The name Weingarten means groceries in Houston. Even nearly 40 years after their demise, those who weren’t even around for the store have heard tales of the grocery giant that once dominated the Houston landscape. Despite their legacy, the Weingarten’s chain had quite a humble start. In 1880, Harris Weingarten migrated from Austria-Hungary (modern Poland) to New York City, looking for opportunity. He left behind his wife, and newborn son Joseph, with plans to bring them to America as soon as he could afford to do so. Finding it difficult to make a living in the already busy city, Harris decided to make the move to Galveston. Arriving in what at the time was a bustling yet lawless town, Harris again found himself struggling to find work. As such, he would choose to resettle on a plantation near Sugar Land. Here Weingarten would operate the plantation’s commissary, which was much like a general store meant for those who lived on or around the plantation. Finding this to be a somewhat limiting venture, Harris would soon move to Richmond and continue to operate a general store. By 1890 the Richmond store was doing well enough Harris was able to send for the rest of the Weingarten family to come and join him in Texas. In 1895, with his son Joseph nearly of working age, Harris moved to take the family to the quickly expanding Houston. Weingarten would establish a dry goods outlet named “The Cent Store.” While details on this store’s operations are limited, it supposedly did quite well until Mr. Weingarten lost his savings during a financial panic and was forced to sell the operation. Thankfully, Mrs. Weingarten had been saving spare cash before this. Using those savings, the family opened their first grocery store in 1901. This first store would be under the name H. Weingarten. It was at the corner of Congress Ave and Crawford Street.

The Pasadena Weingarten’s in 1960 Credit: Weingarten Annual Report/Pleasant Family Shopping

Around 1905, Harris’ son Joe took over as store manager. While Harris would still hold a role in the company, the store name would be updated to J. Weingarten to reflect the new management. Over the next ten years, the company would make two moves in a short period. Both moves were needed to keep up with the growing pace of business. Weingarten’s first two stores had both been in existing facilities purchased from other grocers. To match growing customer demand, in 1913, Weingarten’s announced plans to move into a brand new unoccupied building on Main Street. As typical at the time, the grocery store would be ‘full-service,’ meaning that groceries would be behind a counter, and customers would place their orders with a clerk. The clerk would fill the order behind the counter and wrap the purchases up. According to their claims, Weingarten would outfit the new store to be the most modern grocery store in the South. The store would have most of the trappings of a modern supermarket; Produce, Refrigerated, dry, and canned foods, with even a bakery and deli present at this new store. While the new location did not have a meat market, an adjacent space was reserved and rented to a butcher. This new location would prove to be Weingarten’s most successful, with over 2000 customers turning out on the first day, which was over 2% of Houston’s total population at the time! The two old locations would be leased out to other operators by the Weingarten family and a few houses they had purchased on adjacent land.

The early teens would be quite successful for Weingarten’s. They established themselves as a dominant player in developing areas of town. While they did have competition from existing grocers like Henke & Pillot and Lewis & Coker, their biggest threat came with the invasion of an out-of-state company. In 1917 self-service grocer Piggly Wiggly entered Houston via the franchising of their name and business model to an existing Houston grocer. The idea of self-service grocery was only a few years old, and as such, Piggly Wiggly set about creating patents to slow down or possibly even stop imitators. The success of self-service grocery prompted Weingarten to change its business model, but Piggly Wiggly’s patents delayed the switchover a bit. However, once the change was complete, Weingarten’s familiarity, mixed with the popular new shopping method, helped increase business even further. In 1921, the company would open a second location, and by 1926 they would be up to five stores. Many locations were purchased from other smaller independent grocers and updated to fit the new self-service model. The updated stores would also bring in butchers to help make a complete grocery experience. The 1929 Stock Market crash seems to have somewhat benefitted Weingarten’s, who used the panic to snatch up even more independent grocers. In one of these buyouts, Houston grocery notable C.P. Florian would join Weingarten’s. His experiences would eventually drive him to try and build Minimax as a premier chain.

