A new concept of supermarket, founded by Heinrich Wuhlmer. DegradoMart is kind of an urban legend of sorts. I heard the story about it from a friend who heard it from a friend, etc. It has been circulated around my grocery store. You can judge for yourself how accurate you believe it to be.

Heinrich was a man who immigrated from Germany during the 1930's when he was only 17 years old. During the 1940's Heinrich worked as a bagboy in a supermarket in midwest America called Baker's. In his employment at Baker's Heinrich dealt with many insults and slandering, because he was a German in a time when we were fighting the Germans. It has also been said that he hated older people.

After several years working at Baker's, Heinrich had a revolutionary new idea. Why not create a supermarket where people are not catered to? Where people can buy stuff at low prices, but they can sack their own damn groceries. A kind of 'no frills' supermarket.

Heinrich quit his job at Baker's and started to try and make his dream come true. He bought a small abandoned building in Omaha, Nebraska and started hiring people. His goal was to spend as little as possible and get more profit. He hired a few cashiers and stockers to start off with, but he was determined to never have sackers.

It's hard to believe that Heinrich was able to convince any investors to come into his little endeaveor, but it happened and on March 16, 1951, DegradoMart opened.

The prices were cheap and the decor reasonable, but there was no meat department or deli. Heinrich had a hard time finding enough space for these departments.

Things seemed to be going well until Heinrich forbade any people over the age of 55 to enter his store. When one gentleman told him he would never shop at his store again, Heinrich replied, "Good, Sir. You are one less idiot I have to deal with." Heinrich spoke his mind to all his customers which quickly took him under. His employees were allowed to insult the customers too. One girl who worked there told an older lady that she was too fat to live and should be shot. The girl was never fired.

After several law-suits and endless threats by various people to close down DegradoMart, it finally shutdown after two years in business. Heinrich went back to bagging at Baker's, but was fired after only a couple months. In 1958 Heinrich Wuhlmer died of an overdose of sleeping pills. There is still speculation today over whether his death was an accident or if it was a purposeful suicide.


I work in a grocery store, so I guess this is my greatest fantasy manifested into a node.


Disclaimer: This may or may not be true

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