Loomis Brother's Store #3
258 Salmon Brook Street
People of a certain age in Granby still remember the large sprawling building known as the Loomis Bros. Store. Some remember it as Guay & Kellogg, some remember the antique shop called Houston's and some remember when it came down in 1975. It was a landmark in Granby Center and an iconic reminder of the past. Where was it located? Today, it would be right in the center of present Rt. 189, which was moved after the store was demolished. The history of the store began in 1891.
A Bit More About The Buiding:
The opening of the new Loomis Bros. Store in 1891 was an important event in Granby. The night before the Grand Opening, there was a large gathering of local residents. They were served ice cream and lemonade and the general opinion was that the new store was "beautiful."
In its booming days, Loomis Bros. was truly a general store. It carried groceries, meats, fish, hardware, farm machinery, clothing, dry goods, horse blankets, kerosene, liniments, overalls, gloves, shoes, boots bicycles, candy, fertilizers, suspenders, stationery, pens, toys, writing paper, and much more.
With its multiple uses and other occupants, the building drew almost everyone in town to its doors. It held the Post Office (until the Democrats won the Presidential election) the local Court and the Town Clerks office. People came to record deeds, buy hunting, fishing, and dog licenses, purchase money orders, mail letters, cash checks and discuss the latest news. Of course, they also purchased anything they might need or sent a note to have items delivered by the stage. Upstairs was an apartment for a clerk and his family and a room used by the St. Mark's Masonic Lodge. In addition, there was a barbershop in a half basement and a farm machinery store in the back.
The Shattuck family, who lived next door at 254 Salmon Brook Street, had a long association with the store. In 1890, a young clerk named Edwin H. Shattuck was hired for two weeks when Chester Loomis was on vacation. Those two weeks lengthened into forty-four years. As the two brothers aged, Shattuck was given more and more responsibility. The business was incorporated in 1906 and Shattuck was made a partner. In 1911 he bought the store from his former employers.
Other Shattuck family members were also involved in the Loomis Store. Edwin's older brother William had a print shop, The Shattuck News Co., from around 1895 to 1905. His company supplied most of the store's printing needs. Around 1916, William did clerical work in the store. Edwin's son, Allen D. Shattuck, opened a Print Shop in the store in 1933 and was later joined by his sister June. In 1934, Edwin sold the store to his sons, Earl and Allen. They sold the store in 1941 to James Lee Loomis, son of Chester Peck Loomis. It was back in the Loomis family again.
At the end of its life, the carefully filed records of nearly 70 years were found in the attics. There were credit slips for almost every family in town because shopping was done on credit. One letter said “Please send 1# butter by the morning stage. I will pay you when I come in.”
Some letters are touching – a worried wife who didn’t tell her husband how much the new stove cost, asking the Loomis Brothers to please keep her secret.
There was a spirited exchange with the Telephone Co. It seems the phones were out for a time and the Loomis Bros. decided to take $1.00 off their bill. The Telephone Co. replied with a form letter they are probably still using stating “it wasn’t our fault and service was restored as soon as possible.”
1939 the store was remodeled and a 10-foot long soda fountain was added.
1941 Hanna and Guay moved into the store and in 1945 they bought the store from James Lee Loomis.
1947 Guay and Kellogg owned the store. Part of the first floor was rented by the town of Granby for office space.
1962 Guay and Kellogg built a store on Bank Street (now Geissler's).
1975 Telephone Co bought the property and the store was torn down.