It’s difficult for a small business be a sustained success. It’s even more unusual if that business has endured a number of hardships, like several major floods, a depression, a recession and an ever-changing customer base.
It makes it even more remarkable that Heuser Hardware will celebrate its 90th anniversary Saturday. The hardware store at 523 Spring St., which opened its doors in 1923, has become somewhat of a local landmark in Jeffersonville, and the owners plan to keep it that way.
Co-owners Larry Rogers, Tom Densford and Bill Densford each have several decades of experience working in the 90-year-old store. Rogers said he started working at the store in 1970 and bought into the store in the early 1990s. Tom Densford has been an employee since 1981, his brother Bill since 1989. They bought their share of the store in 2007.
Rogers said a lot has changed during his time at the store, but it’s what has not changed that continues to draw the customers back.
“It’s definitely part of the community,” he said. “I just think so many people depend on us.”
He said just the word Heuser’s in Jeffersonville carries a reputation with the area’s residents.
“We’ve always prided ourselves on taking care of the community,” Tom Densford said. “You make lifelong friends here, which we have. A lot of people still come in here and say they come in here because you can get service and get taken care of.”
That approachability and friendliness is apparent after stepping into the store. On a Wednesday afternoon, four employees, including the three owners, were joined by several customers coming in and out. A few lingered around longer than they needed to share a joke or chat.
Longtime voice of Jeffersonville High School Athletics Ted Throckmorton wasn’t there to purchase anything, but was hanging out behind the cash register joking with the employees.