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'Known for giving back to the community': Fitch Lumber & Hardware celebrates 100 years

Fitch Lumber & Hardware sits on 309 N Greensboro St. on Saturday, Oct. 14, 2023. Fitch Lumber recently celebrated its 100th anniversary in the town of Carborro.

Fitch Lumber & Hardware celebrated 100 years in Carrboro last week.

David Fitch, president of Fitch Lumber & Hardware, said his great-grandfather A.B. Fitch started the business in 1907 in Mebane and added another location in Carrboro in 1923. 

When a fire destroyed the location in Mebane in 1945, all operations moved to the store in Carrboro. David Fitch said the Carrboro location has prospered for the century it's been open.

"We've been in this town for 100 years, so we wanted to celebrate all the Carrboro town has to offer," David Fitch said.

Carrboro Mayor Damon Seils said the Fitch family has been helping the town's economy for all 100 years the business has been in the town. 

Seils attended the Oct. 12 celebration event and proclaimed the day of the store's centennial, Oct. 12, 2023, as Fitch Lumber Company Day in Carrboro.

The centennial event included food from Al's Burger Shack and the Latin Grill Food Truck, drinks from Craftboro Brewing and live music from the band Big Fat Gap.

The local hardware store provides lumber, roofing and household products to builders, contractors and individual consumers at its location at 309 N. Greensboro St.

Bridgette Cannon, an architect at J. Hoffman Studio in Carrboro, said her company is a customer of Fitch Lumber & Hardware. She said J. Hoffman Studio purchases much of its building materials from the store. 

Albert Prisco, a maintenance supervisor at Stratford Hills apartments in Chapel Hill, said he prefers to shop for hardware at Fitch Lumber & Hardware.

"I like to shop local and don't always want to go to Lowe's or Home Depot," Prisco said.

In 2018, Orange County Living Wage certified Fitch Lumber & Hardware as a living wage employer. 

"The Fitch family and their employees have been part of the makeup of downtown Carrboro for many decades," Seils said. "They're really known for giving back to the community." 

The Fitch family also sold clothing and hats at the 100-year celebration event. Fitch said all proceeds from the merchandise will go to the Fitch Family Comprehensive Pediatric Rehabilitation Program.

The program partners with the UNC Children's Hospital, along with several other hospitals throughout the country, to provide medical rehabilitation to children in the Chapel Hill-Carrboro area.

The organization was created after Lee Fitch, who is now in middle school, suffered a traumatic brain injury after being hit by a car when he was 10 years old. 

Lee Fitch's aunt Carol Fitch Walker, said after Lee's accident, the Fitch family found that they did not have any resources in the Chapel Hill-Carrboro area for children with traumatic brain injuries, and that the goal for the program is to raise funds for pediatric rehabilitation services for children with disabilities.

Fitch Walker said that 100 years later, Fitch Lumber & Hardware is still glad to call Carrboro home.

"I feel like the community itself has done a lot for us, and we appreciate that," she said. "We've tried to give back to the community as well." 

@DTHCityState |

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