Salem's Oldest Businesses - Salem, Massachusetts

Salem, MA, USA

Essex Street, c. 1920
Salem State University Archives and Special Collections

Salem has long been a shopping and dinning destination. During the Great Age of Sail, Salem was a center of trade and access to foreign goods. In the 20th century, the city was home to the area's destination stores, attracting shoppers from Boston and throughout the North Shore to Salem's downtown. Although department stores have moved out of the city in favor of area shopping malls, multiple 19th century businesses and restaurants are still a mainstay in Salem. This list focuses on public facing businesses and restaurants that have provide goods or services for over 50 years.

  1. Ye Old Pepper Candy Companie, 1806
  2. Eastern Bank, 1818 (Formerly Salem Savings Bank)
  3. J. J. Welch, 1852
  4. Salem Five Cents Savings Bank, 1855
  5. O'Rourke Brothers Memorials, 1890
  6. Waters & Brown, 1895
  7. E.W. Hobbs, 1897
  8. Soucy Insurance, 1907
  9. Thomas Mackey and Sons, 1907
  10. Salem Lowe, 1912
  11. Winer Brothers Hardware, 1919
  12. Salem Auto Body, 1924
  13. Hawthorne Hotel, 1925
  14. Puleo's Dairy, 1928
  15. John J. Walsh Insurance Agency, 1929
  16. Walyo's Variety Store, c. 1930
  17. Steve's Market, 1932
  18. Gardner Mattress, 1933
  19. Bunghole Liquors, 1933
  20. Bertini's Restaurant, 1943
  21. F.W. Webb, 1944 (Salem Location)
  22. Red's Sandwich Shop, 1945
  23. Gagnon Shoe Repair, c. 1945 (Removed to Beverly, 2021)
  24. Dairy Witch Ice Cream, 1952
  25. Coon's Card and Gift Shop, 1953
  26. Dotty & Ray's, 1958
  27. Eaton Apothecary, 1958
  28. Tri City Sales, 1959
  29. Dube's Seafood, 1961
  30. Mandee's Pizza, 1962
  31. The Daniels House Bed and Breakfast, 1962
  32. Ziggy & Sons' Donuts, 1964
  33. Bill & Bob's Roast Beef, 1969


  1. Replies
    1. The cut off was 1970. 50 years old or more. :-)

  2. How about Salem & Tobin TV on North Street. Used to be two separate stores. I THINK its still open.

    1. I can't seem to find a opening date for them. They are still doing house calls from what I can find.

    2. It was for sure open by 1974 or so, and probably earlier. It was an established business by 1974.

  3. Dube's goes back to the 1920's. The family operated a diner on New Derby St. They were one of the original group to receive a liquor license when Prohibition ended in 1933. I used to deliver the Salem News to Dube's in the mid 50s whe it cost 3 cents. Al & Clara Dube ran the restaurant into the 1960's. "Beaver" Pelletier ran the restaurant after. the Dube'a retired. The current owners are related to "Beaver"

  4. How about Salem & Tobin TV on North Street. Used to be two separate stores. I THINK its still open.
    Westwood Massachusetts CPA

  5. Eaton Apothecary is listed as 1958, yet the original Eaton the Druggist was established in 1921.


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