The Right to Sell

In St. Petersburg, Fla., slight, dapper James Earl Webb, 49, operates what he calls "the world's most unusual drugstore." Unlike most independent druggists, he never felt that he needed the protection of "fair-trade" (i.e., minimum-price) laws to protect him from the competition of big chain stores. Instead, he went out after customers with such unorthodox loss-leader promotions as selling two thousand $1 bills for 95¢ apiece. By selling everything from meat and liquor to haircuts and ladies' ready-to-wear, he boosted the annual gross of his hustle-bustling "Webb's City" from a first-year $39,000 (in 1925) to some $12 million currently.

While...

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