S. Kann Sons Co., Washington, D.C.

Kann's Pennsylvania Avenue Store received  a new
front in 1959.

Before the resurfacing, the original store appeared
as a combination of buildings.

S. Kann's Sons Co. (Kann's) (1893)
Pennsylvania Ave., 8th and D Streets N.W.
Washington, D.C.

DIstrict 7-7200

Lower Level
The Bookstore • The Appliance Store • Records • Photographic Studio • Kanteen

Street Floor
Fine Jewelry • Silver • Costume Jewelry • Better Jewelry • Handbags • Gloves • Small Leather Goods • Fashion Accessories • Main Floor Sportswear • Hosiery • Scarves • Cosmetics • Toiletries • Hat Bars • Wig Bar • Millinery • Lingerie • Notions • Candy • Stationery • Cameras • The Linen Closet • Sewing Machines • Men's Furnishings • Men's Sportswear

Second Floor
Sportswear • Dresses • Daytime Dresses • Better Dresses • Better Sportswear • The Avenue Shop • Coats • Suits • Rainwear • Furs • Young Juniors • Junior Dresses • Junior Sportswear • Foundations • Loungewear • Infants' Wear • Children's Wear • Boys' Wear • Girls' Wear • Teens' Wear • Men's Clothing

Third Floor
Housewares • Small Electrics • China • Gifts • Draperies • Curtains • Upholstery • Broadloom • Floor Covering • Fabrics • Needlework • Sewing Machines • Trim-A-Tree Shop • Beauty Salon

Fourth Floor
Fashion Shoes • Men's Shoes • Luggage • Toys • Sporting Goods • Lamps • Pictures and Mirrors • Bedding • Furniture

(250,000 sq. ft.)

North Fairfax Drive,
Clarendon Circle
November, 1951
130,000 sq. ft.
The Kanteen

Coming in Due Course


  1. What a department store! It was one of those stores that you would find most things but they may have been more affordable there than the other department stores. You could always check here to find comparable items much more reasonable.

  2. I went there often with my mom since I was a toddler. I miss Kann's and Korvette's!

  3. I shopped here at the Arlington Kanns location with my grandmother when I was a small child in the 1960s and one of my fondest memories of Kanns was the Squirrel Monkeys in the shoe dept they had to entertain the children such as myself.

  4. My father worked for Kann's - he began his career in the D.C. store (where my mother worked in the Lamp Department) and joined the Arlington store when it opened; he worked with the same group of salesmen until the Arlington (Virginia Square) store closed. So many good memories - too many to list here :) I remember the Squirrel Monkeys in the Shoe Department and also the escalator in the middle of the store ! One day someone thought my dad was John F. Kennedy since he did resemble our beloved late President and this WAS the 1960's after all. My deja vu - I attended school in the Arlington location of George Mason Law School and am pleased to report the department store - although changed somewhat - is still standing - who else remembers the Kannteen and the Toy Department on the lower level? Hopefully others will post to this site - and thanks for the lovely walk down memory lane !

  5. Oh yes - and Korvette's - who doesn't miss the record department on the lower level? So many records to choose from and the stereo department was the best around ! The store in Bailey's Crossroads was the closest one to where I lived and those of us native NOVA people STILL talk about it ! I am sorry those who did not have the experience and delight of shopping at Kann's and Korvettes have missed so much !

  6. By the way, does anyone remember Woodward & LOthrop? Their motto used to be "our friends call us Woodies" - another wonderful memory for us and please post anything you remember - we shopped in Seven Corners (VA) at their Woodies store but also downtown (remember the delightful Christmas windows?????)

  7. If the work I've put into this site causes people like yourself to consider it a "lovely walk down memory lane," then it was really worth every minute!


  8. I worked there, right out of high school in the linen dept in 1941,1942 first as a stock boy, then salesman before going into the service.You could enter the department through an entry on 8th street as I remember. I remember eating lunch nearby for 35 cents.
    A great friendly store.


