Ralph Charles Walter and Bill Copeland begin a side business installing venetian blinds.
Realizing that the side business was more demanding than originally planned, R.C. and Copeland made their services a formal business on March 14, 1946 with the name of C & W Home Modernizing.
The company’s success and rapid expansion led to renting a warehouse located in Greenock, Pennsylvania to store roofing materials rather than at R.C. and B.C.'s homes.
In 1951, Ralph Charles bought out the company and changed the name to R.C. Walter Roofing and Siding. The Walter family, including R.C. Walter’s wife, Anna Matilda Rainey Walter as secretary, and their two sons, Robert N. Walter and R. C Walter Jr. as employees, structured the company.
Shortly after the warehouse purchase, it began deteriorating and the business was then conducted in a home purchased at the current location on Boston Hollow Road.
Two years after conducting business on Boston Hollow, the home burnt down and plans were created for a new, 40' x 45' building, which still is a part of the store now.
The business location on Boston Hollow Road, originally a roofing supply warehouse, started to morph into a small retail shop for basic hardware supplies in order to gain income for the winter months. The building was furnished with second hand counters form the old Montgomery & Ward store and recycled lumber for shelving.
R.C. had to purchase a warehouse in Greenock to transfer roofing materials into that building for the roofing business and keep the Boston Hollow location as a retail outlet.
At this time, two separate businesses were being run under the same name—a roofing company headed by Robert N. Walter and a hardware retail store headed by R.C. Walter Jr.
The newest, biggest addition was added with R.C. Walter Sr. having doubts changing the wall of the old building and installing a beam. Ken Murtha laid the tile floor, Bill and Bob Howell did the wiring, and Ron Sedlar did the carpenter work for the trim, stairway, and fire escape.
This date marks the first time the store had a real display area with gondolas.
The most important change was the implementation of an ABC computer system in 1988 through ServiStar that facilitated inventory count and easily created several accounting documents.
Robert N. Walter sold the roofing business to Mr. Brian Merten, which marked the retirement of Robert N. Walter. However, after this transaction, Robert N. Walter continued to work part time at R.C. Walter and Sons’s hardware retail store.
ServiStar merged with True Value to become True Serve. This merge gave all independently owned hardware stores an opportunity to fend off industry giants. To this day, R.C. Walter and Sons is True Value associated.
The business was then purchased in 2007 by Tom Walter (current owner) when his Uncle, Charles Walter, retired the same year.
Details of R.C. Walter and Sons history
More services were eventually added to the C & W Home Modernizing, such as roof repair, downspout repair, insulbrick siding, and gutter replacement.
A pick up truck was purchased for the company with the company's name printed on the side.
Business grew faster than expected and additions to the Boston Hollow location were in demand. Bud Bain was in charge of the first addition, which is still in use as the "back room."
As business grew even more, another addition was added--the current "pipe room."
Up to this point, R.C. Walter and Sons had a dust parking lot, which constantly drew in dust every time a customer pulled in that covered the products.
Revolving lights were installed on the corner of the Boston Hollow building as well as a light on top of the new neon sign.
Not only was the accounting department being revamped with a computer system, but also the marketing department with direct mail circular, which are still used today.