American chain of department stores stocking casual clothing. The first shop specialized in footwear and was opened in Seattle in 1901 by a young and penniless Swedish immigrant named John W. Nordstrom. During the 1960s, the company, which already held an important position in the footwear market, decided to extend its production to include clothing for women, men, and children. Today it owns 143 retail stores in 27 American states and has 23 international stores, mainly in Europe.