Pauls Valley Democrat
Examples of preserved history can be found throughout all of Pauls Valley’s downtown area, but only a few places have remained relatively unchanged over the decades.
One such area spot, Williamson’s Furniture at 113 West McClure, has been serving customers all over the region since Betty and Denzel Williamson bought it in 1969, but recently began work to move to a larger location.
Setting their sights on the former Church of Christ at Paul and Pine street, Denny Williamson and his son Denver are ready to take advantage of what will eventually amount to a considerable upgrade on their showroom space sometime in 2014.
“It’s going to be different going into a different building every day,” said Williamson, noting how the longtime location was previously Jackson’s furniture for a while before his family bought it.
“It will give us double the square footage and will be on the highway, which gives us more exposure.”
Work on the former church building, which has its own historical ties to Garvin County going back to around the 1930s, began back in January and has involved extensive remodeling of both the interior as well as exterior of the building.
Much of the basic architecture will remain because of its unique characteristics, with the biggest changes involving adding elements like a large window display front facing the street on the Grant side and will end up adding to about 24,000 square feet when finished.
“I’ve worked here as long as I can remember,” said Williamson about the familiar site on McClure. “There are a lot of memories.”
Finding a location outside of Pauls Valley didn’t even enter into the equation as the Williamson family searched for just the right spot for years here due to the strong bond with many customers who continue a generational shopping tradition.
Though Denny only moved here when he was about five years old, he considers this home and eventually bought the current location from his parents back in 1995.
Both father and son went to school as Panthers and strengthening those bonds with their customers has involved giving back to various projects, like a chance to win a recliner at home games this season and just about every cause through the city’s civic clubs.
Denver carries over that pride and pointed out how one thing they’ve always preached is shopping local, with the construction of this new location an example where everyone from the contractor to concrete comes from inside the city limits.
“You get to be with the people you’re friends with, customers you’ve known since you were a kid,” said Williamson. “We’ve all had to work here growing up.”
In the end, the current location will still be used, but more as an outlet store where the family may keep discontinued or slightly damaged items.
The hope is to use this new location to add even more variety than they already offer, be it something like outdoor furniture and cookware to compliment it.
Denny pointed out how the move to the bigger main location was ultimately seen as a necessity as it will mean providing long term opportunities for the family to stay beyond just its current third generation.
“It’s important to know everybody, their families, your kids family… I can’t imagine living in a big city,” said Williamson.
“My kids have the opportunity to stay in Pauls Valley; to do that we’re going to have to expand so our kids and grandkids can have opportunities.”