Friday Flashback #280

Two weeks ago, Steve Baldwin’s treasure trove of December 1967 downtown Westport photos drew plenty of comments.

Here’s another he contributed to the great “Exit 18” Facebook page.

Changes were soon to come to Main Street. Within months, Art’s Luncheonette would become Westport Pizzeria.

Within a few years, the Westport Furniture Center would burn to the ground. Oscar’s would move a couple of doors north.

More than half a century later though, the bones of Main Street still look basically the same.


14 responses to “Friday Flashback #280

  1. matthew eugene panos

    My Dad took me to Art’s luncheonette in the morning on Saturdays when he was taking me to work with him. He was in the heating and air conditioning business and would meet up with the mechanics there before they started their day at customer’s houses. I couldn’t remember where it was, but you solved that for me! Thanks for the photo and the memory.

  2. The building next to Oscars was actually the W&J Sloane Furniture Clearance Center. It subsequently moved to Compo Shopping Center in the space once housing Food Fair, and the rebuilt Main Street space became Westport Hardware. And the small 3-story building became Swezey’s? Am I right on all of this?

    • matthew eugene panos

      Peter, from what I remember, it sound like you have it right

    • Peter, I’m pretty sure you’re right on most of it except for the 3-story building: As it appears in the photo, the building was owned by the Horelicks (?) and was occupied by Stanley’s TV Service, the Kodak store, and Oscar’s Deli on the first floor; the second floor was occupied by William Hill Field Advertising and Rudi Trautmann Design where I worked straight out of college in 1968. The door to the ad agency is to the right of the Kodak store. The third floor was occupied by Mrs. Horelick.

      Rachna of India eventually took over Stanley’s and the Kodak store. Don’t remember what took over Oscar’s — could have been Clementine.

      Also, as I recall, Swezey’s Jewelry was always to the right of the furniture store, not in the aforementioned building to the left.

      Art’s became Bill’s Smoke Shop which eventually moved across the street.

  3. The same Art as in Arts Italian deli next to the Post Rd bridge?

  4. Alfred Herman

    As I recall, the furniture store was originally Westport Hardware (during the 50’s). This was before everything being sealed in plastic packages………..they had tables with glass compartments holding individual nuts, bolts, etc (like the old 5&dime stores) on two floors. I still have a scythe and wheelbarrow my dad bought there about 1951.

  5. Brad’s not quite right. Bill’s Smoke Shop was there first, moved across the street to Brooks Corner and then Art’s moved in and was eventually replaced by Westport Pizza.

  6. Alfred Herman

    The ORIGINAL Bills Smoke shop was a 8′ x 6′ shack on the southeast corner of Elm and Main, next to a gas station. They had smokes, newspapers and penny candy. This was during the 1950’s. I remember when the Norwalk Hour went from 5-cents to 7-cents.

  7. Nice photo! My husband’s dad’s shop (Stanley’s TV Service) is clearly visible next to Hutch’s Kodak. My husband, Marty, and many of his ham radio friends, including Dennis Jackson (one of the originators of WWPT) worked at Stanley’s while in high school.

  8. Essentially when you look at the original buildings housing the stores today it almost has a Wild West vibe to it

  9. Robert M Gerrity

    Dan, do you have a date on the pic?

    • Around the same time as the others — 1967-ish.

      • Robert M Gerrity

        Well, I was MESMERIZED by the pic – Hutch’s Camera Shop!!! Did NOT see the top note on date. Sorry to bother you. Will have a John Cheever’s brother story for you; JC’s niece was Staples 65 and a star on the women’s field hockey team, IIRC.