114 Main Street, Tupelo, MS 38804
For many, Tupelo, Mississippi stands for one thing: Elvis Presley. Indeed, much of the mystique surrounding the musical great lies in Elvis’ modest beginnings in the industrial center. While home to textiles mills, manufacturing, and distribution centers, Tupelo is often thought of first as the origin of Mr. All-Shook-Up and second as a hub of commerce and trade. At Tupelo Hardware, however, the two converge.
Indeed, to residents, Tupelo Hardware Company is perhaps equally as beloved as the King himself. In business for nearly 90 years and across four generations of the Booth family, Tupelo Hardware has served its community as the go-to destination for mill and industrial supplies, small engine parts, general hardware retail, and some of the friendliest, most knowledgeable salespeople around. You might even say that Tupelo is to hardware supply as Elvis is to pop music.
Founded By George H. Booth in 1926 in the building across the street from its current location, Tupelo Hardware was owned and managed by George’s son, William (“Bill”), followed by Bill’s son, George (II). George H.’s great-grandson, George (III), joined the business fulltime in 2014.
Much of Tupelo Hardware’s success is attributed to the loyal and longtime staff that has served alongside the Booths throughout its history. In fact, the company boasts two employees who have served over 50 years each. These days, the store includes a wide variety of standard retail items in addition to traditional hardware stock. When inventory is limited (a remarkably rare occurrence), the staff goes above and beyond to help you get what you need.
If hardware isn’t your thing, then maybe the making of a musical legend is. In January 1945, Gladys Presley brought her nine-year son to Tupelo Hardware to buy him a birthday present. Young Elvis had his eye on a .22 caliber rifle, and salesman Forrest L. Bobo showed him one. But then, in a smart twist, Bobo presented the boy with a guitar. He let Elvis handle the guitar and strum it for a bit while he attended to other customers. Once decided on the instrument, Elvis couldn’t make the $7.75 price, having only small change earned from doing errands for neighbors. Gladys stepped in to pay the difference, and the rest is musical history.
Tupelo Hardware also features an e-commerce site where you can purchase a wide variety of hardware goods and, of course, Elvis-themed merchandise. If you can make it in person, however, do it. As both an iconic local hardware store, cherished for generations, and the origins of the musical whiz Elvis, Tupelo is well worth a visit.
Visit Tupelo Hardware Company for more information.