm CT
    Posted by: Laura E.

    Went through State Street. The store looks AWFUL until I looked up and saw the Tiffany!!!

    Way to ugly it up, Macy's!! That's the magic of Macy's.

    Date: Thursday, September 19, 2013  8:00 am CT
    Posted by: F.D.

    LIke some others, I don't get all this affinity for Bloomingdale's. In Chicago, it's Marshall Field's that we want. What's wrong with having three store names????

    Date: Wednesday, September 18, 2013  10:15 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete.

    New York City is turning their Visitors Center over to Macy's at Herald Square.

    In-store visitors centers at San Francisco and Chicago are mentioned. Those stay just on Macy's.

    They'd have a good visitors center for Chicago if they made it back into Marshall Field's. Who in Chicago wants a vistors center with a New York name?

    Here's the article. From the New York Times.

    Date: Wednesday, September 18, 2013  7:09 am CT
    Posted by: Laura E.

    Looking forward to the event on the 28th. Marshall Field was the best!

    Date: Wednesday, September 18, 2013  5:46 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY


    Hahahahahahahahahahahahahah OOOOOOOOO hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

    "Adopting the name of a new spouse"~ that brilliant metaphor does still bring a glow to my heart!

    Department stores don't take spice (hahaha) and women with careers who become spice often maintain their surnames because THAT HAS ALWAYS, AND WILL CONTINUE TO, IDENTIFY THEM AND STAND FOR THEIR PARTICULAR PROFESSIONAL VIRTUES throughout their professional lives.  Eh?

    In this case on State Street, it is just as well that she changed her name to that of the deadbeat she married. When free at last, she can retrieve her name and move on.

    Date: Tuesday, September 17, 2013  9:18 pm CT
    Posted by: Richard in Houston

    To "M R"'s comments about us accepting Macy's as the wonderful store coast to coast and the ability to "share" the experiences. I totally disagree. Macy's is NOTHING like Marshall Fields was. Nor like the other regional stores. It is more like JCPenney or Sears. Why in the world would you want to share experiences of what those stores have to offer? Marshall Fields was in a league all its own in many ways: from the high level of service and exclusive quality merchandise to its international fame. By the way, Houstonians no longer have any opportunity to view any windows since Macy's is imploding the former Foley's flagship on September 22nd. How about that to garner respect from former Foley's customers. I hope Strategic Marks LLC wins their bid for Marshall Fields and the other regional stores' trademarks and brings them back. There are millions of loyal Marshall Fields shoppers out there who have not forgotten about Fields and would welcome its return. The same goes for the other regional stores that were decimated by Macy's.

    Date: Tuesday, September 17, 2013  8:41 pm CT
    Posted by: i_miss_the_regional_nameplates, Texas


    I (and the rest of us) still fail to be impressed by what the "M" store has given us in the past 7 years. We are absolutely turned off by the holiday windows; Marshall Field's was (and still is) genius with their Christmas displays and visuals. (Even Harrod's still never fails to impress every Christmas!) Their food (also in the past 7 years) is also nothing to write home about, either: for example, there are reports of unopened Frango boxes dating back to 2008 in some stores! Not to mention these candies are like eating candle wax! And the "M" store stating other stores' (Field's, Wanamaker's, etc.) traditions as their own? In some circles, that would be plagiarism! Sure, the company formerly known as Federated DID buy out these old stores, but claiming another's innovations/traditions as M's own is TERRIBLE and so is holding these respected historic brands hostage!

    Bring back the REAL Marshall Field's! And best wishes on the September 28th event!


    Date: Tuesday, September 17, 2013  5:06 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    I look forward to September 28! We don't forget.

    Date: Tuesday, September 17, 2013  11:01 am CT
    Posted by: M.R.

    I still wish people would think with an open mind about Marshall Field's becoming today's Macy's. Like I said a few months ago, it's really nothing more than an old friend adopting the last name of her new spouse. She's still your best friend.

    I'm sure the store windows were nice as Marshall Field's. Now as Macy's, they're even better! One improvement is that there's the possibility of your friends and family in other cities having a comparable window displays experience. Take for example recent years when Macy's windows featured Christmas Steampunk or Virginia and the profoundly moving story of "Believe." You could see the windows locally in Chicago. Your friends and family elsewhere could see similar windows. Thus, you could share the experience.

    What's nice is that there are some touches that customize stories to the local town. So in Chicago, the windows had references to the legend of Marshall Field's clock and brass signs. Meanwhile, Philadelphia City Center featured local elements from Wannamakers lore to the same basic windows. It's like watching T.V. and sharing the same experience. You could then talk about it on Facebook, Twitter, the phone, etc. And if you really like the windows, go to NYC where Macy's flagship has super deluxe versions of the windows in Chicago and other places.

    Macy's has not only kept Marshall Field's food traditions, it has expanded them and adopted them as being worthy of the Macy's name. Macy's considers and respects this history as its very own! Not only that, Macy's has made the traditions better!

    For example, check out this link and what Macy's has to say about the Walnut Room.
    See?? Macy's conducts the Walnut Room and all its history, right down to the pot pies, as its very own, not some poor step child. Marshall Field's IS Macy's. Now everyone across the nation gets a little bit of Marshall Field's and many other old time stores when they shop at Macy's.

    Please give Macy's a chance and see it as it is today, not what your fears imagine it to be! You'll be so happy that you did!

    Date: Tuesday, September 17, 2013  6:35 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    Times are always hard or harder, certainly since the Early Days of Field's. Enough people always have enough money who will spend it if the allure is irresistible. Especially if the store is not restricted to support by locals.

    Macy's = meh.

    One thing I dislike about dept stores over recent years (and I mean the 'better' sort!) - is chaos. Tight aisles, scatterings of cheezy supplier racks and tables and counters etc..... I personally dislike entering a disorganized, let alone unattractive, space that distracts, obstructs, annoys and confuses. That is especially off-putting to anyone who does not have all day to poke and search. Certainly it does not lead one to make an excuse to linger.

    Field's is big enough- having seen the new cosmetics layout in the article Jim M refers to - that I guess it works, but it looks like random stations rather incoherently distributed within a grand space to which none of the new bits relate significantly, visually, spatially. That may be unfair, but that is what struck me in the photograph.

    All the potential for drama on the first floor was sacrificed when those unifying island counters were removed years ago. I suppose they were just too old-fashioned but some things in life are right the first time. There is no overture, no grand opening statement, no readable vista that pulls you right through those doors in spite of yourself. It's not a Turkish bazaar in a medieval street, where jumble is part of the cachet.

    While this rant amounts to an aesthetic critique, Marshall Field knew exactly what he was doing to get customer blood racing right from the threshold. Mine, anyway....

    Date: Monday, September 16, 2013  9:00 pm CT
    Posted by: gayle s.

    If anyone thinks Chicagoans are forgetting about Field's, I would beg to differ...

    This past weekend, I was invited to give a talk about Field's at a small community center. It wasn't well-advertised, so I didn't expect much of a turnout. To my amazement, the events coordinator called a week before the event to tell me that they had filled the hall--more than 100 people--and had a long waiting list! The talk, which was scheduled as one hour, ran almost twice as long because people just couldn't stop asking questions and sharing memories of Field's. The audience included folks of all ages.

    At the beginning of my talk, I mentioned that Macy's renamed the store because they apparently believed their brand identity could replace Field's. I said it in a very neutral way, not intending to start a controversy, but immediately the room erupted into boos, hisses, and some not-very-complimentary comments about Macy's. Many people stated they would not shop at Macy's because of what they did to Field's, even though they had no awareness of FFC's efforts or any other formal boycott.

    The facility is already thinking about scheduling a second talk to accommodate those folks that couldn't get in to the first one.

    Yep, Field's has been gone for seven years, but it appears that no one has forgotten, nor are many people ready to forgive the company that took away Chicago's store...


    Date: Monday, September 16, 2013  4:42 pm CT
    Posted by: B.C.

    Marshall Field's was a uniquely special store, which was not only a lovely venue for meeting and shopping, but which served as the epitome of Chicago's way of life, and - to a surprisingly great extent - exemplified the very soul and spirit of the city.

    Thanks to all for actively sustaining and promoting the special, joyful spirit of Marshall Fields. The informative and charming communiques never fail to bring a smile to my face, and conjure treasured memories which I cherish.

    Date: Monday, September 16, 2013  12:39 pm CT
    Posted by: Philip Eichler

    To elaborate on Jim's post, the same group that sold Lord and Taylor also owns Hudson's Bay. Thus, they simply sold L&T to themselves, which consolidated their retail holdings under one umbrella. Each store will maintain it's own staff, buyers and identity. (unlike you know who) However, it is speculated that they will use these various brands in concert. For example, it has been speculated that some weaker Saks stores will be converted to Lord and Taylor, while they may use Saks at certain prime The Bay locations in Canada to compete with Holt Renfrew. Hudson's Bay also owns Home Outfitters, a chain much like Bed Bath and Beyond, as well as two discount chains; Zeller's and Field's. They have sold many of their Zeller's locations to Target to concentrate on their department store business (unlike Target) In addition, they have used their Home Outfitters platform to launch Lord and Taylor Home, which flopped at 2 bricks and mortar test locations, but now has an extensive web presence. Unfortunately for us, this could have been Macy's vision for their stores.

    Unrelated, I just finished reading Richard Longstreth's book, The American Department Store Transformed, 1920-1960. He discusses how Lord and Taylor hired the noted industrial designer Raymond Loewy to formulate their suburban Manhasset store in the late 1940s in a "country modern" style of white painted brick and rustic stone, which he points out that Field's copied at their suburban stores of the 1950s. However, which store did it better? Obviously Field's, as the Old Orchard store made the cover of the book!

    Date: Monday, September 16, 2013  11:01 am CT
    Posted by:

    Some private emails serve as a reminded of last Christmas's Video Christmas Card on YouTube--be sure to check it out. Contemporary Christmases at Field's--and more!

    Date: Monday, September 16, 2013  8:18 am CT
    Posted by: Michelle

    So happy to receive the news of the presentation. I hope to attend!

    Date: Monday, September 16, 2013  7:49 am CT
    Posted by: Missing it!

    Marshall Field's was so great. I still miss it! Good to hear from you.

    Date: Sunday, September 15, 2013  8:34 pm CT
    Posted by:


          Newsletter No. 36

          Sunday, September 15, 2013



          AMY MEADOWS

          Our Annual September Event
          1:00 P.M., Saturday, September 28, 2013

    "Amy Meadows, former director of Windows and Marketing Events for Marshall Field's and Macy's, provides a sneak peek into the design and execution of the famed animated windows, Main Aisle decor and the Great Tree.  This slide presentation includes archival images, contemporary photos and memorabilia."


    Seating is very limited.  Please reserve your place as soon as possible by telephoning 312.662.8980.

    The location will be steps away from the historic Marshall Field and Company Department Store Building.  

    There is no charge for this event, although donations are welcomed at the event.  

    Further questions?  Simply reply to this email message.


    INTO THE 21st CENTURY,  Marshall Field and Company was revered internationally as a world-class emporium and uniquely-Chicago cultural institution.  All of this was possible thanks to the amazingly talented and dedicated geniuses who made sure that "There is no place like Marshall Field's."

    This presentation is the first in an ongoing series of events showcasing and paying tribute to those who are the contemporary Marshall Fields, Harry Selfridges and John Shedds in our midst.

    We look forward to celebrating the amazing people who brought so much sheer joy to millions of us.  Please join us on Saturday, September 28th.


          How to Add or Remove Your Email Address From Our List

    * To Remove Your Email Address from Our Subscriber List:

    Send email to REMOVE-ME AT  

    Please include the email address you wish dropped if it is not the one from which you are sending the request.

    * To Add Your Email Address To Our Subscriber List:

    Send email to ADD-ME AT

    Subscription requests must be sent from the email address that is to be added to the subscriber list.

    * Switching Addresses?

    1. Send a "REMOVE-ME"  request from either you old address or your new one; 


    2. Send an "ADD-ME"  request from your new address.

    Again, NEW add requests MUST come from the address to which this newsletter is to be delivered.

    *  Please send all bug reports to info AT


    This newsletter, the presentation by Amy Meadows, and other associated activities and events described within are not in any way sponsored by and have NO affiliation whatsoever with Macy's, Inc. (formerly Federated Department Stores, Inc.), May Department Stores Company, Macy's, Bloomingdale's, Marshall Field and Company, the Marshall Field Family, the Field Foundation of Chicago, etc.  The views and opinions expressed here represent only those of the writer.


           END OF NEWSLETTER No. 36


    PLEASE NOTE: While not part of the event, after 2:30, some of those attending plan to rally holding Marshall Field's signs in front of the store on State Street for a photo op. But that's separate from this event.

    Date: Friday, September 13, 2013  6:01 pm CT
    Posted by: Anna P.

    What would really help is if some of us went to corporate offices at Macy's and demanded to see Terry Lundgren. Or the next time he came to Chicago. He probably wouldn't see us, which is a statement of how much he doesn't care about customers. Otherwise, I'd be glad to tell him how sad it is that he took Marshall Field's away.

    Date: Friday, September 13, 2013  6:01 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Crains Chicago Business has a story about the updated cosmetics departments at three Chicago department stores including Macy's on State.
    Chicago's department stores show off new looks for fall
    One of the comments reflects my view.

    Date: Thursday, September 12, 2013  10:18 pm CT
    Posted by: drew

    Here's a link to an article about Terry Lundgren's "urgent" store visits:
    I find it ironic that on one hand, Terry realized his "dream of a nationwide chain" of department stores under one name; yet on the other hand he praises the "my macy*s" strategy which individualizes merchandise assortments for different regions of the country. The country already HAD several nationwide chains of department stores (JCPenney, Kohl's, Sears) which could be found everywhere; there was NO need to add another. There were also well-respected regional department store chains which catered to their own markets. So now Lundgren is saying that although macy*s is nationwide, it is also also localized?

    Everyone realizes that we live in difficult economic times and that consumers have curtailed their spending. What Lundgren DOESN'T realize is that having macy*s everywhere has taken the department stores from being a "destination" or "aspiration" to just "another" shopping venue. The regional department stores were usually considered something "better" or "special;" macy*s is on the same level as the other nationwide department store chains.

    Perhaps Lundgren should "own up," drop the "macy*s modified" and give shoppers what they really want!

    Date: Thursday, September 12, 2013  7:54 am CT
    Posted by: E.F.

    The Chicago Tribune has had the Marshall Field's clock on its masthead the past couple of days. No doubt a reference to losing Marshall Field's seven years ago this week. Still very sad.

    Date: Wednesday, September 11, 2013  CT
    Posted by: Field's Fans Chicago

    Never forget.

    Date: Tuesday, September 10, 2013  8:01 pm CT
    Posted by: Darla G.

    First time poster.

    Passed through the new Gurnee Macy's this weekend. I was surprised at how small it is. Not that all special. Reminded me of Kohl's.

    I agree with those who never saw Field's compared to J.C.Penneys. You see it with Macy's all the time.

    Date: Monday, September 9, 2013  9:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Steve

    The back of the Splash Section in yesteday's SunTimes had a full page ad for The 28 Shop. Doesn't seem the same at all.

    Date: Monday, September 9, 2013  11:32 am CT
    Posted by: Jim

    It was announced today that Neiman Marcus's 74 stores were being sold for over $6 billion to a group of Canadian investors.

    Sak's 320 locations went to Canada's Hudson Bay for $2.4 billion about six weeks ago. Hudson Bay also owns Lord and Taylor. About six years ago, Federated sold Lord and Taylor's 45 or so stores to an equity firm for $1.2B. More recently, Lord and Taylor was in turn sold to Hudson Bay for an undisclosed price.

    in 2004, May Department Stores purchased Target's 62 Marshall Field's stores, including about 42 that had recently been Dayton's and Hudson's, for about $3.2 billion in 2004.

    Federated paid about $11 billion for May Department Stores in 2005. This comprised 420 department stores, including Lord and Taylor and Marshall Field's, plus a couple of bridal store chains.

    This information is from Wikipedia and other news archives.

    Date: Monday, September 9, 2013  CT
    Posted by:

    Seven years since that very sad day in Chicago history when Marshall Field's was converted to one of 800 Macy's stores.

    We still miss Marshall Field's more than ever.

    Date: Sunday, September 8, 2013  12:52 pm CT
    Posted by: Judy Marth

    Emptying dresser drawers in anticipation of our new bedroom set, we found an old Marshall Field's credit card and a Marshall Field's jewelry box! TREASURE!!! It was so great to see the Field's Green and Logo!! I'm keeping both...

    It's now a perfect day.....

    Judy Marth

    Date: Sunday, September 8, 2013  4:57 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    The Edgewater Historical Society has been a friend of Marshall Field's for a long time. Who could forget their special display tribute to Field's that was up for close to a year?

    In thanks, it's being pointed out that a special event (non-Field's-related) will be held by the Edgewater Historical Society this Thursday, September 12th at the Edgewater Branch Public Library, Upgrading Your Homes: Recycled Materials and Energy Efficiency.

    More details can be found here

    Congratulations to Edgewater Historical Society on their 25th year!

    Date: Sunday, September 8, 2013  4:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Offering a personal opinion in reply to Rich: I'm not a fan of the red star logo for several reasons, not the least of which is that, as you point out, it is a symbol associated with NYC, not Chicago.

    True, the red star, has been used as a symbol of terrible forms of totalitarian Communism. I see where you are coming from and, based on comments over the years, I'm sure you're far from alone. A similar example could be the swastika. For years the swastika was for centuries employed as a common Christian symbol and architectural motif. When the Nazi Party adopted its mirror image as its symbol, it was largely dropped even as a symbol of Christianity.

    The red star has been Macy's symbol for over a hundred years. But Macy's has been lead by U.S. war veterans who fought and sacrificed in World War II, the Korean conflict and other conflicts since. I'll defer to those people's judgement, since they risked their lives to fight Communism at the front who still chose to keep the red star later when they ran Macy's. I don't understand what "younger people" have to do with whether or not Macy's uses a red star as their logo.

    Date: Friday, September 6, 2013  10:13 pm CT
    Posted by: Rich

    In relation to the "Red star". It has been said that R.H.Macy himself had a red star tattoo on his fore-arm. It is true that this has a strong related history to the Dutch.

    In ALL reality however it must be acknowledged that this symbol was adopted by the communist and by the parties of both the Soviet Union AND China. I may be politically incorrect but I AM PROUD to be an AMERICAN and I find it insulting to have to see this symbol emblazoned upon all of their stores ALL OVER the country. Shame on them -- regardless of the history of the star emblom, the newer association with the communists has ruined this symbol and I probably am not the only one who feels that way and I lament the fact that younger people do not have pride in the USA to share that feeling.

    Date: Friday, September 6, 2013  4:57 pm CT
    Posted by: John P.

    The New York Post claims that J.C. Penneys will drop Martha Stewart rather than continue their legal fight with Macy's. J.C. Penneys says Martha Stewart products don't sell well. The way the story is worded suggests that J.C. Penneys says Macy's can have her, as far as they are concerned.

    I agree with others. You rarely heard Marshall Field's written about as J.C. Penneys rival. You Macy's and J.C. Penneys compared all the time.

    Date: Friday, September 6, 2013  1:13 pm CT
    Posted by: Lori H.

    Bloomingdale's has a new promotion celebrating the "Brits." Looks like they've been copying Marshall Field's. Remember when Marshall Field's had the London Taxi doing deliveries all around town? The news at the time had the taxi re-wrapped from Marshall Field's stripes to Macy's black. Eventually the taxi was put up for sale. It was in an online ad.

    Date: Wednesday, September 4, 2013  4:12 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    I see that the former Field's warehouse on Diversey is being purchased from Macy's by some developers. The warehouse was closed over five years ago. It was outdated in layout and repalced with a new warehouse that is all on one floor. This meant about a third less workers are now needed to do the same volume. Two things. One, those savings could have been had by Field's. It didn't have to be Macy's to achieve that. The other thing is that Macy's moved the ware house southwest of Joliet. That's gotta be 50 miles away from the old one. I doubt many employees were able to make the commute and work at the new warehouse. I bet any new employees get paid a lot less. Thus more corners cut. That's the magic of Macy's.

    Date: Monday, September 2, 2013  7:25 am CT
    Posted by: Kevin, Indianapolis

    I am still wearing black and I am in mourning and I am a guy.

    I want my Marshall Field's!

    I am holding out my cup. May I have some more Marshall Field's please?

    Date: Monday, September 2, 2013  CT
    Posted by:

    Happy Labor Day,
    Especially to those who helped make
    Marshall Field's so uniquely special!

    Date: Saturday, August 31, 2013  10:23 pm CT
    Posted by: J.C.H.

    Interesting link about bringing local stores back:

    Date: Friday, August 30, 2013  11:13 am CT
    Posted by: Pat D.

    I loved Field's!

    Date: Thursday, August 29, 2013  10:55 pm CT
    Posted by: P.D.

    People comment almost weekly to me how they miss Marshall Field's.

    Date: Thursday, August 29, 2013  8:16 pm CT
    Posted by: B.L.

