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I did not know that

December 7, 2010 - Karin Elton
I was listening to MPR this morning and the radio host said that Richard W. Sears was born Dec. 7, 1863. She mentioned he got his start in Redwood Falls.

According to, Sears was born in Stewartville and relocated “to a small burg called Redwood Falls...” “Sears ran its railroad station and slept in a loft there as well, a berth he got in exchange for keeping the station clean. He supplemented his income by dealing in coal and lumber and by contracting with local Native American communities to ship their venison. In his spare time, he studied the catalogs that came through, comparing the wholesale prices of the merchandise listed on the bills of lading for train freight with the retail prices in the catalogs, and concluded that there was profit to be made in mail-order businesses.”

And a department store icon is born.

I didn’t know of the Sears-Redwood Falls connection. I suppose if I had ever visited Sears Memorial Park, I would have.

He should have built the Sears Tower in Redwood.

The website goes on to say that “Sears was buried (in 1914) in an opulent crypt in Chicago's Rosehill Cemetery, where legend has it that near his grave a man in a top hat can be seen walking toward the burial site of Montgomery Ward, Sears' archrival.”


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