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Glasgow University Archive Services, GUM

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Advertisement in Glasgow University Magazine, 13 October 1926 for taffeta dresses for sale at John Anderson's Royal Polytechnic department store.

John Anderson (1817-1892) was one of the pioneers of department store trading, if not the founder of the world's first department store. Anderson showed that there were large profits to be made from what he called "universal trading", selling many different types of goods under one roof. He was an inspired buyer, making regular trips abroad to plunder European markets for goods to sell in his Glasgow store. His revolutionary business methods, which included bulk-buying, price-slashing and bold, brash advertisements, were often criticised but also imitated by his competitors. He retired in 1891, handing over the management of the business to his sons.

Reference: Glasgow University Archive Services, DC198/34

Glasgow University Archive Services

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