Dillons turns 100 on Thursday

HUTCHINSON, Kan. (KSNW) – Dillons celebrates 100 years of grocery shopping in Kansas. It was on May 13, 1921 that Dillons was officially incorporated.

The company says it all started with John.S. Dillon was looking for a better way to feed his family of 12. He began selling groceries at his Sterling general store in the early 1900s. He opened the area’s first Cash Food Market in Hutchinson in 1913.

In 1915 he opened a second store, placing one of his sons in charge of the original store. When his sons left to serve in World War I, Dillon sold his stake to his trading partners.

JS Dillon & Sons began using refrigerated trucks in the 1940s, among the first in the country. The fleet of more than 24 trucks, 11 semi-trailers and 13 straight trucks served all JS Dillon & Sons stores. (Courtesy of Dillons)

After the war, JS Dillon and Sons Store Co opened and was incorporated in 1921. By the late 1920s, the company had 15 stores in 10 Kansas communities. The chain grew and expanded into the Wichita market in 1957.

In 1968 the company was known as Dillon Companies, Inc. It began to acquire regional banners in the western and central states, such as King Soopers, City Market, Fry’s and Gerbes, over 300 convenience stores. in five states and Jackson’s Ice Cream dairy. .

Dillon Companies, Inc. merged with The Kroger Co. in 1983 and has grown into a coast-to-coast operator of food, drug and convenience stores.

“Dillons Food Stores has been providing high quality food products to families, creating jobs and investing in our communities for a century – the company is a Kansas institution,” Governor Laura Kelly said in a statement. “I congratulate Dillons on his 100th birthday. Here are 100 more years, and beyond. “

Visit Dillons.com/100 years for more information, photos and a video.

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