Historic District Downtown Building Inventory
Stevenson Hardware/Chard Building (Site ID 14)
Built for John R. Stevenson for use as a hardware store, this building has been remodeled several times. Stevenson moved to Pomeroy in 1891 to take over management of a hardware store. He started his own business in the late 1890s and in 1905, erected this building to house his store. Around 1922, Stevenson sold the building to The Farmers National Bank who remodeled the structure with professional offices on the upper floor, and a bank and the hardware store on the lower floor. Stevenson, a state senator and mayor of Pomeroy, died in 1928 of heart failure.
By 1930, Stevenson's Hardware had been liquidated and the bank closed. The U.S. Post Office moved into the entire first floor. In April, 1954, a fire damaged the first floor of the building that was then known as the Henry L. Chard Building. By the 1950s, the post office, a cafe, and insurance agency occupied the lower floor. The building was rebuilt after the fire, and in 1961, the post office moved into a new facility (#36) on Main Street, and the Chard Building was remodeled for use as a bank and restaurant.
Mearns Gates opened Gates Insurance in the center ground commercial space prior to 1958. As of 2020, that business is still being run by John Gates. Ilene's Beauty Shop was located in the western part of the building from the late 1960's through to the 1980's.
Joe and Alynda Benson purchased the building in 1998 and opened a Historical Museum in the western most street level commercial space and a Gift Shop in the eastern spot.
The professional offices on the second floor have been occupied by dentists, doctors, lawyers, chiropractors, and others. The last business on the second floor was a small print shop run by Bonnie Zeliff during the early 2010's.
Based on research by Donovan & Associates.
Stevenson's Hardware Building on the right, 1908
From a 1914, issue of the East Washingtonian
Clean up with this "Laundry Queen", April, 1919
Retrofit your farmhouse with this "Round Oak Pipeless Furnace" in 1920
In October, 1922, J R Stevenson was selling Furnaces to Go!
A wide range of supplies was available
The "Heatrola" was apparently still a big seller for Stevenson's in 1924
In the distance, you can see the western portion of the Farmer's National bank Building. This was probably after they had closed.
'Professional Cards' from the classifieds of the East Washingtonian, summer, 1924.
Dr. Clark wasn't in the Bank Building, he was next door on the other side of the Pomeroy Hotel. I kept him here because I'm intrigued by a "drugless physician."
This is not Pomeroy, but it was in the East Washingtonian in June, 1924, and there's the Chard connection. Women Tramps? (Ayer is, or was, on the Snake about 3 miles west of where Hwy 261 crosses the river at Lyons Ferry.) [I'm probably the only one who had to look up where Ayer was.]
Gates Insurance in the Chard Building. He was still there until 2017. And although John has retired, the historic sign is still there.
An undated advertisement from a Pomeroy High School The Harvest
Gates Insurance, October 1970
A bit wrinkled, but Merry Christmas in 1981 from all the Gates!
The western corner of the Chard Building during 1958, with the Post Office.
An advertisement from 1968, Ilene's was located in the western part of the Chard Building
Not sure if Ilene's was closed for a bit or a while, but the space was occupied by the Democrats prior to the 1968 Presidential election
Thankfully this type of hairstyle has passed away into history. Anyone remember Jeff?
Apparently, by 1981, Ilene had moved down (up?) the street to the corner of 6th and Main when this advertisement came out. I'll move it when that building shows up.