The Kelly-Leduc Hardware Store
Formerly 67 Wellington Street, at the corner of Saint-Rédempteur
The Kelly-Leduc hardware store, founded in 1914, was located at the corner of Saint-Rédempteur and Wellington Streets. The business, which also sold building materials, had an excellent reputation in the Ottawa Valley.
Its founders, P.-Valmore Leduc and Joseph-Albert Kelly, had bought Ferdinand Barrette's hardware store, established since 1874 on the northeast side of St-Rédempteur and Wellington Streets, where the Terrasses de la Chaudière now stands. In 1927, the Kelly et Leduc company bought the property on the southwest corner, where there had previously stood a plumber's and then a grocery. After the death of his partner, Kelly enlarged the business. For a number of years, this hardware store held on in the face of the desertion of Hull Island, but it finally closed its doors in August 1995.
P. Valmore Leduc was born in Hull on February 5, 1882, the son of Ursule Gravelle and Charles Leduc, journalist, alderman and mayor of Hull. He studied at the Collège Notre-Dame in Hull and the Business College of Ottawa or the University of Ottawa. He then worked for Gédéon Lafond, and in E.-D. Trudel's hardware store. In 1914 he went into partnership with Joseph-Albert Kelly and bought Ferdinand Barrette's hardware store after his death. One Tuesday noon in April 1938, Leduc was stricken with paralysis on his way home from the store. Passers-by brought him home, where he died two days later.
Joseph-Albert Kelly was born on February 29, 1872 in Lévis, Quebec. He was seven years old when the family moved to Hull. Five years later, he began working in George Marston's ironworks where he remained for 27 years. In 1911, he was employed in the Walters and Sons axe factory. After buying the hardware store from Barette, he took up residence in its upper floor. On June 16, 1914, he married Sarah Elizabeth Gertrude Wood, widow of John Francis O' Neil, of Cornwall, Ontario. She already had a son, Robert. The Kellys had a second son, Johnson Herbert, and the family lived over the store. Between 1944 and 1950, Kelly bought the beautiful property at 21 Hanson (Front) Street in Hull. In 1964, at the age of 92, he celebrated the 50th anniversary of the company. That fall, he left the region for Orlando, Florida, where he died on December 9, 1964.
The City of Gatineau owns the beautiful 1915 cash register from the Kelly-Leduc hardware store. Made of cast iron and oak, it is an electric countertop model, with three drawers, four paper rolls and two printers for receipts. Each drawer has a different bell. The president of Kelly-Leduc, David McDermott, presented this cash register to the City on November 30, 1987.