Zion’s Cooperative Mercantile Institution (typically referred to as Z.C.M.I.) was the first department store in the United States. It was founded on October 9, 1868 by Brigham Young. For many years it used the slogan, “America’s First Department Store”. (*)

There have been many Co-op stores built around the states that I have come across. I’ll start a list here and update it over time.

Zion’s Cooperative Mercantile Institution was formed by Mormon merchants in 1868 at the behest of Brigham Young to combat the economic influences of mining and the transcontinental railroad.  The enterprise intended to support local manufacturing, control prices, and invest profits back into the community.  Its success spawned similar institutions throughout the Intermountain West and eventually inaugurated a major department store chain.  Z.C.M.I. was sold in 1999 to May Company.  May Co. was sold in 2005 to Federated Department Stores which owns Macy’s.

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