Bochsler’s: 100+ years of service

February 2014 Posted in Business
A multigenerational family business: Bochsler True Value Hardware was named Mount Angel’s 2013 Business of the Year.  Pictured here are Amy Goschie, Sally Beyer, Kyle and Paul Beyer.

A multigenerational family business: Bochsler True Value Hardware was named Mount Angel’s 2013 Business of the Year. Pictured here are Amy Goschie, Sally Beyer, Kyle and Paul Beyer.

By Brenna Wiegand

In declaring Bochsler True Value Hardware 2013 Business of the Year, Mount Angel Chamber of Commerce states:

“Outstanding customer service for more than 100 years is greatly appreciated by their customers far and wide.”

How does that look, beyond the fundraisers and donations?

“I was new to town and I needed something for my clothesline,” Nann Fleck relates. “I went down to Bochsler’s; Grandma Beyer was still there. It was quite a maze… She didn’t have exactly what I wanted but she went down an aisle and dug back down underneath a shelf and pulled out something that made do!”

“Once somebody was cooking Thanksgiving dinner and their oven element went out,” Paul Beyer said. “They called me and luckily I had the right one.”

At 8:30 one Sunday morning, someone’s freezer went out. Bochsler’s ran a new one out pronto.

“You know, it’s kind of an emergency,” Beyer said. “Their food’s thawing out, I’d better get a freezer out there.”

They do a brisk trade in GE and Hotpoint appliances, but unlike similar dealers, you can’t predict what else you’ll find at the store.

If you’re hungry, grab some peanuts and a Mount Angel rootbeer; turn to see a steep stack of classic and wood-crafted toys.

Step over to have a key made; sit down and try on Danner boots. Test them out on a short aisle and return with a lefse griddle. Guns and ammo look over Mr. Clean.

Mount Angel Chamber of Commerce
2013 Community Awards

Feb. 24, 6 p.m.
Mount Angel Festhalle
500 S Wilco Hwy
Tickets: $30, must be
purchased by Feb. 21
Available in Mount Angel
at Columbia, US and Wells Fargo banks.

“We have a little bit of everything,” Beyer said; “probably the only way to survive in a small town.”

A few Sunday mornings ago, Paul was summoned to the store by a family who’d forgotten to pick up the barbecue needed for that day’s wedding.

Paul rang it up on the ornate Victorian register bought by his uncle John Ebner more than 100 years ago. In a twist of fate, during that century the store changed hands from their mother’s to their father’s side. Its current owners are a mingling of the third and fourth generation: Paul Beyer, his daughter Amy Goschie and his son Kyle; brother Greg; brother Bill and Bill’s daughter Sally Beyer.

The young ‘uns moved in with Quickbooks, e-mail billing, Facebook and a website.

“They can do in just a few minutes what used to take me hours,” Beyer said. “They’re taking a lot of the pressure off me.”

However, no computer can define or calculate the type of knowledge the Beyer brothers possess.

“I’ve been working here since 1971,” Paul said. “After that long a period, you’ve got to know what the people need – every season there’s a new challenge – and we’re trying to teach this fourth generation what they have to do.”

“I think the best thing about Bochsler’s is their staff,” Meghan Bischoff said. “I’ve even had times where I’ve called and they’ve run it out to my car so I didn’t have to get all my kids out.”

“It’s your one-stop shop for all kinds of projects,” Chris Bischoff said. “I agree with their motto – ‘If we don’t have it, you don’t need it.’”

Paul, Bill and Greg say they are honored by the award, likening it to the thank-you notes customers have sent over the years.

“It’s kind of a thank-you for us being here,” Beyer said. “That makes you feel really good.”

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