Mars Super Markets - History
Joseph D'Anna opened the first MARS store on Old Eastern Avenue in Essex in 1943. The store was located at the center of an apartment and military housing community known as Mars Estates. Because of that location, Joe adopted the "Mars" name.
Just down the road, Glenn L. Martin had developed and was building an aircraft that could take off from and land in water, the Mars Flying Boat. There is little doubt that the publicity surrounding this plane helped establish the Mars name in Eastern Baltimore County.
In 1945, Joe opened a second store in the 200 block of Eastern Avenue. In the same year, his two younger brothers returned from the war, first Carmen, who served in the Navy in the Pacific and then Angelo from the Army in Europe. Both brothers went to work with Joe and were made partners.
One year later, in 1946,the brothers opened a store in Dundalk, Maryland, closing the two locations in Essex. Not long after the move, Joe sold his interest in the business, leaving Carmen and Angelo each with a 50% share.
Mars, as it now exists, started at that time even though the name pre-existed the partnership. From that beginning, Angelo and Carmen promised to provide "only the best": the best meats, the best produce and the best and friendliest service. That has remained our guiding philosophy over the years.
Anthony D'Anna, the youngest brother, came to work for Angelo and Carmen in 1949, becoming a partner in 1955. Two more brothers also joined the company, Vince and Peter.
In January of 1995, Angelo N. D' Anna died after serving as the company's President for fifty years. Carmen, who became President at that time, opened three stores, Glen Burnie, Woodlawn and Edgewood.
After fifty years as the company's Executive Vice President and three years as President, Carmen V. D'Anna, Sr. died in August of 1997.
Today, still owned and managed by the D’Anna family, Mars operates seventeen stores in Baltimore, Harford, Howard and Anne Arundel counties. With just under 1700 employees, Mars is a major employer in the state of Maryland.
Mars is serviced by our own 300,000 square foot distribution center in Baltimore, supplying the stores with dry groceries, meats, deli/dairy, frozen and produce. Self-distribution ensures the ability to deliver well stocked stores and fresh products to customers every day.
Supported by our own buying staff, Mars purchases produce and seafood daily from local markets and always includes local produce, when available, from Maryland growers.
Offering many national brands at private label prices, Mars maintains a limited line of our own private label goods.