Any photos not otherwise credited are from the personal collection of Frank Passic, Albion Historian.
Morning Star, July 11, 1993, pg. 8
A recent article about the Laberteaux & Torrey grocery brought up a topic which is a ripe field of research in Albion’s history. Albion once had over a dozen “mom and pop” neighborhood grocery stores all over town. This writer has seen very little written about them and would occasionally like to feature them in this column. If you have photographs of neighborhood groceries and/or information about them, please feel free to send me the information or contact me. These stores catered to all types of folks: black, white, rich, poor, workers, teachers, housewives, and on and on the list goes. The stoes were conveniently located “around the corner” in each neighborhood, and often were the focal point of community social life. The neighborhood store was the place to grab a quick soda, purchase candy, or to get that bag of sugar that was immediately needed to finish a recipe.
One such place was the Carrigan Grocery, located on the northwest corner of N. Albion St. and Austin Avenue. The grocery/meat market catered mainly to workers at the nearby Albion Malleable Iron Company. Over 90% of the business at this store was with AMICO employees It was owned by Leland and Anne (Dubina) Carrigan and operated from 1947 until 1968. Anne was the daughter of Mike and Sophia Dubina, who operated several enterprises in the Austin Ave/Albion St. areas in the early 20th century. Mike Dubina had purchased the building in 1920, which formerly had been a tailor shop. He operated the grocery and meat store there until 1947 when he retired. His daughter Anne and her husband LeLand Carrigan purchased and operated it until it was destroyed in 1968 by arson during a period of civil unrest. The site is now the A-Z sweeper shop.
From our Historical Notebook this week we present a 1956 photograph showing LeLand and Anne (Dubina) Carrigan at the meat counter, waiting on Albion Malleable maintenance man Melvin Harris.
State and Federal regulations regarding meat preparation and other rules eventually wiped out the small neighborhood groceries by the 1960s, as well as heavy competition by the supermarkets such as A & P and Felpausch. But their place in Albion’s history is distinct, and worthy of mention and recognition here. Anyone having a history and/or photograph of their neighborhood grocery is welcome to contact me.
LeLand and Anne (Dubina) Carrigan at the meat counter serving Melvin Harris
All text copyright, 2020 © all rights reserved Frank Passic