    If you have ever shopped in any quality department store, (Macy's is considered middle of the road) then you would understand, good service, good quality, brand names that people have heard of etc. etc. etc.

    As an employer, Marshall Field's treated us well. More than I can say for Macy's.

    Macy's is the Target of New York.

    Bring back Marshall-Fields!

    Date: Thursday, August 29, 2013  6:51 pm CT
    Posted by: C.L.

    I was getting worried about you people here! Then I received the newsletter today. Carry on!

    Date: Thursday, August 29, 2013  6:25 pm CT
    Posted by: Judy.

    I worked at Field's some years back. Loved it! I am furious that the beautiful store is no longer.

    Date: Tuesday, August 27, 2013  6:19 am CT
    Posted by: James R.

    Why does Chicago need TWO Macy's flagships?

    Michigan Avenue should be enough. Why can't they give Marshall Field's back, or sell it to someone else?

    Missing Marshall Field's here, you know?

    Date: Monday, August 26, 2013  12:01 am CT
    Posted by: Susan S.

    During my teen years my hangout was Marshall Fields in Mayfair (Wauwatosa, WI). I went to the State Street store only. I moved to the East coast, but came to the State Street store every chance I could, so I appreciate this group's efforts. Next month, I'm moving to the Chicago area and am looking forward to participating in the September 28th event!

    Date: Sunday, August 25, 2013  1:36 pm CT
    Posted by: drew

    Response to CFO Karen Hoguet's comment that the "tourist stores" are down: And you're surprised ABOUT?

    By taking over and converting all the regional department stores and cloning them into the Red Star, what incentive was created for tourists to visit the same store they have at their local mall? Part of the excitement of a vacation trip was visiting a store one didn't have back home--and purchasing gifts for family and friends from a store associated with a particular city.

    When I visited family in Michigan this summer, I did some major shopping at Von Maur and Meijer because these are stores we don't have in the Pittsburgh area. The gift recipients were excited to receive something in a shopping bag from an unfamiliar store. Bringing a gift from macy*s would have been met with the same reaction as something from Sears, JCPenney or Walmart. <Yawn>

    When I visited Chicago a number of years ago, it was most exciting to visit Marshall Field's. The beautiful building, tasteful displays, great assortment of merchandise--and buying gifts that were special because they were uniquely Chicago. Why would a tourist go to a macy*s to do any major shopping when that store can be found anywhere?

    By destroying the regional icons, I would suggest that macy*s also diluted the value of its own brand. Back in the day, macy*s WAS New York and had a certain cachet. Now macy*s is about as exciting as CVS, Family Dollar or Rite Aid. Nondescript merchandise in bland, nondescript stores.

    Date: Sunday, August 25, 2013  1:22 pm CT
    Posted by: drew

    A neighbor who had never been to New York City said there were two things he definitely wanted to see: the Statue of Liberty and macy*s. (I didn't wish to spoil his excitement by explaining how underwhelming the store visit would be.) When he returned, he said he was greatly impressed by the magnificence of the Statue of Liberty but greatly disappointed by the Herald Square flagship.

    He said the store had no distinctive architecture, no eye-popping displays, no compelling merchandise--it was just a BIG nondescript building filled with what one could find in any local macy*s anywhere. He was shocked that "the world's biggest store" housed fast food chain restaurants. When he tried to find the beautiful "grand stairway" that appeared in many TV commercials, he was told that was just an advertising prop which didn't actually exist in the store.

    So where was the "magic" of macy*s?

    Date: Friday, August 23, 2013  12:05 am CT
    Posted by: Lori H.

    It's been too long since Marshall Field's was taken from us.

    Not only do I NOT shop at Macy's, I also don't shop at Bloomindale's.

    I've noticed that Bloomingdale's has a Loyalty program.

    No one I know EVER needed a gimmicky loyalty club to stay loyal to Marshall Field's. Everyone I know was loyal to Marshall Field's because it was a great, amazing place. Loyalty in retail is PRICELESS!!!

    Meanwhile, Bloomingdale's loyalty program is full of hot air, like that stupid balloon sculpture dog they use for its mascot!

    Macy's is DUMB!!

    Date: Wednesday, August 21, 2013  8:12 pm CT
    Posted by: R.H.

    I wish you guys would hurry up! Field's can't come back soon enough. Richard

    Date: Tuesday, August 20, 2013  8:27 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    We were discussing Marshall Field and Co. at a friend's house over the weekend. She was in Chicago retail for many years. We're convinced that Field's being subsumed by Macy's was all about ego and personal competitiveness, not unlike that between soap opera personalities. What a loss!

    Date: Monday, August 19, 2013  10:03 pm CT
    Posted by: Richard in Houston

    My wife and I were watching "Unforgettable" on CBS. Guess what store was mentioned? Marshall Fields! It is so ridiculous that Macy's will not even consider bringing the Flagship back. It is internationally recognized -- even nearly 7 years after it was retired!

    By the way, we are very saddened that Foley's flagship in Houston is scheduled to be imploded on September 22nd. Seems like Macy's never had any intention of keeping the other regional stores' flagships up to date and open. It went downhill quickly after the takeover and they sold it to investors right afterwards for the value of the real estate.

    Date: Saturday, August 17, 2013  4:29 pm CT
    Posted by: Clare R.

    We still miss Marshall Field's. GIVE THE LADY WHAT SHE WANTS!

    Date: Friday, August 16, 2013  5:50 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    I'm no economist but this last bit about Gurnee Mills makes me wonder- how many tentacles does the octopus need? How many can it support? Does it matter if the tentacles don't all have proper suction cups --- will just any waving string of protoplasm do? Will the weight of all those tangled appendages pull it to the bottom of the tank?

    Please note: A system error previously indicated that the above post was submitted by "jimmy gimbels." The correct author is "Susan NY." Apologies extended for any confusion.

    Date: Thursday, August 15, 2013  5:27 am CT
    Posted by: jimmy gimbels

    Hello everyone. It has been quite a while since my last check in.

    After much fan fare from the developer at Gurnee Mills, Macy's has finally opened in the former Best Buy location. It is basically a white box..inside and outside. Very odd merch selection...housewares has one style of bath towel "in 30 colors" ( I counted 18), and just row after row of fry pans. Store appears to be quite empty, which is good since there are virtually no salespeople to be found. It is fun to watch people in the mall walk up to the store, peek in and walk away.

    Gurnee Mills is an outlet mall. People are looking for bargains not paper thin shirts at $69. Many of the stores in the mall already stock many of the brands that Macy's carries, but at much lower prices. So why go to Macy's?

    Macy's insisted the mall owner create a more upscale section of the mall for its store. So one wing was redeveloped to look more upscale...but the neighboring stores are Marshall's and Payless Shoe Source. How upscale is that?

    Date: Wednesday, August 14, 2013  5:27 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    1) Thanks to all for you patience with the blog and the web site over the past month. Things should be back to normal with regular updates.

    2) Macy's had their FY 13 Q2 conference call this morning. Macy's is down a bit, first time in about 16 quarters. They attribute it to people being financially conservative in spending. Nothing specific on Field's. Closest was mention of the Rosemont Bloomingdale's Outlet and the Macy's at Gurnee Mills Outlet Mall. CFO Karen Hoguet also said that "tourist stores" were down to the same degree as other stores. I'm assuming tourist stores including 34th Street Herald Square in NYC; Union Square in San Francisco, City Center in Philly and State Street and Water Tower. (I think Chicago is the only city with two tourist Macy's stores--and that's if you don't include Bloomindale's.) Macy's in the South seems to be doing better than the northern stores; Bloomingdale's was up from last quarter compared with Macy's being down.

    and 3)...

    Save the date:
    Saturday, September 28, 2013

    will be our annual Field's weekend. Yes, we will will be in front of the store but moreover, we have something special planned (indoors) that will be the centerpiece event. You won't want to miss it!

    Date: Sunday, August 11, 2013  9:27 pm CT
    Posted by: Observer

    People here may come down on one side or another on this issue and still love Field's. Still, Macy's is experiencing another boycott, this time in Texas over some labor law. Boycotters there are encouraged to shop elsewhere for the back-to-school tax holiday weekend. It was on a lot of news stations including the local newsradio station on Friday afternoon.

    Here's a link to one of several stories on this

    Date: Saturday, August 10, 2013  9:27 pm CT
    Posted by: Drew

    I was walking through a Red Star store in a suburban Pittsburgh mall. The store hasn't been remodeled since it was Lazarus; other than minimal cosmetic updates, no investment has been made into any renovation.

    An announcement came over the store's public address system, something to the effect of this: "Welcome, macy*s guests. Stop by our men's department today and save $25 off a $100 purchase during our special sales event." After some other information about the sale, the announcer closed with "Thank you for shopping at macy*s."

    This reminded me of the infamous "Blue Light Special" announcements at Kmart back in the day. As the Red Star stores become more shabby and run down, as the various departments are packed with racks of clearance merchandise, and as the store is constantly running One Day Sales and distributing numerous coupons and shopping passes, observers can only assume the Red Star has transitioned to a full-fledged discount store. Martha Stewart anyone?

    Date: Friday, August 9, 2013  12:20 pm CT
    Posted by: Kathleen C.

    I miss Field's. My Mom & I used to go downtown, it was such a treat. Does anyone have the recipe for the chocolate date loaf which could be purchased in the bakery? I'd so like to make it. I truly detest Macy's & what they've done to the beautiful & classy Marshall Field's. They should be ashamed, but I guess keeping with tradition is not in vogue.

    Date: Wednesday, August 7, 2013  8:12 pm CT
    Posted by: M.A.S.


    The former Oak Park Marshall Field's closed in 1986 and eventually became a Borders. Rumor has it that it will now become a Sleepys Mattress store. Too bad for such an important corner in Oak Park.

    Date: Wednesday, August 7, 2013  7:10 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Macy's is having their Second Quarter Conference call next Wednesday at 9:30 am Chicago time. You can listen via a link at

    Date: Wednesday, August 7, 2013  10:00 am CT
    Posted by: Pete

    Macy's announced today that it is opening special "Lids" sports cap shops in about 200 stores with a pilot of a few stores for now. Marshall Field's fans have been waiting for this moment. Not.

    Date: Tuesday, August 6, 2013  8:38 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Was traveling in the Detroit area over the weekend and decided to check in to see what was going on at the former Hudson's stores that were branded as Marshall Field's for a brief four years before they became Macy's. Sometimes I get new insights on our cause.

    - Visited the Macy's at Northland Mall in Southfield. This location was opened in 1954 and is part of the first modern enclosed mall which was pioneered by Hudson's. That said, it doesn't look like the mall is doing that well in general. The store itself had whole areas that were empty and roped off while other department had empty cases, etc. While this is a historic store, it wouldn't surprise me if it was closed in the coming years. I think the problem is not unique to Macy's. Nothing obvious from its four years at Field's. Not even a shelf of Frangos. Run down.

    - Checked out Ann Arbor's mall where they had a Macy's. I've heard that this is one of the stores that has taken a role as a flagship after the Hudson's flagship closed in 1983. I was disappointed in the store, architecturally. Even as Hudson's or Field's, I don't think it could have measured up to the kind of store that's like Oak Brook or Old Orchard, etc. It reminded me a lot of a decent Carson's store that you'd find today in Chicago's suburbs.

    Here's what I have found most shocking at Ann Arbor. Like others here and myself, I checked out the Frangos. Back in Field's days and even for some time under Macy's, there were dates on the boxes, I think they were "Best by..." dates that were understandable. Then a couple of years ago (at least) Macy's switched to using Julian dates--numbers that begin with two digits of the year, followed by the day of the year. Somethings, like Frango candy bars still have a standard date. So they have a few shelves of Frangos on sale. The dates on some expired earlier this year while more than a few (say maybe 20) has expirations from LAST YEAR! Then I spyed about a dozen boxes behind the candy counter, some with the Marshall Field's logo on them. I was thrilled to see that the logo was back. I asked to see them. The clerk said that I didn't want to buy them--the Frangos dated back to 2008! I checked a couple of dozen of what looked like were forty boxes of Frangos total. Every one I checked had an old date, many back to 2012! I don't think that ever happened at Field's. I can't imagine Field's leaving them on the shelf. Moreover, I think they would have sold faster. There's to it that makes it worse, IMHO, but too complicated to explain here.

    Date: Sunday, August 4, 2013  12:36 pm CT
    Posted by: G.E.

    Miss Marshall Field's a lot. State Street isn't that great street anymore.

    Date: Thursday, August 1, 2013  9:02 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Today, Macy's opened a Bloomingdale's Outlet store in the new Chicago Fashion Outlets mall adjacent to O'Hare. Neiman Marcus and Saks also have outlets there as well. A fascinating aspect is that it's a place where travelers on layovers between flights can shop. You can even check your bags there. An interesting juxtaposition of higher end stores in an outlet mall format. It's sad in a way to see this as the future. The Bloomingdale's employees were among the only stores to feature their employees in suits. Hard to beleive that other stores (JCP, for example, which, BTW is not in the outlet mall) sell suits with clerks wearing jeans. Bloomingdale's have that part right where others do not.

    Date: Thursday, August 1, 2013  4:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Ron S.

    Tall guy here. I don't shop at Macy's but received some clothes as gifts from Macy's. Supposed to be tall size, 36/37 sleeve. They are too short. I thought I was too fat or something. Maybe in denial that I needed to lose weight. But then I bought a couple of shirts in the same size from J.C.Penney. They fit fine! Marshall Field's aside, I can't shop Macy's because their clothes fit funny. Also, count me among those who are fascinated that Macy's has J.C.Penney as it's most compared store. You never used to hear about that with Marshall Field's.

    Date: Tuesday, July 30, 2013  5:34 pm CT
    Posted by: R.K.

    I like Marshall Field's and they are important to me so i support you 100%.

    Date: Tuesday, July 30, 2013  5:25 pm CT
    Posted by: Richard in Houston

    I watched "What a Woman Wants" (with Mel Gibson) last night with my daughter. Guess where he went to see if he could still read the minds of women? You guessed it! Marshall Fields. It was so awesome to see it pre-Macy's. There were great outdoor views as well as the cosmetics area. Marshall Fields was so classy. By the way, Marshall Fields fans need to follow the status of Strategic Marks, LLC's suit with Macy's. They purchased the trademarks of Jordan Marsh, Joseph Magnin, Abraham & Straus, Bullock's, May Co, Robinson's,Filene's, The Bon Marche and The Broadway with the intent on bringing those iconic stores back. In addition, they have applied for Foley's, Marshall Fields and 10 others to add to the stable of brands.

    Date: Monday, July 29, 2013  5:37 pm CT
    Posted by: s.b.

    Branding experts view the Field's takeover and killing as one dumb decision. They mentioned it when talking about Saks and Hudson Bay Co.

    Date: Monday, July 29, 2013  11:48 am CT
    Posted by: Janet Taylor Dybdal

    My grandfather, George Graham MacKay was the silk and linen buyer for Marshall Fields sometime in the later 1800's. I wonder where I could get accurate information about his time of employment there in Chicago.

    Macy's gave the Field's archives to the Chicago History Museum. Maybe you could get access, assuming that sort of information was kept. Best wishes for good luck!

    Date: Sunday, July 28, 2013  10:28 am CT
    Posted by: Kim D.

    Saw a story where Macy's head was talking about some new stores. I think it was the Bloomingdale's in the Rosemont Outlet mall and the Macy's in the Gurnee Outlet mall. He said Macy's was open to trying anything. Yeah, except giving the lady what she wants--Marshall Field's!!!! Dumb!!!!

    Date: Saturday, July 27, 2013  10:25 pm CT
    Posted by: L.T.

    Very odd story in Daily Herald about Macy's opening in an outlet mall near us in Chicago. This shows me Macy's is no Field's!!!!!
    Macy’s? In the Gurnee Mills ‘outlet mall?’

    Date: Saturday, July 27, 2013  6:52 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Was in the State Street store again briefly a couple of days ago. They are remodeling the cosmetics department in first floor room at State/Washington that features the world-renowned Tiffany dome. Hard to say how it will ultimately turn out as it's a work in progress, but I'm so far disturbed to see each cosmetics area seemingly take on the look of a trade show booth. It really detracts from the unified effect of the great, internationally-renowned space. The floor is getting replaced, but it seems each area has its own flooring, as best I can tell. Maybe that will change in the design implementation. But I'm disappointed to see the columns be enclosed so far up with signage. The way these cosmetic counters and booths are shaping up, they could be anywhere, rather than in the most unique retail spaces in the entire world, not to mention in that amazing store. Below is a photo. Maybe I'm wrong.

    Date: Thursday, July 25, 2013  6:52 pm CT
    Posted by: Sharon

    Field's veteran opens new, successful business in Northbrook! I know where I will be shopping--and it won't be at Macy's!

    Date: Wednesday, July 24, 2013  12:03 pm CT
    Posted by: Sharon

    Don't think I remember Marshall Field and Co. ever being in an outlet mall. Macy's is the same as Marshall Field's? No. BTW: I found a good recipe to approximate Frangoes. Whoo Hoo!

    Date: Tuesday, July 23, 2013  6:53 am CT
    Posted by: Another Field's Fan

    I live in Chicago but my work can mean I'm in the neighborhood of hou Mills where Macy's is opening a full-line Macy's store this week.

    So it's strange. In Chicago, I've hardly seen any notice about the store. But the media some 40 miles north is full of info. No matter. I won't shop there. Maybe they are trying to reconcile Marshall Field's with being in an outlet mall. Or maybe it's too far away from Chicago for them to care..

    Date: Sunday, July 21, 2013  5:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Was in the State Street store this past week and have the following notes:

    * It's been noted that the Oak Brook store's jewelry department features images suggesting Macy's NYC instead of Chicago and Field's, while also having a giant photo of the 35 E Wacker clock instead of teh Field's clock. At State Street, they did get it right. Historic images of Field's are in the "R.H. Macy's" jewelry department, including when R.H. Macy's was established. But of course, getting rid of Field's implies that we shouldn't care about history in the first place.

    * It appears that a new logo for the Field's Macy's Culinary Council is being implemented. The previous logo was adapted from the one for Field's; the new one is a circular logo, in a typeface similar to Courier (a font used in food contexts to suggest typed recipes, instructions, etc.) It's OK but wouldn't we all rather have Field's logo back? I've noticed the logo in an ad and also in some signage in the Marketplace. Speaking of Marketplace, they painted or wall papered over the vertical Field's stripes that were until maybe the past year left up on some fascias in the area.

    * Back at Washington and Wabash where they sell handbags, Chicago items, etc., they have sets of Chicago-themed vinyl-look tote bags, cosmetic bags, and the like. One was mentioned about a year ago--it features a contemporary illustration of the Field's clock by a popular local artist. There was a whole rack of these. Some others depict Chicago icons. And then there are a bunch of bags that are vinyl versions of a Macy's bag in combinations of red, black and white (two of three colors per bag). Beneath the Macy's logo, it says, "CHICAGO." I know some have snarky remarks about the red star as a symbol of Chinese communism; however, the fact is that Macy's red star is inspired by a centuries-old iconography where the red star is a symbol of the Dutch sea traders. (Hence why there's a red star on, for example, Heineken Beer bottles.) And of course New York City was colonized as New Amsterdam by the Dutch back in the 1600s. Hence the red star is a symbol of New Amsterdam and New York City trade and retail. As such, R.H. Macy's had a red star tattoo. Point is, such bags are sort of weird, if not offensive. It effectively says, "New York Retail-Chicago." Weird!

    * The touristy books section on 7 had a pricing sign with the caption, "We Love Chicago." Whatever, but you know, if this was still Field's, the sign could have (and maybe would have) said, "We Are Chicago."

    The oddest part of the whole visit was a sign not too far from the center of the 7th floor. I feature it as a photo below. What a silly sign. Clearly, it dances like crazy around the proverbial giant elephant that fills the 1.2+ million square foot store: Most everyone still wants Marshall Field's. I'm shaking my head in speechlessness as I write this. How can they be so ridiculous!???

    Date: Friday, July 19, 2013  4:44 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    Someone else is mad at Macy's. A powerful northside social justice organization took a swing at Macy's for involvement in programs considered an threat to Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare. Judging from photos attached to the article, they gave Macy's a worse time than Field's Fans every did.
    "ONE northside leaders deliver strong message to Macy's CEO" July 15, 2013.

    Date: Wednesday, July 17, 2013  8:03 pm CT
    Posted by: Melissa

    Former Field's exec has great artisan shop called Occasions in Naperville. Now expanding. Been there. It's great!

    Date: Sunday, July 14, 2013  2:01 pm CT
    Posted by: N.

    Douglas Dayton, founder of Target and a member of the Dayton family known for Dayton's Department stores, died at age 88. Target had a full-page ad to pay tribute to Doug Dayton in today's New York Times.

    The Dayton family retired from what what we know today as Target in the mid-1970s.

    In 2005 and 2006, Dayton family members were among those signing the Keep It Field's petition.

    Date: Sunday, July 14, 2013  12:08 am CT
    Posted by: C. Swanson.

    RE: Macy's American Icon's Campaign.

    With Macy's having kicked an American Icon like Marshall Field's to the curb, are we really to take them seriously?

