022- Millet Mercantile Co

     From the Community Hall, go east (right) on 50 Avenue. This avenue was originally called Alberta Street. In the early days it seemed that Alberta Street would be the main street in Millet. Other businesses on Alberta Street were Mrs. Campbell’s boarding house, Millet Packet, and Cooper Bros Harness and Hardware (1906). The location of these buildings is unknown as there was a fire on the southwest end of Alberta Street in 1910. These buildings, as well as Pillens Feed Store and Kovars’s pool hall, were on this street west of the Mercantile Store. Alberta Street was never the main street of town as was predicted. The mercantile building, built in 1921, was once John West’s Mercantile Store. The bungalow next door is the West’s home that was built at the same time as the store. See the plaque for more information.   

     John and May West picked Lot 11, Block 2 on Alberta Avenue (50th Avenue) to build a general store with living quarters above it. This was the third general store to be built in Millet. Mr. West had a partner at first, W. M. Sicklesteel. After a short time Mr. West bought him out. On May 30th, 1921, a fire destroyed the store, home, garage, warehouse, and stables. John West rebuilt a brick store at the same location and a bungalow to the west for his home. Mr. West always insisted that a bang of candy be included in each box of groceries. In the beginning, people hauled willow posts to the store and traded them for groceries, and therefore the posts accumulated. As new communities sprung up across Southern Alberta, fence posts were needed. Mr. West was able to sell them to the Alberta and Revelstoke Lumber yards. Many carloads of posts were shipped. Mr. and Mrs. West worked together in the store and were in business until 1944, when the store was sold to E.J. Walker. Later, the building was used as a Veterinary Clinic, and as the home of Aramanth Art Needlework.