Discuss Detroit Archives - Beginning January 2006 Nice Photo of Hudson's circa early 1980's Previous Next
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Krapug
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Username: Krapug

Post Number: 35
Registered: 12-2003
Posted From: 24.190.86.125
Posted on Sunday, May 07, 2006 - 2:25 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Check out the home page of the Hudson-Webber Fondation. On the about the family page, there is a nice photo of Hudson's taken either in the last years the store was open, or just after the store closed, when the building was still being used by Hudson's for it's offices, and credit operation.

We often see pics of this building either in it's glory days, or when it was in ruin, but not during this time frame.

www.hudson-webber.org

Ken

PS What was the last function that Hudson's used this building for??, I believe it was their credit operation (the buyers were moved to MN., in 1984).
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Huggybear
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Username: Huggybear

Post Number: 210
Registered: 08-2005
Posted From: 68.252.127.120
Posted on Sunday, May 07, 2006 - 3:41 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Looks like it was closed. There is plywood in the ground floor windows.
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Smogboy
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Username: Smogboy

Post Number: 2523
Registered: 11-2004
Posted From: 69.47.100.44
Posted on Sunday, May 07, 2006 - 3:47 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I'm still hardpressed to believe that monolith of a building is gone now. That place truly was magical back in its heyday.
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Krapug
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Username: Krapug

Post Number: 36
Registered: 12-2003
Posted From: 24.190.86.125
Posted on Sunday, May 07, 2006 - 3:48 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I noticed that too, in the final years of the store being open those windows were not used, but they were not covered in plywood.
That being said this photo is probally from the spring of either '83, or 84. At this time point the red awning trim was still in place along
Woodward, as these windows were still being decorated, and the former main entrance to the store contained a customer service window where you could pay your charge account.

Ken
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Viziondetroit
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Username: Viziondetroit

Post Number: 451
Registered: 11-2003
Posted From: 68.42.176.190
Posted on Sunday, May 07, 2006 - 4:06 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

that was a lot of building...

I remember watching the implosion on TV back in like '98 or so.
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Johnnny5
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Username: Johnnny5

Post Number: 240
Registered: 06-2005
Posted From: 71.227.95.4
Posted on Sunday, May 07, 2006 - 5:50 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Great looking photo. The last time I saw the building it was a solid cloud out dusk rolling down Wooodward. Still one of the most memorable things I have ever seen.
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Burnsie
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Username: Burnsie

Post Number: 406
Registered: 11-2003
Posted From: 35.12.18.216
Posted on Sunday, May 07, 2006 - 9:05 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

That's a good photo, and it can be seen in better quality on the WSU Virtual Motor City site.

The last office workers moved out of Downtown Hudson's in Oct. 1986, and the building continued to have security, heat, water, an active sprinkler system & electricity until Dayton-Hudson sold it in Dec. 1989. Then things rapidly went to hell.

It was irresponsible of Dayton-Hudson to sell the downtown building to Southwestern of Canada, a "developer" whose main accomplishment was stripping the building, shutting the utilities off and leaving it open to vandals.
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Hamtramck_steve
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Username: Hamtramck_steve

Post Number: 2933
Registered: 10-2003
Posted From: 68.255.162.105
Posted on Sunday, May 07, 2006 - 10:00 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

That picture is an awesome for showing the various construction stages to what we all call "the building."
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Pdtpuck
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Username: Pdtpuck

Post Number: 24
Registered: 01-2006
Posted From: 208.251.168.194
Posted on Monday, May 08, 2006 - 7:53 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Is there anywhere I can find and/or see pics of the inside of the Hudson's building? I have seen some old ones from the History Museum (I believe), but I have yet to find a wealth of pics from the inside during the end days as a retail outlet, or even in decline....
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Burnsie
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Username: Burnsie

Post Number: 407
Registered: 11-2003
Posted From: 35.12.21.212
Posted on Monday, May 08, 2006 - 4:06 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Pdtpuck-- I'm sure they're out there, but they sure aren't on the Internet. A possibility is the Target Corp. archives-- the recent Images of America Hudson's book reprinted some later-decades pictures from that archives. And the News & Free Press archives. You can get reprints of most if not all Freep pictures taken by Freep photographers going back decades, but they aren't cheap.
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Mauser765
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Username: Mauser765

Post Number: 791
Registered: 01-2004
Posted From: 4.229.117.20
Posted on Monday, May 08, 2006 - 10:08 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Get one of the Arcadia books on Hudsons - there are a few. The 1800's Detroit Arcadia book has interior retail shots too.
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Burnsie
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Username: Burnsie

Post Number: 409
Registered: 11-2003
Posted From: 35.12.22.161
Posted on Monday, May 08, 2006 - 10:32 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

There is one Arcadia / Images of America book about Hudson's, with photos of the store also in other Arcadia books about Detroit.
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Pdtpuck
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Username: Pdtpuck

Post Number: 25
Registered: 01-2006
Posted From: 208.251.168.194
Posted on Tuesday, May 09, 2006 - 4:51 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

thanks...I've been wanting to get the Arcadia books, but haven't freed up the dough yet as I'm on vacation as of Thursday!
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Bob
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Username: Bob

Post Number: 956
Registered: 11-2003
Posted From: 205.188.116.137
Posted on Tuesday, May 09, 2006 - 8:45 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

One of those Arcadia Books has some great pictures of the Hudson's building being used in 1992 for a Holiday sale.
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Hornwrecker
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Username: Hornwrecker

Post Number: 1144
Registered: 04-2005
Posted From: 63.41.8.16
Posted on Thursday, May 11, 2006 - 12:33 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Whole shitload of photos of Hudson's

Hudson's photos
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Viziondetroit
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Username: Viziondetroit

Post Number: 475
Registered: 11-2003
Posted From: 68.42.176.190
Posted on Thursday, May 11, 2006 - 1:13 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

wow.. SHITLOAD is an understatement.
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Eric_c
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Username: Eric_c

Post Number: 728
Registered: 11-2003
Posted From: 68.76.202.10
Posted on Thursday, May 11, 2006 - 1:17 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I'd welcome y'all here to Target #3257, but I'm too busy picking lunch out of my teeth with my drivers license.

