Folsoms Furniture has been providing quality home furnishings since its founding in 1898. It was started in the summer by two brothers, Willis and Robert Folsom. The store became known as Folsom Bros. and was originally located in the village of Springvale, Maine. The original business plan was to become a full-service store, where a person could purchase everything to set up "housekeeping." A complete selection of draperies, pins and needles, coal stoves, pots and pans, sewing machines and actually anything needed for a home was available. One has to remember that this was before "the day of the automobile," and people were not as mobile as in the early 1900's. The store was on the local trolley line, so one could catch the trolley from Sanford for the sum of 5 cents to shop in the village of Springvale. Deliveries were made by Robert Folsom using a wagon with a beloved horse named "Dolly." In the winter months a "pung" was used. The original pung (found some years ago) is now on display at Folsoms' store in Alfred, Maine. The original store burned in 1905 but was rebuilt and opened again a year later. Business continued to grow, and in 1922 Rodney Folsom joined his father, Robert, and his Uncle Willis in the furniture store. The "Great Depression" was an extremely difficult time for Folsom Bros. Many times furniture was sold well below cost in order to pay bills and put food on the table.
Grandpa John Folsom, the first of his namesake joined his half brother Rodney in the business after graduating from University of Maine in 1949. He earned his business degree from UMO after receiving a purple heart from being severely wounded in World War II. He served as an infantry machine gunner in the United States army in the 3rd Armored Division under General George C. Patton. Fighting bravely he took a mortar to his back during the Battle of the Bulge in the European Campaign.
Later on his wife Jane Folsom, daughter Holly Leach and sons Johnny and Jimmy all joined the business and consequently spent majority of their lives involved in some manner. Johnny and Jim Folsom continue to work in the business today, and Grandpa Folsom still at times be seen at his desk reading the newspaper or drawing maps for customer deliveries.
When urban renewal took place in Springvale in the late 1960s it caused many businesses to either close or move, so in 1973 Folsoms moved to the center of Alfred, Maine. They purchased the William Emery home and renovated the house and old barn into their new showroom which is where Folsoms is located to this day.
Folsoms no longer sells many of the house wares it started it’s business with but they are a major retailer of fine home furnishings, rugs and accessories. The Folsom Family is dedicated to only buying American made upholstery. They continue to stand behind the product they sell and have been for over 118 years. Many of Folsoms customers are longtime loyal customers and the family loves to hear stories of furniture bought at Folsoms that has been handed down through generations of families. Ironically enough Johnny and his wife Beth just recently passed down to their daughter a 30 year old Pennsylvania House Sofa that was in impeccable condition.
We at Folsoms Furniture believe the key to our longevity and success is fostering customer relationships and the knowledge and quality of our product. Our customers tell us time and time again that shopping with our competitors or online furniture shopping has never paralleled to the experience they have when buying at Folsoms.