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174-year-old Maryland furniture store, Bast of Boonsboro, to close

BOONSBORO, Md. — Bast of Boonsboro, believed to be the oldest continually operating furniture store in Maryland, is closing after 174 years, the Washington Post reported this week.

The 74-year-old owner, Douglas G. Bast, had considered retiring, and the economy made the decision a little easier, the newspaper quoted store manager Kim Teska as saying. In a statement, Bast said the culture was changing as the younger set increasingly used the Internet to buy furniture and didn't care if it lasted for a long time.

The store, located south of Hagerstown and northwest of Frederick, has begun a going-out-of- business sale and has set July 1 as its anticipated closing date.

The business started in 1837 as a cabinetmaker's shop and also sold coffins with burials. It continued to operate over the decades as both a furniture and funeral home until the two business split in the mid-1960s. The store has stood at the same spot through the years, although the original building was replaced in the 1920s.

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