Condon Hardware at 114 Main St. first opened in town back in 1965 at another location on Main Street located in the same plaza it operates today, said Owner Dennis Condon, who is planning to retire at the end of this year.
MEDWAY — After 55 years as the town’s go-to store for local home improvement needs, Condon Hardware in Medway will close at the end of this year.
The popular hardware and supply store at 114 Main St. first opened in town back in 1965 at another location in the same Main Street plaza where it operates today, said owner Dennis Condon, who is planning to retire at the end of this year.
After experiencing some medical issues this spring – around the time the business’ lease was set to be renewed — Condon, 75, said he reconsidered running the store. And due to the coronavirus pandemic, he opted to retire rather than sell the space.
Ocean State Job Lot, which occupies the other half of the subdivided building is looking to expand into the space, said Condon, a former Franklin resident who recently moved to the Cape.
“I’ve met lots of nice people over the years,” he said about customers he’s known for decades, starting at 21 years old when he first started running the Medway hardware store. He said because he had built such a strong local customer base, the business has never advertised or had a website.
“It’s just all word of mouth,” he said.
His father Frank Condon first started Holliston Hardware in Holliston in 1954 before expanding to Medway in 1965. When Dennis Condon began running the Medway store as a young man, he thought he’d only be running it for a few years, he said. But he never left the family business.
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After his father retired in 1985, Condon said he didn’t want to run two stores himself so they sold the Holliston business. In 1989, the Medway store shifted from its first location to its current location next to Ocean State Job Lot.
Condon remembered the range of products the hardware store was selling during the first decade or so, including televisions, radios, washing machines and dryers.
“If you had to do any shopping you had to go to Framingham,” he said. “There was nothing even in Milford. Milford didn’t even have a motel or hotel.”
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The biggest competition came in the early-1970s when Wal-Mart moved into town, he said. But even recently during this pandemic Condon said business has been going well, and just the other day, he talked to a 58-year-old customer who told him he had been going to the hardware store since he was 3 years old.
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For 55 years, Condon has spent most of his time working, sometimes 60 to 70 hours a week, seven days a week, at the hardware store, he said. He bought an RV a few years ago that he still hasn’t used, and wants to take a 6-month road trip across the country. He also has a boat yet to be sailed.
“I bought it 10 years ago and haven’t had much time to use it,” he joked.
Lauren Young writes about politics, social issues and covers the town of Franklin. Reach her at 774-804-1499 or [email protected] Follow her on Twitter @laurenwhy__.