Mollie Netcher

When lifelong Chicagoan Mollie Netcher (1867-1954) got a job as a shop girl at The Boston Store, she never dreamed of marrying the store owner…or running one of Chicago’s largest department stores but that indeed happened! Charles Netcher unexpectedly died at a young age and 37 year old Mollie Netcher took over the helm and became the boss.  She led The Boston Store through arduous construction, fierce competition and contentious acquisitions. In those days, incorporating women into a downtown dominated by men and creating an atmosphere favorable to women shoppers was no easy task. Under Mrs. Netcher’s leadership, The Boston Store provided a platform for women’s empowerment as shopping became one way that women could declare their independence. Mrs. Netcher ran The Boston Store for over four decades. While the Boston Store went out of business in 1948, the 17 story building still stands at the corner of State and Madison, a testament to the courage and determination of Mollie Netcher.

Why this stop? The Boston Store building (now a mixed use retail/office building) is a block south of the State/Lake station which serves the Green, Orange, Purple, Pink, Blue and Brown Lines.

Get involved—Are you a successful businesswoman? If so, mentor another woman (or transgender or gender non-binary person). Sharing your experience and knowledge can impact the future of a younger business professional in amazing ways!