Throughout the 1930s, Weingarten’s would continue to open new locations and would soon begin building their stores from the ground up. Many of the stores would be designed by a family friend, Joseph Finger. Following the city’s growth, new stores popped up on all sides of Houston. The newer stores were progressively becoming more extensive and more intricate with their offerings. Compared to other operators of the time, Weingarten’s stores were often up to double their size. The company would fittingly adopt the moniker “Weingarten Big Food Stores,” and holding true to its name would start a process of remodeling older locations into larger outposts. In early 1941 Weingarten’s took their company public and sold out of shares within two weeks. Developments at the time included their 15th, and 16th stores, along with a new warehouse. Weingarten’s would also expand outside of Houston for the first time by purchasing two Grenader Food Market locations in Goose Creek and Baytown. The development of new stores would slow down with America’s entry into World War II, shifting resources and labor toward the war effort. However, the chain would play a critical role on the homefront, continuing to provide essential goods, although the government somewhat restricted prices and selection. With the post-war suburban boom, Weingarten’s store count shot up to 23 locations by 1949. This new expansion would also include stores outside the great Houston area, as far as Orange. Around this time, Weingarten’s would begin to develop a new concept called Weingarten Home Center. These separate stores would stock an expanded selection of home goods based on some lines the grocery stores already carried. The stores also carried clothing, small appliances, and other sundries. In many cases, when a store was relocated rather than remodeled, a Weingarten Home Center would take the place of the old grocery store.

The Weingarten at Telephone and Monroe in 1948 Credit: Weingarten Annual Report/Pleasant Family Shopping

In the early 1950s, Weingarten’s had made it up to 29 locations by the end of 1951. As they reached the suburbs and beyond, these locations continued to grow in floor space. With the ability to purchase large plots of land, Weingarten’s would find themselves building the first of their signature shopping centers around this time. The shopping centers would often contain a drug store, a variety store, a few boutiques, and of course, a Weingarten’s grocery store as the anchor. These adjacent businesses would help ensure ample customers for Weingarten’s, who, around this time, would expand their reach even further. Their growth outpaced Houston’s growth, forcing Weingarten’s to look for expansion in other markets. The first store to open outside of Texas would be in Lake Charles in 1954. The same year Weingarten’s would begin work on a distribution center in Shreveport and multiple stores in the area. New markets in Texas, like Bryan/College Station and Tyler, were also targeted at this point. The family would develop their realty deals under the Weingarten Realty arm of the company during this time period. Back at home, Weingarten’s continued expanding existing stores and opening Home Centers in closed locations. Around this time, Weingarten’s began to receive national recognition, representing the face of modern grocery. With locations across three states, this regional grocer seemed to have aspirations of becoming the first national chain out of Texas. The firm’s next purchase would be of an existing chain in Tennesee. The six stores were members of a co-op and used Pic-Pac branding. The stores were relatively modern but not nearly as large as their Houston counterparts. They would change names to “Weingarten’s Food Centers.” It’s unclear if the Shreveport distribution center supplied them or if they continued to be supplied by the co-op. For the most part, the Tennesse Weingarten’s stores did little to set themselves apart from their competition. The chain would never expand beyond the six original locations. By 1961 Weingarten’s would lease their Tennesse stores to a local competitor who would revert them to Pic-Pac locations.

A Weingarten’s in Tennessee in 1960 Credit: Weingarten Annual Report/Pleasant Family Shopping

Back in Houston, the 1960s expansion of locations was still moving in response to the rapid new growth. In 1960 the company would purchase the Texas Servall chain adding six new locations throughout Houston. Weingarten’s would also keep older stores open in areas where grocers would exit. Downtown and the Third Ward areas are both notable examples of Weingarten’s presence in the absence of others. To keep up with changing demands, Weingarten’s would finally give in to pressure and adopt the Big Bonus Stamps Program. While competitors had long been using the stamps, Weingarten’s claimed that the tamp program would only increase costs. Customers would be given stamps according to how much they spent. They could then use the stamps to pay for certain merchandise from Redemption Stores located next to Weingarten’s. To help manage the growing business portfolio Weingarten’s was developing, in 1962, a subsidiary was created. Named Inland Industries, Weingarten’s developed the company with diversification in mind.

A Big Bonus Stamps Redemption Store Credit: Weingarten Annual Report/Pleasant Family Shopping

Weingarten’s would immediately place their Bonus Stamp Company under the new subsidiary and begin negotiations to purchase existing companies. By 1963, Weingarten’s subsidiary purchased two hardware manufacturers, making them the second-largest distributor of metal fasteners in the United States. The firm would also purchase an auto parts manufacturer, bringing them to a record profit of nearly $150 Million in 1964. Weingarten’s would continue to experiment with property development opening a location in Houston’s first “air-conditioned sidewalk” mall. By the end of the year, the company would operate 65 locations across three states. Joe Weingarten had taken his father’s small concern and grown it into a true regional grocer. In 1966 Weingarten’s recognition would reach the state level with Governor John Connally attending a dinner held in Mr. Weingarten’s honor. Unfortunately, though, the next year, Joseph Weingarten passed away. The family had been prepping for this for years, with various family members taking over different positions within their companies. Most notably, Joe’s son Bernard Weingarten had been placed in charge of their realty division. That did not, however, mean the focus was lost on their stores. In late 1967, Weingarten’s announced plans to extend their private label lines.

