The Rike-Kumler Co., Dayton, Ohio





Rike's was, for many years, a beloved
retail magnet in downtown Dayton

The store was expanded many times, by adding floors
on top of its original building, by expanding into the
building of the Miami Hotel to the weat, and by
building additions.

The Rike-Kumler Co.
Second at Main
Dayton, OH 45401                920,000 sq.ft.


DOWNTOWN STORE DIRECTORY (920,000 sq. ft.)

First Floor
Fine Jewelry • Costume Jewelry • Cosmetics • Handbags • Handbags • Small Leather Goods • Gloves • Scarves • Millinery • Hosiery • Legworks • Daytona Shoes • UpDate Sportswear • Notions • Candy and Nuts • Bake Shop • Sub Shop • Stationery • Calculators • Phone Booth • Home Office Equipment • Etc. Etc. Etc. •
Rike’s Store for Men Men’s Accessories • Smoke Shop • Men’s Furnishings • “The Classics” • “The Shirtings” • Men’s Sportswear • Contemporary • Designer Sportswear • Men’s Clothing • Rikesgate Row • Men’s Shoes • Men’s Hats • Young Men’s Shop

Mezzanine
Charlie’s on the Mezz • Coffee, Tea, and . . . • Wine Shop

Second Floor
Junior Sportswear • Junior Dresses • Junior Coats • Junior Shoes • Junior Intimate Apparel • Annie’s Attic • Contempo on 2 • Loungewear • Sleepwear • Foundations • Daywear • Miss Dayton Sportswear • Better Sportswear • Newcom Sportswear • Active Sportswear

Third Floor
Daytona Dresses • Women’s World • Van Cleve Shop • Miss Dayton Dresses • Town & Country Shop • Daytona Shoes • Shoe Salon • Aigner Shop • The Shop for Pappagallo • Contemporary Shoes • Fur Salon • Coats • All Weather Coats • Bridal Salon • Newcom Shop • The Disco • Beauty Salon •
Cash Office • Credit Office • Photo Studio • Repair Desk • Men’s Formal Wear •
Moraine Shops Moraine Contempo • Moraine Sportique • Moraine Coats • Town & Country Shop • Designer Center  • Missoni Boutique • The Moraine Room

Fourth Floor
China • Glassware • Giftware • Silver • Table Cloths • Housewares • Cookworks • Small Electrics • Clocks • Basket Shop • Green Scene • Oriental Plus • LifeStyle • Pictures & Mirrors • Art Gifts • Lamps • Televisions and Stereos • Records

Fifth Floor
Coin Room Restaurant • Coins and Stamps • Books • Infants’ Wear • Toddlers’ Wear • Layette • Children’s Furniture • Children’s Accessories • Girls 3-6x • Girls 7-14 • Boys 4-7 • Boys 8-20 • Young Juniors • Teen Shop • Children’s Shoes

Sixth Floor
Furniture • The Georgian Collection • Sleep Shop • Recliners • Trim-the-Home Shop

Seventh Floor
Domestics • Sheets • Blankets • Pillows • Towels • Bath Shop • Draperies • Bedspreads • Curtains • Area Rugs • Carpeting • Fabrics • Sewing Machines • Needlework • Luggage

Eighth Floor

Sporting Goods • Toys and Hobbies • Hardware • Garden Shop • Major Appliances • Auto Center • Pet Shop

Ninth Floor
Employees Cafeteria



BRANCH STORES


Kettering (1961)
East Dorothy Lane at Woodman Dr.
156,000 sq. ft.







Salem Mall  (1963)
Trotwood, Ohio
218,000 sq. ft.









Dayton Mall (1969)
191,000 sq. ft.

Upper Valley Mall (1971)
Springfield, Ohio
177,000 sq. ft.
The Blue Fox

82 comments:

  1. I worked here in the 1960s, mostly in the stock room of the Candy Department. It was the best job I ever had (and not just because of the candy). I have videos of the old Christmas window displays from the store. They have been refurbished and are in the lobby of the Schuster Center (on the site where the department store used to be) during the holiday season.

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  2. I miss the old Christmas window display. Even once the store was changed to Lazarus which is now gone as well, I was able to enjoy those displays. I'm 32 now. It's sad that this generation of can not enjoy shopping the way that I did growing up.

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  3. I lived in Fairborn from 1956 to 1963. I was 2-7 years old during this time. But I remember driving with mom and her friends to a department store with a huge parking lot. They had a cartoon booth in the back near the toy section where we kids could sit and watch cartoons while the parents shopped. Every time we went, Mom would buy me a Colorform. I loved those Colorforms. But was this a Rikes store or something else?

