My Dewey mo­ment and the New­town Hard­ware House

The Advance of Bucks County - - OPINION -

Ev­ery­one re­mem­bers the fa­mous photo of newly-elected Pres­i­dent Harry S. Tru­man hold­ing up a copy of a news­pa­per pro­claim­ing, “Dewey de­feats Tru­man.” It was a fa­mously in­ac­cu­rate ban­ner head­line on the front page of the Chicago Tri­bune on Nov. 3, 1948, the day af­ter in­cum­bent United States Pres­i­dent Harry S. Tru­man beat Repub­li­can chal­lenger and Gover­nor of New York Thomas E. Dewey in the 1948 pres­i­den­tial elec­tion in an up­set vic­tory.

Well, my Dewey mo­ment came last Thurs­day with a front page ar­ti­cle in The Ad­vance of Bucks County pro­claim­ing the early demise of the New­town Hard­ware House.

Even as I was putting the pa­per to bed, busi­ness RwnHU DDYH CDOODhDn wDs finDOLzLnJ D GHDO WR sHOO WhH busi­ness to a New­town Bor­ough res­i­dent who plans on keep­ing the busi­ness open. I say, “It couldn’t have hap­pen to a nicer guy.” Dave has put his heart and soul into the busi­ness and has strug­gled to keep it alive for his em­ploy­ees and for his cus­tomers. And this 12th hour turn of events is about the best news that could have come out of this, es­pe­cially for our State Street busi­ness community.

But that doesn’t ex­cuse my rush to tell a story that wDsn’W TuLWH UHDGy WR EH WROG. FRU WhDW, , DSRORJLzH WR Dave, his em­ploy­ees, my read­ers and es­pe­cially the nHw RwnHU. , hRSH WhHy cDn finG LW Ln WhHLU hHDUWs WR for­give.

With that said, I stand by the feel­ings I ex­pressed in my orig­i­nal opin­ion piece.

Dave has been a bea­con in the New­town community for years, a shin­ing ex­am­ple of what it means to be a small busi­ness owner through his gen­tle and po­lite man­ner, his al­ways help­ful ad­vice, his ever present smile and his will­ing­ness to get in­volved and make the community a bet­ter place.

AnG WhH cRPPunLWy nHHGs WR UHcRJnLzH hLs cRn­tri­bu­tions pub­licly in some form, maybe through a res­o­lu­tion or a procla­ma­tion.

Dave has given back to the New­town community over and over again, through his ac­tive in­volve­ment with the busi­ness community, his sup­port of com­munLWy RUJDnLzDWLRns DnG hLs OHDGHUshLS Ln WhH 1HwWRwn His­tor­i­cal As­so­ci­a­tion where he vol­un­teers hours to pre­serve the town’s past so oth­ers who come af­ter him un­der­stand what came be­fore.

To the new owner, I say thank you for step­ping up, sav­ing one of New­town’s land­mark busi­nesses and giv­ing Dave about the best send-off imag­in­able.

Small busi­nesses like the Hard­ware House stand as a sym­bol of what makes this coun­try great and what makes small towns like New­town a truly spe­cial place to live.

What we need to do now is to em­brace the new owner, wel­come the changes he will bring and paWURnLzH WhH EusLnHss EHcDusH yRu GRn’W NnRw whDW you have un­til it’s gone.

As , sDLG EHIRUH, LI wH cRnWLnuH WR flRcN WR WhH brand new, big box re­tail­ers and choose to spend our dol­lars over the In­ter­net at re­tail­ers based else­where, Main Street will be a far dif­fer­ent place in the fu­ture – a hol­low shell of its for­mer self.

Let’s make a con­certed ef­fort, es­pe­cially in these chDOOHnJLnJ WLPHs, WR flRcN EDcN WR RuU 0DLn SWUHHWs and sup­port our lo­cal mer­chants. Oh, and here’s an idea for the new owner. 0DyEH whHn hH hROGs WhH RI­ficLDO ULEERn cuWWLnJ, they can hold up last week’s copy of The Ad­vance of Bucks County, much like Tru­man did of the Chicago Tri­bune, and pro­claim a new be­gin­ning for the Hard­ware House in­stead of its demise.

Let’s use this “close call” to re­mem­ber and sup­port what’s im­por­tant about small town Amer­ica. And at the same time give the new owner a warm and grate­ful wel­come and honor Dave for a job well done.

(Jeff Werner is the New­town Zone ed­i­tor of the Ad­vance of Bucks County)

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