The Bellaire Weingarten’s in 1960 Credit: Weingarten Annual Report/Pleasant Family Shopping

Weingarten’s plans for the future included continuing to build its image as a reasonably priced grocer. At the time, Weingarten’s operated in a duality. They were consistently building new stores in developing suburban neighborhoods while not giving up on older locations where demographics had changed. This strategy was helpful for dealing with national competition, which had arrived in Houston in the mid-50s. Rumors were swirling that Safeway would finally make good on a decades-old promise that they, too, would arrive in Houston. Undoubtedly, the previously mentioned focus on store brands was another attempt at bolstering this image. In 1968 many new members of Weingarten management were promoted, and some outsiders, like a former executive of Topco, a generic distributor. By the end of the year, the company had opened 5 new locations, three in Houston and three out of state. While the company was operating like a regional grocer, they were starting to feel the pinch of new competition even prior to Safeway opening its first Houston store. With the former head of Weingarten’s realty branch now at the helm, the company began to focus heavily on building new shopping centers. In 1970 the company started work on its largest project yet, the Eastpark Shopping Center, at nearly 200,000 Square Feet. By 1971, Weingarten’s prepared to break the 100-store mark, with 76 locations throughout Texas, 13 in Louisiana, and 8 in Arkansas.

The S. Post Oak and Westheimer Weingarten’s Circa 1968, after a renovation Credit: Weingarten Annual Report/Pleasant Family Shopping

With the arrival of Safeway in Houston, there was no way Weingarten could keep up with the growth of the national chains. Instead, they would look to differentiate themselves by installing the first UPC scanners in Houston and dating items sold before it was required by law. That being said, the company did also try to focus on value. Some locations were converted to an alternate banner named Valu-King, which would offer limited selection and services compared to a typical store, but with much lower prices. The mainline Weingarten’s stores would also be closed for a day in 1974 to reduce prices. While these ideas successfully increased Weingarten’s sales, their overall profits continued to decrease. At the time, the Houston grocery market was more competitive than ever, with Handy Andy, Eagle, and the relaunched version of Randall’s all taking on Weingarten’s pricing. Beyond this, Weingarten’s commitment to keeping older locations open left them with stores in dangerous areas. In 1976 national news broke of a massive bribery scandal involving Weingarten’s.  The company would pay over $80,000 out of their Bonus Stamps Company to various politicians and HPD. It was quickly becoming evident that the Weingarten family was losing interest in their grocery chain. The real estate arm of the firm had quickly overtaken interests. With Weingartens even experimenting with building malls, both here in Houston and oddly in Maine. Their expansion far beyond the bounds of their grocery chain meant that Weingarten’s Realty had to form new partnerships. Seemingly, as a result of these new partnerships, Earl Eden of Acme Markets was named as a new Executive Vice President of Weingarten’s.

The Rummel Creek Weingarten’s in 1973 Credit: Weingarten Annual Report/Pleasant Family Shopping

Major changes were underway with new outside management now mainly operating the grocery store chain. One of the most significant changes was abandoning the Bonus Stamps program in favor of their “Budget Chopper” pricing. Around the same time, Weingarten’s also expanded their generic food selections. The stores also underwent a modernization program, where some locations were given exterior updates to create a more cohesive and modern image. Finally, a few locations, including those using the Valu-King nameplate, would be permanently closed, reducing the store count from an all-time high of 105. Most of the changes were effective, with Weingarten’s sales and profits finally rebounding in 1979. After a few consecutive years of bad luck, things seemed to look up for the local grocery store. The Weingarten’s name was still highly respected but was somewhat reliant on the family and local connections. Just as Harris Weingarten had known how to tailor his first store years earlier, the modern store managers were allowed a great deal of autonomy that let locations differentiate. In 1979, the Weingarten’s Board of Directors, which mainly was compromised of family members, approved a buyout by a British company Cavenham Inc. At this point, it became evident that the improvements being made were likely meant to prepare the company for sale. In early 1980, less than a month after going up for sale, 93% of Weingarten’s stock had been sold to Cavenham Holdings, which planned to “merge” with Weingarten’s.