    Of course not! That's why earlier last week, we, in our office, weren't surprised to see Macy's disrespect an even more important American Icon, The American Flag. They have a sales paper on line with a woman wearing the flag around her shoulders like it's a blanket. NOTE TO MACY'S: This is a hugely disrespectful way to treat the flag. Did the head of Macy's even serve in the military? I think not. The only icon they seem to be able to respect is Marilyn Monroe and that's just because her estate is selling Mariyln Monroe-branded clothes "only@Macys."

    And Macy's, please stop flying your "American Icons" flags at the same staff as the 50 stars and stripes?

    Macy's should be ashamed!

    Date: Friday, July 12, 2013  12:01 pm CT
    Posted by: Martha T., Raleigh

    We came across this site when we Googled for Marshall Field's. Macy's has nothing about Marshall Field's. We miss it. Me and my family simply can't believe there are no Marshall Field's locations left.

    Please start a petition to get them to bring Marshall Field's back. Macy's is so New YOrk.

    Date: Thursday, July 11, 2013  4:34 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    With the vast majority of people wanting Marshall Field's to come back, let's face it, its either about Macy's not being talented enough to know how to run a great store like Field's or it's all about CEO Lundgren's ego. I think it's both.


    Date: Tuesday, July 9, 2013  10:09 pm CT
    Posted by: Z.

    (This was passed along two or three weeks ago.)

    "What My Mother Gave Me: Thirty-one Women on the Gifts That Mattered Most" is a book edited by Elizabeth Benedict. It was released three months ago. Amazon describes this marvelous book as:

    In What My Mother Gave Me, women look at the relationships between mothers and daughters through a new lens: a daughter’s story of a gift from her mother that has touched her to the bone and served as a model, a metaphor, or a touchstone in her own life. The contributors of these thirty-one original pieces include Pulitzer Prize winners, perennial bestselling novelists, and celebrated broadcast journalists.
    Among those featured is Margo Jefferson, a former theatre critic for the New York Times. She's also been a professor at New York University and Columbia University. What gift did Ms. Jefferson write about? Growing up under the influence of her mother and Marshall Field's. A beautiful read and a shining example of why Marshall Field's matters.

    Date: Monday, July 8, 2013  7:19 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    \ Passed through the Oak Brook store over the long weekend. Of course, it was sad to be reminded that the former Field's Marketplace has been greatly reduced with apparel encroaching into the blue floor tile area that once defined it. But it was really clear that Macy's is still trying to distance itself from Field's branding. In the men's department that had a giant poster of a familiar Chicago clock--but it was the Jewelers Building (35 East Wacker) clock. Talk about going out of one's way NOT to be Marshall Field's!

    Of course, like other stores, the jewelery department has "R.H. Macy and Co." signage that points out something like "Since 1858." How can you take Macy's seriously when it comes to history, tradition and culture when they disrespect, disuse and mothball Chicago's?

    Date: Saturday, July 6, 2013  5:14 pm CT
    Posted by: Annette K.

    My grandparents with my father (age 6) and my uncle (age 13) took a road trip from Wichita, KS to Chicago in 1933 to the World's Fair, and discovered Marshall Fields. Over the years my grandmother rode the train up to Chicago to visit my Uncle at the University of Chicago and go the Marshall Fields to look at the fashions. (she was a fashion seamstress and made clothes for people). She kept the boxes and paper bags and items purchased during those years; I have a lot of those things now. I am a third generation member of my family who would come up to Chicago (from Missouri) to spend a day in Marshall Fields as part of every trip to Chicago....also third generation of my family to always eat at Berghoff's.

    Marshall Fields was a first class act, the architecture and stunning details of the lovely building; and all the departments filled with wonderful things to look at and purchase.

    Now, why would anyone go out of their way to go to yet another Macy's store???

    Date: Thursday, July 4, 2013  10:28 am CT
    Posted by: Cleo F.

    Several 4th of July Fireworks shows on TV, but I'm repulsed by Macy's. Didn't they fund one or two years of the Chicago fireworks and pull out? I know they did in 2006. Curated by stars. How about curated by fireworks designers?

    Date: Thursday, July 4, 2013  CT
    Posted by:

    Happy Fourth of July!

    Date: Wednesday, July 3, 2013  2:23 am CT
    Posted by: E.O.

    You have to wonder how much longer the former Field's at Louis Joliet, Stratford and Spring Hill will stay open. The likes of Carson's, Penney's and even Sears seem to be better kept up at these locations. Those stores were oversteps by Field's. Oversaturation of a good thing. On the other hand, Oak Brook, Old Orchard, Water Tower and Mayfair are nice enough stores to be a flaghip store in their own right. State Street is a whole new level. The idea of bringing back Marshall Field's to State Street is SO SMART. It's an international destination. Why would you hide such a wonder as a Macy's????

    Date: Tuesday, July 2, 2013  8:01 pm CT
    Posted by: N.J.

    Here in Minneapolis, people still complain about the loss of Field's to Macy's.

    Date: Tuesday, July 2, 2013  12:03 pm CT
    Posted by: O.D.O.

    Shame on Macy's cheap chain stores, you took an artful way of shopping in the windy city. Remembering taking the train to downtown just to go to Marshall Field's.

    Bring back Marshall Field's

    Date: Monday, July 1, 2013  12:03 pm CT
    Posted by: E.H.

    As long as Macy's is into saving money, they should print bags with both the Bloomingdale's and Macy's logos on them.

    Count me among the fascinated that Macy's says that the coupons put them at a price-point that's comparable to an outlet store.


    Date: Sunday, June 30, 2013  10:45 pm CT
    Posted by: Ronald

    I was reading all these comments and one of them made me mad saying Marshall Fields was a bag lady and my opinions is Fields is not a bag lady but a beautiful lady!

    Date: Sunday, June 30, 2013  7:34 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    As best I can tell, Macy's focused it's Pride Week events in Chicago on the Chicago Gay Men's Chorus appearance at the State Street, as well as a full, back page ad for the event on the back of the "Windy City Times" LGBTQ publication. Macy's sat out the Chicago Pride Parade this year with last year's Macy's logo replaced on the Chorus' float with that of Wells Fargo. The chorus did pass outa few hundred rainbow-colored rubber friendship bracelets with Macy's "Pride + Joy" campaign embossed in them.

    Last year, Macy's passed out "Pride + Joy" fans. We distributed some "Time to bring back Marshall Field's" buttons. Some people took the fans and pinned their Field's buttons over the Macy's logo.

    Simply reporting what I saw.

    Date: Sunday, June 30, 2013  3:49 pm CT
    Posted by: Drew

    To R.W.: You may be shocked to learn that many shoppers aren't "excited" by New York style and fashion. By converting the nation's department stores, Terry Lundgren has reduced hundreds of local icons to just another mall staple--Sears Penneys macy*s. Nothing special. Just a store in most every mall. He has also diminished the attraction of the New York stores since there are macy*s everywhere. How can something one find any place be a destination?

    As a Proud Pittsburgher, I'm not impressed by pictures of the Herald Square department store displayed at my regional malls. The macy*s stores here are okay, but the merchandise and displays aren't very "magical." In fact, the refurbished JCPenney stores have better selection, variety and displays. The macy*s stores at Monroeville and South Hills (which were former Lazarus locations) plus Waterfront, Washington, Robinson, and Pittsburgh Mills (which were the newer Kaufmann's stores) are a little nicer but it's obvious minimal money has been invested in upgrades or modernization. Downtown, Century III, Beaver Valley, Greensburg are tired and shabby.

    It was so benevolent of Terry Lundgren to try to help us low life hicks experience the finery and class that is New York, but I question why he backpedaled on "uplifting" the various regional stores to New York standards and now praises himself for "localization" of assortments. Is this somehow an admission that perhaps shoppers didn't need or want another Sears Penneys?

    Also, R.W., what's up with all the coupons at macy*s? Are they now trying to capture the Kohl's bargain-hunter shoppers? Terry Lundgren ditched many of the better homewares brands to stock up on the Martha Stewart discount store diva lines. Is macy*s a "better" department store or is it a discount store?

    Note from the webmaster:
    I can't comment on the Pittsburgh-area stores since I have never been in them. However, to be fair, the Hotel Collection home goods at Macy's are very, very nice--I'm thinking of the towels. But I find the Fieldcrest towels sold at Target are even nicer, not to mention their top-of-the-line offering. And yes, Fieldcrest traces its lineage to our beloved emporium. But all of you knew about the history--just emphasizing.

    Date: Saturday, June 29, 2013  5:28 am CT
    Posted by: Barbara, California

    You have no idea how much I miss Fields. Every special dress I bought came from Fields. Before I went on an important date or to the prom I stopped at Fields to have my makeup done!  When I was getting married my gown came from Fields, my housewares came from Fields, my linens, my nightwear, etc. came from Fields. Most of these items I still own and that is after 36 years.  I have kept shopping bags, wrapping paper, and most importantly - MY FIELDS CREDIT CARD. The first time I shopped at Fields by myself (no Mom along) was the day I knew I was growing up. I knew I was truly an adult when my friends and I began to meet at the Walnut room for "ladies who lunch" luncheons. My children experienced their first visits to Santa at Fields. When I moved to California I brought all these memories with me. People know I am a Chicago native when they see my Fields clock, my Fields lamp and my Fields framed photo.

    Thank you for all your efforts.

    Date: Saturday, June 29, 2013  6:57 pm CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    Get a life? We had a nice one going with Field's til someone decided it was too good for us. Fight for it? Of course!

    If you have lived your life under a rock I guess Macy's would look pretty good.

    Date: Friday, June 28, 2013  3:15 pm CT
    Posted by: A Chicago native


    Date: Thursday, June 27, 2013  9:09 pm CT
    Posted by: H.D.

    GM had to pare down it's brand offerings. Yet, they weren't so stupid as to get rid of all but two.

    Macy's should bring back Marshall Field's. All three of their stores would have their own personality. Or get rid of Macy's and Bloomingdale's in Chicago. They say they have to go with the best name. In Chicago, that's Marshall Field's, not Macy's or Bloomingdale's. By a mile. Make that a 100 miles.

    Date: Wednesday, June 26, 2013  1:04 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    My computer class was showing us how to search different aspects of the Internet. One of the exercises was "Find an interesting blog." Since Field's Fans is the most interesting blog I know of, I brought it up and got some emotional feedback from the class on how people still wish we had Marshall Field's to shop at.

    Date: Wednesday, June 26, 2013  1:00 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    About Macy's comments on the new Gurnee Mills Outlet Mall store. I would have rolled on the floor laughing if it weren't so sad. Are they really saying that there can't be Macy's outlet stores because Macy's already coupons everything down to outlet store prices? In other words, it's already like an outlet store 4-5 days a week, if you have the right coupon? Sure, Field's had a bargain basement, but when did you ever hear Field's compared to an outlet store?

    Further proof that Macy's is no Marshall Field's. It was more than a name change.

    Date: Wednesday, June 26, 2013  8:45 am CT
    Posted by: gle

    Another book is out. "Chicago Business and Industry: From Fur Trade to E-Commerce" by Janice Reiff was featured on PBS "Chicago Tonight" on WTTW Channel 11 June 26. Phil Ponce interviewed the author. Much of the discussion focused on Marshall Field's contributions--training employees to make the customer very happy, bringing in women salespersons who understood what women wanted, and expanding commerce by introducing Japanese items and Irish lace. Harry Selfridge was also mentioned as an influence of Field's that expanded abroad. It all sounded good and can be reviewed at

    Date: Tuesday, June 25, 2013  8:27 pm CT
    Posted by: Ron S.

    I've been seeing these ads for Macy's Fourth of July Fireworks in New York. Curated by Usher? Really? Who cares? What next? Curated by Donald Trump or the AFLAC Duck? Who makes up this stuff? Who started equating celebrity with design talent?

    Date: Sunday, June 23, 2013  3:12 pm CT
    Posted by: Lucille C.

    We consider it shameful what they have done to Marshall Field and Company, especially the main store.

    Such an injustice can't stay unmitigated forever.


    Date: Saturday, June 22, 2013  11:14 am CT
    Posted by: M.G.

    I won't buy Frangos since Macy's. Never. Never. Never. Ever.

    Shame on you Macy's. You should collect signatures and prove to them how bad Macy's has been.

    Date: Saturday, June 22, 2013  9:01 am CT
    Posted by: S.B.

    Why is Macy's so hot on Bloomindale's? There are only three stores left in Chicagoland, right? Old Orchard and then something like 2/3 of a store on Michigan Avenue and 1/3 of a store nearby on Wabash for home goods. Yet they buy pages of Chicago advertising. Old Orchard seems ALWAYS dead year round, even at Christmas time. How does it even stay in business?

    They should get rid of Bloomingdales in Chicago, make the Chicago Bloomingdale's stores into Macy's and Macy's home goods, respectively, and turn Water Tower PLace and State Street back into Marshall Field's. It would still be the same amount of newspaper advertising. And when did you ever see a TV ad for Bloomingdale? I can't remember.

    Getting rid of Marshall Field's still reminds me of The Emperor's new clothes.

    Date: Friday, June 21, 2013  6:34 pm CT
    Posted by: Lydia Clarkson

    We visited Chicago from Troy, Michigan this past weekend. That's just outside of Detroit. When Hudson's at nearby Somerset became Marshall Field's, we were pleased. We already used to visit Chicago for Field's and it was great to have the better service and merchandise locally. At the same time, the special experience that was Marshall Field's State Street still made it all the worthwhile to come to Chicago.

    As Macy's, that has all changed. Somerset has some of the good stuff that used to be there, but there's rarely that surprise find, that special thing you ended up buying even though you didn't go into the store expecting to buy it. And while we still like the Walnut Room, most the rest of State Street just has become a really big suburban Macy's. The special mystique, the classy displays, the allure of it all. It's all gone as Macy's. Macy's is crude and crass, just about consumption.

    Macy's is not the equal of Field's. Field's is sorely missed. This is all a sad comment on our society.

    Please keep fighting the good fight.

    Date: Thursday, June 20, 2013  10:23 pm CT
    Posted by: R.W.

    Since I'm a Macy's employee, I can't help but to look here from time to time and see what garbage people are posting. Don't you all have a life?

    While I speak for myself and not Macy's, remember all of this. Macy's bought Marshall Field's. It is Macy's to do with it as it pleases! You people think you are doing good things, but you know? You are simply hurting anything that's left of Marshall Field's. Terry Lundgren has every right -- no, make that it's his duty -- to get rid of MArshall Field's and add value, stability and quality to this company. It's a worthy agenda.

    You people need to educate yourselves on the real quality that is Macy's. If you all weren't so narrow-minded, you'd see that Macy's has brought New York's fashion to Chicago. Without Macy's, Chicago would have greatly diminished access to NYC's International design scene that is most prominent. Marshall Field's, by contrast, was like a dowdy bag lady. Macy's has made the Chicago stores hip again. And if you really want the best, you can go to Bloomingdale's.

    Macy's plan makes sense. Give it up!

    Date: Wednesday, June 19, 2013  8:03 am CT
    Posted by: Anne T.

    Hi Field's Lovers!

    Was just on the L on the way in and saw that WE ARE NOT ALONE! Another organization is also trying to get Field's back, They have little square buttons with the Marshall Field's clock on it. They say something like "NO TO MACY'S!"


    Date: Monday, June 17, 2013  11:54 am CT
    Posted by: mikea

    In response to Jim's comments. My comments about State Street store and Macy's is a reflection of my experiences of both Field's and Macy's. I have been going to the State Street store since I was a small child. I worked at the State Street store for over 6 years. I regularly visit the store on a weekly basis as much as possible. I still know associates who work there. My comments are entirely based on those experiences alone and no other outside sources.

    On a recent visit to State Street I noticed that they are planning on a new cosmetics department. Already barricades are up and signs point out a new department is on the way. Also they are doing small renovations on the 3rd floor too. Maybe now the old floor tiles will be replaced.

    Listening to the recent conference call it seems that Macy's is committed to its MOM program and running two divisions only. IF the recent activity going on for the last ONE DAY SALE is any indication of customer preferences, then sales and large ones are the big draw for Macy's They do not work on a full price model as Bloomingdale's and Nordstrom does. They even admitted it in the last conference call that Macy's on sale compares to prices in outlet malls and therefore they are not going to open up Macy's outlet stores.

    Also in my experiences a store closing sale is not a real good deal especially at the beginning. When Carson's closed on State Street they refused to honor any sale prices that were available in the other Carson's stores. That is usually the case when retailers close a location. The best deals later on in the closing sale usually when inventory is low.

    Date: Sunday, June 16, 2013  2:03 pm CT

    I have an Macy's giftcard I have to use or otherwise I wouldn't shop at Macy's. If you don't spend the card, Macy's realizes maximum profit. Buy clearance merchandise, discounted as much as possible, and that's the best boycott scenario, you know?

    So I figure I will go to the downtown St Louis Macy's going out of business sale and see if they have any Frangos I can use it for. This store on Olive Street used to be nine floors and the Famous Barr flagship. May Department Stores corporate HQ used to be another nine floors filled above that. Now the whole thing will be gone. Making the store and the HQ jobs all disappear. That's the magic of Macy's!

    I bring a coupon and all. They had Frangos. I can't find an expiration date so I see the clerk. They don't have normal dates on them anymore. You can decode a number on the Julian calendar to figure out the date. Who does that? What's the big secret? Do I need a decoder ring? Is it Macy's magic? I ask the clerk if they are on sale, can I use a WOW coupon, but wouldn't honor coupons at that location since it was going out of business and Frangos were part of candy rather than home. But get this. They were tagged $20 but when she checked the price, they scanned as $21! "I think I can give it to you for $20 but no coupon. I'm told if I go to another location that's not going out of business without a candy counter, where they sell Frangos in the home and gift department, I can use the coupon and get it for $16. Huh?! This is a going out of business sale? I can see why they deserve to go out of business. $20 ($21?) at a going out of business sale versus $16 at a regular store. That's the magic of Macy's, I guess.

    I kept the giftcard for some other time, sad that I had been unable to be done with it for good.

    Field's, and not even Famous Barr, was ever like this.

    Date: Sunday, June 16, 2013 
    Posted by: FieldsFansChicago

    Happy Father's Day!

    Date: Saturday, June 15, 2013  6:37 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    Regarding who thought what about Field's......bottom line seems to be no one really cared about the wonders of the goose with golden eggs. Ego, ego, ego.....potentially the vilest poison there is when devoid of spiritual grace. Disgracefully, the goose wound up on the platter and there will be no more golden eggs.

    I just learned of the "Monuments Men" story and take it as a demonstration of how important art objects are to the identity of a people. One man risked his life to defuse bombs set around Chartres Cathedral in WWII.....I don't know if he was even Christian but he recognized an inestimable world spirit-treasure and saw to it that we did not lose it.
    The position that "stuff" is bad (especially if it is pricey or priceless) is, as far as I am concernedóas an artist--no less than evil. We were meant to create, and some of what we create is tangible. It has meaning, sometimes transcendent or profound meaning. (I take this to include natural wonders, as well.)

    We don't need a Chartres Cathedral or a Marshall Field's or a Yellowstone to carry on our lives, really-- but every time we squelch or pull down a spirit-monument for the cash or just out of plain meanness, we are further impoverished as human beings. That is what this battle here is about. It's not about shirts or wipes.

    Whatever his human flaws and failings, however it fed his ego, Marshall Field understood greatness and when I reflect on how his and others' sense of noblesse oblige in Chicago nourished MY life, I am awed.

    Mr. Lundgren, who will thank *you* in a hundred years?

    Date: Saturday, June 15, 2013  12:37 am CT
    Posted by: Robert Mau

    God, I hate Macy's. I haven't spent a DIME at a Macy's (anywhere) since that fateful last day of Marshall Field's back in September, 2006. I'd like to let Mayor Emanuel know that the reason I don't shop downtown anymore is because Field's used to be my destination. Without Field's, there's NO reason to bother, since there are similar stores in the suburbs. And I will never believe that Daley couldn't do anything. "Accept change," was his response. Yeah, like the "change" with parking meters.

    I am heartened to hear that Montreal has a stand-alone department store. It may be worth a trip.

    Date: Friday, June 14, 2013  7:05 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    I haven't read Darlene Quinn's book, but I did understand it was indeed based on what's been happening here in Chicago. As implied in our March 30, 2013 newsletter, the book is endorsed because it really stimulates discussion and hopefully understanding of The Big Picture. I have no idea if I'm "Alan" or "John" or "Clint" or...

    I've understood much the same as you about May Department store's motives for outbidding Federated for Field's. The hope was that they would swallow the whole "whale" as Terry Lundgren told the story a few months ago. But, as you point out, the pundits considered the other twelve-plus MayCo regionals what wasn't so attractive and Field's was Macy's was most after. Moreover, as I stated at the stockholders meeting four weeks ago, MayCo's final 10-K filing with the SEC in spring 2005 listed all of their tradenames--at 12 department stores including Lord and Taylor, plus the likes of David's Bridal, as well as the private labels and brands--as valued at $162M. One exception: Marshall Field's tradenames were broken out as a separate figure--$419M (!!!) Federated had a similar line item for tradenames--that would include Macy's, Bloomingdale's, presumably some mothballed names like Rich's--value of $376M.

