Wal-Mart is the dominant retailer in America. 

We saw this amazing gif by the blog Excel Hero over at The Washington Post. It illustrates Wal-Mart's gradual spread across the United States. 

These amazing time-lapse maps by Flowing Data also help explain how the chain took over the USA in 40 years. 

Sam Walton opened his first two stores in Arkansas by 1965: 

 Ten years later, the retailer had expanded to 104 stores in Middle America:

 By the eighties, Wal-Mart had expanded north and east with 741 stores: 

 And by the 90's almost everywhere had one, with more than 2,000 locations: 

Here's the video version:  

Rapid Growth of Walmart from Nathan Yau on Vimeo.

See Also:

The Most Beloved Regional Soda Pops In AmericaA McDonald's In Queens Is At War With A Group Of Elderly Men Who Refuse To LeaveHere's The Anti-Union Slideshow Wal-Mart Uses To Train Managers

SEE ALSO: 19 Sad Photos That Show Why JCPenney Is Closing Stores And Cutting Jobs