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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Abilene in Taylor County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
 

Site of Thornton's Store

 
 
Site of Thornton's Store Marker image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, December 14, 2014
1. Site of Thornton's Store Marker
Inscription. Known throughout West Texas as “a city within itself,” Thorntonís Store was one of Abileneís leading businesses for nearly seven decades. E.L. Thornton (1896-1964) moved to Abilene from Arkansas in 1919, after service in World War I. He opened a fruit stand in 1919, followed by a grocery store in 1920. Joined by his two brothers, Thornton soon expanded his business. In 1925 he added dry goods, followed by a drug store and a feed store in 1929. Radio and refrigeration departments were added in 1931.
†††††By 1937 Thorntonís filled an entire block of Oak Street, adding a cafť, a beauty shop, and shoe department. In 1941 a franchise for selling new Studebaker cars was added. The one-story properties were renovated in 1947 into a four-story structure of more than 100,000 square feet. Thorntonís was famous for its Christmas displays. In 1959 the largest fire in Abileneís gutted the Thornton property. Reconstruction began at once.
†††††After the deaths of E.L. Thornton in 1964 and his son Charles Eugene Thornton in 1965, surviving family members sold their interests to a chain store based in St. Louis. Thorntonís continued in business under new ownership until 1985.
 
Erected 1996 by Texas Historical Commission. (Marker Number 4900.)
 
Location.
Site of Thornton's Store Marker image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, December 14, 2014
2. Site of Thornton's Store Marker
32° 26.714′ N, 99° 43.961′ W. Marker is in Abilene, Texas, in Taylor County. Marker is at the intersection of Oak Street and S. 4th Street, on the right when traveling north on Oak Street. Touch for map. Marker is located next to sidewalk at the southeast corner of the intersection. Marker is in this post office area: Abilene TX 79602, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. 45th Infantry Division at Camp Barkeley (within shouting distance of this marker); "I Shall Never Surrender or Retreat" (within shouting distance of this marker); Honoring E Battery Lost Battalion WWII (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Taylor County Veterans Memorial (about 600 feet away); Site of Curfew by John J. Clinton (approx. 0.2 miles away); The Texas & Pacific Railway (approx. 0.3 miles away); First Presbyterian Church (approx. 0.3 miles away); Pine Street Shootout (approx. 0.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Abilene.
 
Regarding Site of Thornton's Store. The Thornton's store building built in the early 1960's was renovated in 1988 into the Abilene / Taylor County Law Enforcement Center.
 
Categories. Industry & Commerce
 
View to South Along Oak Street image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, December 14, 2014
3. View to South Along Oak Street
Marker is on left (east) side of street at corner
View to Northeast image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, December 14, 2014
4. View to Northeast
The 1930's Taylor County Courthouse on left
and the Abilene / Taylor County
Law Enforcement Center on right
Intersection of Oak Street and S. 4th Street image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, December 14, 2014
5. Intersection of Oak Street and S. 4th Street
View to northwest with Taylor County Courthouse in background
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on September 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on December 18, 2014, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas. This page has been viewed 210 times since then and 50 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on December 18, 2014, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas.
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