John Shillito & Co. (commonly known as Shillito's) was Cincinnati's first department store. It was founded by John Shillito and William McLaughlin in 1832 as "McLaughlin & Shillito", but their partnership soon broke up. In 1857, Shillito, now operating on his own, built a store on Fourth Street, designed by James W. McLaughlin. In 1878, Shillito's moved to a new landmark building on Race and Seventh streets, also designed by James McLaughlin. The fashionable new store had five elevators.
But by the early Depression business was not as good as had been, and in 1930 Shillito's was bought by the F&R Lazarus Co., which became a founding partner in Federated Department Stores a year later. The Shillito name was merged with corporate sibling Rike's to form Shillito Rike's in 1982; the name was dropped altogether in 1986 in favor of Lazarus. On March 6, 2005, the Lazarus name was dropped and the former Shillito's stores now operate under the Macy's brand name.
The landmark Shillito's department store building has been converted into the Lofts at Shillito Place luxury apartments. It is a contributing property to the Race Street Historic District.