Stevens Drug Store


David Smith Stevens Drug Store was a fixture on the corner of
5th Avenue and 10th Street for more than 50 years.


HUNTINGTON — In 1988, Stevens Drug Store, a fixture on the corner of
 5th Avenue and 10th Street for more than 50 years, closed after
 accepting a buyout offer from the Rite-Aid drug chain.

Sixty-year-old Joe G. Stevens said he had been thinking about
retiring for some time and so decided to accept Rite-Aid’s
offer and be an employee for a while.

“Now I can just be a pharmacist,” Stevens said. “I won’t have
to worry about filing taxes or reordering Colgate.”

His father, Joe G. Stevens Sr., a 1926 graduate of the Cincinnati College of
Pharmacy, opened the store in 1934. Prior to opening the store, he
was district sales manager with the Whelan Drug Co.
of New York, responsible for eight stores in
West Virginia, Ohio and Pennsylvania.

Joe Jr. followed in his father’s footsteps, graduating from the
Cincinnati College of Pharmacy in 1950. The following
year, the father and son began working as partners.
 In 1969, Joe Jr. took over the store when
 his father retired to Florida.

Joe Jr. recalled he was 7 years old when his father opened the store.
One of his first jobs at the store, he said, was scraping away old
chewing gum that had been stuck under the soda fountain
counter. “When I was old enough to see over the
 counter, my dad let me wait on customers.”

In 2007, the iconic corner building that had been the long-time
 home of Stevens Drug Store was badly damaged in a fire
and was later demolished. Today, the
corner site remains a vacant lot.


Note:  This Article and picture appeared in the Herald-Dispatch Newspaper on Nov. 19, 2019.


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