The company was a subsidiary of Cavenham Foods, a British company that had entered the U.S. through its 1972 purchase of Grand Union. Cavenham would continue to acquire other chains, placing them all under the purview of Grand Union. Not included in the sale would be Weingarten’s Realty, which was spun off as an independent company. The new Weingarten Realty would continue to own and operate the malls and shopping centers and lease spaces to the new company. As well they would also continue to work in unison on some already planned stores. By March, Joseph H. McCaig, a former VP of Grand Union, replaced Bernard Weingarten as president of the new company. Only a few days after this replacement, the Grand Union management strategies were put into place. The company that Grand Union was now in charge of was a wild mismatch of locations. Including tiny out-of-date stores in urban parts of Houston and rural supermarkets with no competitors, all the way to upper-class options in swanky suburbs. The company would be allowed to act as a subsidiary rather than being directly folded into Grand Union. However, they would still receive directives from their new parents One of Grand Unions’ first significant changes would be to begin closing lower-performing locations. Some were slated for replacement; however, many others would simply be cut. In late 1980 a meat cutter strike began, which quickly grew to include clerks and cashiers. While multiple chains were affected by the strike, its impact on Weingarten’s was so severe that certain locations were forced to close temporarily or reduce hours. Nearly three months into the strike, Parent Company Grand Union would help to bring the strike to an end.

A map of Weingarten’s locations from 1901-1986

During this time, Grand Union completed its merger and started preparations for closing Weingarten’s corporate offices, essentially making the company a division of its parent company. As a part of this process, Joseph McCaig was promoted to a senior executive position and was replaced as division president by C. Schulke, another Grand Union employee. According to reports that would not become public until years later, the Weingarten’s division was not performing as desired. By 1981, Grand Union had closed eight locations. During this time, the way Weingarten’s operated would change drastically. With the closing of their corporate offices, all local control was lost and merchandising decisions were now being made at a division level instead of store by store. Unfortunately, this change in merchandising would only lower sales, leading to further store closures. The first stores to go would be the locations served by the Shreveport Distribution Center. This would include locations in Northwest Louisiana, Texarkana, and all six stores remaining in Arkansas. This closure would be blamed on intense competition and a lack of expansion. Here at home, the remaining locations would start to receive “remodels” in order of importance. The update involved adding a Grand Union style vestibule and finally completely removing hardlines. It seemed that Weingarten’s wanted the chain to focus on being seen as the freshest grocery store out there. By 1982, new stores were finally being opened by Grand Union, and the remodeling program was expanded to more locations. This was met with local praise for what was seen as a much-needed investment into these stores.

While the reception was initially positive, when venturing into the new stores, many customers were upset with the new merchandising policy. At the same time, Grand Union touted that their remodel program actually cost more compared to building a new location. Unfortunately, though, new locations were what the chain needed. In the 1980s, Houston’s suburbia expanded Weingarten’s was struggling to keep up and, more importantly, stay relevant. The chain was seen as overpriced and out of touch by many. To help finance these updates, Weingarten’s had gained the ire of their unions. Employees were upset about cutting hours and reduced services and options, which they felt were hurting business. Unfortunately, the company would not listen, falling to 71 stores by the middle of the year. In a surprise move, Grand Union announced its intent to either sell or close all remaining Weingarten’s locations as soon as possible. The move was surprising but not questioned by employees who had felt the sting of Cavenham’s wrath. With one manager stated, “I could have all the wine I wanted, but I couldn’t sell corkscrews.” By February, most of the Weingarten’s locations had been sold. The lion’s share, 43 locations, would end up in the hands of Safeway, which would abandon some of its locations in favor of the new stores.

Other buyers included Rice, Gerland’s, Fiesta, Home Town Foods, and even TJ Maxx. Many other stores were sold to independents, and about 20 were closed without replacements. This did, however, leave three stores that were contractually obligated to continue operating. According to some of the early leases made by Weingarten’s with other landlords, they had first right of refusal on lease transfers between grocers. Gulfgate Mall, Montclair Plaza, and the Post Oak Shopping Center all refused to allow Safeway to take over stores at their properties. Gulfgate would change their minds after a few weeks, leaving two stores in limbo. In this situation, the remaining two stores would stay open until suitable replacements could be found. They would operate as independents supplied by Grocers Supply Corp, maintaining a small advertising presence. However, this plan was foiled when the Montclair Plaza store was sold to Randall’s. The final Weingarten’s would operate until April 1986, when it would finally be handed over to Rice Food Markets, who was preparing to convert their nearby location into an Epicurean store. While the final closing of the chain didn’t bring out any significant attention, Weingarten’s remains fondly remembered by most Houstonians to this day. Plenty of love stories originating in our fair city start with “Well, I was at Weingarten’s….” Even though Randall’s would later usurp the identity of the most prominent local grocer, Weingarten’s legacy remains. The realty wing of Weingarten’s continued its expansion until their 2021 merger with Kimco.

