Did you ever wonder where the term “brick and mortar” retail originated? Well, we’re not sure, however, we are he charter definition and a living example of that old canard. The Exeter Merantile Company has been housed in the same building in Exeter, California since 1916, and as you can see, it is, indeed, a brick and mortar building.
It was probably built around 1911 and the earliest picture we have was taken around 1914. That was also the year that our father, Sidney Charles Schelling enlisted in the Navy along with two other young men from Exeter.
In 1916, The Exeter Mercantile was incorporated and owned by two men named Han and Livingston. Word was that one of the men who lived over the store was a gambler.
When our Dad, Sidney C. Schelling returned to his home of Exeter, California from WWI in 1919 where he had risen to Jr. Officer and Captained a ship taking groups from New York to France, he went to work at the Mercantile as the Manager with the right to buy into the business which he did, and we’ve been family owned and operated ever since!
Sid Schelling pictured in 1914 enlisting in the Navy in WWI and back home in 1927.
Member of Exeter Kiwanis; Chairman of March of Dimes Chair of Community Chest raising funds to fight polio; 32nd degree Mason and member of Shriners International, raising money for Shriners Hospitals for Children; served on Draft Board in WWII, Board of Directors off local FFA, Exeter Man of the Year; President of California Retail Hardware Dealers Association and many more.
Hense our motto:
The Exeter Mercantile means Community!
Robert G. Schelling
Brian K. Schelling
Vice President, CEO
Sidney C. Schelling Jr