• "Sapanule - sold by all druggists" pointed consumers to drugstores, ca. 1885. Courtesy of the Boston Public Library via the Digital Commonwealth.

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    "Sapanule" sold by all druggists
    • Date
    • 1870-1900
    • Description
    • Title from item. Date supplied by cataloger.
    • Rights
    • No known copyright restrictions. No known restrictions on use.
    • Partner
    • Digital Commonwealth
    • Contributing Institution
    • Boston Public Library

  • Kugler's Drugstore, Duluth, Minnesota. Courtesy of the University of Minnesota Duluth, Kathryn A. Martin Library, Northeast Minnesota Historical Center Collections via Minnesota Digital Library.

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    Kugler's Drugstore, Duluth, Minnesota
    • Description
    • Kugler's Drug Store; windows; people; 127 east Superior street; ice cream; crushed fruit; soda; Edward Grochau in doorway; 1960s site of Sears and Roebuck
    • Rights
    • It is not necessary to seek permission to publish or otherwise use public domain materials that the Library has made available either online or directly to you from the collections at the University of Minnesota Duluth, Kathryn A. Martin Library. Thi... more
      It is not necessary to seek permission to publish or otherwise use public domain materials that the Library has made available either online or directly to you from the collections at the University of Minnesota Duluth, Kathryn A. Martin Library. This applies whether your use is noncommercial or commercial. Click here for more information link updated to: https://lib.d.umn.edu/research-collections/archives-special-collections/using-collections less
    • Partner
    • Minnesota Digital Library
    • Contributing Institution
    • University of Minnesota Duluth, Kathryn A. Martin Library, Northeast Minnesota Historical Collections

  • Mark's Drug Store, Fosston, Minnesota, ca. 1900. Courtesy of the East Polk Heritage Center via Minnesota Digital Library.

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    Interior of Mark's Drug Store, Fosston, Minnesota
    • Description
    • A note on the back says, "Peter M. Mark's Drug Store - Fosston, in the early 1900s.
    • Rights
    • Rights unknown.
    • Partner
    • Minnesota Digital Library
    • Contributing Institution
    • East Polk Heritage Center

  • A University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy graduation program, 1910. By the early 1900s many universities offered degrees in pharmacology. Courtesy of the University of Minnesota Libraries, Wangensteen Historical Library via Minnesota Digital Library.

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    University of Minnesota, Pharmacy School, 1910 Graduation Program, Minneapolis, Minnesota
    • Description
    • University of Minnesota School of Pharmacy graduation program from 1910.
    • Rights
    • No known U.S. copyright restrictions.
    • Partner
    • Minnesota Digital Library
    • Contributing Institution
    • University of Minnesota Libraries, Wangensteen Historical Library

“Anyone with enough courage and capital could open up a drugstore.”

—Gregory J. Higby, American Institute of the History of Pharmacy

The drugstore as we currently know it evolved during the nineteenth century. Prior to the Civil War, American pharmacists worked in storefronts. These small establishments sold only drugs and medicines and pharmacists placed their drug compounding supplies near the front door.

By the late 1800s, a new type of retail space was developed to sell both prescription and patent medicines. Now, the drugstore also included additional consumer products beyond medications, including magazines, candy, stationery, and cosmetics. The growth of the American drugstore eventually prompted a rearrangement of the space to accommodate a growing consumer market. The pharmacist and medicines were moved to the back of the store and other more profitable products such as tobacco, candy, and the soda fountain now occupied the prime real estate in the front and center of the store.