    That says quite a bit in support of how Field's value as a tradename. Moreover, it says a great deal about immense shareholder value that could be unlocked if Macy's restored Marshall Field's. And for the record, I'm talking about restoring the name and the Field's way of doing business which so many think is different from Macy's. had a story with Terry Lundgren a day or two ago. Lundgren said that Macy's "will try everything." Well, he should apparently add, "except give four out of five Chicago shoppers what they prefer, Marshall Field's." I've been doing a lot of research for my own book. I'm becoming more and more convinced that Field's is gone not out of the bottom line concerns but out of inter-personal, behind-the-scenes history between all those people who are CEOs of department stores.

    Date: Friday, June 14, 2013  1:01 pm CT
    Posted by: Mike R.

    Here is a link to an article in the Appleton Post Crescent about why women executives don't shop locally. Many comments are about the inventory Macy's carries compared to Marshall Field's.

    Date: Thursday, June 13, 2013  11:55 pm CT
    Posted by: Mariam

    I LOVE George Strait. I've noticed that although Universal Music Group has dropped the MCA Records label, they did keep it for George Strait's records, at his request.

    Add it to the list of FAO, Bergdorf, The Drake, Palmer House, Duane Reade and a host of others.

    Date: Wednesday, June 12, 2013  6:09 pm CT
    Posted by: P.D.J.

    Macy's held a special conference call for shareholders yesterday. The transcripts are at

    At one part, the Chief Store Officier, Peter Sachse, discusses Marshall Field's.

    And at that point, something very important happened. And that was we bid for Marshall Marshall Field's. Target had the company at that point in time, and we lost that bid. And I went to my board and I had a number, and I proposed that number and actually left it a little short to give me a little wiggle room. And I made my proposal to the banker, Goldman Sachs, and I said, "Here's my number. And he said, "That's a very good number." He said, "I will appreciate it. I'll get back to you as soon as I get the other bidder." There's just 2 bidders, ourselves and May Company. He called me back about an hour later and he said, "Was that your best and final bid?" And I said, "So how badly did I get beat?" And he said, "The number took my breath away." And I said, "That's all I need to know, I'm out." There was just no discussion, I'm out. And so that, on reflection, was probably the single best decision that I made because, one, it obviously was the right decision. But for us, because we knew we could afford it, we knew what we felt what it was worth, but also gave us a great deal of credibility with our board about future decisions that we might make. And so it was literally 1 year later when we bought the May Company, who had bought Marshall Field's. So we got Marshall Field's in sort of a gift for the purchase, if you will.
    EVERYBODY KNOWS THAT MARSHALL FIELD'S WAS THE CROWN JEWEL OF FEDERATED'S ACQUISITION/MERGER OF MAY DEPARTMENT STORES. Sounds like he is trying to downplay the value of Marshall Field's. It was widely discussed in the business press at the time that May purchased Field's so Federated (now Macy's) would in turn buy May. Before the Field's acquisition, May had problems and was not an attractive takeover target or merger partner. By many analyst's accounts, it was the opposite. Federated got May as a gift for purchasing Marshall Field's. Macy's has always wanted in the Chicago market, but not in the already crowded field of stores.

    The more they talk like this, the more it makes them out to be covering up that they screwed up. "Mission accomplished." NOT!

    Date: Tuesday, June 11, 2013  8:00 pm CT
    Posted by: gl

    I have been reading Darlene Quinn's book, "Unpredictable Webs." It comes across as closely based on real-life events here in Chicago with regards to Macy's and Marshall Field's. The character "Conrad" seems similar to Terry Lundgren, while "Alan" seems inspired by Jim McKay. There are scenes with protesters and come of the comments the protesters make sound like they could have come off this very blog. I have not yet finished the book.

    Date: Monday, June 10, 2013  5:01 pm CT
    Posted by: mikea

    Interesting listening to some of the comments from Karen Hoguet and Peter Scalise at the Citibank conference. It seems that Macy's will be spending less money on store remodels except for Herald Square than they did in previous years. Instead of overall large remodels they will be small and more cost savings. It seems that is true.

    At State Street, they are planning to keep the store open until 9:00 PM on weekends for the summer even if there are no one day or special sales.

    They (Macy's ) claim that spending on omnichannel, fulfillment centers and the internet are better serving the companies interest than large store remodels. Some of the Macy's I have been to especially in Southern CA are in horrible shape. Old Orchard needs a facelift. A large store like that should not look in such bad shape.

    They made over 1 billion on profits last year, why cannot spend a little to update some of the stores and make the shopping experience a good one. I for one do not like to shop in a old rundown store.

    [ "mikea" is a long-time critic of efforts to bring back Marshall Field's with his letters in support of Macy's having even appeared in the Chicago Tribune Letters to the Editor. While his opinions do not necessarily reflect those of his employer, nor are they necessarily sanctioned by his employer, "mikea" works for a company that does remodeling work for stores including Macy's and, in the past, Marshall Field's. His opinions are featured to demonstrate that rebuttals are indeed welcome, generally if an accurate email address is provided.]

    Date: Sunday, June 9, 2013  5:01 pm CT
    Posted by: S.K.

    This American Icon business from Macy's is whacko. Where do I begin? Field's was an American Icon and they killed it. And then they push Marilyn Monroe as the most prominent of icons. Hey, she's well known and I know they have a clothing line bearing her name, but she was troubled, too, you know? I mean, I can think of a lot of war heroes who died for us and are more deserving of attention. Then again, they don't have a clothing line at Macy's. And if they want to show us how American they are, how about selling fewer goods made in China? They can start by having all Donald Trump merch made in the USA. Macy's is cray--ZEEE.

    Date: Friday, June 7, 2013  9:09 pm CT
    Posted by: Lumi Grand

    Hello, everyone!

    Though it's been a very long time since I've posted anything on here, it certainly has not been ANY time that I have not missed Marshall Field's!

    It was so nice to know there was Marshall Field's if I wanted to buy "that special gift" wrapped in the most beautiful gift wrap I've ever seen. Marshall Field's was truly a CLASS ACT ALL THE WAY.

    I've thought about the protests though I've not been able to attend because of the distance. I've had an idea for a couple of years now, and so I decided to SHOW YOU my idea on my blog page at

    I hope you will all visit my page and consider my idea. I've thought about it for a very long time, and time has not diminished my belief that this very visual protest would be very, very effective.

    I'm still here, still hoping for the return of Marshall Field's - the best store I have ever shopped!

    God bless you all,

    L. Grand

    Response from Jim McKay:
    It's a good idea and concept. Actually, we've considered such an idea a few years back, based on Christo and Jean-Claude's "The Gates" from about ten years ago. Instead of the saffron, shades of Marshall Field's green would be held up by fans strategically choreographed on the sidewalk.

    Date: Friday, June 7, 2013  3:58 pm CT
    Posted by: State Street Spectator

    I searched for "Marshall Field's: The Store that Helped Build Chicago" (4th printing special hardcover edition) by Gayle Soucek at the State Street store today. The sales associate in Barbara's Bookstore told me they won't be getting it there because they have the paperbacks and those are cheaper. They did say they could special order it by request.

    The paperback edition is available in abundance near the 7th floor food court and in the Lush cosmetics area on the ground floor. Customers apparently still grab it up.

    Date: Wednesday, June 5, 2013  1:44 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    Gosh, why can't we get it through our silly heads that it is fiscal madness to maintain the likes of a Marshall Field's whose bags require a distinctive logo? Who are we to think a unique store is an asset to the city? Since when is quality merchandise of interest to this democracy?

    If excellence costs money, it's something we can do without. That's that.

    Date: Tuesday, June 4, 2013  10:39 am CT
    Posted by: Linda

    I concur with those concerned about Field's slipping into a state of decline on State Street. Little by little. Not right away, but in time. You also don't hear much from Linda Piepho and Ralph Hughes these days. It's all Andrea Shwartz, a Macy's Veep of communication from Marshall Field's days. Only she disavows Marshall Field's.

    On another note, Field's used to have this amazing sweet creamy dill dressing. Does anyone know where I can get the recipe? I didn't see it in the Field's books in the stores.

    Date: Monday, June 3, 2013  2:39 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    I found the new hardcover version of "Marshall Field's: The Store that Helped Build Chicago" at the Barnes & Noble in Evanston, and was encouraged by author Gayle Soucek's comments on reader responses on how they still miss our great department store.

    Date: Sunday, June 2, 2013  8:09 pm CT
    Posted by: s.b.

    I read today that Neiman Marcus and Saks were going to "merge" because of some private equity firm's desires. It did not happen but it was proposed and rejected in the month of May.

    That's the issue with what's wrong with things today. The people who are running these firms are NOT retailers... they are private equity firms and financial folks. Field's (the man) was a true retail pioneer. Similarly Steve Jobs was a design/lifestyle brand pioneer. I think for these men, profits were second... and creating the very best product was key.

    They made money because they created an amazing retail experience and sold amazing products!

    Today it is all about the bottom line... they don't "get" that the bottom line is influenced by WHAT IS BEING SOLD AND THE EXPERIENCE THAT GOES WITH IT!

    Date: Sunday, June 2, 2013  10:59 am CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Today's Chicago Tribune has a mention of restaurant that Field's used to run at Midway Airport some years back.

    As I stated in the comments, an international class restaurant run by an international emporium at the international airport of an international city.

    Date: Friday, May 31, 2013  11:36 pm CT
    Posted by: Miriam G.

    Macy's unveils the second year of $400million in renovations to the 34th Street flagship in NYC. They sure don't spend much here in Chicago, do they? So much for caring. Then again, I'd hate for them to ruin State Street.

    Date: Thursday, May 30, 2013  7:03 pm CT
    Posted by: F.F.

    Karen Houget, Macy's CFO, and Peter Sachse, Macy's Chief Stores Officier, just gave a presentation at Citi's 2013 Global Consumer Conference.

    The following are the transcripts:
    Two mentions sort of related to Marshall Field's. Hoguet said that Macy's plans to spend more money on the major remodeling of stores in the likes of Texas as opposed to Illinois because that's where the customers are moving. Then the conversation turned to the new Macy's at Gurnee Mills. It will be a 1 floor, smaller store format, an experiment to see if a Macy's can open a full store in an outlet mall. Gee, too bad they got rid of the small store at Lake Forest!


    Date: Thursday, May 30, 2013  9:21 am CT
    Posted by: gle

    I went to the State Street store after work yesterday to look for the 4th printing special edition of Gayle Soucek's book, "Marshall Field's: The Store that Helped Build Chicago." It was nowhere to be found. The previous edition is still available in the 7th floor food court area, and in the Lush cosmetics department on the ground floor. As expected, I could find no sales associate to ask if the store will be getting the new edition in.

    I see from a post on this website that the book is availavble online. Does anyone know if it is only available online?

    Date: Wednesday, May 29, 2013  9:37 pm CT
    Posted by: Joan K.

    We're losing the Famous Barr flagship store here in St Louis this summer. The clearance sale starts this weekend. Ten years ago, the building held a nine-floor store plus as many floors of corporate administration that ran about 400 stores. All gone. Despite promises, it simply took a while. Eight years, to be exact, for it all to go away.

    You people here are right to be concerned about Marshall Field's on State Street closing. It may not happen right away. It probably won't happen under Terry Lundgren. But what he's done to Field's sets things up for State Street's closure in another 15 years. The status of one of the greatest stores in the world has been weakened by an egotistical stand of one person. What a loss.

    While we're all sad about the loss of Famous here in St. Louis, most everybody here is even more shocked at Marshall Field's becoming Macy's. Still can't believe it!!!!!!!

    Date: Wednesday, May 29, 2013  9:02 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay


    Regardless of what Macy's official statement, not having to print separate bags for Marshall Field's is one of the most commonly perceived reasons as to why Macy's had to replace it. I read and hear this in news stories, academic papers, from customers resigned to Macy's who really wish they had Field's instead. Your post effectively says one of the widely held rationalizations for getting rid of Chicago's favorite store doesn't hold water. Moreover, your comment about Bloomingdale's also effectively says that Macy's is a step down from Field's. For years--especially when Bloomingdale's entered Chicago market--the overall perception was that it was an arch competitor to Field's. Thanks for clarifying that both are myths. Now we have two less reasons to justify the loss of Field's.

    As I said in the presence of Mr. Lundgren and all at the recent stockholders meeting, surely Macy's is talented enough to give Chicago shoppers what they overwhelmingly want while also having their Macy's and Bloomingdale's too, right?

    Date: Tuesday, May 28, 2013  4:04 pm CT
    Posted by: mikea

    In response to the post by Paul R. Yes Macy's does have special shopping bags etc for Christmas, this American Icons and other special events ie so does Nordstrom for their special sales and Christmas too.

    According to Macy's the reason for not having a Field's is they do not want to have another division within the company. Another division would require more associates in buying and merchandising. Advertising would include another set of print and media ads along with a website and omnichannel for another division. They want to operate the company in a economy of scale.

    Bloomingdales' sells much different merchandise than Macy's and they keep the divisions and stores separate.

    Date: Tuesday, May 28, 2013  5:40 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    Sigh. Just pulled my husband's ancient Marshall Field's terry robe out of the dryer. It is his pet. It is a little bedraggled but proud, repaired a bit but still nobly hanging together after many years of heavy use. I had to reattach the label a while back so it remains where it belongs. Was the robe expensive? Yes. That's why it is still on the job, having bypassed cheaper ones that have come and gone. Why do people think spending serious money for a good product is a bad idea? Is getting a new crummy robe every year or two a better one? That's a deep question but anyone in manufacturing and marketing can probably tell you right off, what to think.

    So we feel loyalty to a store that delivers good things, and indifference to one that spews forgettable stuff. What's that worth?

    Date: Monday, May 27, 2013  CT
    Posted by:

    In Memoriam of All
    Who Gave Their Lives
    For Our Great Country!

    We think of you with overwhelming gratitude this Memorial Day.

    Date: Saturday, May 25, 2013  8:27 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    Was in State Street today. Macy's is selling "Macy's Chicago" tote bags. They don't know how to stop insulting Chicago, do they? Black bag, Chicago skyline from out in Monroe Harbor, all topped off with the red star, the symbol of NYC. They don't get Chicago.

    Date: Saturday, May 25, 2013  9:21 am CT
    Posted by: Sandra K.

    Live in the Minneapolis-St.Paul area. Used to go to Marshall Field and Co. when ever I could make it to Chicago and bring back the very special clothes, furnishings, and whatever special thing that Field's staff so discreetly suggested. They never pushed anything on you. As their slogan once read, "Nothing like it back home."

    Since Field's was ruined by Macy's, I have been looking for a replacement. I know people suggest Nordstrom. They sure do have the service and quality. I can't believe how many people don't realize that Bloomingdale's is really Macy's. I don't shop there. But in the past year or so, I've been finding that the place with the most exciting merchandise is Dillard's! I head south now and then and get to shop there. Now Dillard's is no Marshall Field's, but I've been impressed with the shift in merchandise in the past year or two. Whereas Macy's pushes all this black and graphic prints, Dillard's has been getting all this exciting color and fine merchandise. It's really gone up in my book. It used to be quite dowdy. Now they have great, hip stuff that people can wear.

    Lord and Taylor, Nordstrom, Dillard's, Neiman's and others have a taste of Field's, yet nothing compares to Field's. It was the whole enchilada.

    Date: Friday, May 24, 2013  8:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Yousef

    Glad to see this going.

    How come Frangos don't have expiration dates anymore???

    Date: Friday, May 24, 2013  7:09 pm CT
    Posted by: E.H.

    Marshall Field's was the "must stop" tourist trap for me. Macy's is New York, Field's is Chicago. And Field's had more class.

    Macy's has this American Icon's thing going on. Marshall Field's was -- still is -- an American icon in part because it wasn't Macy's!

    Date: Wednesday, May 22, 2013  12:03 pm CT
    Posted by: Jeff K.

    Regarding the Cincinnati Business news story, amazing that the head of Macy's wouldn't respond.

    Sounds like a "gotcha" thing.

    Date: Wednesday, May 22, 2013  11:12 am CT
    Posted by: Paul R.

    Marshall Field's is sorely missed!

    I thought the big deal was that Macy's wouldn't have to print special Field's shopping bags.

    I've noticed special Macy's bags depicting American Icons. Uhh...they have one big American Icon in Marshall Field's. Certainly they can use the same argument to print Marshall Field's bags.

    Bring back Field's!

    Date: Tuesday, May 21, 2013  9:51 pm CT
    Posted by: Joyce PYka

    Back in the day wonderful traditions revolved around Marshall Fields for many years, for many people. Here's my children's historical fiction blog and the story that was inspired by "the store".


    Date: Tuesday, May 21, 2013  9:13 pm CT
    Posted by: Drew

    Sad that the downtown St Louis Red Star is closing, despite the investment in "upgrades." I fear the downtown Pittsburgh store is soon to be the next victim of macy*fication. Several floors have been closed off and the remaining selling floors have vast areas of empty space; merchandise is spread out and selections have dwindled. Popular lines such as Under Armour are NOT stocked downtown. Executives told the media they were NOT investing in new fixtures or renovations in the downsized store aand the upper floors (former Kaufmann's administrative headquarters) remain vacant.

    Despite the opening of new hotels, office buildings, and eateries, downtown Pittsburgh is no longer a shopping mecca. The loss of Saks Fifth Avenue last year, and the previous departures of Lazarus and Lord & Taylor, have hurt the Golden Triangle--and the downsized and downmarket Red Star is no longer a draw.

    I think macy*s has made it obvious that they don't want the downtown flagship locations for the most part, since they are letting the buildings deteriorate and are eliminating anything that makes the stores attractive to customers. The macy*s at Washington (PA) Crown Centre is a smaller, one level store in a middle market about 45 minutes south of Pittsburgh; its competitors are smaller Sears and The Bon Ton. The store has a wide variety of merchandise (though not the top lines) and nice visual displays. macy*s seems to invest more in this store than the downtown Pittsburgh location.

    How many more of the remaining downtown locations will be shuttered because of disinterest and disinvestment?

    Date: Tuesday, May 21, 2013  5:10 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    I'm glad to see our website up and moving again, and that Field's continues to be represented at the Macy's shareholder meeting. I did vote my proxy share (looking forward to the day when we can vote Marshall Field's shares).

    On another note, the "Mr. Selfridge" series on PBS "Masterpiece Classic" aired its season finale last Sunday, with plans to continue. Even though its ultimate department store seems mere backdrop to a nightime drama of characters I probably would not want to meet, there are subtle messages that were summed up in a statement made to Harry Selfridge by another character--"You sow what you reap." Amid many mistakes and being burned for mistakes, Selfridge somehow manages to sow and reap the rewards of providing and innovating standards of quality and service to the customer. This is a lesson Macy's would be wise to learn from.

    Date: Tuesday, May 21, 2013  9:58 am CT
    Posted by: mikea

    It was sad to hear that Macy's is closing yet another downtown store St.Louis. As long As I have been going to St.louis since 1989 that store has been there and at first was busy and did well. However over the years Dillard's closed, the mall closed and even stores around Macy';s closed. The failed Ballpark Village that was to open in 2009 for the All Star Game never materialized. Just now construction has begun on phase 1 of Ballpark village. This was supposed to revitalize downtown St.Louis.

    Macy's said they will continue to pay their lease for the next two years. It is interesting to see if St.louis city had something to do with the closing. The St.louis Post dispatch reported that the city had bonds on the building and that the taxes paid from Macy's sales were to pay for the bonds. However sales fell about 17% in 2012 as compared to year 2011 leaving less money to satisfy the bonds.

    I can remember doing business with May Company in 2001 and insiders there told me that if that store was not their headquarters it would have been closed years ago. I put the blame on the city of St.Louis for not investing in ballpark vilage earlier, not revitalizing downtown and letting it fall in respect to retail. There is really no reasson to come to downtown St.louis to shop in the last 10 years or more. Even Union Station is turning into a ghost town with yet another deveopler trying to turn that great Depot around.

    I doubt that State Street will close unless downtown Chicago falters to a great extent ie St.Louis, Detroit. Macy's does promote that store alot in fact on par with Union Square and Herald Square. They even decorate it more for Christmas than Herald Square.

    Minneapolis could be in jeapoardy of closing unless downtown starts to turn itself around. Already the store has been shrunk to 5 selling floors and stores in Block E have closed along with Neiman's across the street and Saks many years ago. The mall across from the Macy's is turning into a ghost town on weekends. It would e sad to see that happen, but downtowns in medium sized cities are loosing retail in large amount.

    Date: Tuesday, May 21, 2013  6:35 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    Flagships going under?? Even Pittsburgh, the one I thought was being spared as an acceptable NYC branch? Why would anyone buy a bunch of flagships, blab about a national branding, and painfully slowly strangle the stores to death one at a time...? For the same reason you buy a champion football team, pay them $10/hour, put them in thrift shop uniforms, give them budget footballs, and switch venue to a back lot. Then shrug and say no one cares about football any more, and fire them all.

