Bygones of Monroe:
THE SACKETT STORE SOLD
A. F. Meloche, druggist, has purchased the S. M. Sackett building, 29 East Front street. He acquires possession January 1 st , 1906, and in the meantime the former owner will dispose of the stock, Mr. Meloche having bought only the building. The latter will continue in his present location, the Lewis building, and will remodel the Sackett building, put in a new front, etc., to suit the new tenant.
This marks the beginning of the end of the oldest drug establishment in the state, for Mr. Sackett himself had occupied the building since 1853, and before that, Dr. Harry Conant had a drug store, beginning business in September 1822. Thus the building was used for the drug business for 83 years. Mr. Sackett was born in Maumee, Ohio, October 21, 1825 and thus observes his 80 th birthday anniversary tomorrow. On February 14, 1842, he was brought by his father from the Raisinville homestead to take a position as a clerk for Dr. Harry Conant. Always of less than average height, Mr. Sackett at the time was compelled to stand on a stool behind the counter when waiting on customers. From the time he entered the employ of Mr. Conant until today he was engaged continuously in the drug business, giving him the record of the longest service in that profession of any man in the state. He remained with Mr. Conant until July 4, 1850, when he and E. R. Clark formed a partnership in the drug and grocery business in Coldwater, laying the foundation of the present flourishing business of E. R. Clark & Co. In the spring of 1851 they burned out and Mr. Sackett sold his interest to Mr. Tealls, soon afterwards coming to Monroe and purchasing a half interest in Mr. Conant's business, the firm adopting the name "Conant & Sackett." In 1853 he acquired the full ownership, buying the balance from the Conant estate.
As was the case in all businesses in the early days, Mr. Sackett carried a variety of merchandise besides drugs, and, in a measure, never ceased to do so. Books, magazines, stationary and sporting goods formed the principal side lines. In addition he also handled marbles, tops, fireworks, toys, etc., that for years brought troops of small boys to spend their pennies at "Uncle Sammy's. of keen and alert mentality, widely read, gifted with remarkable memory, his mind became a storehouse of reminiscences and no pioneer or historical meeting in the county was complete without him. Physically slight, but wiry and active, it was only during the past year or two that he was compelled to cease active business cares and even then he frequently remarked with that characteristic twinkle of his: "Give me a young pair of feet and I'll be as spry as you young fellows."
He was known throughout the county, not only through business contact, but through his Sunday school work, in which he took an intense interest. He founded and taught in the LaSalle Sunday school a generation ago. For 25 successive years he was county superintendent of the Sunday schools, attending each one of the 50 conventions that were held during his term of office. Only the inroads of old age induced him to lay aside these duties. At present he is confined to his home, where, bowed with honored and honorable old age, he is spending the evening of his life serenely awaiting the masters call.
(Monroe Democrat, October 20, 1905)