Four generations use local jeweler
For four generations one family has done business at Everette’s Jeweler's in Graham, with a family tree spanning back to the man who made the first purchase at the store in Jan. 1951.
In Jan. 1951, Everette Vanarsdall and his wife Peggy had their grand opening of Everette’s Jeweler's in Graham, Vanarsdall’s son Dan Vanarsdall said. Everette was in the Navy in World War II and went to watchmaker school on the Servicemen’s Readjustment Act of 1944, or the G.I. Bill. He worked as a jeweler for a few other business before opening his own business in 1951.
Vanarsdall’s line of credit from his wholesaler when he started his business was $6.75. With that money he purchased a watch that would eventually be his first item sold at the store. In Jan. 1951, a man named Bud Reagan purchased the watch and several years later returned it for a newer watch.
“Since it was his very first sale he restored the watch and put it in that little shadowbox,” Dan Vanarsdall said.
It was in the 1990s that Dan Vanarsdall said his father had chosen to memorialize the first sale at his store by placing it in the shadowbox. The watch still sits behind the counter at Everette’s Jeweler's in Graham inside the shadowbox.
Bud Reagan’s son Mark Reagan Sr., continued the tradition of doing business at Everette’s by buying his wedding ring at the store. His daughter Angela Reagan, was also a customer of the store and most recently her son Cap Fellows bought his wedding ring in Dec. 2018, and Dan Vanarsdall said he was surprised to hear that Fellows was related to the man who made the first purchase at the store.
“He said ‘That is the first watch your dad sold to Bud Reagan,’ and I said ‘Yeah,’ and he said ‘That was my great-grandfather,” Dan Vanarsdall said.
Everette’s Jeweler's celebrates 68 years of service to the city of Graham this month. The business moved to its current location at the corner of Elm and 4th St. in 1984 and Dan and Scott Vanarsdall, along with their mother Peggy oversee operations for their father whose store has left a historic mark on Graham.