    Date: Monday, May 20, 2013  7:57 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Thanks to all for your patience with this blog over the past month. There have been some problems so the submissions have not been appearing. That in turn has meant that you may not have read or been able to respond in a timely fashion to the posts. Please accept my apologies.

    As always, you have the option of submitting a writing by clicking the "post" button above or by emailing info at Be sure to state, "for posting" or "for publication" if you use the email option.

    Best regards,


    Date: Monday, May 20, 2013  11:48 am CT
    Posted by: Joan K.

    The great Field's clock is on the masthead of the Tribune again this week. Yesterday and today, so far.

    Macy's is closing the St. Louis flagship store. For many years, the building had Famous Barr's flagship on the first first nine or ten floors. May Department Stores headquarters were located on the floors above. In recent years, the store was reduced to three floors plus a couple of other floors for Macy's administration purposes. The latter will be consolidated in St. Louis' suburbs.

    For many years, the store had a great train set in the store windows. I wonder what will happen to it.

    All the plaques that said Famous Barr were replaced with Macy's plaques in 2006, except one or two.

    So this year sees the end of the flagships in Houston, Honolulu, St. Paul and now St. Louis. Can Minneapolis and Pittsburgh be far behind? Makes one wonder about State Street.

    Macy's store closure is blow to retail scene downtown

    Date: Saturday, May 18, 2013  8:23 am CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    The following story from the Cincinnati Business Courier gives an overview of the annual Macy's, Inc. stockholder meeting, including that Marshall Field's was mentioned.

    Date: Friday, May 17, 2013  11:09 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Earlier today, I attended the annual Macy's, Inc. stockholders meeting in Cincinnati. Upon the conclusion of the meeting, there is an opportunity for stockholders to step up to a microphone and speak or ask questions for up to three minutes.

    I used the opportunity to once again restate the case for bringing back Marshall Field's, especially to State Street. In a few days, I will expand on what transpired, but my hope is that I properly represented the massive collective view that restoring Marshall Field's would mean so much not only to the shoppers of Chicago and the world, but also Macy's stockholders.

    Yours truly,


    Date: Thursday, May 16, 2013  11:06 am CT
    Posted by: cy gaffney

    I recently sent my sis in Palm Springs a sixty year old copy of 'give the lady what she wants' and my sis was so happy.My dear mum used to let me use her charge card and have nice meals at field's in the seventies. I had two terrific folks who I was proudly caregiver for in their infirm years.They were always there for me and turnabout is fair play.My dear grandmama worked in the 'notions section many moons ago. When I walk through Macy's now,two words come to my mind...rag shop.And many of the employees never crack a smile or attempt to make you feel welcome. Field's was welcoming to all walks of life and economic brackets,which is how it should be. And as a collector of playing cards since my golden youth, Field's always had such a wide selection and now Macy's does not even carry them.Che peccato.In the film 'exotic marigold hotel' Judi Dench says in voice-over that there is no past we can bring back by longing for it...I disagree.Thank you for letting me share.

    Date: Wednesday, May 15, 2013  4:29 pm CT
    Posted by: Sara

    I called the State Street store today to find out more about tomorrow's Great Clock celebration. The first couple of people I spoke with knew nothing about it. I guess they don't look at their own advertising. Then I was told it might be cancelled. I'm not going to come down if it's not going to happen. Anyone else know anything?

    Date: Tuesday, May 14, 2013  6:13 pm CT
    Posted by: Drew

    The Red Star in downtown Pittsburgh plans to commemorate the iconic Kaufmann's clock this weekend:
    Sadly the merchandise selection continues to decrease as the large areas of empty floor space continue to increase throughout the store. Several employees I spoke with stated that downtown is no longer a "flagship" location for Red Star and the better brands are only available at some suburban locations (Ross Park, Monroeville, South Hills, Robinson). The store doesn't need even the downsized space and there are rumors of additional floors being shuttered. The store is being maintained but not upgraded.

    Date: Sunday, May 12, 2013  4:31 pm CT
    Posted by: Philip Eichler

    An example for a revitalized stand alone Field's can be found in Montreal. Maison Ogilvy, now simply known as Ogilvy. Currently owned by Galen Weston and managed by his Selfridges team, it retains it's own identity and is a one store operation. It has packaging unique to the store (a tartan plaid) maintains some quirky traditions (a bagpiper goes through the store around noon) and back in the 1980s was one of the first stores to create the store within the store concept. Mr. Lundgren, please tell me why again that a single Field's couldn't exist?

    Date: Saturday, May 11, 2013  3:45 pm CT
    Posted by: Sara

    Tomorrow's Sunday Chicago Tribune has a full page ad devoted to a Macy's ad campaign called American Icons. These are things America likes like Marilyn Monroe and the Hollywood sign. They have local events on a calendar, including an event to celebrate THE GREAT CLOCK! Of course, they don't mention Marshall Field's, but what does the clock stand for? MARSHALL FIELD'S! The event will be this Thursday, under the State And Randolph clock at 11 A.M. They will pass out to everyone a Frango Twist to celebrate. They say the clock is 100. I thought that anniversary is NEXT year!

    Date: Thursday, May 10, 2013  10:39 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    Gapers Block has a great story on Selfridge, Marshall Field's and Carson's. Good stuff!!!

    Date: Tuesday, May 7, 2013  7:21 am CT
    Posted by: Leslie H.

    We still miss Marshall Field's. I wish Marshall Field's would come back to State Street. I also wish they would open Marshall Field's in the former Oak Park location. It's available right now. Borders closed two years back. The Evanston store is similar. Now it's a Panera and a CitiBank.

    Date: Monday, May 6, 2013  4:37 pm CT
    Posted by: P.F.

    Why would anyone want to have Donald Trump shirts and ties when they could have Marshall Field's shirts and ties?

    I miss Marshall Field's. It was quality!

    Date: Sunday, May 5, 2013  8:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Sandi G.

    The Fairmont Hotel on Columbus has a deal with Macy's. You rent a room overnight for $239 or more plus tax, they give you a $100 Macy's gift card to shop at State Street. The offer avoids mention of Marshall Field's. I don't remember deals like this to get people to shop at Field's. They weren't needed. This is like a variation on the Macy's Wow! pass coupons.

    Date: Friday, May 3, 2013  11:59 am CT
    Posted by:

    Gayle Soucek's best-selling book, "Marshall Field's: The Store That Helped Build Chicago," is now available as a limited edition hard cover. This is the fourth printing and probably the History's Press's best-selling title. Says a lot about Marshall Field's.

    Here's the entry on Amazon:

    Date: Thursday, May 2, 2013  5:28 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    The latest NY Times Dining section has a full page Macy's ad saluting the "10th Anniversary" of the "Macy's Culinary Council".........Really?

    I think they mean "Field's Culinary Council"....right!!!!

    Date: Tuesday, April 30, 2013  8:01 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Letter to the Editor about Field's in this week's "Crain's Chicago Business."

    Date: Monday, April 29, 2013  7:12 am CT
    Posted by: Sara

    Watched Masterpiece's Selfridge's last night. I just adore Miss Towler and Mr. Leclair!!!!

    They would fit in at Field's today!

    Date: Saturday, April 27, 2013  2:07 pm CT
    Posted by: Mary O., Streamwood

    I've been in Bloomingdale's a few times since the decimation of Marshall Field's and Company. The one at Old Orchard seems dead even at Christmas time. Michigan Avenue and Wabash Home are passably busy.

    Yet, what if they had changed Michigan Aveue and Wabash into Macy's and Macy's Home store and left Marshall Field's at State Street and Water Tower?

    The money they spend on advertising for Bloomingdale's in Chicago could be better spent by on Marshall Field's. Any Bloomingdale's customer would love to have Field's back. And then they could have Macy's on Michigan Avenue where it wouldn't bug anyone that they took away our Marshall Field's stores in Chicago.


    Date: Thursday, April 25, 2013  12:04 am CT
    Posted by: Pete

    Several news stories today about workers protesting low worker wages at all sorts of stores in Chicago, including Macy's. One channel showed the Field's clock. I don't rememember anything of the kind when it was Field's.

    And so it goes.....

    Date: Wednesday, April 24, 2013  10:55 am CT
    Posted by: gle

    Today's "Chicago Tribune" online has an article about workers striking for better wages on State Street, Macy's included. There is a comment blog.

    "Chicago fast food, retail workers strike today" Tribune staff report, April 24, 2013,0,5930406.story

    Date: Tuesday, April 23, 2013  6:25 pm CT
    Posted by: Drew

    Neil Steinberg talks about change and Chicago in yesterday's Sun-Times.

    Change happens. But where do we draw the line?


    Change frightens us -- offends us, almost, particularly when we realize on the small, hard, practical reasons behind the trashing of our beloved icons. Federated Department Stores changed the name of Marshall Field's to Macy's so they could run one unified block of national TV advertising, and to avoid the inefficiency of ordering red bags for all their stores nationwide except this little island of dark green bags in Chicago. Part of our civic heart was cut out to save on plastic bags.

    Date: Monday, April 22, 2013  7:21 am CT
    Posted by: Sara

    Loved Masterpiece's Selfridge's:

    "How will you put a car in the window?"

    "Don't worry! We did it in Chicago at Marshall Field's and it worked like a charm!"

    (Harry loves to say "worked like a charm," doesn't he?)

    Love the show, but would love a thousand times more to have Marshall Field's back. Nothing beats the real thing!"

    Date: Sunday, April 21, 2013  7:42 pm CT
    Posted by: Drew

    The iconic Kaufmann's Clock in downtown Pittsburgh turns 100 this year. Surprisingly the Red Star is planning to commemorate this anniversary.
    Is it possible that the Red Star executives are FINALLY beginning to realize the value of the regional department stores? Perhaps they are starting to understand that shoppers have a connection to their home town store and hopefully may be inclined to return some of the beloved flagship department stores.

    Date: Friday, April 19, 2013  12:59 pm CT
    Posted by: O'Neil

    The Selfridges show on channel 11 is a bit of a snoozer and I'm none too fond of most of the characters. But, I agree, the sets remind me of Field's.

    Date: Thursday, April 18, 2013  8:16 am CT
    Posted by: Chicago traveler

    Chicago had one of its horrific thunderstorms with heavy flooding during morning rush hour today. In addition to a good umbrella, what every savvy Chicagoan needs to carry is one of those green plastic Marshall Field's shopping bags. I put my purse (a Field's purse by the way) into the bag while waiting endlessly for my train. By the time I finally got to work, nothing in the bag was wet. Chicago still needs its Marshall Field's.

    Date: Wednesday, April 17, 2013  1:32 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    I, along with several others who have posted, enjoy "Mr. Selfridge" on PBS for the resemblances to Marshall Field's and other carefully-crafted historic details. I am ashamed of most of the characters, and glad to know some are fictitious (media productions seem to need things like that). However, the visions Harry Gordon Selfridge had for the evolution of retail and marketing are, I feel, much to his credit.

    Date: Wednesday, April 17, 2013  12:37 pm CT
    Posted by: mikea

    It seems the show Mr. Selfridge is becoming a soap opera to some extent. The lives of the characters other than Harry are taking place which does keep the interest to the viewers , however the British acting is not the best. It is interesting to see how forward thinking Harry was in retail. What we take for granted was not there many years ago. Women did not buy ready to wear clothes and self service was not heard of. I know for a show taking place in the early 1900's so the outside scenes are limited and all of the props had to be made speciafically. I take it the store was much smaller in the begiining and must have been enlarged throughout the years.

    Date: Tuesday, April 16, 2013  8:15 am CT
    Posted by: Wm.

    I'm reminded of seven years ago when Terry Ludgren announced "Macy's AT State Street." He's not a fan of Chicago.

    Date: Monday, April 15, 2013  9:13 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    The sets on "Masterpiece Classic: Mr. Selfridge" are amazing. They DO look so much like Marshall Field's. I could do without all the serial adultery, but the scenery and sets and all are very amazing.

    Date: Monday, April 15, 2013  12:29 pm CT
    Posted by: Leslie O.

    The thing with Macy's is that every few years they need to acquire a great chain like Marshall Field's so they can get new ideas. Otherwise......

    Date: Sunday, April 14, 2013  5:09 pm CT
    Posted by: V.S.

    Just a reminder:

    If you haven't seen the PBS Masterpiece Mr. Selfridge Series, you can watch missed episodes on line for a limited time:

    Episode 1

    Episode 2

    Episode 3 after tonight

    Date: Saturday, April 13, 2013  2:06 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    Some names are simply synonymous with Chicago--among them, Roger Ebert and Marshall Field's. They both enriched are lives, contributed to our identify as a city. Those are things that cannot be changed.

    Date: Saturday, April 13, 2013  6:52 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    Ohhh yes, the Selfridge was too clichÈ-ridden, almost Disneyesque, for my taste but I really enjoyed the sight of what looked so much like Field's in its infancy- the clerks stashing merchandise......I fondly remember Field's it before they took out the original first floor showcases and still think that was a foolish move. (And the gold "lipstick" on the classical detailing! Yes, the Greeks painted their buildings like cartoons but that is not the architectural heritage in question...) I will tune in again just for the whiff of MF&Co.

    And what good news about the Soucek book! That says something about the cause! It does not seem possible that anyone could be so dumb as Macy's, that Field's could ever just vanish.

    I think the universe needs Field's back and somehow it will happen.

    Date: Friday, April 12, 2013  9:07 pm CT
    Posted by: David, Dallas, TX

    I want to add my voice to the others who mourn the loss of Marshall Fields Stores and the Quality  Products they sold.

    Macy has lived up to its reputation as a lower middle store in the spectrum of department stores operating in the US.

    Bring Marshall Fields back under Marshall Fields standards of quality.

    Date: Thursday, April 11, 2013  12:27 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Regarding Macy's sales reports, like many retailers including Target, Sears and Walmart, Macy's is no longer releasing monthly sales reports. There will only be the quarterly reports, with Q1 2013 due in May.

    Also, Macy's has released it's new annual report, proxy statement and fact book. You can download and view these at

    Date: Wednesday, April 10, 2013  5:02 pm CT
    Posted by: J.J.

    I recently "won" a Macy's gift card. Imagine that!

    What did I do with it? No. I did not cut it up since Macy's then gets 100% profit. That would be their fantasy come true. Instead, I purchased items that were on clearance and Marshall Field's related. That meant some Easter-themed Frangos and Cheggs on big clearance. An attempt to minimize profit for Macy's. That's making the most of a bad situation.

    And I agree, the Frangos don't quite taste like they used to. Waxy somehow, indeed, as some have mentioned.

    Date: Tuesday, April 9, 2013  4:05 pm CT
    Posted by: Jeff

    Was reading the business report today. Reminded how much I miss Field's, especially wen I walked through the deteriorated stoe at Woodfield over the weekend. The Martha Stewart/Pennies/Macy's trial is starting again. WHEN, WHEN DID YOU EVER HEAR PENNIES DESCRIBED AS MARSHALL FIELD'S RIVAL??? You hear it all the time now.

    Date: Monday, April 8, 2013  5:32 pm CT
    Posted by: Sharon Y.

    The show on Chan. 11 reminds me of my research on Marshall Field's. I bet Selfridge and old man Field were polar opposites. That's why they did so well together!

    Date: Monday, April 8, 2013  9:01 am CT
    Posted by: T. Renwick

    Saw a green truck driving ahead of me on the Ike today. Yep, sure enough, there was a mark where the Marshall Field's logo used to be. I miss those things!

    My sympathies to the family of Roger Ebert! He was a true Field's Fan!

    Date: Sunday, April 7, 2013  8:45 pm CT
    Posted by: Patrice T.

    Loving Mr. Selfridge! That green carpet running down the aisle transports me back to Fields! Macys is sure missing a tie-in for their business!

    Date: Sunday, April 7, 2013  8:02 am CT
    Posted by: Marion A.

    We miss Marshall Field's. Now we miss Roger Ebert. Maybe Roger can pull some strings up there for us, eh?

    Date: Saturday, April 6, 2013  7:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    I did check out the ninth floor Flower Show at State Street last weekend. I have to say it was the best Flower Show since Macy's took over, in my humble opinion.

    Still, as a friend reminded me, it was nothing compared to the French imported flowers and the like that Field's had when they hosted the show.

    In case you missed it before, here's another perspective from the Chicago Tribune's "Chicago Now" blog:

    Nice Try, Macy's. You're Still No Field's.
    by Christine Adams, March 28, 2013.

    Date: Saturday, April 6, 2013  1:38 pm CT
    Posted by: Robert H.

    I'm sure Roger Ebert's in heaven where they have Marshall Field's and green everywhere, while Macy's is what you get in hell! (Hence Macy's red color.)

    Date: Saturday, April 6, 2013  8:01 am CT
    Posted by: P.W.

    So sad about Roger Ebert!

    We would have had Macy's plaques all around the store if it weren't for him calling for landmark status.

    Date: Friday, April 5, 2013  9:33 pm CT
    Posted by: Gayle C., Encinitas, CA

    I grew up in Chicago going to Marshall Fields for the "little Red Hen" luncheon in the Walnut room. When I was in college, I worked as a tour guide and sold theatre tickets at the 3rd floor waiting room. I would proudly wear a button in California.

    Date: Thursday, April 4, 2013  9:40 pm CT
    Posted by: Timothy N.

    A great Chicagoan.

    Date: Thursday, April 4, 2013  8:26 pm CT
    Posted by: Jeanne W.

    Many thumbs down.

    Date: Thursday, April 4, 2013  3:55 pm CT
    Posted by: Cisley

    This is very sad. We lost a great reviewer, writer and a famous advocate for Field's and Chicago.

    Date: Thursday, April 4, 2013  2:55 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Roger Ebert has passed away. Roger's many commentaries on Macy's takeover of Marshall Field's were the blueprint and inspiration of our efforts here at
    Here are two of several commentaries that Roger Ebert wrote about the conversion of Field's to Macy's. Roger also Tweeted his unhappiness with the switch.

    Date: Wednesday, April 3, 2013  1:11 am CT
    Posted by: Ron D

    I watched the first installment of Mr Selfridge. I find it a very interesting chronicle of an era of a much different time in retailing.

    But unfortunately Jeremy Piven overacts as usual, even when playing an over-the-top personality like H G Selfridge.

    Date: Tuesday, April 2, 2013  6:03 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    To respond to mikea:

    I certainly think the Marshall Field's brand / store name is much, much more than the man himself; heck, it excelled for 100 years after he died. And Selfridge was part of it--the things that Field's didn't like so much are why he wasn't given partnership. But you need to reconsider the absurdity of your post--for the sake of you and your post having any cred. Selfridge's was on the verge of bankruptcy 30 years after it was founded and had to purchased to save it. Moreover, Selfridge died a pauper, ousted from from his eponymous store. While Field's had some rough years, especially with wholesale in the 1930s, the Field's retail business was what remained--yes, thanks in part to Selfrdige, as well as Shedd, McKinley and others. But Selfrdige did in fact fail; Field's never lost money to the point that it even came close to having creditor problems like Selfridge's.

    Interesting trivia to note that when the store was sold and Mr. Selfridge was gone, the store's name went from "Selfridge's" to "Selfridges" without the apostrophe.

    Date: Tuesday, April 2, 2013  12:27 pm CT
    Posted by: mikea

    i watched the show Mr. Selfridge the other night. A few comments, Jeremy Piven was good, however the story line is to much like a British Upstairs /Downstairs. The other characters are kinda boring and the show is somewhat sleepy, since I almost fell asleep twice watching it. It is interesting to note that he had such showmanship and marketing skills to make a store great. He was a pioneer in his day. He made shopping fun and exciting. One thing in particular he said is , let's get more customers in here in the morning, so we are going to offer Morning Specials. Wow a current store offers Morning Specials (Macy's).

    From what I read Marshall Field did not particularly care for Harry Selfridge. He did not like his marketing and showmanship and would not offer him to be a full partner which was the reason for his departure. I believe Field's would have never succeded if it were not Harry Selfridge abnd his policies.

    I hope the seriers focuses more on the store than the soap opera characters, and it lightens up a bit and emits a little more humor but I do not think that to be the case.

    Date: Tuesday, April 2, 2013  10:40 am CT
    Posted by: Mary Wallace

    just want to first say thank you for continuing to host this site - and secondly let you know that although I now live in Washington DC (and Pittsburgh temporarily) I haven't shopped at a Macy's since they ruined the State Street store.

    I lived in Chicago from 1989 until 2000. It was a wonderful experience -and I miss the city and its people very much. I spent at least 5 years working in the United Insurance building on the corner of Wacker and State. As a 20-something-year-old, I thought it was the best thing in the world to walk up the street on my lunch hour and shop at Marshall Field's. I would treat myself to lunch at the Walnut Room. I would buy all my clothing from Marshall Field's (boy do I miss The Country Shop - I still cherish my genuine Harris Tweed swing coat I found there!). At one time Marshall Field's had an 'outlet' store in Park Forest - not far from where I lived at one point. You would be amazed at some of the bargins I found there!

    Christmas present to my family all came in Marshall Field's boxes. I used to say "Nothing ever bad happens to you in Marshall Fields" (a la Holly Golightly!) I grew up in Detroit and was ecstatic when I learned that Marshall Field's had bought Hudson's - a Detroit landmark. My mother, who worked in housewares in Hudson's would get asked by various native Detroiters what she thought about Marshall Field's taking over Hudsons. She would always answer that she thought it was alright. Her daughter lived in Chicago and loved Marshall Fields.

