Family Business: Photo Essay by Ashley Vargas
Ashley Vargas photographs three Jacksonville family businesses that have built a legacy in our city.
Published June 1, 2013 in Culture - MetroJacksonville.com
As a consequence of my childhood experiences, I have an extra fondness for family owned businesses. I searched Jacksonville seeking family owned shops that offered a glimpse of my past.
The three different local businesses documented in the following pages, have been owned by individual families for decades.
Harold's Meat Market
Harold’s Meat Market, owned by the Goody family since 1965, was originally a gas station with the actual structure dating back to 1929. Richard Goody, son of Harold Goody, now owns the market.
As soon as I stepped through the doors, I felt like was five years old again. The place smelled just like the back of my dad’s store where I use to watch him wrap the meat. I felt so much at home that I was almost expecting to see my dad walk out from the back in his meat coat
Richard Goody is on the right and on the left is his son, Harold Jr
Fresh cut meat daily
Harold's Meat Market
10535 Lem Turner Rd
Jacksonville, FL 32218
Kelly’s Piano & Organ
The Kelly family has always been in the piano business so they decided to open their own shop in 1963, a few years latter they expanded the store so include a showcase. The Kelly’s Piano & Organ not sell, repair and tune pianos. They also hold piano recitals.
I had the chance to meet with Bob Kelly the current storeowner, the son of Mr. and Mrs. Kelly. Walking through the place I felt this sense of calmness and peace. It was a very pleasant being in the piano showcase room. In the background you can hear an automatic piano playing.
The workshop where they fix and tune the pianos
Another workshop where they build pianos
Kelly's Piano & Organ
1716 University Blvd North
Jacksonville, FL 32211
They opened their doors on July 20th 1976 Ron Chamblin was 31yrs old. I got to interview Ron, and he had told me that when he first opened his store he had no idea what he was doing. I asked him “How did you learn, what you know now?” He replied with “ the best teachers I had were my customers, my customers taught me everything I know.”
After speaking with Ron, I got to go around his store and the further into the store I went it smelled like old books, and the yellowing of the pages just reflected me back to my brother’s room with his huge comic book collection.
4551 Roosevelt Blvd
Jacksonville, FL 32210
215 North Laura St.
I hope that the family owned shops maintain a place in Jacksonville. Not simply for what goods and or services they offer but because these shops offer a physical and emotional glimpse into those intangible memories that we seek to relive.
I would like to conclude by saying thank you to everyone that welcomed me into their store and shared with me apart of their family, and store history. I had a great time meeting everyone.
Article and Photographs by Ashley Vargas
This article can be found at: https://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2013-jun-family-business-photo-essay-by-ashley-vargas