Hard­ware House to re­main a fix­ture on State Street

New­town Bor­ough res­i­dent steps for­ward to pur­chase busi­ness, will keep it open as a hard­ware store.

The Advance of Bucks County - - NEWTOWN AREA - By Pe­tra Ch­es­ner Sch­lat­ter

NEW­TOWN BOR­OUGH – In a 12th hour re­prieve, a buyer has stepped for­ward to pur­chase the New­town Hard­ware House and keep it open.

Dave Cal­la­han, owner of the New­town Hard­ware House, made the big news pub­lic last week just days af­ter he posted go­ing out of busi­ness signs on the doors to the 143-yearold store.

Cal­la­han said shortly af­ter an­nounc­ing plans to close, he re­ceived a phone call from a gen­tle­man who wanted to talk about buy­ing the busi­ness.

The two men met on Sun­day, MonGDy DnG TuHsGDy RI ODsW wHHN finDOiz­ing a deal that will trans­fer own­er­ship of the store some­time around WhH fiUsW wHHN Ln 2FWREHU.

Cal­la­han did not re­veal the iden­tity of the buyer, but he did say he is from New­town Bor­ough.

“He is go­ing to buy the hard­ware store and it will re­main a hard­ware store,” said Cal­la­han. “There will be some changes. You can still buy nuts and bolts and things you could buy in a hard­ware store and other things.”

Cal­la­han said he’s “very happy that the hard­ware store will continue to be in this lo­ca­tion do­ing the same kind of busi­ness it has for 143 years. I feel great they will add some new things that peo­ple will like.”

Fol­low­ing the change in own­er­ship, Cal­la­han said he’ll be stay­ing on for a while work­ing on a part-time ba­sis

Cal­la­han had been strug­gling in reFHnW yHDUs WR NHHS WhH EusLnHss DflRDW while search­ing for a buyer.

“I de­cided sev­eral weeks ago to hire a liq­ui­da­tion com­pany and to go out of busi­ness,” he said.

Last year, to bring at­ten­tion to the store’s plight and an econ­omy which has hit the build­ing trades and the hard­ware busi­ness par­tic­u­larly hard, he had bumper stick­ers printed with the words, “Save New­town Hard­ware House.” The stick­ers were an in­stant hit, bring­ing at­ten­tion to the store, but more im­por­tantly, bring­ing cus­tomers back.

And this past spring, a “cash mob” of sup­port­ers de­scended on the store, spurred on by a Face­book post­ing by cus­tomer Andy Smith, who en­cour­aged peo­ple to show up, “en masse,” to give the busi­ness “a bit of an eco­nomic boost.”

“Mob­bers” lit­er­ally swamped the store as em­ploy­ees rang up sale af­ter sale, from grass seed, tools and paint to light bulbs and nails dur­ing a busy morn­ing at the store.

“It makes me feel good,” said Cal­la­han at the time of the pub­lic out­pour­ing, as he reached for the words to de­scribe the in­cred­i­ble morn­ing. “It’s un­be­liev­able. It truly is.”

Cal­la­han said he’s now look­ing for­ward to re­tire­ment and “hav­ing a good time.”

He also hopes to do some trav­el­ing and to continue his vol­un­teer work with the New­town His­toric As­so­ci­a­tion and the New­town Fire As­so­ci­a­tion.

He also plans to re­main ac­tive with the State Street busi­ness community even though he will no longer own a busi­ness on the street.

He told one store­owner, “Just be­cause I don’t have a busi­ness here I hope you would let me continue help­ing.

“I’d like to see the mer­chants on the street get along bet­ter than they do and pull to­gether and at­tract more busi­ness to State Street,” he said.

Cal­la­han said he will continue liv­ing in the bor­ough, but he’ll miss walk­ing from his home a block away to the New­town Hard­ware House.

“I will prob­a­bly walk there au­to­mat­i­cally,” he joked.

Dave Cal­la­han at the door to the New­town Hard­ware House.

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