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|2012-07-31 - Weird News|
224-year-old general store shuts down in Rhode Island
-- Fourth Estate Cooperative Staff
Adamsville, RI, United States (4E) - Gray Store, the oldest general store in a small U.S.' village of Adamsville in Rhode Island, was shut down on Monday after serving the local community for 224 years.
The store opened in 1788 - a year before George Washington became the first president of the country. The Waite family has been running the business since 1879.
Jonah Waite, a 21-year-old journalism student, became the latest person to inherit the store after the death of his father Grayton Waite. Grayton, 59, died of cancer last month. Talking to reporters in front of a large crowd, which gathered to see last operational day of the shop, Jonah said that he was not interested in continuing the family business any more.
He added he and his father had discussed about closing the shop, which used to sell penny candy, cigars, a small selection of groceries, antiques and collectible knickknacks. "He knew it wasn't something I intended to take over and operate. His intention was to sell it in the next couple of years and fully retire. He didn't have time to do that," heraldnews.com quoted Jonah as saying.
"Up until about five years ago my dad and I prided ourselves on it still being sold for a penny. Now with inflation it's about five cents. We've always had candy, cigar customers. There are certain things that my dad has maintained," said Jonah.
Gray's had been declared America's oldest continuously run general store in 2007 by U.S. Senator Jack Reed and then-Governor Donald Carcieri.
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