There was a time when department stores made sense. Before online sales brought myriad possibilities to your finger tips and niché stores sprang up to create immersive retail experiences, it was enough to have a fair selection at a fair price. Once a linchpin of American capitalism, department stores are now as antiquated as general stores and trading posts.
And yet, they persist. Every quarter, a failing department store is scooped up by an enterprising Wall Streeter who thinks they can stem the tides of history. These corporate raiders cut costs, add some flashy new brands, and usually fail. Customers are left with a dingier, sadder version of the store they only went to as a last resort in the first place.
Department stores will eventually go extinct, but for now, they litter the malls of America, fluorescent lit capitalist ghost towns, living monuments to a time when customers would settle for a product that was almost what they wanted. Enjoy the last gasps of old retail with The 10 Lamest Department Stores of All Time.