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  4. Hello, Laurie H.

    My brother lived in Fairborn when he was stationed at Wright-Patterson; so we visited. I believe there was a large, original Elder-Beerman store there at one time; it was quite unlike the E-B of today, so that may have been it.

    We also went to the Centerville Elder-Beerman and I was surprised to encounter a large, single floor department store with a balcony at the back for designer clothing; quite different from anything I had seen before. I would venture to say that the Fairborn branch was similar.

    Thanks for the memories . . .

    BAK

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  5. My dad grew up in Dayton. my Mom used to go to Dayton to shop. I bought my first paperback at the Rike's book department. Nothing quite compares these days to the hot dogs they served at the Mezzanine there. I also fondly remember the bell on the elevators.
    Thank you.
    Joe Decker

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  6. When I was 3 and 4 years old, my Mom took me to weekly ballet class at Lera Ray's dance studio which I think was on Monument Ave. Afterward, we would go have lunch in the cafeteria on Rike's mezzanine. Always the same for me: a PB&J and a cherry phosphate soda. Sometimes we would split a piece of their delicious chocolate cake - I still remember the texture - rich dense chocolate cake and fudgy icing, slightly chilled, as that was the way they served it.

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  7. I recall the Rike-Kumler Co. (Rike's) between the years of 1967 and about 1988 or so (whenever it closed and became a shell with a million square feet of former store inside). The store was simply one of the great ones. Kids remembered Santa and "Tikes" (and, of course, the windows), but it had "everything", to quote Sandy Duncan. It was a real big city department store, with all that implies. Its loss helped augur the rather service and style-devoid age we now enjoy.

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  8. I think that Ohio had more great department stores per capita than any other state . . . and Rike's was special indeed. I knew the store in the '70s when my brother lived in Dayton.

    Thanks for sharing your memories!

    Bruce

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  9. You're correct about Ohio.
    I should add about Rike's that a favorite haunt of mine was the employee's cafeteria on the ninth floor. That was in the tower addition and accessed just above the 8th floor ticketing/bill paying department via a very speedy escalator. It had a great view of the city and was usually bustling with employees going on and off shift. Rike's went up to the 13th level, actually. It had its own ad and art offices. I made a tour of the whole thing, once.

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  10. The reason I researched this company is because a friend of mine has a print of Lady Peel. On back of the frame it states; Antique English Color Engraving, Handtinted 1879; Styled and Framed for: The Rike-Kumler Company,Dayton,Ohio

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  11. I sent my comment anon. a liitle while ago. I am the one that commented about the print of Lady Peel.

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  12. Hi I worked at the Springfield Mall, I was the food mgr for the "Blue Fox Rest" A great store and the people and staff the best 1974-78. JHMazzoli

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    1. was there a 3rd floor at the springfield store? Everytime I go there and wonder this because of the height of the building, would love a tour....

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  13. I just bought a rock maple (dining room) side chair with rush seat that has a Rike Kumler Co. tag on the underside of the seat. Any info on the furniture from this store would be appreciated. Thanks.

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  14. I grew up with Rike's. At Christmas time, they had the corner windows with animated figures and a life size Santa and reindeer, that wrapped around the up part of the front of the building. I used to go eat with my Grandmother in the fifth floor dining room and it had great food. AHHHH..the good ole days.

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    1. Oh my, this could be me!! My absolute favorite memories of Rikes. I also remember the girls' dept clothes on the fifth floor. I have memories of my grandmother trying on hats in the millinery dept. Always someone to help you personally. I loved the BBQ sandwiches in the cafeteria on the mezzanine and our visit always concluded with a purchase of chocolate from the candy dept on the main floor. Rikes is the epitome of department stores!

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  15. Remember Rikes so well. Cannot believe it is gone.
    Remember when we dressed up to shop! LOL
    Have old Rikes dining room menu for sale. Please contact me at 2606 S. Chase Dr. Springfield, Il 62704 if you are interested in buying it. Not sure of the date, but you could get the feature luncheon for 65 cents! Also have Elder's menu.

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  16. PS - Did find date for Rike's dining room menu - on the front there is a picture of Rikes. Around this
    picture is the motto - We've Built Your Greater Rikes Under the bldg, there are the dates 1853-1938. So I am guessing this is from 1938 - the menu prices certainly seem to be from this era - veal steak with mushrooms, potato and fresh fruit cup with sherbert - 65 cents!

