Wonderful Times

I LIVED ON MONTANA STREET, IN 1952 THRU 1955. I REMEMBER THE PIONEER AND ALSO ECHO PARK ( WITH ITS BOATS ). IT WAS A VERY NICE PLACE TO LIVE & I SOLD PAPERS ON THE CORNER OF SUNSET & ECHO PARK. ONCE, THEY HAD A STAGE PLATFORM, OUT BACK, WITH MUSIC PLAYING BY A GROUP–REMEMBER THIS WAS EARLY 50’S, WHEN R&R WAS JUST BEGINNING, INCLUDING ELVIS. WE MOVED TO MONTANA FROM GLENDALE AREA & I HAD TO TAKE THE RED CAR TO SCHOOL IN GLENDALE FOR A FEW MONTHS TO FINISH UP THERE. THE RED CAR–RAN PAST ECHO PARK (GLENDALE AVE.), UP TO BEVERLY BLVD. & WENT UNDERGROUND IN THE TUNNEL TO DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES. WOW–I SURE AM TELLING MY AGE. ANYWAY, WONDERFULL TIMES & THE PIONEER MARKET WAS ALWAYS GREAT TO US & ECHO PARK WAS SUPER TO SPEND TIME WITH FRIENDS & WHISTLE AT GIRLS. HA HA ALLOWED BACK THAN. I WISH EVERYONE COULD HAVE SPENT TIME BACK THAN, AN EARLIER AGE–BUT A LOT MORE FUN & PACE SO MUCH SLOWER. GOD BLESS EVERYONE.
BOB R.

The Canadian Connection

My mother came to LA from Montreal PQ in 1926. “Izzy” Liebow followed her to LA but my mother married a dentist, and he married Eva, who was also from Montreal. My mother said that Izzy founded the Pioneer Market. I went to public school with their two daughters, Norma and Marilyn, and I attended Marilyn’s wedding around 1960. We visited their house on Douglas St many times when I was young, but lost touch after 1960.
Burt Kleinberg, Carmel CA

The Pioneer Spirit

I remember I used to live in the apartments located in the Jensen building, my mother would take me shopping to Pioneer market. We would walk the aisles up and down looking for whatever we needed. I would love riding the quarter machines outside.
 
I also remember those brown paper bags I would cover my books with. All this hapenned 1984-90, I was 9 yrs. old; now I'm 30 and have moved to Hollywood. Every Saturday I take my kids to Echo Park and share with them my stories about Pioneer. Now a Walgreens stands there, when I go inside I can still feel the Pioneer spirit, it's amazing how Pioneer still lives in me.
                                                                                    Frank Olano, Hollywood, CA

Pre-Pioneer

Although I don't have a lot of historical data, my grandfather, Issadore Liebow, started the market in the 40's, from what I recollect. When he passed away suddenly at an early age (in approx. 1955), my grandmother, Eva, was forced to sell to the investors, again from fuzzy recollections. However, we always had fond memories of our Grandma Eva telling us about those early days of operating the market, and how much it meant to her and my grandfather.
Robert M. Weller, Oak Park, CA

Market in Turmoil

I lived in Echo Park from 1988 to 1996 & frequently shopped at the Pioneer Market. Great Hispanic food, very friendly people, & much fun during holidays.But my strongest memory is from the 1992 riot following acquittal of the police involved in the Rodney King beating.
I thought for sure Echo Park (& the Pioneer) were too far away from the looting & burning. But the first day of the rioting (4/29/1992), I couldn’t get into the parking lot because the entrances were blocked by grocery carts. And on the next day, National Guard troops stood
guard all around the store. It was truly bizarre to see this friendly neighborhood grocery store that I’d shopped at for years surrounded by obviously armed military officers.
–Dana Graves

The Market is Gone but the Memories Remain

Although I no longer live in Echo Park, it will always hold a special place in my heart as well as Pioneer Market. I remember going there when it was the old store located right on the corner. I still remember my parent’s excitement when the new store opened up and how we went to check it out. I remember walking there to but anything from milk to tortillas to sandwiches from the deli (they were so good).
Pioneer was like a place where you were bound to bump into a classmate, neighbor, friend, or even a teacher. When I moved to West Covina, I’d make it a thing to go back when I was in the neighborhood and take advantage of the specials. I even showed my kids where I
used to live and where we used to shop for groceries. When I heard they would be closing it, it made me very sad, but things go on and the memories will forever remain in our hearts.
–Gabriela Rico-Barreto

After School at Pioneer

I remember going shopping with my grandma, all the time there and going home with a bunch of bag and remember hating that because we lived right on the top of Laveta Terrace. This was 1987-93 I also remember when I would go to school every morning (I went to Logan St. School)
and stopping by to play those video games they had, and stopping by after school and meeting my brother, so we can walk home together. I just recently found out that Pioneer Market had closed I now live in Las Vegas, and it does not compares to that old neighborhood that I
loved so mush for many years.
–Karla C.

Bargain Hunters

I used to go shopping with my father at the market in 1950. I was
9 years old and we would get eggs, milk, and butter. He would complain
about the price of eggs and butter, but he would always buy them. I
remember a colorful neon top on a sign; I remember the store being on
the corner of Echo Park and Sunset Blvd, with the parking lot in the
back.
–Zoe Levy

A Unique, Old Fashion Style

My memories are not that far back because I am only 23 years old.
Anyhow, I still would love to share them. I remember when I was a
little girl my Mom and I would go to Pioneer Market all the time. I
would go with my Mom like in the 80’s and she would never say no to me
when I wanted a coloring book and crayons. They were located right in
the entrance near the liquor store.
Actually I remember getting in line at the liquor store when all
the other registers had long lines, it was way much shorter.
Pioneer Market had a lot of detailed artwork all along above the
walls. There was a cute little house with a cat outside drinking
water out of his bowl on the wall right above the deli section. It
was so cute that I always appreciated it. The market had a unique
little old fashioned style to it. Most markets are very simple and
aren’t as old as Pioneer Market was.
I made sure to take pictures of Pioneer Market before they closed down.–Maria Romo

The “Weenermobile” Arrives

My memory of the Pioneer Market was that my mother used to take me there around 4 a.m. to avoid the crowds. We would go down the isles and shop for canned goods and we were able to take our time. Oddly, I recall the labels on the cans were very beautiful and colorful and
have seen few like them since. Names like “Glorietta”, “Oregon”, “Reese”, “LeSuer”, “Iris” come to mind. I also remember buying “White Rock” soda, which had a little winged lady on a rock looking into a mountain stream. I believe it must have influenced my future vocation,
because today I am a graphic artist and product packaging designer. Around 1963 or so, BIll Stulla of KHJ TV’s “Engineer Bill” show came to the store and I got to meet him again. I was on the show in 1957. The Oscar Meyer Weenermobile came to visit one Saturday as well.
I also clearly remember seeing a small building being built in the parking lot in front of the liquor store around 1964 or so. It was the “Pioneer Chicken Take Out” building. The liquor store was a fun place for a kid, since it had a great magazine rack and I could read
the comics for free. The clerk knew me and it was okay. A great place.
–Chris Anderson, Palm Springs