The Boston Store is a former department store located at and State Street in downtown Erie in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania. The store itself was founded in 1885, with the building being constructed in 1929. At its peak, two other Boston Stores were opened, in addition to the downtown store. The Boston Store was closed in 1979. The building remained abandoned until 1988, when it was renovated into a combination apartment and commercial building, and was renamed Boston Store Place.


  • Boston Store as it looks today
    Boston Store as it looks today
  • Famed clock in Boston Store
    Famed clock in Boston Store
  • 1960s photo of the interior of Boston Store employees preparing for Christmas season
    1960s photo of the interior of Boston Store employees preparing for Christmas season
  • Exterior of Boston Store in 1960s
    Exterior of Boston Store in 1960s

The Boston Store was founded in 1885 when Elisha H. Mack bought the bankrupt Erie Dry Goods Store. Mack renamed the store after Boston, Massachusetts, then the "perceived...center of fashion and culture." The store was moved from its original location on Peach Street to the 700-block of State Street in 1886. From 1886 to 1930, the Boston Store expanded, purchasing more of the property on its block. By the late 1920s, the store had managed to acquired frontage on all four surrounding streets—Peach, State, 7th and 8th. Mack retired in 1925, shortly after his longtime business partner died.

In 1929, a new Boston Store was designed by the Erie-architectural firm Shutts & Morrison. The new store was completed in 1931 and was estimated to have cost $2 million. From 1949 to 1953, renovations and expansion of the Boston Store were carried out by the local architectural firm Myers & Krider. The three-story portion of the Boston Store facing Peach Street was raised to six in 1949; the three-story structure on 8th Street was demolished and replaced with a five-story one the next year. Escalators were installed on first through fifth floors in 1953.

The Boston Store was bought by Associated Dry Goods in 1959. Management of the Boston Store was assumed by Home's department store of Pittsburgh in December 1975. Because of the loss of sales caused by competition from the Millcreek Mall in nearby Millcreek Township, the Boston Store was closed on July 7, 1979.

The Boston Store was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on October 24, 1996. The upper five floors were renovated into 125 apartments. The radio stations WFNN, WJET, WRKT, and WRTS broadcast from the building. A restaurant was opened on September 22, 2008 on the ground floor of the Boston Store, but closed in December 2013. UPMC Health Plan moved into a 7,600-square-foot space on the first floor in early 2011.

Trostle, Sharon, ed. (2009). The Pennsylvania Manual 119. Harrisburg: Pennsylvania Department of General Services. pp. 9–56 Miller, George (September 19, 2008). "Let's eat under the clock". Erie Times-News. pp. 1B–2B. Kinal, Brian (February 7, 1999). "Hope on Horizon for Boston Store". Erie Daily Times. pp. 1B, 10B. "You haven't lived here if you haven't...". Erie Times-News. November 30, 2009. p. 1B. Bruce, David (March 2, 2011). "UPMC Health Plan removes signs from Erie's Boston Store". Erie Times-News.