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  17. Grew up going to Rike's the day after Thanksgiving to Christmas shop. We always parked at Rike's Parking Garage at the corner of Main & Monument--a block up from the main store and we would eat in the mezzanine cafeteria. I loved their barbecue sandwiches and the cherry phosphate. I was priviledged to work in the pharmacy at all of the branches but the favorite was the downtown store where I started as a intern. The pharmacy was on the main floor and my most treasured memories besides the people that I worked with, was that at Christmas time Mr. David Rike would come around and great everyone by name. He knew everyone that worked for him. What a way to start life in the business world. So many times I recall that great department store where you could shop for anything and they would deliver it and charge it to your store charge account

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  18. All the warm accolades given here about the wonders of Rike's were well deserved. It was an extraordinary store. I too have very fond memories of shopping there at Christmas especially and eating in the mezzanine cafeteria. My sister and I both shopped at Tike's for presents for our parents and grandparents. An aunt used to take me to Rike's for my birthday and then treated me to lunch across 2nd street at the great King Cole Restaurant. It amazes me now that a city the size of Dayton had such world-class places to shop and dine. Ohio really was blessed with so many fine department stores. All six of the largest cities had at least one great store and Cincinnati and Cleveland had several. All the suburban malls, "lifestyle centers", discount stores and fast food joints in the world could never compensate for their loss. I feel blessed to have known them and sorry for those who did not.

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  19. I don't see any mention of the full service restaurant, which I believe was on the same floor as the Coin Room....I grew up in Dayton and visited the restaurant as a child and also as a Mother....ate in the Coin Room many times when I worked.

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  20. My first introduction to "Rike's" was when I was stationed at Wright-Patt in the Mid-80's. It was Shillito-Rike's at that point but I fell in love with the Downtown Store. I'm originally from Northeastern Ohio (in the country) and only got to see really grand department stores in Akron, Cleveland, and sometimes Pittsburgh (O'Neil's, Higbee's, Horne's and Kauffman's) probably only saw them each once growing up. But always Loved Dayton's grand lady the most (probably because I was an adult then). But at least years later I have came across several of the Rike-Kumler artifacts and enjoy them every day - Still trying to find away to publish pictures of them on some site. I have a set of the 1938 elevator doors, several stained glass mezzanine dividers, cafeteria trays, silver serviceware from the 'Dining Room' as well as 2 blond chairs. I have even been able to 'save' a green drinking fountain, brass ad wall display case and original oil paintings of David Rike and Samual Kumler. If anyone has any ideas how I can share these on the web I'm open to it.

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  21. I have a heavy metal coin which was part of the decor at the "Coin Room" at Rike's. I wish I could find out more about it.

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  22. Miss downtown Rikes. What a special place to shop and have lunch. I remember seeing Rikes in Piqua delivering purchases when I was little. They would send dresses for instance to our house, my mother would try them on pucrchase what she wanted or send them back. Imgaine the trust back then to do that? All of the pictures of me with Santa and the Easter Bunny were taken at Rikes. I am 63!

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  23. MY mother, who died Dec. 2011 at age 95 had pleasant memories of visiting her aunts who worked there in the 1920s and 1930s they and other employees gave her employee discounts, which she badly needed. Rike's was THE (only ?) place to shop.

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  24. Meet me in the Coin Room in the next life.

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  25. My Grandmother Eleanor Parnell was a longtime Rike's employee and retired from there. She lived on Neal Ave. and whenever we stayed over a weekend we would go downtown to Rike's on the RTA and go up to the Toy floor then have lunch in the resturaunt. We even got to eat on the very top floor employee dining area. Thanks for the memories...Larry Sussman Dayton Ohio

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  26. Would anyone have any information about young modeling clothing in the 50's-51-52-53? A lady named Sallylee Conline modeled there with my mom. Trying to find out if there are archive pictures out there. One of Sallylee Conline was on the cover of Life Mag. in the 50's. Anyone remember Maryjane Hurst modeling with Sallylee?

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  27. I recently picked up a crombie overcoat in ex-
    cellent,nearly new condition from a thrift store
    down here in Tampa and it had a Rike's store for
    men tag in it. Never heard of Rike's before that.
    Obviously,Rike's was a great department store
    from a time when being classy and customer service
    was important. Sad to see a time like that go....

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  28. I have a set of four small colored engravings that my great aunt bought at the Reike-Kumler store art department before 1958.
    I prize them because they belonged to her, and because of the store label on the back.
    I remember the store, but we did not get into the city very often.

