Hardware store opens in Peabody
Inventory is still trickling in, but Jamie and Korie Hatton decided they had worked too hard to be thrown by setbacks as they opened Hatton’s Hometown Hardware this past week.
The couple spent months renovating the space at 124 N. Walnut St. in Peabody where a hardware store has stood since the late 1870s.
They planned to open in early April, but that was before an outbreak of COVID 19 slowed delivery of inventory to a crawl.
“We could have opened over a month ago,” Korie Hatton said.
The store was still waiting on deliveries of paint, lumber, and steel hoses, rental equipment, kitchen cabinets, counter tops, flooring, metal roofing and siding.
Undeterred, the Hattons decided they had enough product for a soft opening even if they weren’t able to offer everything they planned.
“The community needed us open. The community needed things,” Jamie Hatton said. “And they were willing to work with us and were understanding of not having it all in place. They wanted us open.”
“I am glad we did, they poured the love in here, they really have” he said.
This first week they had a steady stream of visitors dropping in to say “Hello.” A few bought pies.
The Hattons are keeping everyone safe during COVID-19 by wearing masks and gloves and providing hand sanitizer at the front of the store. They have masks available as a fundraiser for the Peabody food bank.
“We are sanitizing everything including the door handles,” Korie Hatton said.
The 22,000-square-foot space gives customers enough room to stay at least six feet apart from each other as they admire Hatton Hardware’s remodeled interior.
Jamie Hatton put in 20-hour days for months transforming the space in a way that would embrace the character of the old building even as he renewed it.
“I am all about the nostalgia, what a hardware store used to be and what made hardware stores come alive,” he said.
He used roofing tools to rip up particle board and tile to reveal the original wood floors which were thoroughly cleaned, sanded, and stained.
“One time I stayed up 42 hours straight,” he said of the staining and sealing process that took four coats of polyurethane. “I couldn’t stop.”
The Hattons repurposed everything they could find on the property and reused it. Jamie Hatton built the front desk from scraps left in the lumber yard and tin from the barn.
Jamie still has a few projects left for the interior as stock comes in. The final touch will be a display of old tools, that have a memory attached to them, starting with a planer from the 1900s someone bought in as a gift .
The couple plans to finish the building’s exterior in time for a grand opening, with a barbecue, sometime in June.
Their dream is still a work in progress, but the warm welcome has made their hard work worth it, even as inventory continues to trickle in from suppliers.
Jamie said the experience has humbled him and taught him patience.
“Actually it’s something I still need to learn,” he said laughing. “With all this work, you will not be able to get it all done at one time. There are not enough hours in the day.”
When former owners of the business Mark and Ginger Whitney dropped by, Mark told them they had done “a great job” with the new store, which was a great feeling.
“I hope I have done it justice,” he said.
Last modified May 6, 2020