Newtown Hardware House in Bucks County has been doing business for more than 140 years. David Callahan has owned it for the last 30. He says it serves its neighbors well.
“I am constantly surprised at how much they love this store,” he says.
But this last year has been especially tough. Callahan did all he could to stay open, even launching a “Save Newtown Hardware” bumper sticker campaign. He was also the lucky victim of a “cash mob” – when a group of people descend on a business at once and buy something.
“The cash mob was terrific,” says Callahan. “I’ve never witnessed anything like it. All these things helped but, at the end of the day, it still was not enough.”
So, sadly, Callahan put up a “going out of business” sign. And something curious happened — people came out of the woodwork to try to help him.
“You feel like you should say ‘Well, where have you been the past year?’ But it is ironic — you put the sign out that you’re going out of business and they all come forward,” he says.
One person even offered to buy the business. Callahan happily accepted, though he won’t yet reveal the buyer’s identity. He also won’t say what the new business strategy will be so the new owner won’t face the same struggles to stay open.