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  29. My grandparents, parents & older brother were all from Dayton. Grandma worked for Elder-Bierman's (sp?) in the '60s - 70s. I just found a photo framed by The Rike-Kumler Co -- looks like a night time photo of downtown Dayton (with Rike's building in the center) dated 07/30/36. Just started trying to track down info on it.

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  30. My grandma just gifted me a 6 place settng china set from rikes that hadn't been open until today :) I love them.

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  31. I just found an ornate crystal chandelier from Rikes in Dayton, if anyone is interested look me up on Facebook at Rusty NChippy.

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  32. I too have fond memories of eating at Rikes with my grandmother and going to Rike's at Christmas time to see the window displays until the social unrest of the 60's made it too dangerous to go anymore. :(

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  33. I remember riding the bus going downtown Christmas shopping and seeing Santa and his reindeer display on the side of the building.
    I worked security at nights there later, the building was amazing.
    Doug

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  34. Just seems like nothing is the way it used to be. Rikes downtown was an icon in Dayton. Too bad that kids growing up today don't have the pleasure of enjoying it like us older folks did. It was great family time going there, and I also got to take home some chunk chocolate in bags. I did buy a brick from the building after it was torn down, so I do have something from Rikes. Ahh the good old days!

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  35. To BAK, or anyone that might be able to help? I've many special memories of Rike's department store, but only because of the playland w/ the live dolls that lead to Santa Clause. It was early 1980's that my parents were so awesome that would take me, & my four older siblings to see Santa there around Christmas time every year. I fell in love w/ the dolls & am still. This year they are being displayed at the Schuster Center (where Rike's used to stand before being torn down-Dayton, Ohio) I am anxiously awaiting my visit to see the live display once again, I haven't seen them since I was little (probably 7 yrs old max), so that way back in 1987. Sorry, I will get to the point now... I was wanting to know if anyone had any pictures of the old display when it was at Rike's? I'll be getting new pictures this year when I finally get to see them again, & was curious to see the difference, or if they made any changes in the dolls themselves. Plus, I guess I just wanted to have a picture & see how close I am to what my mind has always remembered. I do have a few from what the Dayton Daily posted online, but that's this years display, and not much of it. I'm sure they are wanting to get people to come & see it & not give too much away? Anyway, if anyone could possible help, I'd really appreciate it! Thanks!

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  36. Hello, and thank you for your memories. You may want to contact Wright State University, where Rike's archives have been preserved. There you could potentially find pictures of the old display.

    I would like to write a history and memoir of Rike's using the archives, but the usage fees make it impossible for me, and the publisher will not assist with these costs.

    Do let me know what you find if you pursue this tip, and Merry Christmas!

    Bruce

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  37. What a treat it was to shop with my grandmother there. NEVER missed a Christmas waiting in line to see Santa and have your picture taken, then shop at Tykes, and topped off eating in the cafe. My grandmother furnished her entire house from Rike's. And it was all beautiful and quality merchandise. Still have Thanksgiving place settings and a turkey platter she gave me. Loved those window decorations. I'm taking my 2 teens to the Schuster to see these displays. Thanks for keeping Rike's alive!

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  38. I grew up in the 60's in Ohio. My Aunt and her family lived in Fairborn. As a child,when we would visit, we always went to Rike's,so many memories.Those wonderful "Christmas Windows". In 1976,I went to work at the downtown store. I enjoyed my employment there. I reflect back alot. I also assisted in putting together those "Christmas Windows". I never dreamed as as child that one day ,I would be there.

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  39. Hello. My name is Brad Burns with Burns World of Merchandise in Richmond Indiana. I have a Rike-Kulmer antique table here at my store. It still has a tag on the underside of the table that has all the details about the table. I am trying to come up with an accurate value so I can price it accordingly. If you have any information at all please feel free to email me at burnsworldofmerchandise@aol.com.

    Thank you for your time

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  40. I was born in Dayton, Miami Valley Hospital, in the early 30's. I remember trips to Rikes, eating lunch in that dining room, beautiful women modeling dresses while eating. I still have a "kids" menu from there. The windows, Toyland, the trains, were all a big part of Christmas. My first visit with Santa was there. Rikes was a whole world in itself. Really special were trips to Rikes.

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  41. Fun to read all of these Rike's reminiscents and look at the pictures on this great website. I loved Rike's too. We used to take the bus (the number 5) down to Rike's after school to 'shop' for hair ribbons and have a cherry coke in the mezz cafeteria.

