/*-- Map api plugin fix --*/ /*-- end Map api plugin fix --*/
Possibly the oldest continuing retail business in the town of Dalton, L.P. Adams Co. is a family owned and operated business with members of the eighth generation working there today.
Founded in 1900 as Griswold and Adams, L.P. Adams has a long history of service to the community. But the company actually got its start several generations earlier. During the 1850s, an uncle, William H. Hawley, started a coal and feed business in Dalton. In 1884, Hawley sold the company to Thomas W. Ransbotham, who built it into one of the largest businesses in Western Massachusetts at the time.
In 1890, Ransbotham bought the old Congregational Church building located on East Main Street in Dalton and moved it to Housatonic street where it was converted into a dwelling and a feed and grain store.
Ransbotham later sold the company to William H. Griswold and his partner Leroy P. Adams, who renamed the company "Griswold and Adams" and devoted their efforts to retailing flour, coal, grain and firewood. Griswold later sold his share of the business to Leroy P. Adams, who renamed the business "L.P. Adams Co."
On October 30, 1907, the renovated church building that housed L.P. Adams Co. was destroyed by a fire. A new facility was built at the same location and is still in use today.
L.P. Adams became well known throughout the area for rendering "prompt and capable service in everything pertaining to grain, flour, feed, poultry supplies, coal, coke, and mason supplies." Coal and grain, such as Quaker dairy feeds and Ful-O-Pep Poultry feeds, were delivered by rail car to the back of the large building and stored upstairs. Cordwood was cut on company property in Middlefield at the site of an old quarry, loaded on flat cars and railed to the Dalton location on the Boston and Albany Railroad. The wood was stacked in front of the store and split to order with a vertical, mechanical splitter. That same splitter, rebuilt, may now be seen in the main lobby
of the store.
Upon his death in 1942, Leroy's son, Henry Adams took over the family business. Leroy's grandson Harry A. Walton worked in the business as a schoolboy and upon returning from service in World War II. In the mid 1950's, Henry retired, putting Harry in charge of L.P. Adams Co., Inc.
Harry expanded the business with his father, Harry "Pappy" Walton. It was Pappy's responsibility to drive around in his old Ford pickup truck every Friday night to pick up accounts receivables. On at least one occasion, one of Pappy's chickens made part of the rounds on the running boards.
Under Harry's direction, the business grew with the help of his devoted wife, Muriel, their three sons, Craig, Wayne, and Lee, and family and friends. Upon Wayne's return from service in the Vietnam War, he joined his family in the ever-growing business.
April 28, 1973 was L.P. Adams Co.'s grand opening of new offices, showrooms, and warehouse with a weeklong open house to show off the 7,000 square foot, two-story endeavor. In 1984, Wayne added an additional 18,000 square foot warehouse to store the expanding inventory necessary to serve the community.
Meanwhile, Wayne's brother, Lee concentrated on the fuel oil business and building the hardware and gardening department. He later opened the Hinsdale Hardware Store, a division of L.P. Adams Co. Lee left the company in 1989, to pursue other ventures.
Times change and in all those years L.P. Adams Co. had to change as well. The cordwood department was dropped and eventually coal, grain, and most recently the sale of fuel oil followed. The "coal pocket" was torn down in 1970 and the fuel oil storage tanks were removed in 1999.
Lumber, building materials, seasonal special ware, hardware, plumbing and electrical supplies now dominated the sales area and warehouse. Full planning, design, layout, quotation, and personalized consultation occupied the second floor with bathroom and kitchen showrooms. Invoicing and inventories are updated to computers.
Most recently, Wayne's two sons, Todd and Cory have joined the business with an aim on the future. As with their father and grandfather, they're learning the business from the ground up, including sweeping floors to making deliveries. Todd's son, Wayne's grandson, Zander has since joined the business as well, also learning from the ground up. Zander will soon be attending the same College that his father Todd attended (Bentley University) with the intent of achieving his degree in Business.
September 2012, L.P. Adams Co. launched its "Boom Service" with the purchase of a 68' knuckle boom truck. This addition to the fleet was to add another customeroriented service to their portfolio. The boom service was primarily started to give our customers the ability to order their building supplies, suck as roof trusses, and then schedule the boom truck for the setting of those trusses, all under one roof. It soon evolved into much more than just our customers and our material. L.P. Adams Co. boom service became a service to many other trades in the construction industry including, setting commercial air conditioners, hot tubs, and even windows. Today, that boom service has grown to include the specialized trucking of an array of building and landscape materials with the occasional sculpture or two. They have grown their network of customers to include all of New England and have broadened their service base as well.
2015 was the year L.P. Adams repurposed the second floor of the original L.P. Adams (then called Griswold and Adams) grain storage into a custom millwork shop. Since then, L.P. Adams purchased the old freight house building from Crane & Co., behind the original L.P. Adams and expanded the custom millwork shop in that space. Today, it is a fully operational millwork shop to support the needs of their customers. This includes trim and paneling replication, planning, and a wide variety of other millwork services. The original L.P. Adams is now home to commercial space for several local businesses.
L.P. Adams Co. continues to expand its services and product lines in the construction world, while at the same time, preserving its roots. As the L.P. Adams history continues..........