Croft Lumber Company started out as a sawmill owned by Vine Crandell and Clarence Croft and was incorporated in May of 1937. In 1943, Jim Croft and his uncle Clarence took over the business, purchasing Crandall's share. Following Clarence's death in 1947, his niece, Margaret McConnell was involved in the business, inheriting one half of the business. Jim Croft purchased her share two years later and became sole owner.
Gradually, Jim worked into the retail business, offering windows, doors, and building materials as well as lumber. The sawmill and logging operation, then managed by Jim's brother Richard Croft, was shut down in 1964, when Jim Croft purchased the Ford dealership in Athens from Jim French. Croft Lumber is now strictly a retail business. On New Year's Eve 1960, Croft Lumber Company was destroyed by fire with the exception of the sawmill.
By April, they were back in business. In 1977, another major expansion took place with a remolded store and addition, which brought the store to its current 16,000 square feet of display area. Croft Lumber became the first Pro-Mart hardware store in the East. Further renovation was completed in 1997, including demolition to the sawmill to increase customer parking and complete re-merchandising of the store's interior. Subsequently, Croft Lumber became the National Pro Hardware Paul L. Cosgrave Award-winner. This prestigious honor is given annually to the Pro retailer showing commitment to the ideals of effective hardware merchandising.
The company has the distinction of three generations of Crofts at the helm. Jim's son, Robert, joined the business in 1968. He served as vice-president and later became the owner. Robert's son Warren joined the business in 1993; he served as an officer and the buyer of lumber and building supplies. Croft Lumber went through change of leadership after the sudden death of Robert in April 1998 and Jim in November 1998.
Today, brothers Warren and Michael Croft own Croft Lumber. In 2002, Warren Croft was named National Retail Hardware Association's National Young Retailor of the Year in the over 2 million sales category.
In 2004 Croft Lumber launched a project that spanned several years to rebuild the lumber yard. A new drive through lumber storage system was installed.
2006 saw the completion of a new drive through building material shed and paving of the lumber yard.
Building Material Storage Shed
Also in early 2006, Croft Lumber joined the largest building material buying groups LMC (Lumbermens Merchandising Corporation). This partnership allows Croft Lumber access to more products at lower prices buy pooling the buying power.
LMC dealers are among the most competitive, progressive, outstanding Building Materials Dealers across the country, channeling over 11 billion dollars of sales annually.
Both the inside and outside of the store were remodeled in 2008.
In 2010 Croft Lumber expanded its kitchen and bath department, acquiring Wysox Cabinet and adding interior designer Kelly Repasky. In April 2011 the company purchased Cash-Credit Appliance and welcomed their experienced staff to Croft Lumber. Parvin Mensch, Ed Bidlack and William Thorpe will bring 50 years of experience selling and servicing appliances to Croft Lumber. Croft Lumber is now a full-service appliance store featuring several brand and styles to choose from.
The company now has the area's largest showrooms offering everything from hardware, paint, lumber & tools, to beautiful kitchens, baths, and appliances. At Croft Lumber we offer quality products, a knowledgeable staff and excellent customer service. As our slogan says we are "Building on Service at the Right Price".