    But better yet was the August shopping trips to buy our Spalding saddle shoes in the sale and then have lunch in the lovely dining room (with the cutest little lidded glass chicken casseroles for our chicken a la king) and those upside down ice cream cone 'clowns' on white doilies. And the ladies modeling. So fun. There were nine of us kids so we went down in shifts for our back to school shopping and we had our packages delivered of course!

    My mother hired the Rike's interior designer, Ed Hollek, to do our house--I think at that time he was one of the only ASID designers in the area. And I think we have some of that rock maple furniture others have mentioned. Our brand was "Meetinghouse Maple".

    Rike's bridal department was where my sisters and I went to order our wedding dresses. In the 1970s there was a very knowledgeable (society) saleslady there who consulted with the 'brides' and helped with their gift registry to make sure they got the 'right' china. Of course they could order any dress in that you wanted--even special designers through the Moraine Room.

    We have many fond memories of Rikes--thanks for this wonderful website.

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    1. Thank you for writing my memories - perfectly to a T! I wish I still had my Mother's rock maple bedroom set. I don't live in Ohio anymore but hope to return tjis spring

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  42. Rike's at Second and Main in downtown Dayton. What great memories for me especially in the mid Sixties. Of course Christmas season was the best. The window displays were awesome as well as the Christmas trees and Santa in his reindeer-drawn sleigh on the store's exterior. Tikes!!!! OMG!!! I can't think about this too much. I'll cry... Where did the years go?

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  43. I promise to let you know BAK, thank you SO MUCH for your response & telling me about Wright State! I will try to see what I can find out, & if I can I will make a trip there... After all, it's only 15 mins. away from where I live! :) Thanks again!

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  44. I am based in the north of England UK. Last week I purchased a fabulous coat with the 'Rikes fur salon Dayton Ohio' label in the lining The coat is mink with a fox fur collar and the name Maggie Webster is embroidered on the lining. Just thought I'd do a bit of research as to where the coat originated and lo and behold I've just found this site having no idea that Rikes was a dept store! I wonder what stories my coat could tell and how it arrived in a shop in the English Lake district. Thank you for all the info and if a miracle happened and Maggie Webster is reading this ..........

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  45. It is wonderful to see that The Department Store Museum has even spread to the beautiful Lake District in the North.

    Rike's was really loved and appreciated by the people of Dayton . . . I know someone who said "never in my wildest dreams would I have thought that building would ever come down and Dayton would be without Rike's!"

    Perhaps even one of Maggie's descendants or acquaintances could re-connect with that coat!

    Thanks for sharing such a unique tale!

    Bruce

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  46. Thanks for sharing the memories. One of the things I remember most is stopping at Rike's when I had to change RTA busses on the way home from school. I would run in and head to the candy counter and buy a soft pretzel or a giant chunk of solid chocolate, the kind of piece that was so huge that you could take an actual bite but would have to knaw at it with your front teeth. I chisled away at it like a little squirrel all the way home. Good times...

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  47. My first real job was with Rike's--I became an associate buyer for the contemporary department in the early 70's. Many top management changes back then. Wondering if anyone reading this could tell me if they remember Sally Miller who was the buyer from the Handbags and Small Leather Departments. I believe she was from Jacobson’s and she helped me in the very beginning and I would love to thank her. I can't seem to locate her—let me know on this blog. It would be great. Thank you Susan

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  48. I was the voice of one of the live dolls that Gloria mentions from Santa's Village. I may have even talked to Gloria, since it was when I was in college in the 80s! It was a fun job- had to sit on a ladder behind the wall, holding a microphone, talking to children as they came by! But growing up, I remember the dining room the most- special dinners there always included the children's chicken and noodles, served in the ceramic hen!

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  49. Love all the comment about Rike's. As a child in Dayton in the 60s, Mom would take my lil brother and me to shop at Rike's. I fondly remember the nice older man who ran the elevator and always warmly greeted everyone.
    Holidays were great there with Toyland, the Tike Shop where kids could buy small gifts for parents and the Santa and Elves photos.
    And the candy shop, oh yeah.
    I do estate sales today and still come across many Rike's items in great condition.
    Often we would head to the Woolworth's for lunch; it was Mom's first job in the 50s and she loved it there as did we.
    Rike's was classy, and even though we weren't fancy people, it sure felt like it when at Rike's.

