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County Seat (store)

County Seat was an American clothing retailer founded in 1973. With more than 740 stores at its peak, the chain closed in 1999 following Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

County Seat
Number of locations
Area served
United States
ProductsBlue jeans, clothing


Jack J. Crocker, then the CEO of SuperValu supermarkets, founded the chain in 1973 in Dallas, Texas.[1] Appropriate for the pun in its name, County Seat specialized in blue jeans and other casual wear. In 1977, the chain grew to 183 stores, and also began to sell sports clothing.[2] In 1983, it was sold to the Carson Pirie Scott department store chain of Chicago, who bought County Seat for $71 million.[3]

Carson Pirie Scott redesigned the chain's stores with matte black fixtures and re-focused the merchandise line to target high schoolers. The chain had 415 stores in 1989, at which point Bergner's acquired Carson Pirie Scott and sold County Seat to a new management team.[4]

Wet Seal offered to buy the County Seat chain in 1996, but was rejected.[5] The chain filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in late 1996 and began to close stores.[6] County Seat filed for bankruptcy again in 1999.[7]


  1. ^ "SuperValu, Inc". Retrieved 13 August 2011.
  2. ^ "Jeans chains wonder: Is there life after denim?". Men's wear: 46. 1978.
  3. ^ "No title". Business Week. McGraw-Hill. 2: 53. 1984.
  4. ^ "County Seat". Retrieved 13 August 2011.
  5. ^ "Wet Seal offers to buy 508 County Seat stores". The New York Times. 13 December 1996. Retrieved 13 August 2011.
  6. ^ "County Seat files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy". The Toledo Blade. 19 October 1996. Retrieved 13 August 2011.
  7. ^ "County Seat Files Chapter 11". The Orlando Sentinel. 23 January 1999. Retrieved 13 August 2011.