    When I learned that Macy's was RUINING the State Street store, I was now living in the DC area. I hadn't initially minded shopping at Macy's as it was about the only game on the east coast. But after they changed the State Street store, I decided that I would engage in my own protest and stop shopping at Macy's. And, I've stuck to my commitment pretty much since then and frankly haven't missed Macy's at all. I'll do my make-up and perfume shopping at Lord and Taylor or Nordstroms - and find them preferable to Macy's -come let's face it. Macy's is about one step about Kohl's. It is a big box store with crap clothing and even crappy sales people - on the few occasions that I have had to enter the store (against my personal wishes), I've found Macy's staff ignorant and rude.

    The bottom line is that typical of a 'New Yorker' who thinks that the world stops and starts at the Hudson River, they can't understand that other cities don't want their junk. They can't understand that other US cities take pride in their own history and culture - and yes it is quite possible that this history and culture is BETTER than the junk imported from New York.

    I also find it very interesting that the current show on Masterpiece - Selfridges - has roots with Marshall Fields - NOT Macy's. Mr. Selfridge learned his trade with the Marshell Field's company.

    Finally, I fail to understand why Macy's couldn't have just kept the State Street store as Marshall Fields. Let them change all the Mall stores, but keep the history of the Flagship store! Can you imagine what New Yorkers would do if someone bought the Empire State Building and decided to change its name? But, alas, what do you expect from arrogant Macy executives who don't have a clue about anything except their own small New York world.


    Note from Jim:
    Just a clarification: Daytons and Hudson's purchased Marshall Field's -- Field's did not buy Hudson's.

    Dayton/Hudson renamed itself Target around 2000 and in 2002, they also decided to concentrate on the Target discount stores and sell the department stores. They wanted to keep the Hudson's and Dayton's names so they renamed all the Hudson's and Dayton's stores Marshall Field's.

    Date: Monday, April 1, 2013  7:28 pm CT
    Posted by: L.E.

    Regarding the PBS Selfridge show. How much of the store shown is the real Selfridges and how much is a set?

    The scenes on the corner of the store look SO MUCH like Marshall Field's! Same for when there's the great aisle with the green carpet. Also the railings from the balconies.

    Date: Monday, April 1, 2013  2:32 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    I watched the first installment of "Mr. Selfridge" Sunday night on PBS at 8:00 p.m., and agree with comments about how much the store resembles Marshall Field's! I enjoyed the exquisite detail of the fixtures and fashion, and being able to witness a department store being developed instead of discarded.

    Interesting to note, the character of Harry Selfridge was portrayed as rather a polar opposite to the reserved, disciplined image we often have of Marshall Field. I found it hard to think of the two being able to do business together, or even have a cup of tea. I am not surprised they separated, but wonder if much of the charm we love about was Field's wasn't part of the Selfridge influence. I look forward to the remaining episodes.

    Date: Monday, April 1, 2013  12:06 pm CT
    Posted by: Paul in Baltimore

    Watched Mr. Selfridge. The scene were Ellen Love walked down the center aisle reminded me of the grand entrance you would make on Randaloph or Washington with the great expanse of store before you.

    Date: Monday, April 1, 2013  7:42 am CT
    Posted by: Anne T.S.

    Pleased to hear from you. Thought I would check in. This is the spirit of Marshall Field's here. Yes.

    Date: Sunday, March 31, 2013  9:22 pm CT
    Posted by: Susan D.

    RE Mr Selfridge: watching first episode now and it makes me want to cry-the store looks like an recreation of the old Fields-curved display cases the "card catalog "style stock drawers, marble columns etc etc-Pity that everyone is going to think Selfridge invented all this stuff..

    I have a little anecdote for you: My mother was quite ill the last few years of her life and towards the end ,she could no longer walk and was entirely bedridden. One day, I went in to give her lunch:she was asleep and I had to wake her. She opened her eyes and said she had been having a wonderful dream. I said "Oh?" My mother smiled-" Yes-I was walking" " where were you walking, mama?" My mother smiled,she half closed her eyes,almost as if she wanted to see her dream again, "Oh ,it was so beautiful-I was shopping at Marshall Fields" Marshall Fields-the store of dreams-- I don't think anybody ever dreams of being at Macy's.

    Date: Sunday, March 31, 2013  7:24 pm CT
    Posted by: J.P.

    Hopefully the PBS show about Selfridge will stir up good memories and momentum!

    Date: Sunday, March 31, 2013  12:36 pm CT
    Posted by: Blue Sky

    Glad to get the newsletter. Keep up persistently!

    Date: Sunday, March 31, 2013  CT
    Posted by: FieldsFansChicago

    Happy Easter!

    Date: Saturday, March 30, 2013  11:55 pm CT
    Posted by: FieldsFansChicago

           NEWSLETTER  No. 34

           Saturday, March 30, 2013

           PASSOVER, EASTER, SPRING:      
                  Please enjoy the blessings and gifts of the season.
                  PREMIERES MARCH 31ST ! ! !

           Coming May 2013
                  "Unpredictable Webs"       
                  by Darlene Quinn

           Coming This Summer       
                  Special Milestone Edition of
    "Marshall Field's: The Store That Helped Build Chicago"       
                  by Gayle Soucek
           We Consider Our Successes  & Look                  
           To A 21st Century Marshall Field's

             HOW TO ADD or REMOVE YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS         
                  FROM OUR LISTS



           Sunday, March 31, 2013       
           WTTW, Channel 11, Chicago & PBS Stations Across the U.S.
           8:00-10:00 pm, CDT

    This Sunday evening, March 31, PBS premiers its latest "Masterpiece Classic" series, the critically acclaimed "Masterpiece Classic: Mr. Selfridge."  The series is based on the 2007 book, "Shopping, Seduction & Mr. Selfridge" by Lindy Woodhead and stars Evanston-raised actor Jeremy Piven in the title role. 

    Although the series is set in London, as fans, loyalists and  students of Marshall Field and and Chicago, this series offers much us excitement!  Moreover, it helps underscore the international stature of Chicago's Marshall Field's.
    Wisconsin-born Harry Gordon Selfridge was a significant figure in the history of Marshall Field's and Chicago.  Starting as a stockboy, Selfridge rose through the ranks to become the Marshall Field's executive who, at the turn of the 20th Century, set the stage for the "style, glamour and razzmatazz" that remained a legendary part of the modern Marshall Field's experience all the way through its last full year in 2005.

    Although Field and Selfridge parted ways, they continued to influence each other's renowned stores long after they themselves passed away.  After trying a store for 90 days in what  became the Carson Pirie Scott flagship on State Street, Selfridge eventually went on to start his own hugely successful store on London's Oxford Street.  Despite their differences, Mr. Selfridge revered Mr. Field and his store so much that a portrait of Mr. Field was a focus in his London office.  Moreover, Selfridge's flagship store, designed by architect Daniel Burnham, still to this day bears an uncanny resemblance to Marshall Field's on State Street.  At the same time, the 21st Century version of Selfridges informed the last, great reinvention of Marshall Field's on State Street in 2003.  As this reinvention of Field's was starting to bear success, it was cut short as a result of the conversion to Macy's.

    Those who have seen the first episode of "Masterpiece Classic: Mr. Selfridge" have commented on how much they "feel the spirit of Marshall Field's."  Scenes from the Selfridges store conjure the same chills of excitement that once were part of the Marshall Field's experience.

    After a very successful run in the U.K., "Masterpiece Classic: Mr. Selfridge" has been renewed for a second season.  While the series does not directly cover Selfridge's years at Marshall Field's, the first quarter of Lindy Woodhead's book is a fascinating story of Marshall Field and Company's retail store in the last part of the 1800s, told from the angle of Mr. Selfridge.

    Please don't miss this exciting series which will surely inspire us all as we work for the return of Marshall Field's to State Street.   If you are unable to watch the first episode, some Starbucks coffee shops are offering the first episode as a free iTunes download.  Also, the entire first season will be available on DVD and Blue-Ray later this year. 

    Learn more about Harry Gordon Selfridge, Marshall Field, and "Masterpiece Classic: Mr. Selfridge" via these links:


    WTTW Channel 11 Chicago

    "Masterpiece Classic: Mr. Selfridge" 
    Wikipedia Entry

    "Harry Gordon Selfridge" Wikipedia Entry

    Chicago Sun-Times

    Chicago Tribune,0,6781174.column

           Coming May 2013       
           "Unpredictable Webs"       
           by Darlene Quinn

    Award-winning author Darlene Quinn has composed a series of books that are based on the real-life stories of historic department stores.  Ms. Quinn is a former executive with the storied and elegant Bullocks Wilshire, L.A.'s peer to Marshall Field's that was also converted to Macy's.  At Bullocks Wilshire, Ms. Quinn worked with Macy's CEO, President and Chairperson Terry Lundgren.  Her 2010 book, "Twisted Webs," offered a case for the return of Marshall Field's.  This spring will see the fourth book in Ms. Quinn's "Webs" series, "Unpredictable Webs."  Set in Chicago, the book was partially inspired by activities and events surrounding the switch from Marshall Field's to Macy's.  While we've not yet seen the final book, it promises to be a fun and fascinating read for all Marshall Field's fans.  Pre-order your copy now at fine book sellers including

           Coming This Summer       
           Special Milestone Edition of
           "Marshall Field's: The Store That Helped Build Chicago"       
           by Gayle Soucek

    Gayle Soucek's "Marshall Field's: The Store That Helped Build Chicago" has become the top-selling title of all the History Press's books.  In what we believe to be at least its fourth edition, History Press will offer an unprecedented hard-cover edition--a first for any History Press book.  While relatively brief, Ms. Soucek's book is a comprehensive overview of Marshall Field's that is very satisfying, covering the period from its founding by Potter Palmer all the way through the post-Macy's rallies calling for Marshall Field's return to State Street.  You will want to read this book again and again.

    Surely you will want a copy of this special edition, along with a few copies for friends.  Be sure to watch our web site, your local book store or book web sites for the exact release date.  Congratulations to Gayle Soucek and the History Press!

           We Consider Our Successes & Look To A 21st Century Marshall Field's

    While we have yet to achieve our ultimate goal of a restored Marshall Field's reinvigorated and reinvented for the 21st Century, we consider our successes so far.  We--and many others--believe our efforts have put the brakes on declines and reductions of the great Marshall Field's legacies, especially at State Street.  We also believe that Macy's has learned a great deal from our efforts.  Moreover, our collective efforts have set precedents that have prevented or slowed corporate takeovers and homogenizations of other Chicago institutions from Grant Park to Wrigley Field and others that have not been publicized.  Ultimately, we have kept the brand, the ethos and spirit of Marshall Field's alive for that inevitable, special day when forward-thinking business and civic leaders do what makes immense sense: the restoration of Chicago's international, iconic emporium, Marshall Field's.
    Thank you for your dedicated and sustained role in making this great history possible as a return of Field's unfolds.

    Read our case for " 21st Century Marshall Field's For a 21st Century Chicago." Please see


    Please include the email address you wish dropped if it is not the one from which you are sending the request.
    Subscription requests must be sent from the email address that is to be added to the subscriber list.
    * SWITCHING ADDRESSES? 1. Send a "REMOVE-ME"  request from either you old address or your new one;
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    This newsletter and the activities and events described within have NO affiliation whatsoever with Macy's, Inc. (formerly Federated Department Stores, Inc.), May Department Stores Company, Macy's, Bloomingdale's, Marshall Field's, the Marshall Field Family, the Field Foundation of Chicago, etc., and the views and opinions expressed here represent only those of the writer.

           END OF NEWSLETTER No. 34

    Date: Friday, March 29, 2013  9:14 pm CT
    Posted by:>

    Date: Friday, March 29, 2013  3:51 pm CT
    Posted by:

    A couple of excellent stories about "Masterpiece Classic: Mr. Selfridge" in Tribune and Sun-Times. As you know, Selfridge was in many ways the complement to Mr. Marshall Field in defining the entire spirit of the Marshall Field and Company retail store from the 1880s to 2005.
    Jeremy Piven felt "connected" to Marshall Field exec he plays on "Mr. Selfridge"
    BY LORI RACKL TV Critic/lrackl AT March 28, 2013 3:04PM

    'Mr. Selfridge': The man who invented retail therapy
    Jeremy Piven plays Harry Selfridge in a PBS series(March 28, 2013)Nina MetzChicago Closeup
    4:32 p.m. CDT, March 28, 2013,0,6058017,full.column

    Date: Friday, March 29, 2013  12:17 pm CT
    Posted by: D.J.

    Passed through the Flower show at State Street today. It was pretty, but somehow it was smaller than when it was Field's. I was happy to see green plastic chairs in the cafe area outside the show. It reminded me of Marshall Field and Co.

    It's just not the same since it's not Marshall Field's. Miss it.

    Date: Wednesday, March 27, 2013  1:23 am CT
    Posted by: Rich

    Hi all

    Someone gave me a small box of Frango's at Christmas -- I STILL MISS Marshall Field's for Christmas ---- and all other ---- Shopping!

    I ate them and was surprised -- they were ok -- minty -- but not as creamy or smooth as I remember -- and I used to eat them a LOT -- these were more waxy - I remember all the great flavors and special time limited flavors that Field's used to make available -- they made peanut butter ones for a while that were out of this world!

    Like they used to say -- "There's no place like Field's"

    How true!


    Date: Monday, March 25, 2013  10:19 pm CT
    Posted by: Michaela T.

    I'm a native of Toronto. I have lived in Chicago for over 20 years. Marshall Field's reminded me of The Bay, but even better. The USA had few truly European department stores. Shame on Macy's for replacing Marshall Field's which was the most European of all. SHAME!

    Date: Saturday, March 23, 2013  11:14 am CT
    Posted by: mikea

    i was in the store yesterday and happened to make my way to the 9th floor. even though the flower show officially was not open, they allowed guests to walk through it. It was done very nicely, and this year there were floweers on the first floor and 6th floors also in the Walnut room. It was sad though that the 9th floor is closed off to retail. It was not really a retail floor since the 1080's-90's renovation of the store and the opening of the atrium.

    The corner windows on State street will be filled with flowers. the show is much better than last years.

    Date: Friday, March 22, 2013  2:37 pm CT
    Posted by: Mary S.

    We're sad about losing the St. Paul store across the street from our office. It was very convenient. But what we really miss are the special trips to Chicago for the State Street store. We did this as a family even as I was a little girl. Dayton's on the Mall is also great...but Marshall Field's State Street was the same, yet on a larger scale and more European. Now, it's nothing special. None of these stores. They are all generic Macy's. I will now go to Herberger's.

    Date: Thursday, March 21, 2013  1:16 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    I have been following the previews of "Mr. Selridge" on PBS television. The mini-series looks really exciting and well-done with EXQUISITE attention to detail. Perhaps it will inspire a trend. It certainly makes a point about why customers prefer a quality department store.

    Date: Wednesday, March 20, 2013  6:11 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    In the 1800s, Marshall Field and Company was more than just the amazing retail store on State Street; there was also a huge wholesale division that offered a multitude of items from its home on what is today's Franklin Street and its replacement building, the Merchandise Mart. The latter was constructed as the wholesale division of Field's.

    Mr. Field was the mastermind behind all these businesses, but it was his partner Harry Selfridge who made shopping an event and entertaining, an outing. This was an example for the rest of the world's merchants. As Roger Ebert put it, Field's showed the other stores around the world (like Harrods) what they wanted to be when they grew up.

    After Marshall Field refused to rename the store "Field, Selfridge and Co," Mr. Selfridge set out on his own. First he opened a store in what was to be the Schlesinger and Meyer store at 1 S. State. It lasted 90 days before becoming the new flagship of Carson Pirie Scott. Eventually Mr. Selfridge moved to Oxford Street in London and opened his legendary store on Oxford Street. That store thrives today and is arguably the closest thing in existence to the real Marshall Field's experience. In fact, this store informed Marshall Field's successful "store within a store" concept at State Street of the mid-2000s, only to be cut short of realization by the Macy's buyout.

    Now Britain's ITV(1) and PBS have partnered to tell Mr. Selfridge's story in a new "Masterpiece Classic" series that is in the same vein as acclaimed "Downton Abbey." Episode 1 airs at 8:00 pm on Sunday, March 31, 2013 on Channel 11, WTTW:
    You can also advance preview episode 1 by purchasing it a the iTunes store. You can get it free by going to participating Starbucks and downloading it to your computer via a free iTunes download.

    "Women's Wear Daily" also has a free story on the series. The story discusses Selfridge's relationship with Marshall Field and Company.
    Examples like this and the BBC World Service cover of our rally in 2010 show that Europeans and the world appreciates what Macy's does not. What a pity Macy's is missing the chance to capitalize on this series by not having Marshall Field's on State Street.

    Date: Wednesday, March 20, 2013  1:20 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    Those are beautiful photos from the St. Patrick's Day parade of attendees modelling their Marshall Field's buttons.

    Two of Chicago's great traditions have been the St. Patrick's Day parade and Marshall Field's. We still have the parade, now we need to get the other one back--GO FIELD'S!

    Date: Wednesday, March 20, 2013  12:50 pm CT
    Posted by: mikea

    In response to the post by I miss the regional plates. Comparing product brand lines to a entire business is like comparing apples to oranges. It is easy to market different brands within a company as far as food, soap products etc. It is much different to running a entire division of a department store. Running a entire division requires different merchandise, a whole advertising and market department and the costs associated with that.

    Recently I went to the Fashion Show mall in las Vegas. Macy's has opened up a new men's store. The store was awesome, clean neatly organized. Sales associates could not be more helpful and great sales. The original Macy's is being renovated for the womens department. Macy's needs to remodel and merchandise the Chicago stores in the Macy's West model. State Street could offer more specialty departments and do even more business with some renovations and remerchandising some of the departments.

    Date: Tuesday, March 19, 2013  10:17 am CT
    Posted by: L.

    I have been living in New Orleans the last 10 years, I am from the Bridgeport neighborgood. Turst me when I say Marshall Fields was a HUGE part of my life No store treated you the way Fields treated you.

    When I come home to visit and go to the Loop to shop, I bypass Macy's. Again keep up the great work.

    L. (Name withheld)
    New Orleans /Chicago

    Date: Monday, March 18, 2013  11:43 pm CT
    Posted by: Lisa G.

    A good way to bring back Marshall Field's is if you write to the management. If enough do, they will. BRING BACK MARSHALL FIELD'S!

    Date: Monday, March 18, 2013  10:00 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    Thanks to Tracy, Bee and all who helped make our button and flyer distribution at Saturday's St Patrick's Day Parade a huge success.

    Neither sleet nor rain nor snow (all present) nor the advance of time dampened Chicago's enthusiasm for the return of Marshall Field's! St. Patrick's Day is about Irish pride, but moreover, it's arguably the holiday that comes closest to expressing pride in our Chicago. Marshall Field's reflects that pride in a huge, international way--EVERYONE (except seemingly senior execs at Macy's) loves Marshall Field's! Below are a few pics that show just that.


    Date: Sunday, March 17, 2013,   7:45 am CT
    Posted by: nancy k. I noticed that the numbers on the field's clock are faded to the point where they can't be read. on some sides. Bring back Marshall Field and Co.!!

    Date: Saturday, March 16, 2013,   8:01 pm CT
    Posted by: Mark in Minneapolis Macy's nee Marshall Field's nee Dayton's St. Paul flagship closed today. For the first time since the 1800s, downtown St. Paul doesn't have a department store.

    For the past decade, the store has been subsidized by the city to prevent it from closing. The subsidy expired recently.

    Date: Saturday, March 16, 2013,   7:08 am CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    We'll be out at the St. Pat's parade on Columbus Drive today passing out flyers and buttons. If you care to help or just want a button, email me by clicking my name at the beginning of this post or by calling (312) 662-8980.

    Date: Friday, March 15, 2013,   12:01 pm CT
    Posted by: Joi H.

    Hello everyone;

    The Chicago Fashion Incubator is having an social event next Friday, a week from today, at the Chicago Cultural Center. This will benefit the incubator and have a theme of historic posters from the past. One of my acquaintances is one of the six designers they have. I've noticed they don't seem to mention Macy's as much as they used to. Maybe it's a fluke. Or maybe they get the message that this is Chicago, not New York fashion. Whatever, you can buy a ticket at

    Date: Thursday, March 14, 2013,   5:36 pm CT
    Posted by: R.S.

    I loved Marshall Field's. Everyone associated Marshall Field's with Chicago. What a wonderful store!!! What a great place to shop. Great customer service, good quality made clothes. Marshall Field's was Chicago!!!! Macy's doesn't have the Chicago feel whenever I walk into their stores. The closing of Marshall Field's was sad for every Chicagonite. Over 150 years, though. That is a long, long time for a store to remain open. Will always treasure the days when I did shop there.

    Date: Thursday, March 14, 2013,   5:57 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    I have to say it again - sorry - if all this logic was ever going to fly at Macy's, it would have by now. Logic, sense and sensibility, rationality and respect, whatever--- not part of the Lundgren scheme. I would like to think Macy's cannot prevail because the universe was meant to operate on a higher plane.