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  50. My wife did a bit of child modeling for Rike's around 1980. She wasn't sure of the flyer/magazine or the year, but I do know the timeframe. Does anyone have any of the old flyers and magazines for sell or at the very least I could view?

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  51. clutch purse made in belgum for Rikes

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  52. I worked at Rikes in the men's clothing department in 1962 or 1963. They put me in the department, where they sold really expensive clothing for men. One day I wore a red skirt and sweater to work, and the older, heavily made up, jewel bedecked 'lady' who was over me that day, took me to a corner and gave me the riot act over wearing red to work. She was very loud and rude. It embarrassed me, and hurt my feelings deeply. I didn't need the job that badly, so I quit. I never liked Rikes after that. Another thing that stands out in my mind, is that they paid their employees in cash, in an envelope. M.E.J

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  53. The photo you have labeled as Salem Mall is actually the Rike's warehouse which was located near Patterson Blvd. and the Stewart St. bridge.

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  54. If you worked in the Men's Clothing Dept during that time then you would have met my Father.
    He was a Tailor/Fitter there from just after WWII until the early 70's.
    I grew up in that store.

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  55. my father was a suit salesman during the 50's & early 60's I don't know the exact years but all my childhood was centered around Rilke's downtown. I remember going to the fancy dining room & the hobnail chickens that was filled with chicken pot pie. I have a handkerchief that was given to customers for their 100th year anniversary. I had it preserved & it hangs in my living room. What memories

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  56. Ahhhhh, memories… how good they feel.And how fortunate to have others who will share their memories with us and, at least for me anyway, realize that we are connected more than we know. I too shared a journey in Dayton. Born and raised. We lived on the West Side and going ‘downtown’ was a TREAT. I loved it. We’d put our dime in metal shiny box ( aboard the yellow RTA bus ) and that dime took us downtown to a place of magic. ( at least it seemed that way to me ) I recall my sister and I would get off the bus right in front of the Elder Beermans ( it was a tall blue building ) and we’d take the elevator up to the ‘record department’ ( the toy department was on that floor too ). I recall that Beerman’s had booths in the record dept, and they’d would play a little bit of the record , if you wanted , before you’d buy. I recall being with my sister,( we were like pre-teens ) listening to the early Beatles. We’d then leave Beerman’s and head across the street to McCroy’s , Thal’s , and Baker shoes. Then on to Rikes-Kumler~~!! And that was a treat, because once inside you felt ‘special’. We knew this was a store for ‘rich people’ and we’d pretend that we were too. I recall riding the escalator up to the ‘juniors Dept and the clothes there !!! I wanted them all, ( but couldn’t afford ). I always felt that they were extremely well made… I too loved the corner window Christmas Display ( Our mother was usually with us during those trips )… Does anyone remember the ladies powder room? Remember all of those mirrors?… What a classy place Rikes-Kumler was…. I recall always wanting to buy ‘something’ when I’d go downtown and usually it was a magazine( anything featuring the Beatles, like 16 magazine! ) .. I’d recall purchasing my magazine at the little magazine stand, that stood right outside the side entrance of Rikes. From Nov after Thanksgivings all though the month of December was a magical time for us and our trips to Downtown Dayton..

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  57. I WAS A STUDENT NURSE IN 1971 WHEN MY FRIENDS AND I WERE ATTENDING MIAMI VALLEY HOSPITAL SCHOOL OF NURSING. I HAD MY FIRST MAKE-OVER AT RIKE'S INCLUDING FALSE EYELASHES, HOW WE LAUGHED COMING HOME, AS ONE OF MY EYELASHES GOT LOST ON THE BUS! I WAS ARIKE'S SHOPPER UNTI I LEFT DAYTON IN 1978-I MISS ALL OF THE GOOD OLD DEPTSTORES, WHERE ONE WAS TREATED WITH RESPECTAND PEOPLE WERE HAPPY TO HELP YOU!

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  58. I have a vintage 1968 Dikes of Dayton Purse. I'm looking to sell it or give to someone who will get use out of it or display it. Please reply to this

