(click the small image to see a larger version of it)


"21 - Cheney Store"

The old Cheney Store, which used to stand on South Main Street (facing west) at the corner of Main and Charter Oak Streets. At the time of this April 27, 1960 photo by Ken Burkamp, Manchester Upholstering occupied the space.


Following are comments received from those who responded.         If you would like to add more comments, please click here .

• Maureen (McKeever) Hevey, now of Vernon but a Manchester native, notes that her "Aunt Nonie," lived in an apartment on the second floor of the Cheney store from at least the 1940s until 1960. "My great-great aunt, Honora 'Nora' Quish, was born on August 18, 1878 in Manchester and died on November 4, 1960. I fondly remember visiting her with my parents and as a young child in the 1940s, I loved the 'entertainment' of watching cars and people on Main Street through the apartment's long windows. I'm not sure of the exact year she moved to the apartment over the store, but that's the only residence at which I remember visiting her. There was a separate entrance to reach her second floor apartment, and it was either on the Charter Oak side of the building or in the back I can't remember which. I just remember walking up a long flight of stairs and then down the hallway to her front door!

She was the daughter of Thomas Quish and Johanna Sullivan Quish. For several years in the early 1900s (at least 1905 to around 1915), she lived with her sister, Johanna ('Annie') in Boston, MA. In 1916 she 'boarded' with her brother, Thomas and his family at 35 Garden Street in Manchester. In my research, I found that her nephew, Thomas Quish (1889-1954), lived with her for some period of time. He was Postmaster in Manchester."

• Dick Jenkins,of Niceville, FL, writes: "I'm confused with your naming the photo the 'Old Cheney Store.' This building replaced the old Cheney Store. Yes, it has some similarities in size and features such as the porch that ran along the entire front of the building; however, the original store, owned and operated by William Cheney, also contained numerous other businesses including the South Manchester Post Office. A fire broke out in the Cheney Store on November 29, 1898 at 12:30 am and was extinguished by 4:30 am, sustaining heavy damage. It was never fully rebuilt. Another structure arose from the remains of the Cheney Store that did not contain the Victorian features of the original store.

"When I was a child it was the Little and McKinney Feed and Grain store. In the basement was William Dickson & Sons painters. M.A. Carra, the grocer, occupied a portion of the street-level business. The foundation of this structure was stone and mortar, the same type of stone that formed the retaining wall that fortified the present elevation of Charter Oak Street between Main Street to where private dwellings began near the intersection of Spruce Street."

(and also from Dick, in a subsequent email...)

"It might have been my mother or grandmother who once told me that the Cheney Store had burned down but I don't remember seeing a record of that fire in all my days. I've seen the illustration of the store that appeared on the old map(s) of Manchester and when I stumbled on the mystery photo and its title I decided to do some tracking. The account I found is from the Town Manager's Report dated 2007, ... I would love to have a look at his source.

"All the old history books neglect to mention that the Cheney Store had a fire, but then, the year 1898 was a very long time ago. I do remember that there was an alarm right there by the store. Eventually the police had a call-in station there as well."

Editor's Note: For a reprint of the 2007 Town Manager's Report on the fire that , which Dick mentions in his email above, please click here.