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Frew General Store - Princeton PA

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The Frew General Store in the village of Princeton, opened sometime in the 1880’s, was operated by James and Kate Frew – who were assisted by their eight children. When James passed away in c1890 his wife continued to run the business until her own death at the age of sixty-one in late February 1908. Kate died three weeks after the untimely death of her daughter Sarah (Frew) Davis of Wampum. Kate’s daughters Nancy and Adda subsequently ran the store for at least the next decade. I believe that Nancy and her husband Frank Braden managed the store for most of the 1920’s until Frank’s death in 1929. Depicted in this photo from left are: Bernice Brothers (age 8), Adda Frew (age 19), Kathryn Brothers (age 7), May Frew (age 30), and Nancy Frew (age 39) and her husband Frank Braden (age 42). Adda, May, and Nancy are all sisters and Bernice and Kathryn are the daughters of another Frew sister named Edith. There appears to be some construction rubble strewn about so I’m wondering if this building had been recently built or perhaps renovated. (1910) (Photo courtesy of Dee Dee Laird) Full Size

James and Kate Frew had eight children to include daughters Nancy, Sarah, Nellie, Edith, May, and Adda and sons Charles and David. This amazing photo depicts the five eldest Frew girls. I believe they were all graduates of the Slippery Rock State Normal School, a teacher’s college founded in 1889. The school was renamed several times over the years and is the modern day Slippery Rock University. Sitting in front row from left ares Edith Frew (age 22), May Frew (age 20), and Nancy Frew (age 29). Standing in back from left are Sarah Frew (age 25) and Nellie Frew (age 24). Ages are approximate. Edith and May are clutching diplomas so they must have been the only recent graduates. The youngest sister Adda would have only been age nine at this time. (1900) (Photo courtesy of Dee Dee Laird) Full Size

The old Frew General Store has long since closed but the building – now a private residence – is still standing along Mill Bridge
Road in the village of Princeton. (2008) (Dee Dee Laird photo) Full Size


  1. That house is right up the road from me. I live on Firehall Rd.-on the left, across from the yellow house in the picture. This is the first I have heard of the history of this house. I believe Maude Shaffer lives there now.

  2. I live just behind that yellow house and my building was also a general store during that same time period. Anyone have any photos of it? It would be a the corner of Princeton and Mill Bridge Roads, also yellow, along with white trim.

  3. The house on the corner, behind the yellow house was white with green trim when I grew up there in the 70s and 80s, my father remodeled it from the studs out. I think it may have been a small bank or post office? Maude was the greatest neighbor, in a neighborhood full of kids. We used to jump our bikes off the sidewalk when she wasn’t looking.

  4. In my days living with my Grandparents (1940’s), Fred and Dora Weisz, the store was owned by Frank Bratchie. His first wife was Minnie. She was my grandmother’s sister. My cousin Eddie and I would help Grandpa Weisz deliver fresh eggs and milk to his customers in the village. When we got to Uncle Franks store, Eddie and I always got to choose candy from the Penny candy selection.

    Fun days…

  5. That is my Grandma Shaffers house and May Frew would be my Great Great Grandmother This is Great Love it


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