National Supermarkets - St. Louis

Welcome to my unofficial website for the St. Louis division of National Supermarkets! National was a competitor in the St. Louis grocery scene until purchased by Schnucks in June, 1995. In this buyout, Schnucks bought all 57 of National's St. Louis-area stores, as well as its New Orleans division, from Loblaws of Canada. However, in order to preserve competition, the Federal Trade Commission required Schnucks to sell 24 St. Louis-area stores to other grocers. Of these stores, 18 were National stores, and 6 were Schnucks stores.

Schnucks operated these 24 stores from June, 1995 until March, 1996. It was then that The Family Company of America, comprised of former National executives, purchased 23 of the stores and reopened them as National Markets. While 18 of the stores were former Nationals, the "new" National did not use the familiar National logo as it is a trademark of Loblaws.

While many St. Louisians were thrilled with the revival of National, it was short-lived. In 1997, Family Company closed 5 of the stores, claiming Schnucks sabotaged the stores in the 9 months it ran them. A sixth store, in Kirkwood, closed in 1998 when the new company could no longer afford the rent on the building, owned by Schnucks.

National's final swan song came on April 12, 1999, when the remaining 17 stores closed as a result of Family Company declaring bankruptcy. St. Louisians came to learn that James Gibson, the principal owner of Family Company, had gambled with money from his clients. Gibson had also used this money to start the "new" National chain.

The tenth anniversary of National's final bowing-out is near. Many of the Nationals have been reopened as other businesses, from grocery stores to hardware stores. Some have been demolished to make way for new development. Even though National stores cease to physically exist, it is my hope to keep them alive in some form on my website. I hope you will find this site to be informative. I enjoy hearing comments from others who remember and mourn National as I do. If, while navigating this site, you have questions or find errors, please e-mail me. You will find links to my e-mail on the site. Have a great day, and remember..."You're important to us!"

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