For the past 85 years, Barber & Haskill has been helping people in Midland and surrounding areas, by selling products that help make their house a home.
However, Barber & Haskill has had many evolutions before becoming Midland’s premiere appliance and mattress store. In fact, it actually didn’t start off as an appliance store at all, said Tom Barber, owner of Barber & Haskill.
The business was started in 1938, when his grandfather came to Midland from Owen Sound, and joined forces with his brother-in-law, Mr. Haskill. As Mr. Haskill was an electrician by trade, the first Barber & Haskill was an electrical company doing wiring for homes and farms that didn’t yet have power. Which included water trough heaters to help improve life on the farm.
As more and more homes gained electricity the demand for electrical products grew. They decided to combine their electrical expertise with selling appliances and the first Barber & Haskill appliance store was born. At that time, Barber said they were selling things like wringer washing machines and space heaters, they were the store to bring the first televisions in to Midland in the 1950’s.
“That was actually a big thing for them, being involved in cable TV coming to town and the first people to sell TV’s. Later they had a close relationship with the local Mitsubishi TV plant further driving TV sales for the then growing retail business. Even though we no longer carry electronics is was a big part of our history,” he said.
After his grandfather, his father took over and in 2003 it was Tom’s turn, becoming the third generation of Barber to run the business. “While the store has changed and expanded over the years, Barber said. It was the foundation provided by its founders and my father that has made it last as long as it has” What hasn’t changed is that they’re still in the business of making people’s homes comfortable and hopefully life a little easier.
“We’ve been lucky enough to have customers trust us to help them make those decisions, and supply the products for them that make their house a home for 85 years,” Tom said.
Barber & Haskill credits their success and longevity to the community’s ongoing support and loyalty
“It’s amazing to me, but my father seems to be able to tie everyone in the town of Midland to someone who worked here at some point,” he said. “There has definitely been hundreds people that have worked here.” Barber says that “it is these staff members current and old that make this place work, they are the link to the customer, the personality, without them we would not have lasted this long.”
“It’s the staff that makes this place a nice place to come to, they aren’t pushy, they’re helpful. They are selling to their neighbours, it’s important for them that they make sure that our customers make the right decisions and get a good deal,” he said.
And this is why Barber equally wants to thank the customers, along with the staff. “None of this would be possible without them all, I am not the reason we are celebrating this milestone, it is the that have gotten us here.”
Celebrating Barber & Haskill’s 85th anniversary with events and promotions all year long
To thank their loyal customers for their continued support over the years, Barber has planned several promotions, sales and events that will take place throughout the year.
They’re launching their gift with purchase program throughout the store. For example, customers will receive an 85th anniversary gift package with the purchase of select BBQs, which could include spices and rubs, pellet and pellet bins, grill cleaners, and so much more.
Other events include a customer appreciation event, special deals and promotions, and monthly specials in all the departments. They’re also launching the Barber & Haskill VIP Program, a loyalty program that earns points for dollars off future purchases to reward repeat customers.
Barber & Haskill’s 85th anniversary events kick off in June and will continue throughout the year. For more information, call Barber & Haskill at 705-526-7811, contact them, or visit their Facebook page to learn more!