Skillern Drugstores grew up in the Dallas, Texas vicinity with an early 1885 location in Lewisville. Another Skillern’s followed near the Dallas Courthouse in 1910. James A. Skillern, founder, had stores dotted around Texas by the 1930s. The chain blossomed to many locations across Texas, Oklahoma, and Louisiana, to a peak of 145 stores.
Skillern’s became a departmentalized store in its prime, having the traditional lunch counter and many departments of product lines in addition to its pharmacy. This writer remembers the Big Shakes made from scratch that were discounted during Back-to-School shopping days at the Snider Plaza location in University Park, a suburb of Dallas. Also, I loved fountain Cokes. More syrup and less fizz.
Growth and Buyout
In 1979, the chain was purchased by American Stores Company, which operated the stores under the name “Skaggs/Skillern” for a time. In the 1990s, American Stores began converting many of the Skillern stores to their Osco Drug, Revco, and Sav-on Drugstore brands, and by the early 2000s, the Skillern name had been phased out completely.
The last remaining Skillern Drug Store, located in Richardson, Texas, was converted to an Osco Drugstore in 2004, marking the end of the Skillern brand. A Dallas Blog has many posts of fond memories at Skillern Drugstores.
The ownership of Skillern Drug Stores changed hands several times over the course of its history. Here is a brief timeline of the ownership changes:
1885: Skillern Drug Stores is founded by A. J. Skillern in Dallas, Texas vicinity.
1979: American Stores Company acquires Skillern Drug Stores.
1997: American Stores Company acquires Revco, which assumed most Skillern store names.
1999: Albertsons Inc. acquires American Stores Company, including the Skillern Drug Stores chain.
2006: CVS Pharmacy acquires 700 stand-alone Sav-On and Osco Drug stores, including many former Skillern locations, from Albertsons Inc.
2018: CVS Pharmacy completes its acquisition of Aetna, a healthcare benefits company.
Today, the former Skillern Drug Stores locations are part of the CVS Pharmacy chain.
- Year Started: 1885
- Year Ended: 1979
- Origin Of Name: Name of Founder
- Location Sales: Texas Vicinity
- Brand Name Predecessor: Several
- Brand Name Successor: N/A
- Owner Original: James A. Skillern
- Owner While In Use: Many
- Owner Successor: Several
- Year Resurrected: N/A
- What’s Popular Today: CVS Pharmacy
- Naics Code: 456110
- Location Headquarters: Dallas, Texas USA