Buffalo in the 50s: W.T. Grant’s 10th location opens in Riverside

By Steve Cichon

Grants — which was, as the company’s slogan said, “known for values” — opened its 10th “bigger, better” Buffalo-area location 65 years ago today on Tonawanda Street in Riverside.

The national chain of variety stores expanded in Buffalo as the city’s population did and was a fixture in many early strip malls, such as University Plaza and in the retail build-out at Main and Transit. The national chain filed for bankruptcy in 1976.

This Grant’s location is now occupied by the Riverside library branch.

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Steve Cichon

Steve Cichon is a proud Buffalonian helping the world experience the city he loves. writing about the people, places, and ideas that make Buffalo unique and special. The storyteller and historian has written six books, worn bow ties since the 80s, and is the News Director at WECK Radio. A 25 year Buffalo media veteran, Steve's contributed more than 1400 Buffalo History stories to The Buffalo News, worked at WIVB-TV, Empire Sports Network, and spent ten years as a newsman and News Director at WBEN Radio. He's also put his communication skills to work as an adjunct professor, a producer of PBS documentaries, and even run for Erie County Clerk. Steve's Buffalo roots run deep: all eight of his great-grandparents called Buffalo home, with his first ancestors arriving here in 1827.