You know, we got hot dogs and nachos right over there.
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Burnsie
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Username: Burnsie

Post Number: 411
Registered: 11-2003
Posted From: 35.12.20.243
Posted on Thursday, May 11, 2006 - 2:44 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Hornwrecker-- Pdtpuck is looking for pictures of the store during its decline-- he mentioned that he's seen those glory-days ones from the Historical Museum.
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Wolverine
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Username: Wolverine

Post Number: 149
Registered: 04-2004
Posted From: 24.231.201.120
Posted on Thursday, May 11, 2006 - 4:19 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I always wondered what the building looked like inside just before demolition. I've searched everywhere for images as I'm making a 3d recreation of the building, and the older images are not as detailed.

http://flickr.com/photo_zoom.g ne?id=110786890&size=o
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Krapug
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Username: Krapug

Post Number: 37
Registered: 12-2003
Posted From: 24.188.92.110
Posted on Thursday, May 11, 2006 - 4:37 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Considering that there were a number of "urban exploration" trips into Hudson's (legal and otherwise), someone out there must have photos of the interior from it's last days as a open store, the time period when the store was closed, but the building was still being used, and the period when it was a ruin.

During the last 6 months that the store was open in 1982, it became quite the tourist destination for the "last trip to Hudson's", so there have to be a lot of photos out there.

Here's another Hudson's trivia question.

During the final years of the store being open, what restaurant (s) were still open to the public ??

Ken
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Rrl
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Username: Rrl

Post Number: 486
Registered: 12-2003
Posted From: 71.213.228.212
Posted on Thursday, May 11, 2006 - 6:19 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

My memory is fading from my much younger years when I was actually at the Woodward Hudsons, but from Hornwrecker's link, the inside of the store seems bland; smooth, low ceilings; rectangular columns with no ornamentation; sheet linoleum floors; simple light fixtures.
Did this building suffer a "renovation" to cover and hide the unsightly plaster cornices, crowns and capitals; terrazzo floors, chandeliers, etc.? I've got to assume there were a lot of buried treasures in that place.

Anyone have any pre WWII photos to compare?
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Rsa
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Username: Rsa

Post Number: 852
Registered: 10-2003
Posted From: 68.255.236.129
Posted on Friday, May 12, 2006 - 1:25 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

downtown hudson's was in fact thoroughly "modernized". most light fixtures are circa 1950's, escalator and other signage circa 1960's, interior finishes mostly circa 1970's. some original finishes were retained; such as the wrought iron mezzanine level on the third floor mens' department, chandeliers on the main floor, the wood paneling in the pine room, tile work in the mezzanine restaurant, some offices, etc.

the store had started it's decline long before it actually closed. in response to this, hudsons started decreasing sales area. they did this, not by closing of floors, but by partioning the floors off from the perimeter of the building. walls were put up in front of the windows, sometimes leaving vast "dead areas" in between the outside walls and the sales areas.

[RockStArchitect, member of the team that cataloged the building before demo for the DHS]
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Aarne_frobom
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Username: Aarne_frobom

Post Number: 22
Registered: 10-2005
Posted From: 162.108.2.222
Posted on Friday, May 12, 2006 - 4:24 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Around the time of the building's demolition, there was an extensive Hudson's display at the Detroit Historical Museum. I recall hearing that there was a single presentation of a slide show or video record made inside the building at the time artifacts were collected for the Museum. I missed that, and asked the Museum clerks if a video copy was available. I was told that the pictures were the property of someone who would not allow them to be reproduced, but whether the demolition contractor, Dayton-Hudson or another building owner, or someone else, I don't know. But presumably they're out there somewhere. Of course I never photographed the interior during the brief time I worked there as a stockboy in 1971. I wasn't too eager to see photos of the building in its deteriorated state, anyway, preferring to remember it as it was. The recent small picture book, "Detroit's Legendary Department Store" is a good substitute.

I suspect the last restaurant to operate in the store was the hot-dog stand on the fourth floor. More significantly, the fourth floor had the last open public rest room. At the time of the store's closure, much was made in the press of the fact that this was the last rest room freely available for public use in downtown Detroit. These articles and the closure of this john remain in my memory as The Moment I Realized Detroit Was Screwed.
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Rsa
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Username: Rsa

Post Number: 853
Registered: 10-2003
Posted From: 68.255.236.129
Posted on Friday, May 12, 2006 - 4:30 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

most artifacts gathered from the hudson's building were donated to the museum. the volunteers that gathered them were the ones that took most of those photos, and remain property of those who took them. it was documented extrememly well in it's last year of life. unfortunately, i can't provide a link; most of us were still using analog cameras and there is a ton of photographs to scan.

thanx for the interesting anecdote aarne.
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Burnsie
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Username: Burnsie

Post Number: 412
Registered: 11-2003
Posted From: 35.9.3.65
Posted on Friday, May 12, 2006 - 5:21 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

The Arcadia book mentions that most if not all pictures taken by the volunteers before demo went to the Greater Downtown Partnership.

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