View The Amazing Progress On Grand Junction Colorado’s Historic Stranges Grocery
For well over a year crews have been hard at work remodeling the 100+-year-old Grand Junction building. In another month or so, work on the facade will be complete. Take a look.
Take a Look at Stranges Grocery at 226 Pitkin in Grand Junction, Colorado
Have you ever been inside this historic building? I was born in Grand Junction, but until April of 2022, had never been inside. The new owner of the building, Kevin Tinsley, contacted me and invited me to take a tour.
The Facade Is Nearing Completion
Not long ago the front door and windows were boarded up at the old Stranges Grocery at 226 Pitkin in Grand Junction. The original fixtures were removed and sent out for restoration.
Fast forward to July 12, 2023, and the windows and doors are restored and returned to their original places. I received an email from Kevin yesterday (July 12, 2023) with an update.
Almost have the façade done, just need some paint... The city is supposed to give me a 10K façade grant. There is 30K in materials and a man month of labor easily.
A Remarkable Place in Grand Junction, Colorado
According to mesa.marmot.org, the building at 226 Pitkin Avenue was a family grocery store owned by Carl Stranger. There's something very special about this building. It has a remarkable charm about it. I know for a fact my great-grandparents used to shop there. During the Great Depression, my grandmother and her siblings lived in a garage on a lot directly behind Stranges Grocery.
US Census Records indicated the store was in operation by 1909, possibly earlier. You'll find the building is on the National Register of Historic Places. Should you choose to get more information on this building, use the reference number 13000079 when searching the National Register Database.
Keeping This Grand Junction Building "Historic"
Kevin Tinsley and his wife SueAnn purchased the building roughly two years ago. During my April 2022 visit with Kevin, he shared the following:
So, right now, I paid them (Colorado Preservation, Inc) to write a grant to get state money to do an architectural evaluation of the property. Colorado Preservation, Inc. is going to write a grant so I can get it to the State and get all the professionals in here to evaluate the place and that way I don't run afoul. We've done, you know, surface stuff here, but from this point forward it's going to be all architect.
Changes Taking Place at Stranges Grocery Store
A number of projects are in the works. The basement (which I didn't know it had) has been repaired and improved with reinforced walls and a new floor. Original fixtures such as the coal chute, the sump, and the site of the boiler have all been preserved.
A Few Fascinating Finds Along The Way
A number of interesting items have been found during the renovation. One item, a lipstick dated 1941, a shade called "Victory Red," was found inside a wall on the second floor. This particular find was donated to an American servicewomen's museum. One "historical" curiosity was found on the backside of a piece of trim. As you may recall, this structure was designed and built by Nunzio Grasso. Check out the writing on the back of this wood trim.
A Real Treat To Go Inside the Old Stranges Grocery
Touring this historic building was an absolute pleasure. How many of our great-grandparents used to shop there? Did any of your family work there? Who lived in the apartments upstairs? You can literally "feel" the history in this building.
If you haven't driven by lately, I encourage you to do so. Stranges is rapidly returning to past glory.