ELLSWORTH -The Sears Hometown Store will shut its doors at the end of July after over two decades in business, according to Manager Karen Higgins.
“This was a shock to us,” said Higgins, who has been with the company just over eight years. Higgins said the store’s three employees all have jobs lined up, and she had already been planning a move to Presque Isle at the end of summer to be closer to family. The employees were informed of the closing last week, according to Higgins.
The store was in a location in the Mill Mall plaza for 13 years, according to Higgins, and has been in its current spot on the Downeast Highway for about nine years.
The company was a household name for generations, and was particularly well-know for its Sears, Roebuck and Co. catalogue. The catalogue had everything: cameras, calculators, pants, shampoo, luggage, televisions and cars. It even offered kit houses (yes, houses) for under $1,000 in the early 1900s; one catalogue from 1913 advertises a “six-room bungalow” for $872 (about $21,496 today).
The catalogue was discontinued in 1993; since then, the company has shuttered hundreds of stores across the United States, including several in Maine. The company’s website lists seven stores left in the state, not including Sears Auto Centers. The Ellsworth location’s last day will be July 23, according to Higgins.