Stanley's True Value Hardware: Serving Philadelphia for generations

Mark Jaconski, owner of Stanley’s True Value Hardware in Philadelphia, is part of the third generation of his family’s hardware business. His store has evolved over time and has carried the True Value name for 27 years. Below, he shares a little bit about what the local, independent store means for his community.

Share a little bit about the history of the store. 

My grandfather and grandmother started this business in 1948. Eventually, my father worked for GE and then in the store on the weekends, which of course led to me getting involved in the family business.  

In 2013, we opened a brand new facility that is phenomenal, and in 2015, we bought a second location. It was an existing True Value store and is very similar to our original store. 

In what ways is Stanley’s True Value part of the community? 

As one of the key stores in our community, we try to stay as involved as we can. We mostly donate through every school, church, community center fundraiser – anyone who asks, we try to help. It’s about paying it back to the people who support us. 

The fact we have been here for decades means we’re doing something right, and we’re so proud to be supported by our community.  

What do you think contributes to the long-term success of the store? 

First, being part of a good buying group. We have better purchasing power than being on our own, and being part of an established, large collective helped us flourish as a small business. 

Second, people sing our praises every day about our staff, thanking me for how great they are. There is no less than 200 years of hardware experience across the team. You don’t get that anywhere else and I think it’s unique to locally owned businesses. It’s not unique to True Value – many stores have experts like we do. But you can’t walk into a big store and get help like we offer. 

We of course have the right products but being able to show customers how to install it and walk them through how to fix their toilet – that’s huge. 

Anything else? 

It’s wonderful that our customers are grateful we are here, and it’s amazing to be able to serve and help them the way we do.