Actually, I think your reaction will be in the soft “wow” category as you enter what I would call the Drug Store or maybe even the Country Store. For those of us here at Texansunited.com, it was a definite step back in time, a wonderful step, I might add…right into Mayberry!
Visitors to the pharmacy can pick up their 21st century prescriptions and then have lunch (served weekdays from 11:00-2:30) at the beautiful old soda fountain that is open until 4:30 for those extra special shakes.
The pharmacy building was initially Freeman’s Grocery Store, the place where Mr. and Mrs. Freeman both lived and worked. Deb Hall, who manages the soda fountain for Jill, enthralled us with descriptions of the old grocery.
“Freeman’s had the first soft serve ice cream machine in Dublin. They actually installed a walkup window at the front of the store with a little stool for children who were not tall enough to reach the window. This was a big, big deal fifty years ago. Dublin had arrived!”
Deb also showed us the wall where Mr. and Mrs. Freeman kept their wooden ice boxes. In these, milk, butter, and eggs were kept cold.
Today, the old grocery is gone, but somehow the charm of yesteryear remains, and it surrounded us as I asked Jill about her family’s history in the medical profession.
“My grandfather, Dr. Joe J. Pate, came to Dublin after WWII and established his practice. My dad was raised here and graduated from Dublin High School. Of course, he left Dublin to attend college and then Medical School in Galveston. After graduating from Med School, he returned home and took over Granddaddy’s practice.
Both of Jill’s brothers graduated from Pharmacy School; however, she is quick to point out that she graduated ahead of the brother just older than she!
Jill and husband Sammy purchased the Patrick Street Pharmacy when it was in a different location and they operated it there for the first few years. They bought the current building in 2007 and spent the next two years restoring it.
Today, the old building has come full circle as Jill and Sammy have brought it back to life, making it once again a thriving part of the heartbeat of Dublin.
Of course the old-fashioned soda fountain is a huge part of their success.
“I always thought that if I ever had the opportunity to have a larger pharmacy I would put in a soda fountain. I can remember walking to the Rexall Drug Store to get a milk shake at the fountain, and I loved it! Plus, I love antiques and days gone by so…here I am.
“We actually were very fortunate. My husband happened to talk to a man who had purchased a house in Carlton and in the barn was an old soda fountain.”
Yep, you guessed it; that fountain is today inside the Patrick Street Pharmacy! However, for two years Sammy and Jill left the soda fountain in the old barn.
“Then, we bought this building and started working on refurbishing it. They were tearing down the old Methodist Church in Carlton and we got the bead board that we used on the ceiling and the wood around the walls from the church.
“The tin wall came from the roof of a storage building that was behind this building, and the tin roof over the actual pharmacy came from Dublin’s Templeton family’s old dairy barn.
The gorgeous floor of the building is actually the original wood floor that has been brought back from years of carpet, tile, and linoleum. Believe it of not, they took up each individual plank of wood, planed it and then put it back in place!
“Effie Leatherwood is our good friend and she has an eye for decorating and loves antiques so she took me to all of her favorite flea markets, etc. I couldn’t have done it without her.”
Of course, there is a wall dedicated to Jill’s father and grandfather. On display is her dad’s old doctor bag as well as other professional memorabilia.
Yes, today Patrick street is a thriving, independent, community pharmacy… or as I still like to say…Drug Store…