WORCESTER (CBS) – It may be the last of its kind. After 235 years, Elwood Adams Hardware on Main Street in Worcester is closing.
The store opened in 1782. The Revolutionary War wasn’t over yet.
After just a handful of owners, this independent hardware store just can’t compete, and that’s going to be a big loss for its longtime customers and employees.
It’s not an exaggeration to say that Elwood Adams Hardware is an institution.
“They had everything you want,” says customer Rod White.
“There’s been a hardware store in this location since 1782,” adds Mark Lannon, the stores assistant manager.
Always on Main St. in the first brick building built in Worcester, and always the go-to place.
“The availability. The oddball stuff you couldn’t ordinarily find, and it’s quality stuff,” says customer Louis Delsey, who has been coming to the store for more than 50 years.
But the force of the internet and big box home improvement stores has made it tough for mom and pops to compete.
Lannon came to work at Elwood Adams Hardware right out of high school, and stayed for 35 years.
“I’ve worked with many families here. I’ve seen their kids go through elementary school, college, now having their own kids. I’m still close with a lot of them,” he says.
“I’m the kid,” says Carlos Colon. He’s the “new” guy, having worked at Elwoods for nine years.
“It’s sad. It’s been here so long. Too bad it can’t keep going,” he says.
Customers have been streaming in to say goodbye. Beverly Hastings wanted a momento, something with the hardware store’s name. She got it on this tape measure – the last one.
“I grew up in Worcester and this has always been here. So it’s sad to see it closing,” she says.
The store will hold a liquidation sale soon, and will probably close for good next month.
WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Lana Jones reports