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  59. Just on a whim, decided to check on some info on Rike's...how fun it's been to read all the posts and remember when..... I was born in 1951 and was raised in Eaton.Many, many times I came to Dayton to shop at Rike's with my mother, sister and maternal grandmother. I, too, remember their delivery service, eating at the dining room, mezzanine, and coin room. My paternal grandmother worked on the 7th floor in the linens dept. At Christmas, she would take us to work with her and while she worked, we'd tour the store on our own (and behave!) and meet her for lunch at whichever place we wanted. Of couse my favorite place while growing up was the candy counter where they had the best mint patties and the best butterscotch discs I've ever eaten! As many of you, we always visited the Christmas windows, Tike Shop, and Toyland. In later years, I attended from Sinclair (before they had the campus they have now) and lived at the Loretto. I still went to Rike's at that time to shop and ate many a meal at the Mezzanine. Wow what memories this has brought to mind; almost too many to share! Just ask my kids! They've heard so many stories of Rike's! You just don't find department stores of this caliber any longer (complete with elevators AND escelators). Too bad. As a footnote, does anyone else remember the little wooden carts they would ocassionally have on the 1st floor where they would sell real lavender in little wicker holders? It's a scent that reminds me of Rike's every time! Thanks for the great memories and reminders of things I'd forgotten about a wonderful place!!

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  60. I grew up in Dayton, in the 50's. My sister and I loved to do our "Christmas Shopping" in the special kids shop. We left Dayton in 1961 but Rike's has always held very happy memories for me.

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  61. Worked at Rikes for 18 years. As a Maintenance Mechanic I visited and worked at all the stores except one and three of the warehouses. The only store I did not work at was the Oxford Store which was run separate from Federated under private ownership.

    The upper floors (Only 1955 Building) housed-
    9th Floor- Employee cafe and rest area, Advertising and Ad Photo Shop, Mail Room.
    10th Floor- Maintenance (Electrical,Plumbing, Woodworking, Mechanic & Glass, Painters & Mechanic Locker Rooms), Display, Executive Offices (CEO, President, Vice President, Upper Management).
    11th Floor- Personal & Mid Level Management.
    12th Floor- Building Super.-Jim Coughlin & more Ad Dept. Offices.
    13th Floor- Only Machine Room (Water Tanks & Electrical, Storage, Fire Tank and pumping stations} & 1955 Building Elevator Bank Room.
    Rikes was really several building put together.
    1912 Building, 1938 Building, 1947 Filler Building, 1950 Building, Miami Hotel & the 1955 Building which went to 13 floors.

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  62. I have many of the original photos of my sisters and I with the Rikes Santa Claus love the kids gift store where you could buy your parents something for Xmas.

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  63. All of these wonderful memories. I was born in Dayton in 1953. My mother and I would ride the bus from our home in East Dayton and stay until the store closed at 9:00 on Thursdays. Rikes always went above and beyond in service. I remember my father and I buying a gift for my mother and getting FREE gift rapping. I also remember stopping into Rikes to shop during my lunch hour. I moved to Florida in 1985, and I believe that a big part of Dayton died when they closed Rikes downtown store.

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  64. I am 58 and have wonderful memories of Rike's in downtown Dayton. Every year we would go as a "family" (remember those days) to see the Christmas displays in the corner windows... then down to "Rikes Tikes" where I would get a dollar or so to go shopping for my parents and sister. You got to enter this little toy shop like area, without your parents, where all of Santa's helpers who would help you shop. Later in my teens, we were finally allowed to take the RTA bus downtown after being dropped off at the bus stop near Town & Country on Far Hills. How grown up we felt!!! I loved the old elevators that were still operated by older men. I think we gave them a run for their money.... HA!! Gosh, I miss the good ol days!!!!

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  65. Emily von Stuckrad-Smolinski25 December, 2013 23:35

    I have been the curator for the Rike's Animated Windows for the past 10 years. I work for the Victoria Theatre Assn (which runs the Schuster Center.) I love reading all of the wonderful memories everyone has about Rike's! I, too, remember it as a very small child. One of my first memories is actually of the elves! It's a sincere honor to have everyone come down at Christmas and enjoy the figures. Just to give some brief history on them: What we own, was sold at the Rike's auction, purchased and displayed North of town, then the DDP purchased them, then donated them to the VTA when the Schuster was being constructed. The FIGURES are the only thing remaining. We had to build new "windows" (what we call boxes) and recreate new scenes incorporating the figures we had remaining. Every once in a while someone will come forth with a new figure, but it's probably been 5 years since anyone new has come forth. I've also looked for the Rike's reindeer, but they seem to be gone for good. If I can get one donated (or even borrow it) I can recreate them! If anyone has anything they would like me to take a look at, please feel free to contact me: Emily von Stuckrad-Smolinski (937)228-7591x3045 or emily.vonstuckrad-smolinski@victoriatheatre.com

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  66. I worked at Rike's Salem, camera and men's department, while in high school (1964 / 65). Left for 2 years while in the Navy reserves. When I returned I was made a buyer trainee in the basement store. On a branch trip to the new Dayton Mall store I met by wife to be. We were engaged one month later. So we are fondly connected to Rike's. Carl and Helen, Greensboro, NC

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  67. I remember watching puppet shows at Rike's back in the late 1960s. One such show was a remake of the 1964 TV special Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer, but it was done with marionettes.