  9. Kann's was the first DC Department store to have black mannequins and was the first to use them in windows.

    James Goode's amazing book on lost Washington DC architecture (Capitol Losses) has a wonderful entry for Kann's.

  10. My great-aunt only shopped at Kann's, and after they folded, we carefully hoarded Kann's boxes so that she'd find Christmas gifts acceptable.
    We we'd go downtown as teenagers, we'd often eat at Kann's because we loved the barbecue they served.

  11. It was a great store. My mother had a charge account there and she would buy all her fabric there for sewing. One day my mother and my brothers went with my mother to the 3rd floor "Fashions by the Yard" and we saw a black mannequin on the right as we walked into the department and my brother and I were all a gasp! We couldn't believe it. I must say Kanns had very neat and well done window displays. I remember the D street Christmas window displays about the "Candy Man" with a Sammy Davis mannequin with music, and big lollipops and candy canes with little beautiful DG Williams children's mannequins.

  12. went there every month with my mother when I was young , grew up in southeast dc

  13. Remember, hot dog counter standing up eat! Didn't mind as a child it was fun! Old fashion elevators with people operating them! Kann's was memorable place in wash d.c. growing up!!!

  14. At Kanns, my mom was a bookkeeper, my dad did the fashion illustrations for the evening news, my Uncle Joe worked on the first floor as the buyer for the men's department, and our friend, Mrs. Pillsbury, worked in home goods. I even have a wooden display drawer from the men's dept. that I use in my home. The German bakery was the best there. Sure miss Kann's.

  15. I loved going to Kann's in Virginia with my parents in the 1950s and 60s. One of my very favorite dolls came from there - I still have her! It was also the store where I got my first pair of "high heels" (3/4" or so - in the early 60s, young girls didn't get heels until they were 10-12 years old - now I see them on 3 year olds!). I had my first non-sweet pickle chip at the Kanteen. Lots of fond memories!

  16. I ran across some s kann furniture at a storage unit auction that I purchased. Its quite beautiful and wildly original. Would anyone know where and how to get it appraised?

  17. Bought my wedding dress there in 1968.

  18. While antiquing one day I came across an old camera with film in it. I'm a collector so I purchased it and brought it home. I carefully unloaded the film and had it processed. Due to the age and the exposure of the film only a few pictures were able to be developed. Examined the photos and determined they were taken outside of Kann's dept. store. I would love to pass these on to anyone who is interested.

  19. If any of the photos would be appropriate for this web site, you could scan them and send to bakgraphics@comcast.net. I will be happy to post them for all to see.


  20. My family was part of the Kanns employees for many years. My mother was an elevator operator, my dad sold shoes, my aunt worked in the Credit Dept. My uncle worked in the warehouses. My 1st. job out of high school was across the street working in the accounts receivable dept. working with the buyers. We were one floor below the advertising dept. I will always think of Kanns as home.

    Regenia Campbell

  21. My family worked for Kanns. My Uncle Joe worked as a supervisor for their warehouse from the 1940's on, my Aunt the Credit Dept. my mom ran the elevators sat on the little stool, my dad sold shoes. I worked across the street in the accounts receivable dept. payroll was in my office, advertising was the floor above. Still have one of their boxes. I live not far at all from their Md. warehouse location it is a field now.


  22. I've still got a 1957 Kann's Christmas catalog with me as a 9 year modeling kids pajamas.

  23. I have a Box of Kann's Department Store Soap that my mother kept. Anyone interested email me at creativedreams333@gmail.com

  24. I live in PG County, MD and just found a small clear glass bottle in my yard while digging. It has "S Kann, Sons & Co." and "Washington" in raised letters on one side of the bottle. It did not have a twist off top - it looks like it may have been made with a cork top or something of that nature. Does anyone have any idea what may have been in it and how old it might be? I was assuming it may have had some type of scent or oil in it. It's about 3" tall and made of thick glass. I am forever finding old bottles in my yard. Cheryl