Now, before anyone takes me to task that a chain of 12 large department stores isn't a "small" business, I'll point out that Federated stores will own 730 stores after it closes these 68 stores. To think of what used to be LS Ayres as a large chain business is quaint, pre-Wal-Mart economics. Nowadays, these huge monstrosities have the money-flow of a mid-sized industrialized nation.
I'll miss going to get a "dress" shirt at Ayres. They have always been the standard of the middle-to-upper class department store. Always a step above JC Penny and never quite as large and bland as Sears, LS Ayres added a slight touch of class to Indiana. It had history. It had tradition.