New ownership — and name — for Gasport hardware store

New ownership — and name — for Gasport hardware store

Apr. 15—GASPORT — A hardware store in a tight-knit community can be more than just a place that sells tools, hardware or lumber.

For a store that has a longstanding history such as Standish-Jones, it’s a place that people in the community gravitate toward.

Besides walking in to purchase screws or saw blades, the employees would talk with customers and get to know them on a personal level.

Even on Standish-Jones Building Supply’s final day of business before a change in ownership this past Tuesday, people were frequently walking in and out of the store.

The community staple will be changing hands, as well as its name to Stockham Lumber, starting on Monday.

The business, which was under the ownership of Kathryn “Kitty” Ulrich and her family since 1986, is being sold to Dan Klipis, owner Stockham Lumber in Holley. The business will serve as Stockham Lumber’s second location.

Stockham Lumber will be acquiring most of the Gasport store’s existing inventory in addition to the purchase of the business itself.

Lumber will be for sale once again at the store following about a three-year hiatus of no lumber being sold at Standish-Jones.

Dominic McCarthy, an employee at the store, attributed this to rising lumber costs and slower sales. Despite this, he noted that the store selling lumber under the new ownership will fill a need in the community once again.

Stockham Lumber will also be repurposing the second floor of the business from the well-known “Always Christmas” store to a show room for products such as windows and doors, according to Dan Bragg, the operation manager for Standish-Jones and Spalding Hardware of 47 years.

Bragg said the Christmas inventory has been moved to the Spalding location in Lockport and they plan to continue to sell it there.

In addition to the Christmas store, there were about eight cats that lived at the store and were taken care of by the staff. The staff are currently in the process of finding new homes for the cats.

Bragg said that Stockham Lumber had previously inquired about purchasing the store and that Ulrich decided now was the right time to sell for various reasons.

“We’re getting older, obviously and help today is not as abundant as it used to be,” Bragg said.

While there will be different people in charge of the new Stockham Lumber store, he added that several of the employees will be staying between the Gasport and Lockport locations. The store’s well-known “friendly atmosphere” at both locations will not change, Bragg said.

“I think the future for here is good,” he said. “It’s going be bright and there’s going to be a lot of work ahead of us.”

Bragg noted that what they will most miss is the people they interacted with on almost a daily basis in the store.

“What we’re gonna miss the most are the people, the vendors and the customers, obviously,” he said. “They’re not just customers, they’re good friends.”