On July 5, 1988, Jimmy T. Pate purchased a small old fashioned 25-year-old hardware store that was closed in Comanche, Texas called Comanche Building Supply. After a massive remodel and restocking stage to update the appearance and operations, the store was ready for business a month later. By the end of the second year, due to increased sales, the size of the building was doubled to meet the demand for more inventory. A year later Mr. Pate had the opportunity to purchase additional property beside the store, therefore he enlarged the hardware store again and added more lumber storage buildings. On October 21, 1993 the business was incorporated and the name changed to Pate's Hardware, Inc.
In August of 1993, Mr. Pate purchased a vacant warehouse building in Deleon, Texas 16 miles north of Comanche. After a complete remodel and construction of lumber and storage buildings the second hardware store opened 4 months later. Sales continued to increase and the need for more inventory also grew, so in August of 2000 3,645 sq. ft. was added to the original Deleon store building, along with additional storage for lumber and pipe.
Shortly after Mr. Pate made that first purchase he recognized the need for growth and expansion. Therefore when a house or lot became available to purchase that was located around the original store he bought it with no real purpose in mind. In May 1995 Mr. Pate saw the advantages of diversifying his business and purchased another building that was vacant beside two lots he was using as storage, Pates Rental was opened later that year. As the opportunities became available, Mr. Pate continued to purchase four more lots to connect the area together to form one yard full of equipment, storage buildings, a shop, and a store front. The rental store is operated completely separate from the hardware stores. It rents everything from hand tools, welding supplies, concrete equipment to backhoes, bulldozers, road-graders, ditch diggers, wedding and catering supplies, and much more.
With the opening of the new locations, the offices inside the Comanche Hardware store had to be expanded but there was nowhere to go. Therefore in July of 1997, another building was purchased and remodeled for a General Office. The office was equipped with five offices and a customer receiving area. The General Office maintains two secretaries, a buyer, and a sales manager along with Mr. Pate's office. The General Office centralizes all the payroll, bookkeeping, accounting procedures, and purchasing for all the stores.
In August of 1997, a piece of property was purchased in Early, Texas about 25 miles west of Comanche. Mr. Pate designed this location from the ground up, with a new building and state of the art lumber facilities. After a long delay due to rain, the construction was finished and the Early store was opened in April, 1998.
Again in April 2002 construction on the Comanche Store began with a 4,356 sq. ft. addition. It was complete in August, 2002 with new products and increased inventory. Later in 2002, Mr. Pate purchased a vacant warehouse beside the Comanche store. The warehouse was remodeled and the front half was made into a new, larger General Office. The warehouse is used to store lumber, plywood, OSB, insulation, and other products. With the addition of the warehouse and yard space around it Pate's is able to stock inventory for all the locations.
Late in 2005, Mr. Pate started working on another project. He rented two buildings both in strip malls, one in Granbury, Texas, which is 65 miles east of Comanche, and the other in Weatherford, Texas, which is 90 miles northeast of Comanche. With these two new locations in Metroplex areas there were new complications and challenges. The Granbury location required structural remodeling. After the shelves, counters and lumber racks were purchased and set up, Mr. Pate's first indoor hardware store/lumberyard under one roof was open for business in Granbury in April of 2006. Then a month later the Weatherford store was set up stocked and open for business.
No longer are all the Pate's store located in rural areas since the openings in Granbury and Weatherford, although all the stores still service farmers, ranches, dairymen, local merchants, and residents. Now with more locations, Pate's is more capable of purchasing larger quantities of inventory and supplying larger construction jobs as well as handling more contractor needs. The Pate family, which includes Mr. Pate, his wife, their four sons and daughter-in-laws, still own and actively manage the company with the help of an outstanding professional staff.