Franz Hardware tops the "gone but not forgotten" category. Here's the Eliot Building as it was in 1993. Sailworld is right next door. In the era when every fourth storefront sold windsurfing equipment, Franz actually sold everyday household items.
Downstairs just out of view was the "Archery Shop."
Category: [Downtown Hood River]
Thanks for the picture that was my dad's store. Because of the Ace Hardware sign I can tell this was after my dad had sold out to my cousin Pete. Would also like to see a picture of the mural on the west wall. Is it possible that you have an old picutre with the Dutch Boy on it before they updated it?
Norma on 9th January 2015 @ 7:27am
If I remember correctly Dr. Luke Smith had his office up above before he went down on Cascade.
Charlott on 9th January 2015 @ 7:29am
Damn, I miss that store!
Dan on 9th January 2015 @ 8:07am
I loved this store!
I still have most of the beautiful dishes that I couldn't resist buying when I would go in, to browse around or get help with some hardware questions.
Everyone should have the opportunity of fond memories of a local business, such as many of you have memorialized with this week's photos.
l.e. on 9th January 2015 @ 8:14am
To the north is the 50's-60's Safeway building but the awning indicates this is after it became a pizza place. At the rear/east lot Safeway trucks backed steep uphill to unload in the basement door, fun on the ice without sliding down toward the RR station.
Kenn on 9th January 2015 @ 8:29am
They had it all, might take a bit of time to find it. I miss the store, I miss the gruff George, I miss Gilbert, I miss Joy...........do not like getting old. Arlen
Arlen Sheldrake on 9th January 2015 @ 8:33am
Home Depot has it all now Arlen. But no Gil and George or anybody else to help you find it. But looking down at the grass, still beats looking up at it.
Buzz on 9th January 2015 @ 9:36am
My memories of HR businesses only go back to 1970. Safeway was up on State street across from the Library.
Even that parking lot was steep. I remember the guy ahead of me in the check out line looking up and saying "On NO!" as he ran out the door to try and stop his pickup that was slowly rolling down the hill.
Another car in the parking lot stopped it.
l.e. on 9th January 2015 @ 10:02am
I would suggest that in the period I remember--the 1940's and 50's--that Franz Hardware was the hub of the downtown businesses. And that George and Gilbert Jubitz were a major part of the core of influential merchants. Also, I was always fascinated by the sliding ladder they had in the front of the store to reach their top shelves.
Bill Seaton on 9th January 2015 @ 12:39pm
Franz Hardware was truly a classic dry goods store. I recal as a young 'un in the 1960s spending time there wandering the aisles looking at everything from chainsaws to teakettles to rope on spools. What a place! Nothing like that anymore, even Home Depot
Susan Turner on 10th January 2015 @ 6:37am
I'm so glad everyone enjoyed this series of photos of the recent past. As l.e. pointed out, this should encourage you to take pictures of everyday things today so we can all enjoy them in 20 years.
I'll post another series highlighting historic preservation in a few weeks.
Arthur on 10th January 2015 @ 10:49am
Hardly a day goes by that we don't mention something hard to find, or needed to fix something, and say "Franz Hardware would have had it." It was a wonderful store. George told me a funny story once about Tom's grandfather, Ed Slade, who died in the early 50s. We lost a huge amount of institutional memory and much more, when Franz closed. (Not to mention a place to get parts for my treadle sewing machine.)
jeanie senior on 10th January 2015 @ 3:25pm
Good point Arthur but I worry about what processes are being established to acquire digital photos from folk. While my focus is on RR history, the concern is general. It is one thing for a family member to bring in a load of printed pictures....will todays spouse bring us a digital drive?
Arlen Sheldrake on 10th January 2015 @ 6:25pm
Paul Sanstrum was the manager of the Safeway store then. and kitty-corner across the street was the 88 Cent store when I came to HR. Miss talking to the Jubitz's and finding one little bolt or nut. I didn't have to buy a whole pack of nails, bolts, etc Our HR Museum has set up a replica exhibit of the store, complete with their old cash register and counter. Probably in storage now, so that other exhibits can be shown. A bigger building is needed!!!
Judy on 11th January 2015 @ 8:55am
Jeanie, I remember the Slades. He would bring her to Wilma Sherwood's to get her hair done. While he was waiting for her he would make pinwheels for the kids in the neighborhood. Mrs. Slade was a good friend of my grandmother Jubitz.
Norma on 11th January 2015 @ 4:16pm
The Hood River Glacier, April 9, 1908, page 7
Frederick & Arnold have secured the contract for the new Eliot building to be erected on the corner of Oak and Second streets, and it is expected the building will be finished in September. The building will cost about $20,000, two stories and full basement. The walls will be of pressed brick and the building will be an ornament to the city, as well as providing more room for the increasing mercantile trade. Most of the building has been already rented, but there is still some space left.
Jeffrey Bryant on 13th January 2015 @ 9:58pm
Oh my, the memories!! Gilbert was my grandfather, I loved spending my summers "working" in the store. I would stock the shelves in the front corner with sports equipment and apparel, make bows that would be used to wrap gifts in the housewares dept., and would also help Grandma Georgia send out the bills to people that had charge accounts. I believe she only did this two times a year? Can you imagine a business operating that way today??!!
Jennifer Young on 14th January 2015 @ 8:20am
The Hood River Glacier, July 9, 1908, page 7
Wm. Haynes, the well known hardware man has disposed of his stock to E. A. Franz, who has for some time been associated with the Stewart Hardware and Furniture Company. Mr. Franz will take over the business August 1st and soon the new Eliot block is completed will occupy the spacious floor of that building with a full line of everything in the business.
Jeffrey Bryant on 24th January 2015 @ 9:13am
The Eliot Building, 1909, is the very first commission (1906) of A. E. Doyle (Butler Bank, 1924 & Lakecliff Estate, 1907), the noted early 20th c architect of Portland. It is named for Thomas Lamb Eliot, Portland's most prominent citizen of that time and a patron and good friend of Doyle's. Here's a great tidbit...the initial drawing for The Eliot was done in Florence, Italy when Doyle & Eliot happened to run in to each other in 1906. Eliot owned a country home outside of Hood River and plans had already been drawn for his hardware store/office building by a local architect, P.M. Hall-Lewis. Eliot ditched those plans and hired Doyle, making it Doyle's first job on his own after leaving the Portland firm of Whidden & Lewis (First National Bank, 1910). Eliot went on to found Reed College and Doyle was his architect of choice. Much more in Doyle's biography, "The Beauty of the City", by Philip Niles.
Ellen on 4th March 2015 @ 11:31am
I remember this store well, but we went to Volstorfs in the heights, my grandfather had a mechanic's shop attached to it - whew, long time ago
John Graff on 8th June 2016 @ 12:36pm
One day when visiting Hood Rive in the 90's, before we moved here, I spotted a decorative stone animal in Franz' store window and was so surprised to find the artist, Isabel Bloom's work so far from my hometown of Davenport, Iowa. Her stone garden figurines continue to be immensely popular all over the Mid-west, and beyond, I guess.
Ellen on 1st September 2016 @ 8:48pm
I remember marveling at the beard on the moose head on the store wall.
Barbara Parsons on 11th December 2020 @ 8:44am