Travel with Bennett-Watt and learn about the Meeker Hardware Store in Danbury Connecticut, where you can buy old fashioned
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Meeker Hardware in Danbury Connecticut
Host: In Danbury, Meeker Hardware has been in business since 1883. Established first in Bridgeport early in the 1800s, they relocated to the boon town, Real and Mining Center of Danbury and have been a family right institution ever since.
Hal Meeker: Building itself was completed in 1889, the business started in 1883. And my great grandfather runs the business out of a freight warehouse in the rail yard. Built this building and apparently, it was a four-storey building. We had some pictures of it. Four years after it was completed, it burned to the ground. They rebuilt it, what you see from the outside it’s kind of staggered; it’s kind of a weird architectural which was what structurally sound.
I had kind of an eerie thing happen to me number of years ago, 1976. I was reaping out the old wooden floor in the basement getting ready to pour a concrete floor and I found an impression in the mud and I started digging and I hit granite. I started scratching little more and then I saw numbers and then I said 1889. And then below it, I started to read Meeker. Still to this day I get Goosebumps because I thought I’d found a gravestone. But a few years later, we’re getting ready to celebrate our centennial in 1983 and I was going through some of the old pictures and in the photo of the four-storey building. Here’s a stone of the peek of the fourth storey, and I finally got them where it came from because apparently during the fire, the whole front of the building collapsed. Landed in the back basement, they just built it and kept going. But that’s the stone you see out in front.
Host: The key to Meeker Hardware is longevity.
Hal Meeker: What are to find in business is that we setup an environment where it’s people-friendly, the music that you play, the atmosphere you create, the old victrola. Matter fact I got to crank that up because that’s something that when I was young I learned how to throw Frisbee and I can’t tell you how many records that I broke. They were vintage but it is something that was in my parents garage addict ever since I was a young child. This is the volume control. You open the door and its likely listening, sipping track on the back. I think its September 1918. It’s in perfect operating condition. So anytime we get young kids come in and they have their CDs cranked up, we’ll turn on the Victrola and makes them, “Isn’t this technology? This is great”, and I get confused.