Location List

Store #
11601 Congress St, Houston, TX 770021901-1909, Existing store purchased for $400 from previous owners, Still standing
11420 McKinney St, Houston, TX 770101909-1914 Moved in 1909 for undisclosed reasons although likely more space
11502 Main St Houston, TX 770021914-1951, Lease Expired, store contents sold at Auction, Demolished
118091 Upper Bay Rd, Houston, TX 770581967-1984 Still standing? Replacement Store
21009 Texas Ave Houston, TX 770021921-1935 Destroyed in a fire
28826 Jensen Rd Houston, TX 770931953-1981, Originally Humble Rd, Still standing, Family Dollar, Contains likely original Terrazzo flooring, Family Dollar Opened in 1988
3105 Preston St Houston, TX 770021923-1955 Demolished
35908 Broadway Avenue J, Galveston, TX 775511955?-1980 Still standing? Part of a shopping center, Where Big Lots is, "W" logo glass was discovered after Ike, Home Center location
43406 S Main St Houston, TX 770021925-1955 Demolished
42535 9th Ave, Port Arthur, TX 776421955-1984 Demolished prior to 2008, although sign was still standing, Vacant as of 2021, Home Center location
5808 Prairie Ave Houston, TX 770021926-1966, Moved to 11011 Prairie
51011 Prairie St, Houston, TX 770021966-1978 Demolished prior to 2007, Serving predictably as downtown parking
61601 Taft St, Houston, TX 770191935-1970, Originally an independent, Demolished ~2010 for apartments, Slanted Entrance
61938 W Gray St, Houston, TX 770191972-1984 Still operating as Kroger as of 2021
75100 Harrisburg Blvd Houston, TX 770111930-1965 Previously an A&P, Still Standing
7750 S Wheeler St, Jasper, TX 759511966-1974 Still standing as of 2021
82001 Yale St Houston, TX 700081930-1976 Move to 239 W 20th
8239 W 20th St, Houston, TX 770081976-1984 Still open as Kroger, Weingarten labelscar was briefly visible ~2019
91420 Richmond Rd Houston, TX 770061931-1962 Former Texas SerVall, Contents Auctioned, Later became a Go Go Bar, Still standing Menil Building
91150 Airline Dr, Bossier City, LA 711121964-1978, Had a crime problem, was briefly another grocery store, has been different pottery/outdoor stores since
101602 Polk Ave Houston, TX 770031931-1960, Demolished where GRB is
101513 W 18th St, Houston, TX 770081962-1977, Demolished for HEB?
103520 Spencer Hwy, Pasadena, TX 775041980-1984 Likely Demolished
113600 N Main St, Houston, TX 770091932-1971 Still standing, O'Reilly's, Contains many original exterior features including the sign?
11450 Sheldon Rd, Channelview, TX 775301972-1984 Still operating as Food Town as of 2021, 100th Store built
123114 Smith St Houston, TX 770061935-1963, Demolished?, Originally 3100 Smith
12510 N Downing St, Angleton, TX 775151961-1978, Unsure
131118 Broadway Harrisburg, TX 770121936-1964, Not officially referred to as #13, Later Became a Car Dealer then Leonard's Dept Store
141100 Quitman St, Houston, TX 770091939-1984 Rebuilt 1974, Still standing, Operating as Fiesta as of 2021, Still has cathedral ceiling
152512 University Boulevard, Houston, TX 770051941-1984 Demolished during Rice Village renovations
164820 Washington Ave, Houston, TX 770071941-1983 Still standing, Now subdivided, still retains many external cues as of 2021, Later Valu King, Now 4800 Washington
172 E Texas Ave, Baytown, TX 775201942-1950 Former Grenader Store, Demolished
178620 Stella Link Rd, Houston, TX 770251956-1984 Sold to Safeway, Then the final AppleTree in Houston
18800 W Texas Ave, Baytown, TX 775201942-1950 Former Grenader Store, Rebuilt as #17
187840 Long Point Rd, Houston, TX 770551956-1984 Preceded by Garden Center by a year!
191006 N 16th St, Orange, TX 776301944-1952 Merged with #20, Address approximate
191352 W 43rd St Houston, TX 770181956-1984 Still standing, subdivided, Most recently Fallas Paredes, Most external features remain
20200 W Turrett Ave, Orange, TX 776301944-1980 Home Center location
211102 Telephone Rd, Houston, TX 770231946-1980 Still standing HISD Building
221711 W 2nd St, Freeport, TX 775411948-1976 Demolished, Home Center Location
235800 Lyons Ave Houston, TX 770201949-1984 Still Standing, Fiesta, Home Center Location
24200 Gilham Cir, Port Arthur, TX 776401950-1980 Home Center location, Still standing as Family Dollar
252090 Railroad Avenue Beaumont, TX 777051950-1980 Demolished, Home Center Location
264100 Almeda Rd, Houston, TX 770041951-1984 Demolished, Stood where Post Office is
27800 W Texas Ave, Baytown, TX 775201951-1980 Still standing, Modified but recognizable exterior, Home Center Location
284000 Bissonnet, Houston, TX 770051951-June 1984 Sold to Randalls, Originally 4000 Richmond
2910901 Market St, Houston, TX 770291951-1984 Referred to as Jacinto City, Still operating as Seller Bros as of 2021
302220 Calder Ave, Beaumont, TX 777011952-1984 "Marina-Style", Sold to Safeway, Home Center location, Still standing
314519 Griggs Rd, Houston, TX 770211952-1984 Still standing, Marina Similar, Planned GFS as of 2022
