Portland Press Herald Still-Film Negatives Collection
Call number of Original
56924 and 77966B
Portland Public Library Special Collections & Archives
Portland, Cumberland, Maine, USA
Format of Original
4 x 5" gelatin silver negatives
Exterior views of Day's Jewelry Store (also known as Day's Department Store), 489 Congress Street.
The Day's business began with Capt. Harry Davidson, and sons David and Sidney Davidson. The latter had been jewelers since 1914, and opened the store at 489 Congress Street in 1927. Day's expanded from selling and repairing jewelry and timepieces, to include radios, stereos, television sets, appliances, and cameras. Day's eventually bought out the Murdock's store, which was also on Congress Street. Murdock's had been Maine's distributor for the Eastman Kodak Company's cameras and film; the acquisition added the product lines of photography and optical equipment to Day's.
Day's famously extended discounts to municipal workers, teachers, and S.D. Warren millworkers, and prided itself for hiring local residents. "They know their hard work and loyalty will be rewarded in promotions," said Sidney Davidson of his staff.
David Davidson's famously favorite expression was "Phew! What a day!"
In 1949-1950, Day's completely renovated the 489 Congress Street building at the cost of $500,000.00, although the building was owned by J. B. Brown. In 1972, Day's relocated to the former F. W. Woolworth store building (540 Congress Street)- where Day's Portland store operated until 1985. Inevitably, Day's had stores in Caribou, Presque Isle, Old Town, Bangor, Rumford, Gardiner, Waterville, Westbrook, Saint Johnsbury VT, and Portsmouth NH.
The Portland store was purchased by the Corey family and relocated to 415 Philbrook Avenue, South Portland.
Top image: Exterior view of Day's stores, 489 Congress Street, shortly before the major renovation. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow house (487 Congress Street) is at right.
Photo published in the Portland Press Herald, on 21 July 1949.
Bottom image: Full exterior view of Day's, 489 Congress Street, from south.
Photo published in the Evening Express, on 6 November 1954.
"Day's Jewelry Store, 1949 and 1954" (1949). Businesses & Buildings - Portland Press Herald Still Film Negatives. 592.
Portland, Me., Downtown Portland, Businesses, Congress Street