    How long can he keep this pricey and shameful shell game going? If we all hang in long enough, we will be celebrating together.

    Date: Wednesday, March 13, 2013,   5:34 pm CT
    Posted by: From Seeking Alpha

    The head of Carson's parent, Bon-Ton, acknowledges that they don't have a flagship store--no single store of their 270-plus stores generate more than 1% of their sales. Furthermore, contrary to what he expected when he first came to the helm, he thinks having multiple store names helps them connect as their hometown store rather than one national brand.

    Too bad he wasn't in CEO of Bon-Ton when it closed Carson's State Street. Carson's sticking around would have clobbered Macy's into bringing back Field's.

    Date: Wednesday, March 13, 2013,   4:59 pm CT
    Posted by: Rhonda T.

    I miss Marshall Field's greatly. I applaud the efforts and that you are all in it for the long haul.

    Yet, I have to comment on three recent posts.

    1.) No, M.R., it's not like my BFF married some nice guy. In my book, Macy's is the psycho date that I'd talk her out of.

    2.) Bloomingdale's was never as good as Marshall Field's. As someone else said, it only has a portion of what Field's had and the service and personality isn't nearly as good as Field's.

    3.) Someone is comparing Field's to bottled water? Really? REALLY???? C'mon! There's so much more to it than that. The example mentioned about Bergdorf's and Neiman's comes closest. Ditto for the precedents of The Drake, The Palmer House Hilton and Hilton Hotels.

    Just had to get those three things off my chest!

    Carry on! Bring back Field's! We all miss it!

    Date: Wednesday, March 13, 2013,   7:08 am CT
    Posted by: Lydia R.

    The Great Marshall Field's Clock continues to remain on the masthead of the Chicago Tribune for the fourth consecutive day!

    Iconic and Chicago! Marshall Field's!



    Date: Tuesday, March 12, 2013,   9:17 pm CT
    Posted by: i_miss_the_regional_nameplates

    This just occurred to me.

    How can macy*mart say they are performing profitably when they have hardly anything to offer and eliminated all the great regional brands (including Marshall Field's)?

    In this case, I have found a few examples from the food/drink/consumer products industry where regional branding, product diversification, and even bringing back a fan favorite REALLY pays off!

    First of all, there's NestlÈ Waters North America, based out of Stamford, CT. They have their national brand of water (NestlÈ PureLife) as well as speciality brands (like Perrier). HOWEVER, although they acquired several regional water bottlers over the years, guess what? They actually retained the brands and their respective springs/sources and sales regions! Out west, for example, there's Arrowhead. In the South Central, there's Ozarka. New York State has Poland Spring, Florida has Zephyrhills, the East has Deer Park, and of course, the Midwest has Ice Mountain. The "Brands" section of the NestlÈ Waters section states, "Bottled Waters with Distinctive Tastes and Heritage."

    Mothers Cookies, originally an Oakland, CA-based bakery, went out of business in 2008, but Kellogg's (already the parent of Keebler and Sunshine) resurrected the famous baker in May 2009. One of its signature products is Mothers Circus Animal Cookies. While the old Mothers made just one variety (pink and white), the new Mothers re-invented the Circus Animal Cookies and made vanilla & fudge, Halloween, Christmas, 4th of July, and jungle-colored varieties! A favorite product for many once thought to be vanished from store shelves forever...came back, bigger and better than ever! Unless you are cool with ordering food from, Mothers products are only available in stores west of the Mississippi River, unfortunately.

    Proctor & Gamble? Kraft Foods? Ditto to both; they have a huge variety of products operating under various, recognizable brands. (Just for fun, look back at fall 2006 for a funny comment regarding if all Kraft products were renamed under a certain brand!)

    Sure, all of these products may not be exquisite cuisine fare, but I just wanted to make a point: operating various brands with unique identities/features is good for business, and somebody WILL resurrect Marshall Field's...bigger and better than ever!


    Date: Tuesday, March 12, 2013,   12:38 pm CT
    Posted by: Mary D.

    Dear Field's Fans;

    Did you see the cover of this morning's Red Eye Tabloid? It had a Macy's wrap-around section for the impulse clothing line. Lots of photos of models. The photos all duct-taped down. How classy. The following copy accompanies it:


    Showcasing NYC talent and fashion? When does Macy's ever give such attention to Chicago's talent with a wrap-around section?

    All this hogwash about honoring Chicago! Give me MY MARSHALL FIELD'S!

    Date: Monday, March 11, 2013,   5:08 pm CT
    Posted by: A Field's Fan

    At last, a decent story on the Martha Stewart, Macy's and J.C.Penney lawsuit. Apparently, Terry Lundgren started talking to Martha Stewart--beyond what the court required in arbitration. Maybe Lundgren and the Mayor will talk about Field's next. It's pretty bad when a CEO ignores most of a town's shoppers. And what would it hurt if Field's were to come back?

    Date: Monday, March 11, 2013,   1:27 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    Bloomingdale's better than Field's and as good as Neiman Marcus?


    BTW: Macy's sells INC clothes and HOTEL COLLECTION at both Macy's and Bloomingdale's.

    Date: Monday, March 11, 2013,   9:36 pm CT
    Posted by: C. R.. Mn.

    To Bryan Crowley:

    Bloomingdale's was NEVER superior to Field's. Sure, Bloomingdale's had some of the hip departments that Marshall Field's had, but was never Marshall Field's equal, especially in terms of service.

    I heard that supposedly when Marshall Field's became Macy's, Macy's got rid of quite a bit of high-end merchandise so as to direct those sales to Bloomingdale's. So if Bryan thinks Marshall Field's is lower than Bloomingdale's, he must be comparing the stores post-Macy's conversion.

    Field's had something for everyone! Bloomingdale's is just a specialty store.

    Date: Monday, March 11, 2013,   6:58 am CT
    Posted by: Lydia R.

    The Great Marshall Field's clock was on the masthead of yesterday's and today's Chicago Tribune as a reminder to set your clocks ahead.

    I think it was mentioned here that last year, The Tribune referred to it as the Macy's clock. HUMMPHHH!!

    Date: Sunday, March 10, 2013,   10:34 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    Most any Field's shopper would, like myself, take issue with Bryan Crowley about his rankings.

    Marshall Field's was comparable to ALL of those stores. Bloomingdale's was effectively a subset of Field's. They competed directly. In fact, when Bloomindale's entered the Chicago market on Michigan Avenue, Field's ran an ad welcoming them. That's how classy Field's was.

    I DO agree that it is shocking that Macy's can't seem to clean the bathrooms at State Street and Water Tower, but they can afford to keep things clean and in tip-top shape at Bloomingdale's at 900 North Michigan. Methinks they are cutting corners at the two Field's locations to make up for profits. But it's penny-wise and pound-foolish.

    Date: Sunday, March 10, 2013,   2:46 am CT
    Posted by: Bryan Crowley

    What amazes me most about Macy's is how bad the store sucks, yet Bloomingdales doesn't suck. If I was Macy's I'd bring back Marshall Fields and expand them Nationally and I'd create 3 tiers to my National Brand.

    Bloomingdales - Upscale (Nieman Marcas & Saks)

    Marshall Fields - (Nordstrom)

    Macy's - the same as it it crappy clothes and household items.

    Then I'd bring back the other stores that were killed like Bullocks, Kaufmans, Hechts, Filenes, Famous Barr and brand them as AMERICAN DEPARTMENT STORES that only sale merch from American Designers and AMERICAN Company's. Each buyers would be the same for each company but each location would also have a section for local designers.

    Date: Saturday, March 9, 2013,   9:55 am CT
    Posted by: gle

    Lecture tomorrow:
    Sunday, March 10, 2013
    2:00 P.M.
    "Remembering Marshall Field's"
    Speaker Leslie Goddard
    Wilmette Historical Museum
    609 Ridge Road,Wilmette
    $5 Non-Members
    (847) 853-7666

    Date: Friday, March 8, 2013,   11:05 pm CT
    Posted by: Gina T.

    I just found this site. We used to look forward to going to Chicago for Marshall Field. Macy's is something we have here in Memphis so going to Chicago for it isn't such a big deal. I hope you succeed. Then again, lower quality seems to be popular.

    Date: Thursday, March 7, 2013,   1:46 pm CT
    Posted by: Newswatcher

    I heard a brief comment on Fox 32 morning news to the effect that Martha Stewart testified she went with JC Penney because Macy's didn't expand or do what it said it was going to do and she wanted to expand.

    I also think MR is rather out of touch comparing the change from Field's to Macy's like having your best friend get married and change ONLY her name. The way I see it, it's more like the queen married the frog and turned into a toad.

    Date: Thursday, March 7, 2013,   8:46 pm CT
    Posted by: Paul in Baltimore

    One thing I read regarding Macy's and Martha's contract was that she couldn't not sell at downmarket stores. How Macy's can consider JC Penny downmarket baffles me. About the only thing I find downmarket from Macy's is WalMart (and even there, there is a lot of overlap).

    Date: Wednesday, March 6, 2013,   12:26 pm CT
    Posted by: Zelda

    I could not agree more with Marianne, who said Macy's is like your best friend getting married and becoming a Stepford wife. Field's was a unique store and brand, while Macy's are just cookie cutter chain stores with no individuality, truly the lowest common denominator of retailing. On another note, I am rather enjoying Terry Lundgren's court battle with Martha Stewart, two greedy plunderers turning against each other. The fact that Macy's is more like JC Penney than any other store only makes it richer.

    Date: Tuesday, March 5, 2013,   8:39 pm CT
    Posted by: i_miss_the_regional_nameplates

    To M.R.: No (and no offense), your concept of Marshall Field's being "married" to macy*mart is wrong on all counts! To us Field's Fans, macy*mart taking over Field's is basically the retail/business equivalent of a wolf in sheep's clothing. Sure, the buildings look elegant on the outside (except for the macy*mart evidence, of course), but inside, we see cracks in the tile, broken escalators, duct tape aplenty, scathing salespeople, outdated clearance merchandise, and of course, the "latest" counterfeit-brand and Z-grade celebrity merchandise overpriced and only reduced through incessant sales (with a zillion exclusions)! Therefore, both stores are NOT the same!


    And to all: Shop elsewhere (like I will in my hometown)! Pass out your flyers and buttons! Hope Terry will become the lawsuit loser! Continue raising awareness about Marshall Field's and hope for a MIRACLE ON STATE STREET!!!!! (Sorry for a long post - my time, browsing, and money NEVER go to the Communist store!)


    Date: Tuesday, March 5, 2013,   7:17 pm CT
    Posted by: Richard in Houston

    In response to M.R.'s post: Obviously, you never had the chance to see Marshall Field's in its prime. It is not even a comparison to today's incarnation of Macy's. The old RH Macy of the late 1980s would have been slightly comparable but certainly not the cheap store it has become. Marshall Fields was NEVER compared to the likes of JCPenney, Kohls or Target as a competitor. Today's Macy's is lower grade to the mid to better tier stores that they took over (Bullock's, Rich's, Foley's, Burdine's, Jordan Marsh, Bon Marche' etc.) In my opinion, Marshall Fields would have been comparable to Bullocks Wilshire and I Magnin but was still on a different level since it was a much larger store and was a world class destination. If you truly believe that I really feel for you as you never saw Fields (or the other regional stores, including old RH Macy)and was quality shopping really was.

    Date: Tuesday, March 5, 2013,   7:04 pm CT
    Posted by: Marianne

    Oh MR! Your comparison of Marshall Field's being taken over by Macy's to an old girlfriend who's gotten married and simply changed her name is ridiculous! It's more like your old friend changing into a Stepford Wife! The name placques are outside, but even the building isn't even the same, because of the lack of upkeep. So many great brands are gone, with cheap poor-value brands replacing them. Much more has been lost than just a name. But what a name! Marshall Field was part of the growth of Chicago into the world class city it has become, and Marshall Field's was a name worth preserving because of that history. Target and the May Company knew that, because they chose to keep the Field's name and to preserve much of what had gone before in terms of merchandising and classiness. Macy's wiped out the whole spirit of our once great store, and those of us who knew and loved Field's know how much was lost. And we don't want a Stepford store!

    Date: Tuesday, March 5, 2013,   6:10 am CT
    Posted by: Susan NY

    M.R.: Wife?!! You've heard of abusive husbands, no?

    Time of one's life at a fallen Field's? I had the time of my life at a grand Field's. Take your pick.


    Date: Monday, March 4, 2013,   5:45 pm CT
    Posted by: Field's Fans

    Happy 176th Birthday, Chicago!

    And we know that Chicago would be much, MUCH the lesser were it not for having Marshall Field's for all but 22 of those years!

    Thank you Chicago and THANK YOU to Marshall Field's for making Chicago a great international city and much more than just another Midwest town!

    Date: Monday, March 4, 2013,   12:24 pm CT
    Posted by: M.R.

    As a Macy's employee for the past three years, I've had the time of my life.

    So it's amazing to read this site. I appreciate your loyalty, but consider what's really happening at these stores. If you do, you will realize that Marshall Field's is still there, better than ever! She's just your best friend who has gotten married and simply changed her name to match her husband's! She may have "Macy" as her last name, but through and through, the gal is still what she used be, but better than ever because she's married to a wonderful fella, Macy's.

    Marshall Field's isn't gone. She just has a new married name! BE her FRIEND AGAIN! You'll be SO GLAD to catch up on what's new and how she's changed for the better!

    Date: Sunday, March 3, 2013,   12:39 pm CT
    Posted by: Mikea

    In response to the post about the Macy's downtown St.Louis store. true it is very sad what has happened to that store. However that store and downtown St.Louis retail has been on the downslide since the early 90's. Dillard's closed the downtown St.Louis store about 15 years ago and it was a pretty much vacant building until Embassey Suites took over part of it. The opening of the Galleria mall killed St.Louis Centre, which is vacant. Even Union Station has turned into a collection of junk stores, hoping the new owner revitalizes that great place. The May Company would have closed the downtown St.Louis store if it had not been thier headquarters. Sales there have been very poor. I am surprised that Macy's still keeps that store open. Rumors have been outt hat the new ballpark village once it gets going might bring some needed retail to downtown and maybe Macy's could relocate there to a better effecient store.

    Date: Sunday, March 3, 2013,   7:57 am CT
    Posted by: Geraldine, England, U.K.

    I support the campaign to bring back Marshall Fields, in both quality and name. Although I live in England, United Kingdom, I used to shop at Marshall Fields when I worked as an air stewardess for British Airways, and that was for many years. I was quite upset when I heard via a friend of mine who used to live in Chicago (has since gone back to Canada to live), I really could not believe it.

    I would be grateful if you would be kind enough to advise me who I write to, I really would like to give my support.

    Many thanks.

    Geraldine (last name witheld)

    Date: Saturday, March 2, 2013,   8:03 pm CT
    Posted by: A.P.

    Terry Lundgren's felt "gut-punched" when he heard about Martha Stewart's questionable deal?

    Hey, that's how Chicago felt when TERRY LUNDGREN ditched Marshall Field's. And any smart stockholder would feel the same!

    Sheesh! Such arrogance and what phonies. BOTH TERRY AND MARTHA!

    Date: Saturday, March 2, 2013,   3:09 pm CT
    Posted by: newswatcher

    I find it interesting the emphasis the news placed on Lundgren slamming the phone down on Martha Stewart when she called to tell him she was signing on with JC Penney, and why she would even bother to call personally (if that is what happened). That is all the coverage I saw on Fox 32 and WGN 9 the day of the trial, and an addendum that Lundgren said the call made him sick to his stomach,.

    Date: Friday, March 1, 2013,   10:02 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    Details about Macy's Spring Flower Shows are up at their web site. There will be shows in NYC, Philly, D.C., Minneapolis and San Francisco, in addition to State Street. State Street's show runs from March 24-April 7.

    This year's theme is "The Painted Garden" and has promotional tie-ins with an upcoming movie called "Epic." "Epic" is from the makers of "Ice Age" and bows May 24.

    At State Street, Hilton's Homewood Suites Hotels are co-sponsors with Epic. New York's Herald Sqaure flower show also boasts Zyrtec and Pepperidge Farm Goldfish as co-sponsors.

    The State Street flower show will be on the ninth floor, like last year. Some people here have raised eyebrows as to why it's not placed throughout the floor. To me, it's pretty clear--you need to keep the flowers cool or they will fall apart before the two weeks are up. This way, they don't have to freeze everyone "to death" through out the store. They just have to keep one area chilled right for flowers.

    For more information, see

    Date: Friday, March 1, 2013,   12:35 pm CT
    Posted by: C.F.

    Looks like Macy's is taking a play out of Marshall Field's book with the new restaurant.

    For those who aren't familiar, the other restaurants at Herald Square are Starbucks, the cafeteria in the Cellar, Aunt Anne's Pretzels, Jimmy's New York Pizza, Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream and Au Bon Pain.

    True, Marshall Field and Co. had TWO Starbucks at State Street, but then Marshall Field and Co. on State Street was one of the first places in the world outside of metro Seattle to have a Starbucks!!!

    Date: Thursday, February 28, 2013,   8:32 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    The Wall Street Journal had a story today about how the head of JCPenney has run the ship into the reef. Page B6. Macy's has done a good job having steadily increasing profits over the past several quarters. JCPenney has a downward ski slope. The Wall Street Journal has a lovely chart comparing Macy's and Penneys. Good on Macy's.

    But after a few seconds, it hit me. You never saw Marshall Field's compared with JCPenney.


    Date: Wednesday, February 27, 2013,   7:29 pm CT
    Posted by: Rob R.

    Lundgren gave emotional testimony and said that he felt like he had been gut-punched when Martha Stewart called?

    Now maybe Lundgren knows how most all of Chicago felt when he decided to dump Marshall Field's. And he had the audacity to call Chicago "just emotional" about losing Marshall Field's.

    Given Lundgren's logic, he should consider Martha's deal with Penny's to be business and not an emotional choice.

    Crocodile tears.....

    Date: Wednesday, February 27, 2013,   11:23 am CT
    Posted by: Chicago misses Field's

    Was listening to the radio and they had a commercial for a Go Red event here in Chicago. It was sponsored by some fine local companies and institutions. And then I heard that the Chicago Fashion Incubator was participating. I wondered if that was the same as the Chicago Fashion Incubator at Macy's on State Street. Apparently it is, but it's interesting that Macy's isn't mentioned. Maybe a sponsor conflict or something? Is Macy's distancing itself from the incubator? Or is this just a one-time fluke?

    But it reminded me of some scuttlebutt I heard a few months ago. I've heard that Macy's CEO Lundgren and Mayor Emanuel don't get along well, if it all. Has anyone else heard that? You don't see those two together like you used to see Daley with the CEO.

    Maybe Rahm gets the message that it's stupid for Chicago to build its fashion brand on name that is synonymous with NYC. Or maybe the Mayor doesn't like a store that sells ties endorsed by a guy who insists his former boss is lying about his birthplace and ineligible for the Presidency. Etc. Etc. Or maybe I'm wrong.

    Date: Tuesday, February 26, 2013,   11:49 pm CT
    Posted by: drew

    How sad that poor Mr Lunkhead has been stabbed in the back by his "friends" Ron Johnson and Martha Stewart:
    Reminds one of the old saying about "karma." Couldn't happen to someone more deserving.

    Date: Tuesday, February 26, 2013,   10:40 pm CT
    Posted by: Michael Smith

    Saw this and thought it may be of interest. So sad...

    Date: Tuesday, February 26, 2013,   10:22 pm CT
    Posted by: Michael Smith

    Imagine if they spent this kind of money on State Street

    Date: Tuesday, February 26, 2013,   9:51 am CT
    Posted by: JasonMChicago

    This may be a good place to comment on Macy's Inc and their Martha Stewart case. It is read buy a lot of branding people.

    Date: Monday, February 25, 2013,   9:17 pm CT
    Posted by: James McKay

    I don't know that I entirely agree with Philip's post. Maybe someone from Macy's is reading this and can respond and clarify.


    Mr. Lundgren's testimony in the trial with Martha Stewart, JCPenney and Macy's has been getting attention today. My humble opinion that I've been posting is as follows:

    There's more testimony to be heard this week, but so far I'm siding with Macy's on this. Most I know associate the Martha household items as being "only@ Macy 's." Maybe Ms. Stewart, Mr. Johnson (CEO, JCP) and others will shed new light later this week, but my take is that unless MSO shops are completely "MSO-run" stores just leasing space inside JCP, it sounds like Macy's is justified. Maybe JCP will win on a technicality.

    Macy's execs are doing the right thing to protect what is basically Macy's shareholders' investment in MSO's brand.

    With all that in mind, I find it ironic that Macy's has pretty much moth-balled the still hugely popular and very valuable Marshall Field's brand in Chicago. The last year it was itemized in the annual report, Marshall Field's trade names were appraised at $419 million; Mr. Lundgren says that Marshall Field's was overvalued at that time, but conservatively, Marshall Field's trade names were worth at least half--$210M, if not much more. That's more than the combined valued of all the other ten or so department stores Macy's acquired at the same time. $210M is more than MSO's entire market cap of around $200M. And yet Macy's goes after MSO, but ignores Marshall Field's?

