In the 1980s there were two hardware stores in downtown Mill Valley: Varneys was at 57 Throckmorton and Tamalpais Hardware was at 30 Miller Ave.
In 1919, World War I veterans Tony and John Varney bought the plumbing business of August Muntz at 67 Throckmorton. They renamed it Varneys and moved it to 57 Throckmorton.
In 1920, they expanded into the hardware business. Until 1949 Varneys also sold coal. The brothers managed the hardware store until 1946 when Tony’s son Charles and John’s son Dick took over.
In 1994, Varneys went out of business.
In 1928, Ralph Tieman opened Tamalpais Hardware in the Mauer building at 171 Throckmorton. In 1928 he moved the business to a new building at 731 Miller Ave. In 1932 he moved it to 30 Miller Ave.
In 1986, Tamalpais Hardware went out of business. Mill Valley Lumber, not far from downtown, stocked a limited selection of hardware items.
It went out of business in 2011.
The next closest hardware store was General Hardware in Egger Plaza in the Locust District. It also went out of business in 2011.
Today, the only source of hardware in Mill Valley is Goodman Building Supply on highway 101.
(A Marinscope historical vignette courtesy of the Mill Valley Historical Society.)