Kuester’s Hardware Store


Fred Kuester’s first store, seen here at the corner of Lincoln and Weinbach, opened in 1937, in what was then a sparsely-developed part of town. Advertising itself as “the hardware store and more,” the business became a fixture in the retail community for decades as Fred Kuester, an Evansville native, gained a national reputation as a pioneer in the industry for his store designs, varied merchandise, and other innovations. Branches later operated on Diamond Avenue, Vann Avenue, in the North Park, Fairlawn and Lawndale shopping centers, and in venues as distant as Owensboro, Kentucky, before the business was phased out after the death of Kuester’s widow in 2000.

FOOTNOTES: We want to thank Patricia Sides, Archivist of Willard Library for contributing this picture that shall increase people’s awareness and appreciation of Evansville’s rich history. If you have any historical pictures of Vanderburgh County or Evansville please contact please contact Patricia Sides, Archivist Willard Library at 812) 425-4309, ext. 114 or e-mail her at www.willard.lib.in.us.


  1. I really, really miss the Kuester’s store on University drive. All we’ve got now are the big boxes unless you drive to Mt. Vernon to Bud’s and a little Ace store.

  2. Those people at Kuester’s would actually help you find what you thought you needed and then show you how to use it … or disabuse you of your flawed perception and steer you in the right direction.

  3. I worked for Kuesters for 10 years..My late father worked for Kuesters for 43 years..I miss going into a smaller store like it was ..to buy only one “bolt”..not a whole box..I miss waiting on and helping people…

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