32915 6th St N, Texas City, TX 775901952-1984 Still operating as Food King, Home Center location
331222 S Shaver St, Pasadena, TX 775061954-1980 Still standing, Now a Crazy Boss location, Home Center location
341010 S College Ave, Bryan, TX 778031954-1980 Still standing, now subdivided, Home Center location
352830 Ryan St, Lake Charles, LA 706011954-? Marina Like Store, Home Center location, Still operating as a Market Basket
363825 Gilbert Dr, Shreveport, LA 711041955-1977 Prototype "inverted roof" Later Price-Lo (Stanley), Anchor of Maddison Plaza
362409 Bay Area Blvd, Houston, TX 770581979-1984 Subdivided around 2012
37200 Gulfgate Mall Houston, TX 770871958-1984 Demolished
381900 Louisville Ave, Monroe, LA 712011959-1961 Closed almost immediately after a deadly robbery
394755 Concord Rd, Beaumont, TX 77031958?-1982 Still standing, Affordable Home Furniture
403705 Jewella Ave, Shreveport, LA 711091958-1982 Later Price-Lo (Stanley)
411710 New Boston Rd, Texarkana, TX 755011959-1982 Still operating, as a CashSaver
425810 Bellfort Ave, Houston, TX 770331963-1980 Sold in 1980 to Rice, Still standing, Citi Trends, and other subdivided stores
435130 Bellaire Blvd, Bellaire, TX 774011959-1984 Still standing, Was sold to Safeway, AppleTree, then Randalls who closed in 2020
442710 W 70th St, Shreveport, LA 711081960-1982?
452763 Red Bluff Rd, Pasadena, TX 775061959-1984 Demolished, Sign post still standing
462501 S Post Oak Ln, Houston, TX 770561960-1986 Demolished Early 2000s, Was the final store close in 1986 due to lease issues
472718 MacArthur Dr, Orange, TX 77630Unsure?
484404 Airline Dr, Houston, TX 770221960-1984, Northline Mall, Sold to Rice, Demolished with rest of Mall
49410 Dixie Rd, Lake Jackson, TX 775661960-1983, Demolished?, Originally 410 Loop Rd
5011320 Chimney Rock Rd, Houston, TX 770351960-1984, Westbury Square, Sold to Safeway, Still standing, 99 Cents Only Store,
513803 Dunlavy St, Houston, TX 770061960-1984, Demolished for Condos 2013, Sold to Safeway, Later AppleTree, then Fiesta
534400 N Shepherd Dr, Houston, TX 770181960-1967, Former Texas Servall, Demolished 2007 for LA Fitness
533322 Center St, Deer Park, TX 775361978-1984, Sold to Gerland's, Still operating as a Food Town as of 2021, Recycled Number
548011 Park Place Blvd, Houston, TX 770871960-1974, Former Texas Servall, Subdivided, Including Kelley's Country Cookin'
545828 Line Ave, Shreveport, LA 711061976-1982 Former Big Chain Store, Sold to Safeway, Then Brookshires
557061 Lawndale St, Houston, TX 77023Subdivided, 99 Cent Only Store, La Michoacana
563020 Little York Rd, Houston, TX 770931960-1962, Former Texas Servall, Sold to Minimax, Family Thrift Center
564425 W Fuqua St, Houston, TX 770451964-1984 Still open as Foodarama as of 2022
572040 S Richey St, Pasadena, TX 775021960- 1968, Former Texas Servall, Still operating as Food Town as of 2021
579634 E Houston Rd, Houston, TX 770281971-1984, Now 9634 Mesa, Later Save-A-Lot, Now KIPP Campus, Adjacent Eckerd/CVS stayed open until at least 2011
613228 Twin City Hwy, Groves, TX 776191962-1971, Still standing
6111700 Bellaire Blvd, Houston, TX 770721962-1971, Still standing, had much of the facade left until ~2018
6210500 Eastex Fwy, Houston, TX 770931962-1978, Demolished
629494 Hammerly Blvd, Houston, TX 770801979-1984, Still operating as a Seller Bros as of 2021
63701 E Davis St, Conroe, TX 773011964-1984, Originally an indepdent named Sav-Way, Still standing, UTMB Health
641175 Edgebrook Dr, Houston, TX 770341964-1984, Still operating as Fiesta, Cathedral Roof still visible
65610 Memorial City Mall Houston, TX 770241964-1977, Tennant of Memorial City Mall
6511041 Westheimer Rd, Houston, TX 770421979-1984 Anchor of Westchase Mall, Later Randall's, Currently Whole Foods as of 2022
665665 Beechnut St, Houston, TX 770961964-1974 Renamed "Value King" for 1973 & 1974, Sold to Cox's Foodarama who for their second store, Still open as Foodaram as of 2022
6611240 Fondren Rd, Houston, TX 770711978-1984, Somewhat of a replacement store, Still operating as a Fiesta as of 2022
681602 Kings Hwy, Shreveport, LA 711031966-1983
694055 Calder Ave, Beaumont, TX 777061966-1980 Still standing, Harmony Science Academy
707601 Westheimer Rd, Houston, TX 770631967-1984, Still standing, Ross, Was possibly given a new entrance under Grand Union?
713009 Gerstner Memorial Dr, Lake Charles, LA 706011966-? Originally 3015, Third in Lake Charles, Most recently Kroger
72435 Uvalde Rd, Houston, TX 770151967-1984 Still standing as dd's Discounts, Was later HEB Pantry Foods
732415 Bernardo De Galvez Ave, Galveston, TX 775501967-1984, Still standing, Was Arlan's until Hurricane Ike, Now Human Resources?
74939 Nederland Ave, Nederland, TX 776271967-1984, Still standing, Exygon Health Club
752232 Spencer Hwy, Pasadena, TX 775041967-1980, Demolished?
764523 Johnston St, Lafayette, LA 705031969-1984, Sold to Safeway
