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Melbourne's lost department stores

11 December 2020

Melbourne and shopping have been hand in glove since the 1880s, and at its peak the city flaunted more than a dozen department stores. Today only the big two, Myer and DJs, remain, having weathered the economic downturns and threats posed by online shopping – so far.

In the lead up to the silly season, we take you back in time to the golden era of Melbourne retail to hear about the rise and fall of department store empires such as Foy and Gibson, Manton's and George's.

Watch the video above to experience some of our vibrant photographic collection spanning the last 150 years of Melbourne's shopping culture.

Read more in a blog post by former digital content editor Janet Austin.

About From the Vault

From the Vault is a video series that delves into the surprising, poignant and sometimes funny stories behind the unique archival images held in the State Library Victoria collection.

Find out more and view all episodes.