One hundred and twenty years old born in 1901, I remember some of my early trips to Walgreens on the south side of Chicago more for a chocolate shake at the small diner. Walgreens was truly famous for their malted milk shake that they created in 1922. The first self-service Walgreens opened on Chicago’s South Side in June 1952; the second followed in a few months at Evergreen Plaza. I remember traveling to Evergreen Plaza on the bus with a girlfriend in the late 1960’s and stopping at Walgreens for either a snack or a great place to purchase candy. My Mom shopped at Walgreens to pick up women or men’s perfume for the holidays. I also remember attending a party at the Walgreens home in Lake Forest in the 1980’s; attending a thank you party for theater they sponsored. They were very pleasant and down to earth.
Working at Horton’s Drugstore (for $4 a week) was a job he took only because of an accident that left him unable to take part in sports. While working in a local shoe factory, Walgreen accidentally cut off the top joint of his middle finger, ending his athletic competition. Walgreen became a pharmacist and left for Chicago. He worked for a variety of drug stores taking in what could be done and what should not be during the late 1890’s. it was not until 1901 that Walgreen was able to put together enough money for the down payment on the pharmacy. He wanted to buy the store in which he was working, owned by Isaac Blood. The store was located in the Barret Hotel at Cottage Grove and Bowen Avenue on the southside of Chicago.
After creating the malted milk shake, there were 44 stores expanding into Missouri, Wisconsin and Minnesota. Walgreens Charles Walgreen Sr. died in 1939, his son Charles R. Walgreen Jr. took over the chain until his retirement.Charles Walgreen III became the company’s president in 1969 and retired in 1999. However, he remained on the board of director until 2010. Some major milestones for the company happened in 1984 when Walgreen opened this one thousandth store. The five thousandth store was opened in 2005 and the eight thousandth store was opened in 2012. In 2014, Walgreens took its products and services to the four corners of the world with the completion of its merger with Alliance Boots, a leading international pharmacy-led health and beauty group
Currently, it operates more than 9,000 Walgreens drugstores. . The drugstores are in all fifty states, including the District of Columbia, the Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico The Walgreens headquarters office is in the Chicago suburb of Deerfield, Illinois.