Posted by: Manager / Associate Curator | March 17, 2017

Remembering the Mom & Pop Stores

Not that many years ago, it seemed that one could find a family-run corner store or several of them in every neighbourhood as well as a number of butcher shops.

Augustus Street 538_Comp_WM

Lorena Smith operated a confectionery store out of her home on the s.w. corner of Augustus Street at 6th St. W. The building at 538 Augustus is a private residence today.

Lorena’s store was just up the street from Villeneuve’s Market opposite Adams Avenue, which also has reverted to a private residence.

Lavigne_1940s late_PL

A few blocks northwest, Archie and Mrs. Lavigne operated a butcher shop and grocery store, Northern Market, on the n.e. corner of 7th St. W. (239) at Bedford Street. The store adopted the IGA banner at one point. A fire destroyed the store and neighbouring houses. All that remains is the former brick garage and apartments along Bedford Street, which were expanded and converted into more living space. Apartments and townhouses went up behind and adjacent to their former property. Thanks to their son Philip for sharing this photo from the late 1940s.


And a few blocks northeast was Parisien’s, a grocer and butcher shop located next to what is now Wilson’s Funeral Home in the 800 block of Pitt Street. Former Cornwall mayor, the late Gerry Parisien, in the centre is flanked on the left by Isabel Pidgeon his then future wife, and his now late sister Iola Parisien on the right. Gerald’s parents started the business.

122 McConnell_1991_WM

Across town at 122 McConnell Avenue was Major’s store. In this 1991 photo the words “grocery”and “discount” have been obliterated; they were on the sign two years prior. This building is now used for storage. Prior to some streets being re-numbered, the address was 22 McConnell Avenue South.

These are but a few of the many historic photos accessible during regular hours in the SD&G Historical Society Archives located at your Cornwall Community Museum.



  1. Do you have a picture of St. Joseph’s School?

    • Sorry we do not have any photographs of the school, but we do have a newspaper clipping file and their 25th anniversary book, which you can view at the museum.

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