These vintage photos show us what Florida’s first Publix stores used to look like
On Sept. 6, 1930, George Jenkins would arguably change the state of Florida by opening the first Publix store in Winter Haven. Ten years later, Jenkins mortgaged his orange grove and built his first ever Publix "supermarket," which was also built in Winter Haven. Needless to say, the store was a massive hit, but World War II brought a shortage of supplies, and prevented Jenkins from building new stores. In 1945, Jenkins decide to purchased the "All American" grocery store chain and convert them all into Publix supermarkets. A few years later he moved the headquarters to Lakeland, and the rest is history. Now, with locations all over Florida, the grocery chain is a billion dollar corporate giant with yearly earnings that rival Nike. These historical photos from the Florida State Archives show what those first few years were like, and also how the famous slogan "Where shopping is a pleasure" got its inspiration.
| Photos by Florida State Archives