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  68. Does anyone know who purchased the Santa, sleigh, and reindeer? Victory Theatre is looking for it......... They want to put it on the Schuster Center this year......

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  69. I worked as a model for Rike's newspaper advertising in the late 60's and early 70's, also for a time when it was Shillito-Rike's The studio was on the ninth floor and Bob Slack was the photographer. I still have all the newspaper ads I appeared in. Such a shame the building is gone.

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  70. My Uncle Rolly Henderson was the man behind the R! He signed his name and used the R from his signature to make the R!

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  71. At Rikes does anyone remember the monkeys in the pet shop back in the 70s?

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  72. Hi I have 3 pc brush mirror & comb set that still has the prime tumbler tag on 3.69 for the set in mint condition and some other pieces wondering if anyone on here knows anything about these my email is lessie.shiflet@yahoo.com thank you for your time

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  73. My name is Jeff Powell.......my mother worked in the kitchen at the Blue Fox in the early 70's. When she decided to retire, the manager asked if she would write down her recipes. As most great cooks do, they have no recipes. It's always apinsh of this and a dab of that......you know the drill. When she retired the restaurant had two culinary arts students follow my Mom around for a couple months, writing down her recipes. She's been gone for several years now and I've always had regrets that I didn't document the things she prepared...............PLEASE, if anyone has access to any of these cook books, please contact me @ trackerjlp@gmail.com Thank you.

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  74. Somewhere someone has some of those old white chicken soup bowls. It was covered with a china chicken. My brother used to get in trouble, when we were little, by trying to "feed" the chicken his soup! Someday I'll find one!

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  75. I still have my little metal credit card that my husband and I used to buy our first piece of furniture. We both grew up in Dayton and went there often especially for the holidays specials. It was so sad when the city had it imploded. There was a time when it was one of a kind and Mr. Rike's name was well known in the US for the way he ran his business.

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  76. To: Anonymous 17 Feb 2014 19:42
    Also worked with photographer Bob Slack when I was at Channel 2. Does anyone know if Bob is still around? He was a great photographer and a pleasure to work with! When Paul Warfield (Cleveland Browns) worked at the station with Omar Williams, Bob took a picture of me and Paul and presented it to me in poster size...still have it!!!

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  77. Never heard of Rikes until I was lucky enough to get an old Chinese composite doll on a stand with a Rike's price sticker on the bottom. Lead me to this page, prompted my to read all of your fond memories. What a joy! Thanks all for sharing!

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  78. I worked there from 1974 to 1980 in Traffic, my wife in Advertising till they moved to Cinn in 1981.We never punch time clocks, sign in sheets, They would cash your check at the cash office. If you stayed over they bought you supper. I miss the family atompshere that wae Rikes. I was in Dave Rikes house. My friend was his houseboy for sometime. He gave him some money when he passed and I have never seen him since then.I just found a old Arkay news with many pictures of many people I worked with. Many are gone now, but, I remember them all.

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  79. I have so many great memories of visiting Rike's department store as a child and while in college- 1984-1988. The store was kept up nicely with a good merchandise selection until the last year or so the store was open when they began walling off sections of the upper floors.
    Dayton was unique at the time for a smaller city still having 2 large, full line department stores downtown- Rike's and Elder-Beerman conveniently located across the street from each other.
    I specifically remember the candy counter , Charlies on the Mezzanine, and Rinaldo's bakery (loved the Napoleons they sold) along the Second street side of the store. I remember perusing the electronics department and thinking that $1000.00 was a lot for a single disc CD player (1987) The sales associates knew how to treat the customer and were helpful when making purchases.

    I enjoyed the book department and was sad to see it go. The book department was replaced by an art gallery with changing exhibits. I had some of my watercolors shown there when they had the annual Dayton by Daytonians art shows.

    The Christmas windows at Main and Second street were wonderful and were faithfully put out each year at a time when many downtown stores no longer bothered to maintain them.

    It seemed to me at the time that people loved the tradition of the downtown Rikes and new Elder-Beerman, but knew it was no longer the "in thing" to go downtown to shop.

    Thank you to everyone who has posted comments about this great store!


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