Kmart is closing its last-remaining Michigan store on Sunday (Nov. 21). This is especially sad, since Michigan is the state where the retail chain got its start way back in 1899.
I’ve actually never been to a Kmart, but there’s something about the brand that just says “American,” so it’s sad to see it go. No more “blue light specials” or cheesy Kmart advertisements on TV. After the Michigan location closes, Kmart will only have six locations in the continental United States. Kmart is owned by Sears, which bought the chain when it went into bankruptcy in 2005.
So, where is the last Kmart store in Michigan? It’s in Marshall, located on the western part of the state. A handful of other Kmarts across the country are slated to close before Christmas, too.
The story of Kmart started back in the late 19th century. Founder Sebastian Spering Kresge opened his first five-and-dime store in downtown Detroit under his own name. Decades later, in 1962, the name was changed to Kmart, and the chain grew and grew. For years, Kmart was one of the most popular chains in the U.S., but other so-called “big box” retailers such as Walmart and Target are not the biggies.
Towards the end, like many retailers, Kmart in Michigan had a hard time finding workers. A recent posting for a job at the Marshall store was seeking temporary cashiers with a pay of $25 per hour.