Our Pictorial Past – Shoemaker Hardware

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 Photo courtesy of the Pickerington-Violet Township Historical Society
 The hardware store was, and is, often a hub of activity in small towns. In Pickerington that hardware store was Shoemaker Hardware, located at 24 W. Columbus St. According to Gary Taylor of the Pickerington-Violet Township Historical Society, the building at 24 W. Columbus St. was constructed in 1870 and purchased in 1873 by John Shoemaker from A. Brackbill. "The popular thought on the building is that it was originally a tavern," said Taylor. Shoemaker built an attached house to the building in 1884 that could be accessed from the original building via the second floor. In 1886 the building became Shoemaker Hardware with John operating the business until 1913 when his son, Frank "Shoey" Shoemaker took over. Taylor said Pickerington old timers remember that Shoey cut a square hole in the second floor that he used to create a homemade rope and pulley elevator to lift store items up and down between the floors. Shoey operated the store until he passed away in 1963, after which his wife, Grace, ran the business until 1969. "The store was his kingdom," said Taylor of Shoey. Pictured here is a young Frank Shoemaker (center) along with Billy Hoy (left) and William Henry Kraner (right) posed in front of the store in the early 20th century. The triangular sign above them reads "harvesting machinery, twine, etc." For information on the Pickerington-Violet Township Historical Society, visit www.PickeringtonHistoricalSociety.com

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