812970 Washington Blvd, Beaumont, TX 777011967-1971, Renamed Valu-King 1968-69, Demolished?
815330 W 34th St, Houston, TX 770921974-1983, Mostly now DD's
822295 Delaware St, Beaumont, TX 777031964-1970, Still standing, New entrance, Renamed Valu King
831365 N Main St, Vidor, TX 776621967-1973, Unsure? Likely demolished
83800 N Main St, Vidor, TX 776621973-1984, Replacement Store, Still operating as a Market Basket
84319 W Park Ave, Orange, TX 776301967-1970, Still standing? Vacant, Closed 1970
8411830 Wilcrest Dr, Houston, TX 770311974-1982 Recycled Number, Still standing as Marshall's
855320 Hwy 1765, Texas City, TX 775901968-1984, Food Rite Market
862516 Avenue H, Rosenberg, TX 774711968-1984 99 Cents Only Store
871203 W 1st St, DeRidder, LA 706341968-1984, Sold to Safeway then to Stanley/Price-Lo
889420 Cullen Blvd, Houston, TX 770511968-1984 Still operating as Fiesta as of 2021, Cathedral Ceiling, Original Flooring
891523 Little York Rd, Houston, TX 770931968-1980 Still operating as a Seller Bros as of 2021
905815 Lockwood Dr, Houston, TX 770261968-1983, Still operating as Fiesta as of 2021, Cathedral Ceiling, Original Flooring
9113150 Memorial Dr Houston, TX 770791968-1983, TJMaxx since closing, Uses original vestibule
92454 Heymann Blvd, Lafayette, LA 705031969-1984, Champagne's Market
939550 Homestead Rd, Houston, TX 770161968-1980 Still operating as Super Value Foods
941800 NE Evangeline Thruway, Lafayette, LA 705011969-1984 Northgate Mall, Originally 281 Frontage Road, Sold to Safeway
95400 W Little York Rd, Houston, TX 770761970-1983 Likely now Food Town
963465 Gulf Fwy, Dickinson, TX 775391969-1984 Standing, Now StarFine Furniture
973709 N 16th St, Orange, TX 776321970-1984 Still operating as a Market Basket, Retains most external characteristics
9811737 Eastex Fwy, Houston, TX 770391970-1984 Still standing, Citi Trends
99 5300 N Braeswood Blvd #99, Houston, TX 770961971-1984 Braeswood Square, Sold to Safeway, then AppleTree, then Belden's until 2019
1001811 N Alexander Dr, Baytown, TX 775201969-1984 Unsure
1017455 Southwest Fwy, Houston, TX 770741970-1975 Located next to Woolco, Demolished
1016470 W Little York Rd, Houston, TX 770911978-1984 Arched Design, Still operating as Food Town as of 2021
1023323 Lockwood Dr, Houston, TX 770261969-1980 Formerly Pacini's Superette, Still standing Roller Rink
103838 Algregg St, Houston, TX 770081971-1984, Demolished 2013 for Apartments, Operated as Fiesta prior to this
1044628 Broadway Avenue J, Galveston, TX 775511971-1977 Globe Grocery Dept, Demolished for community center
1046450 Phelan Blvd, Beaumont, TX 777061978-1984 Arched Design, Subdivided, Center of facade removed
1054601 Farm to Market 1960 Rd W, Houston, TX 770691976-1984 North Oaks Mall, Most recently TJMaxx
10619633 Eastex Fwy, Humble, TX 773381977-1984, Still standing, Conn's?
1085900 Renwick Dr, Houston, TX 770811976-1984 Still operating as a Seller Bros as of 2021
1098066 S Gessner Rd, Houston, TX 770361975-1984 Still standing, Currently Ross
1101050 Federal Rd, Houston, TX 770151976-1984 Still operating as a Seller Bros as of 2021
1116059 S Loop E Fwy, Houston, TX 77087Target Food Store, 1973-1984, Sold to Rice Food Markets, Building later Auchan, Still standing
1127051 Southwest Freeway, Houston, TX 77074Target Food Store, 1973-1979, Building still standing
1139429 Katy Fwy, Houston, TX 77024Target Food Store, 1973-1979, Building still standing
11410000 Kleckley Dr, Houston, TX 77075Target Food Store, 1973-1979, Building still standing
80093442 Palmer Hwy, Texas City, TX 775901982-1982 Possibly Never Opened? Sold to Super Warehouse Foods, Then to Randall's, Who quickly sold to Albertsons, Partially demolished for new stores
81169701 Spencer Hwy, La Porte, TX 775711982-1984 Later Gerland's Food Fair, and then Food Town until ~2019
81201200 Harvey Rd, College Station, TX 778401983-1984 99 Cent Only Store, now Burke's Outlet
812610717 Jones Rd, Houston, TX 770651982-1984 Steeplechase Shopping Center
813615152 Bellaire Blvd, Houston, TX 770831983-1984 Still resembles a Grand Union
8140601 Bertrand Dr, Lafayette, LA 705061982-1984, Sold to Safeway, Later Price-Lo (Stanley)
2125 S Broadway Ave, Tyler, TX 757011956-1963 Still standing, Sold to local
929 3rd Ave, Lake Charles, LA 706011963-? Originally a Piggly Wiggly/Kroger
1169 W 16th Ave, Pine Bluff, AR 716031959-?
901 W Main St, Jacksonville, AR 720761959-1970s? Address Aproximate
2415 Broadway St # A, Little Rock, AR 722061960-?
8801 Geyer Springs Rd, Little Rock, AR 72209
9101 W Markham St, Little Rock, AR 72205
6823 Cantrell Rd, Little Rock, AR 72207
2145 Union Ave, Memphis, TN 38104
2754 Lamar Ave, Memphis, TN 38114
1154 Jackson Ave, Memphis, TN 38107Still standing East of interchange
3941 Park Ave, Memphis, TN 38111
3502 Summer Ave, Memphis, TN 38122Demolished, Walgreens
1170 S Bellevue Blvd, Memphis, TN 38106



