Before your favorite retail chain had locations all across America, they had to start somewhere. Some "birthing" stories are fairly well-known. For example, some of us may be familiar with how Wal-Mart got its start, almost fifty years ago, when Sam Walton opened the company's first discount store (Walton's Five and Dime) in Rogers, Ark. Five years later, there were already 24 Wal-Mart stores in Arkansas ringing up $12.6 million in sales.
But what about your other favorite retail chains? Where did it all begin for them? We visited the corporate Web sites of a dozen popular retailers to see where they got their start.