Abraham and Joseph Neisner opened the first Neisner Brothers dime store in Rochester, New York in 1911. The chain grew exponentially through the early years of the 20th century. In February 1929, an interest in England's British Home Stores was acquired.

In 1937, there were one hundred and eight stateside Neisner's stores, which were located in sixteen states. By its peak -in the early 1960s- Neisner's operated one hundred and seventy-eight stores, in twenty-one states of the Union.

The Neisner concept for a discount mart store -known as Big-N- made its debut in 1967. It was not successful, due to competition from Woolco and Kmart. A struggling Neisner's conglomerate was sold to Connecticut-based Ames in November 1978. Some stores were shuttered. The remainder operated under the Neisner's banner until their closing in 1981.