  2. Checking to see if one of the locations that was not mentioned was in Longview, Texas. 1955. In my father’s items I found a Weingarten’s name badge and a Food certification with my father’s name on them.

    1. John, I wasn’t able to find any record of Weingarten’s in Longview. The closest I know for sure they got was Tyler. Could your dad have worked at that store? If you have any other information to share from the certification maybe it includes a Store Number or similar info? Or would be up to sharing a photo of the name tag, we’d love to see it!

  3. Loved there stores. Sad to see them go. Glad some still standing in Beaumont and Houston.

  4. Hi! So recently someone told me that there was a Weingarten’s store on Gessner.. When I was reading this blog I noticed a picture of a building that looks almost the same as what is now a King Dollar on 2555 Gessner. But the picture says it’s the Bellaire Weingarten. Is there any chance the that the Gessner address was also a Weingarten? The building is very distinct so it’s weird that the old photo looks so much like the now King Dollar store. Please help lol!

    1. It certainly looks like an ex-Weingarten, but all my records point to this being a Gerland’s from opening. The design similarity is uncanny, though I have a hypothesis for how it ended up like this. Weingarten either developed the center intending to place a store there, or was approached by an existing developer but backed out after construction started. Gerland’s was already the area’s dominant grocer, so they may have either leased this from Weingarten’s or the property owner. Another theory I have developed since talking with some inside players is that this store was exchanged for a Gerland location Weingarten’s wanted. Supposedly they swapped a couple of other properties in the 70s too.