    While I so far applaud Macy's for their due diligence in pursuing exclusivity on Martha Stewart products, the precedence justifies that Macy's should unlock value and realize greater returns for shareholders by returning Marshall Field's to State Street in Chicago and as a private label. Marshall Field's is STILL the "It" Chicago brand and Macy's is ignoring an asset of huge shareholder value.

    Date: Sunday, February 24, 2013,   3:47 pm CT
    Posted by: Philip Eichler

    Rick's post about Hart Schaffner and Marx suits piqued my interest, so I went to Macy's website.(won't go in a store) Clicked on the find it in store tab, put in my city apartment's zipcode, and State Street, Water Tower and the closest suburban stores all came up "not available".

    Here's my theory: They probably did bring some suits back and they were a total flop. Why? First of all, all their best sales people left, so there was no one with the knowledge to sell this product. Secondly, if you recall, Macy's got rid of in store alterations. Who is going to purchase a suit and then go find a tailor when other stores still do alterations in store? Something else caught my eye on the Macy's site. It listed the suits as "imported". Unless Macy's is getting some special cut rate suit from Hart Schaffner and Marx, this is erroneous. Hart Schaffner and Marx went in and out of bankruptcy late last year and one of the big outcomes is that its' suits are still made in the USA; the HSM suits are made in Illinois and their higher end label, Hickey Freeman, are made in upstate New York. That was big news, it saved 1000 jobs, it was splashed all over the media. My guess is few if any products Macy's sells are made domestically, so who ever writes the copy for their site just assumes everything is imported.

    Date: Saturday, February 23, 2013,   5:17 pm CT
    Posted by: Jimmy Gimbels

    Dear readers: It has much too long since I have checked in with all of you. I want you to know that I remain "Macy's Free" and equally horrified at the current state of the former Fields' stores. Bleak comes to mind.

    I took a little tour of a look M outlet a few days ago. Yes, Jimmy Gimbels goes to Macy's so you don;t have to. First impression was how low the quality has tumbled in the clothing arena. I did not think it was possible to make shirt fabrics so thin. Amazing all Fall, holiday and winter merchanidse that is still around.

    I did get a good laugh at M-stores latest promotion: "ONE STAR". While most business strive to claim a five star rating. Macy's is happy with one star.

    You all take care. See you soon at Lord and Taylor.

    Date: Saturday, February 23, 2013,   3:20 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    Masterpiece Classics on PBS TV Channel 11 is anouncing what looks like a mini drama about Mr. Selfridge and his vision for creating the perfect department store. It is to start March 31.

    [For those who don't know: Harry Selfridge is often cited as being Marshall Field's right hand man. He was key to setting the stage for Field's retail ethos for the 20th Century. After a parting of the ways with Mr. Field--due to his wanting the store to be known as "Field, Selfrdige and Co."--Selfridge operated for 90 days out of what then subsequently became the Carson's flagship on State Street. Eventually, he opened a new, eponymous store on Oxford Street in London which still flourishes today. Marshall Field's customers are struck by how similar Selfridges is to Field's. Moreover, the modern Selfrdiges inspired the reinvention of Field's State Street in 2003. That reinvention was becoming a success when Macy's tragically pulled the plug and took the store downmarket as Macy's.]

    Date: Saturday, February 23, 2013,   10:59 am CT
    Posted by: mikea

    It looks like maybe next January Macy's will announce a store closing in the Chicago area. The old great Fiel'ds in River Oaks may be gone. That mall is going down vey quickly. Carson's closed in January and Sears will be closing in May. That leaves Macy's and JC Penney left. JC Penney will probaly close too this year. They are doing poorly. It will be sad since River Oaks was on the scale of store design as was Old Orchard, Mayfair and Oakbrook, Very classy designed and well built stores in the old Field's tradition. However that mall has been on the downslide for many years and a closing would not be surprised, but sad!!!

    Date: Saturday, February 23, 2013,   8:21 am CT
    Posted by: Zelda

    A few days ago, I was crossing Washington Street at Wabash and I saw a sign I'd never seen: "Honorable Marshall Field's Way." As always, such experiences prompt two reactions, first joy that the greatness of Field's is still recognized, then the usual sadness that it's gone. I'd so much rather have the store than the sign. Macy's is a sad sad store, with cracks in the floor, displays set up near doorways to block shoplifters, and no class.

    Date: Friday, February 22, 2013,   10:00 am CT
    Posted by: FYI

    Macy's, Inc., parent of Macy's and Blooingdale's, will hold its FY 2012, fourth quarter conference call this Wednesday, February 26 at 9:30 am CHICAGO TIME. You can listen by following the links at You should probably test in advance to see if you have the correct browser plug-ins installed. If you miss it, they have an archive eventually, although sometimes the post report Q & A is truncated.

    Date: Thursday, February 21, 2013,   9:03 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    I've seen several stories where the court case between Martha Stewart, Macy's and JCPenney is being heard. Apparently, Terry Lundgren takes the stand Monday, Martha on Tuesday and JCPenney's Ron Johnson on Wednesday. Gee, Macy's is fighting for Martha Stewart when they could care less about the better brand, Martha Stewart.

    Date: Thursday, February 21, 2013,   7:52 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    Hi Field's Loyalists!

    Nordstrom is reporting sales being up 20%. Nordstrom is just a subset of what Field's offered. You think Macy's would like to use Field's.

    I bet they'd get 50% increase at those stores!

    Date: Tuesday, February 19, 2013,   11:52 am CT
    Posted by: Sharon S, Joliet

    We miss Marshall Field so much. I'm delighted to see the quest continue.

    Macy's would lose no business by bringing back Marshall Field's to some stores like State Street, Oak Brook and, of course, Orland Square. But they do lose business by not bringing it back. A no-brainer opportunity. They are blowing it.

    Date: Monday, February 18, 2013,   5:23 pm CT
    Posted by: Alicia

    I noticed that Bloomingdale's Clinique counters are offering cosmetic purses that look a lot like the purses, bags and umbrellas that MF&Co was selling when Macy's killed them. I'm talking about the ones with the water color images of lady shoppers on State Street on the main sides and the side panels that are black, pink or mint green.

    I like my Field's bag WAYYYYYY better.

    Date: Sunday, February 17, 2013,   10:01 am CT
    Posted by: Wanting Field's to Come Back

    I was at the first rally that happened the day the switch became official. What especially impressed me was the store employees who gave us thumbs up through the windows and on the sidewalk. What didn't impress me was Macy's having waiters walking around the store in black Macy's T shirts, passing out Doughnut holes on silver trays. How tacky. How perfectly NOT Marshall Field's.

    I was glad to be out there to support my favorite store. I will try to come to a rally or picket when there is one.

    Date: Sunday, February 17, 2013,   7:02 am CT
    Posted by: L R

    Was around Greek Town the other day. Marshall Field's is everywhere. The Mariano's Grocery Store has a photo of the Marshall Field's clock on the wall in the deli section. Then there's a Marshall Field's clock photo in the National Hellenic Museum. A couple, actually. Then I saw another in a shop. We miss Field's! Is there a connection to Greek heritage?

    Date: Saturday, February 16, 2013,   9:38 am CT
    Posted by: Rick

    I know Macy's brought back some Hart Shaffner & Marx suits to State Street after Obama won, but do they still carry them? I saw some on the web site that Macy's has, but they didn't indicate they had them in Macy's retail stores. For the record, I was comparison shopping prices, but plan to buy elsewhere.

    Date: Friday, February 15, 2013,   5:01 pm CT
    Posted by: Ann H.

    I was surfing the web when I came across a review of the movie, "Mahogany" starring Diana Ross and Billy Dee Williams. In the movie, Diana Ross' character worked her way up from being a secretary to a fashion buyer at Marshall Field's. The Movie was shot in Marshall Field's on State Street.

    I thought that was interesting.

    Date: Thursday, February 14, 2013,   8:32 pm CT
    Posted by: Former Field's Employee

    Field's is a special place in all of our hearts. I met my partner when we worked together in Trend House. He has since passed on. Everything must pass, but his passing and the passing of Field's happened much too soon.

    We quietly hope for the return of Marshall Field's. It was so great!

    Date: Thursday, February 14, 2013,   12:03 pm CT
    Posted by: Paul R.

    I was just reading some SEC filings. It seems that Lundgren recently received something like $7 million in special stock. Other Macy's execs also get bonuses, all totaling about $17 million. I wonder if they get these bonuses based on how long they keep Marshall Field's gone.

    I've always been troubled by Target's and Macy's treatment of Marshall Field's. Aside from the obvious that Marshall Field's was replaced with Macy's, it's amazing to consider that major shareholders pressured Target to sell Marshall Field's because its profits weren't increasing AS FAST as Target's. I think the department store division was increasing at about 2% a year while Target was increasing at 6% profits.

    While looking at the filings, it appears that Blackrock is the largest shareholder of Macy's with over 5%. Blackrock is also a significant holder of everything from Safeway to Apple and much, much more. Blackrock is about 70% owned by PNC Financial, the parent of PNC Bank. Consider that there really is no owner that has more than 5% or so; then you see that for all practical purposes it is Terry Lundgren who controls Macy's and Marshall Field's.

    It sucks!

    Date: Wednesday, February 13, 2013,   8:05 pm CT
    Posted by: Kathy B. Palatine

    I miss Marshall Field's a lot. I just saw the Christmas Video and it was VERY TOUCHING!. I know bean counters don't care about that sort of thing...but that emotional feel makes more than a hill of beans! It makes A MOUNTAIN OF BEANS!

    Date: Wednesday, February 13, 2013,   2:35 pm CT
    Posted by: Bob T.

    We were just talking around the office. 1. Macy's isn't nearly as special as Field's. 2. Never saw Frangos as on sale as much as Macy's puts them on sale. I can't compare the prices of merchandise that Field's carried versus Macy's since I don't buy clothes there any more. However, I find it suspect they way they jack up the regular price of Frangos and then have all these discounts and coupons. A lot of game playing.

    And that's the way I see it.

    Bob T.

    Date: Tuesday, February 12, 2013,   8:12 am CT
    Posted by: Sharia

    Haven't been back in a while. Last night I thought, "If the Pope can resign after 600 years of that not happening, then so can his Lundgr-Ego-ness!" Afterall, getting rid of Field's is just Lundgren's megamillion-dollar ego trip at the expense of Chicago and Macy's stock holders.

    Keep the faith!

    Date: Monday, February 11, 2013,   7:56 pm CT
    Posted by: ge

    I passed through both Macy's and Target on State Street around 1:00 pm. Target was doing very brisk business; Macy's was pretty dead even though Valentine's Day is comeing and Frangos are significantly discounted. Books about Marshall Field's are selling. The Walnut Room was largely empty. Maybe two or three tables with customers as far as I could see.

    Bring back Marshall Field's!

    Date: Monday, February 11, 2013,   2:16 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim

    In response to "Mikea:" Back a couple of weeks ago, at the same announcement that Saks was departing, Dallas Galleria also announced that Belk will take over the space ASAP as its fourth flagship store in addition to Belk flagships in Raleigh, Charlotte and Atlanta.

    I remember that Old Orchard used be really busy as Field's. When I was last in the store a couple of months ago, Macy's had places which were overly cluttered while others are were empty, especially in the basement. I'll take Old Orchard over Northbrook any day. Both stores maintain the "Macy's retrofit look. Last I was there, they had Frangos in the middle of the cologne department in Northbrook(?) How does Bloomingdale's stay in business at Old Orchard? Bring back Marshall Field's to State Street with satellites at Old Orchard and business will go way up! "Mikea", aren't you connected with one of the contractors who does renovations? Of course, you think it needs to be renovated.

    Date: Monday, February 11, 2013,   11:40 am CT
    Posted by: mikea

    It will be interesting to see what happens to the old Field's in the Dallas Galleria. Saks has announced that they will be closing th estore this summer and moving out of the Dallas area. Maybe another Neimans, Dillard's or a second Macy's store. That mall is vey well kept and does a good amount of business. Valley View lost both the macy's and Dillard's stores some years back. Maybe Dillard's

    In response to the comments about Old Orchard. Yes that store is very dumpy, old clutttered needs renovations. Field's only remodeled that store way back in the early 90's. When they opened northbrook, they kinda let Old Orchard go by the wayside. Macy's is doing the same and more. It seems that Macy's promised no cluttered nice stores when they took over the Field's However Old orchard sure does not seem that way. I was in the St.louis downtown Macy's , yes a small store but it was clean and not cluttered. They need to work on Old Orchard!!!!!!

    Date: Sunday, February 10, 2013,   8:24 pm CT
    Posted by: s.b.

    I went through the Marshall Field's in Old Orchard and was astonished how horrible it has become. Now mind you, I have not entered the store since it was Field's. The Men's Store looked like a Sears - CLOTHING PACKED to the brimm... coats everywhere. No displays really more like a fully-stocked Sears or Mervyn's or what not. I remember then old men's accessories section with cuff links and wallets and stuff. That was all gone. The men's suit section was like Burlington Coat Factory. Oh gosh the whole place was a mess. There were bargain hunters there going through the racks but it was no Marshall Field's.

    (no disrespect to the other stores I shop at Target, Century 21, etc. but they never have PRIME real estate in major cities and take away a beloved store to do so. Macy's is just masquerading as a "better department store." That's the point, it's not. It is a tiny bit higher than today's Carson's and ON PAR WITH the Carson's of yesteryear.)

    Date: Sunday, February 10, 2013,   9:10 am CT
    Posted by: Joe T.

    Just a reminder that Target still feels strongly enough of their debt to Field's history. They still carry Fieldcrest brand as their highest-end textiles. Fieldcrest towels on sale this week. You can still get Field's quality.

    Date: Saturday, February 9, 2013,   2:55 pm CT
    Posted by: gle

    There may be those who say, "Are you still at it, why don't you just give it up already," to supporters of Marshall Field's. However, I am hearing more and more of that sentiment directed toward Macy's when I wear my "I Want My Marshall Field's" or "Time to Bring Back Marshall Field's" buttons. "After all this time, why doesn't Macy's just get it," they tell me, "That store is crumby, I don't even shop there!" It still appears that even if Macy's doesn't know/care what potential customers think, the customers do know.

    Date: Saturday, February 9, 2013,   12:37 pm CT
    Posted by: Richard in Houston

    Marshall Fields pulled out of Texas in the 90s. Does anyone remember what their restaurants were called in The Galleria in Houston, Town and Country and Dallas Galleria?

    Date: Saturday, February 9, 2013,   12:26 pm CT
    Posted by: Richard in Houston

    I read what a prior contributor posted about Macy's website has about State Street. Then, pursuant to their comment, about their referral to a historic store in Houston. As many of you know, they took over Foley's and had listed the 10 floor downtown Houston location as the flagship until they decided to close it in January. What amazes me is they now list the original RH Macy's store in The Galleria that opened in 1986 as their "historic" store that is a must see in Houston. That is a BIG laugh. They have let that store decay so badly it is shameful. I went through it last year and it was horrible. stained carpet, broken tiles, the original escalator signage and all from the 1980s. You can even tell where The Cellar cafe was. They have merchandise stacked in boxes where the tables were. It looks pitiful. Are the people running Macy's nuts?!! They could at least have listed the former Foley's at The Galleria since it is larger and much newer and well kept.

    The morons running Macy's never cease to amaze me. I took a business trip to Dallas this week and dined next to what was Marshall Fields in the Dallas Galleria (Its now a Saks Fifth Avenue as they purchased the former Marshall Field's stores in Houston and Dallas when they pulled out in the 1990s). When I looked up at that store I remembered the quality and unsurpassed elegance that was Marshall Field's. Its so sad.

    Date: Friday, February 8, 2013,   11:09 pm CT
    Posted by: Maresella

    What boggles the mind is why Macy's want's the same stuff every where that I travel. I pass through Macy's and it looks the same in Miami as it does in Chicago as it does in Boston. I hear thety have this thing where they customize for local customers, but what store doesn't? People want something a little different. The Jordan Marsh story shows that. Moreover, that Macy's won't let the name used by anyone else says it has value. It's really weird. And I agree. Field's is on a whole new level. For half of what they spend replacing Field's with Macy's, they could have had an exhilarated Field's. King Lundgren would then be the head of THREE great stores, all unique.

    Date: Thursday, February 7, 2013,   7:21 am CT
    Posted by: Pete

    Anyone I know who still admits to shopping Macy's does so only to buy Frangos. That's all.

    Why can't they get it through their skulls that people want Marshall Field's???? They have something good that people want and they won't sell it. Bizarre!

    Date: Wednesday, February 6, 2013,   12:21 pm CT
    Posted by: Robert S.

    I noticed that Macy's has a web site called visitmacyschicago or something like that. They don't mention Marshall Field and Company by name. How disrespectful!!!! I also noticed that they consider two mall stores in Houston and New Orleans to be on par with Field's and Herald Square. They say something like you can't visit those cities without not shopping there. Those stores are look like shopping mall stores. To use an expression, "what are they smoking" at Macy's????????

    Date: Tuesday, February 5, 2013,   8:01 pm CT
    Posted by: Lindsay W.

    We visited Chicago from Danville this past weekend. We walked through Field's but it didn't seem right. MISS YOU, MARSHALL FIELD'S!!!!!!!!!!!!! COME BACK!!!!!

    Date: Tuesday, February 5, 2013,   8:23 am CT
    Posted by: Just another Field's Fan

    I noticed that the Chicago Tribune featured the Great Marshall Field's clock as part of their masthead yesterday. Today it was replaced by the Wrigley Building clock. Last spring, when the clocks changed, the Tribune said that the clock was the "Macy's clock." It was effectively the icon of Marshall Field's--no one thinks of Macy's first when they see that.

    Date: Monday, February 4, 2013,   4:26 pm CT
    Posted by: PhilipEichler

    In response to Just Another Fields Fan, I would offer the following: You are correct that Field's had different types of stores, all major retailers do. For over a century Field's was a dominate force in Chicago retailing. That began to change in the 1970s. On the high end, the likes of I.Magnin, Saks, Bonwit Teller, Neiman-Marcus expanded into the Chicago market. However, the worst was Lord and Taylor opening stores like crazy. While the bosses wife might be shopping in the 28 Shop, most Field's business was in the middle to better catagory. Lord and Taylor hit that hard, thus Field's had no choice but to expand in the suburbs to defend its market share. You mentioned Spring Hill, that is the perfect illustration. The pad currently occupied by Kohl's was originally slated to be a Lord and Taylor, but more interesting is the current Carson's store. If you've been there you might notice that it really doesn't look any other store around Chicago. That is because it was built as a Charles V. Wiese store and was their prototype to expand into the Chicago market. That plan was abandoned when Wiese's parent, Maus Freres SA was able to purchase Carson's. While Field's did sell luxury goods, I believe this broader, more middle class base is a major reason that so many mourn the loss of Field's as it was everyone's store. The perfect illustration of that is the sheer size of State Street, it had something for most everyone. Compare that to Saks' flagship in New York; you could fit Saks in a corner of Field's State Street.

    Date: Monday, February 4, 2013,   12:27 pm CT
    Posted by: Mike a

    In response to the comments from the visitor to the southwest suburban stores. Yes I agree the Joliet mall store might close in the future or they may get a lease reduction. The mall is becoming a grade C mall. Eben though Westfield owns it, the quality of customers there was never up to Field's standards. However in the late 70's and early 80's when Joliet, Spring Hill and Stratford opened, Field's was selling lower priced more moderate merchandise and was trying to be a store for the masses. All 3 of those malls are not the best in the Chicago area. If the new mall is ever built off of I-80 and I-55 I would think some of the major stores would relocate there and close their Joliet mall location. Von Maur is supposed to go there, but the recession put a hold on that and a couple of other projects in the suburbs.

    Date: Saturday, February 2, 2013,   2:18 pm CT
    Posted by: Pete

    Interesting set of stories about an entrepreneur testing trademark laws to open on-line and mall kiosk versions of Jordan Marsh, a very beloved Boston department store. The stores became Macy's around 1996. Macy's lawyers are fighting it, but check out this story.. Apparently, he also is trying to bring back some other stores in the same way.

    I know this isn't a board about Jordan Marsh, but it shows how these brands and stores are still valuable but Macy's ignores that value. In fact, I think Marshall Field's is more valuable.

    Date: Friday, February 1, 2013,   7:18 pm CT
    Posted by: Jim McKay

    I just became aware that there's been some problems with the posting script. As a result, no one's been able to post for the past 12 days. I have a received a handful of items that people have asked me to post in the past few days. I will post those this weekend in the space below. Thank you for your patience.

    Here's to the once and future Marshall Field's.

    Date: First submitted by email, Wednesday, January 30, 2013,   12:39 pm CT
    By: An email message from Anne S.

    I've noticed that Kroger has managed to keep a number of grocery stores operating under different banners, even with different formats. For example, they have Ralphs, a full-line supermarket here in L.A. Then there's Food4Less which is a warehouse supermarket. I also don't think Bloomingdale's is doing well in Chicago. That's just my opinion.

    Click here to view items from before February 1, 2013


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