Bed Stuy Hardware Store Raid


Bed Stuy Hardware Store Raid

 

In July I dropped by this Hardware store on Fulton Street (btw Franklin and Bedford) to pick up some "humane" mouse traps.  They didn’t have any, but I was struck at the time by three things.  1.  A very angry customer was arguing with the clerk (owner?) about some paint or varnish he’d purchased there.  2.  He actually knew what kind of trap I was asking for unlike the many other hardware stores I’d tried along the way there.  3.  The place was shocking.  A litter of kittens appeared to be having an amazing time playing among the piles (and I mean piles) of stuff.  Like most stores in the area, the merchandise was behind glass, with a window for the merchant to collect money and pass you your purchases.  The window was completely stuffed with stock, "stuff" was stacked floor to ceiling and the owner was friendly and helpful and clearly knew where every single item was in the apparent chaos.  He stood in the center area of the store, on the same side of the glass as we did and only entered the shop area to dig through his wares and offer up suggestions.  I wondered if he was a hoarder, I wanted to ask a ton of questions, but I just needed a mouse trap and in the midst of an argument with another customer – it wasn’t the right time to try and slip in "How did this happen to your store?"  The neurotic, compulsive problem solver side of me thought of the possibilities of the place after a few days of cleaning.  I was convinced there could be treasure among the plumbing supplies, nails, tools and solvents.  I suppose the romantic, nostalgic part of me appreciated that such a place could stay in business as long as it had.   I’ve passed the place with a certain fondness over the past few months, a sort of mystery mixed with disbelief.

 

Currently Fulton Street is closed from Franklin to Bedford by police as they are emptying the store into trucks.  I heard a few rumors as I tried to figure out what was going on, but I don’t know why there was a rush hour raid on this little shop.  Judging from what I could see and what folks were saying, it might have to do with paint.  It’s sort of bittersweet.  Who knows, maybe the place will re-open tomorrow.  Maybe not. 


  • http://robblatt.com Rob Blatt

    There’s an awesome store on Bedford somewhere north of Bedford and south of Monroe on the West side. It’s run by an old lady who is thrilled to have “your kind of people” back in the neighborhood.