From an article by Samantha Bryant in Community Impact Newspaper
"Everyone was amazed that we had a newborn baby there," his mother, Judy, said.
She said five generations of her family have worked in the hardware and construction business, from her grandfather, John Thomas Parker Sr., who opened Parker Lumber Company in Houston in the '20s, to his 14-year-old great, great grandson, Zachary Parker, who is now working part time at the Ace Hardware store at 2950 Williams Drive, Georgetown, TX.
Judy and her husband, Johnny, own the Ace Hardware on Williams Drive. Their son Jason manages the store. Also called Parco, a combination of the words Parker and company, the hardware store was incorporated into Ace Hardware in 1977 to help lower prices and get brand recognition.
"So many people are coming to Georgetown to retire, and they already had an Ace [Hardware] in their town, so they recognize it," he said.
Jason said customer service is a priority for his hardware store. Coin-operated candy machines and the smell of free popcorn give the store a welcoming vibe.
The store features home improvement, paint, lumber, hardware, plumbing, heating and cooling, tools and home goods departments.
The Millegans opened a garden and landscaping department about two years ago. Jason visits in- and out-of-state wholesalers to select pottery, metalwork, statues and masonry products for the store. He purchases plants from local, family-owned growers.
Judy said her grandfather opened the original lumberyard in Houston in 1925. After moving to the Highlands and then to the Lakeway area, Parker Sr. and his wife, Addie, purchased 375 acres west of Georgetown in 1946 and opened a lumberyard with two of his sons and his son-in-law at 1910 S. Austin Ave. Judy said a drought in the 1950s slowed the local economy.
"It caused business to really slump and they closed the business," she said.
In the '60s, Judy's father, Harold, opened a lumberyard on Ranch Road, which he relocated to Williams Drive about 10 years later. He added a small retail store in 1972. His brother J.T. Parker Jr. and J.T.'s son John T. Parker III also worked with him at what was then known as Parco Home Center.
Harold, who died in 1990, was involved in the school board and was a charter member of Crestview Baptist Church, which now sits on land the family donated in the '60s.
Through the Parker Development Company, the family built homes in the Crestview, Country Club Acres, River Bend and Quail Meadows subdivisions. They have also built commercial buildings along University Avenue and structures including the gazebo in San Gabriel Park.
Through the years, Judy said all the family members have worked at the hardware store at one time or another.
"This has always been the anchor, and all the other businesses tie into it," Judy said.
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