In 1971, Penneys was rebranded as JCPenney. The red square hearkens back to a very old corporate motto, "Fair and Square." The square was added around 2000.
For this period, JCPenney was displayed in a bolder font.
In 2011, JCPenney (now sylilized as jcpenney) remodeled their look, bringing back the red square, but only covering the "jcp" part of the logo. The font is still Helvetica. JCPenney said that this is a modern look.
The logo was first used on a commercial during the 83rd Academy Awards on February 27, 2011.
Ron Johnson, known for introducing the first Apple retailers, became CEO of the company in November 2011. With new ideas proposed for the company, this new logo was introduced on January 25, 2011. The font has been changed to Gotham and the logo simply states JCP. It came into effect on February 1.
The logo returned the "Fair and Square" slogan that had been used decades ago, and the store format is mostly based on square shapes.