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Hardwick's Hardware in Seattle will disappear soon

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I've been going to Hardwick's for about 30 years. They are located at Roosevelt Way and 42nd St. NE in the U District. They are just about the last of their kind, a real hardware store. If you can't find something anywhere else, go to Hardwick's and they will have several of the item. Narrow aisles, tall shelves, all kinds of bins of loose stuff. They sell not only new stuff but also used. You just can't imagine how many items are in this store without having been there.

The whole area south and southwest of the U. has changed in recent years. Seen from I-5 approaching from the south, it looks like a row of canyons. A great many of the single story, single family buildings that were there have been turned into multi-story apartment blocks. I watched University Ford disappear a number of years ago. It's all tall buildings now. Hardwick's is one of the few single story buildings within a couple of blocks; they are dwarfed by multi-story buildings all around. I keep thinking every time I go down there, "I wonder if I'm gonna find them gone when I get there." Not yet, quite.

However, today I talked to one of the employees. He informed me that the building has been sold to developers and will be gone within a year. Of course all the development in the area ("highest and best use" basis for taxation, among other dynamics like voters going for every give-away under the sun) has caused their property taxes to be staggering. Then there is the issue with retrofitting an old brick building to contemporary earthquake standards which is very costly and impractical.

The owners of those looming, fancy, new multi-story buildings, they have no problems paying taxes on them. They fill the buildings with fancy tenants and gouge the bejeepers out of them for rent. It's the Seattle way. One of the drivers of homelessness is that there no longer are two-buck flophouses. Those old buildings have either been converted to "lofts" or demolished for new construction.

My dear old dad had a saying for this, it was, "So this is progress?? Who needs it?"
 

Mikej

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Lars Larson had a guy on a week or three ago that was the owner of a hardware store in Seattle and was closing up. Might have been the place you're talking of. I can't remember for sure but I think, maybe, he was moving to another community? And not just quitting? Here it is....


Man, when I get out of THIS fricken city I've watched turn to a festering, crowded loony bin for the last ten years or so I'l be jumping for joy!
 

1371JarHead

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Man 0 man that is my fav place in all of bubblegumattle, I was just there on Sat buying a new bench vise, made in America of course, it will be so sad to see it gone, great tools for everything, low prices outstanding service, super nice owners, sigh..sign of the times i guess.
 
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McClendon's in Kent is VERY much like that. They have expanded by opening up several other stores but they just ain't the SAME. The Kent store has the really neat old stuff while the other stores just carry the New Stuff.
 

AndyinEverson

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Somethings are tough to top...
Like an old fashioned hardware store , sporting goods store or gun shop.

Sure this can easily been seen as a case of yet another old guy missing the way we never were...But ...

I do have fond memories of such stores and I do miss 'em
Mom and Pop stores , the local working man's bar , a library filled with just books...
Little things like these , little slices of a America that is no longer with us....I am glad that I got to experience it.
Andy
 

Rickenbacher39

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We used to live in Bothell because, well, we didn't know any better.
This was at least 30 years ago and McClendons had a store in Woodinville.
It was such a cool place. Aisles so narrow you could barely walk down them
stacked to the ceiling with all kinds of man stuff. I was in heaven.
They were the only place I could find that would sell me a pallet of Presto-Logs.
We moved to a rural area 2 hours away around '95 with horses and other smelly animals
because we became sane.
Now I'm up to my eyeballs in Mom & Pop hardware stores, cafes and grocery stores, quiet
streets and good people.
And smelly animals.
Life is good.
 

AndyinEverson

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KKG,
Oh yeah Kesselring's was a great store...lots of guns there for sale and a nice big used gun selection for sure.
Andy
 
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KKG,
Oh yeah Kesselring's was a great store...lots of guns there for sale and a nice big used gun selection for sure.
Andy
I knew Ron real well and a couple of the sons. I have a good friend that I took up there and he ended up working for them until they closed after 50+ years. They were a Really Great place to deal with.
 
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I went there once when I lived outside Seattle - kinda neat.

There is a general store in Scholls I used to visit as a kid when I lived on the farm; Petrich's. The old store is gone now, burnt down. I remember the wood floor so warped it was hard to walk on, almost impossible to roll a shopping cart on (most people didn't bother). That was about 55 years ago - can't remember all the nooks and crannies - but I have a picture of it in my mind.

Replaced with a more modern store, but still private and small and serving the community. Only been in there a couple of times since moving back here.
 
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We lived out in the Forks area for a while and it was a little Peyton Place with all the things that were going on, BUT there were also many people and things that made live worth living out there!

But you really need to be HEALTHY because the "Medical" Staff leaves something to be desired! The Radiologist had already lost his Licence to practice Medicine but the Hospital still used him. He "Read" some X-Rays of mine and said it was a Broken Tailbone. He was Right, except when those same X-Rays were Read 7.5 years later it was determined that ALL 5 of my Lumbar Vertebra had been either Cracked or Broken!!!

Yeah, it was a Great place to love of you were HEALTHY!
 

Mikej

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Off topic, kind of...Not just the neat old timey hardware stores that carried some of everything, but how about the "FEED STORE"?! Ahh, the sights, the smells. Buying corn seed pea seed, chicks...(Little fluffy things that go "cheep, "cheep". Not the kind at the meat-market type bars.), baby rabbits. Chicken feed and salt licks, etc. I make a point to stop in just to take it all in when we're out in the country and see a feed store.
 
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Off topic, kind of...Not just the neat old timey hardware stores that carried some of everything, but how about the "FEED STORE"?! Ahh, the sights, the smells. Buying corn seed pea seed, chicks...(Little fluffy things that go "cheep, "cheep". Not the kind at the meat-market bubblegums/bars.), baby rabbits. Chicken feed and salt licks, etc. I make a point to stop in just to take it all in when we're out in the country and see a feed store.
It used to be called "Browsing" but the current flock of Chicks and Rosters can't seem to do it with anything but their Phone! They don't know what they are Missing!
 
OP
gmerkt
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Lars Larson had a guy on a week or three ago that was the owner of a hardware store in Seattle and was closing up. Might have been the place you're talking of. I can't remember for sure but I think, maybe, he was moving to another community? And not just quitting? Here it is....
This is the same store. However, the employee that I talked to said the "new" store in Post Falls would be specializing in high-end wood working tools and they weren't trying to replicate the original store.
 

Mikej

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This is the same store. However, the employee that I talked to said the "new" store in Post Falls would be specializing in high-end wood working tools and they weren't trying to replicate the original store.
I look at it like, the man will have his store, his passion. And Seattle, in my mind, is a/the loser. But what do they care? All they want, like potland, is to have as many tax paying people, buildings and businesses stacked on top of each other for more and MORE moneeee!
 
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In Seattle, it all started going to hell when they changed the lot sizes to half of what they originally were and changed the houses zoning requirements to allow giant multi unit complexes to replace a few houses.
 

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