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The Sherman Tin Shop

The southeast corner of the building is a dead give-away that Ray Locke's tin shop once served as a church. The building, which sat at the corner of Houston and Montgmery streets in Sherman (Grayson County, Texas) burned down in 1998 (THC).

When I was a wee college student, I saw Locke's Tin Shop at the corner of Houston and Montgomery streets in downtown Sherman and thought it was the prettiest building I'd ever seen. And when it burned down in 1998, Sherman (Grayson County, Texas) lost a bona-fide treasure.

The structure was built around 1907 to originally serve as a church, but by 1920 it was acquired by Ray Locke, who made it into a tin shop where he displayed his craftsmanship around the building and on the roof. He, his wife Stella, and tinsmith Owen Smith (aptly named!) provided the citizens of the Red River Valley with their tin needs for over forty years.

Locke's Tin Shop was a very unique place, mainly because unlike the buildings that surrounded it, it was faced with wooden clapboard siding, featured a stained glass windows, and was situated right at the street (not set back like modern building are). When driving into Sherman from the east, it truly stood out.

A few years back, the Sherman Public Library shared a post with the history of the shop, and in 1985, the Texas Historical Commission took photos to document the building for the National Register. So while the Tin Shop is gone, at least there are still some photographs left!

Man on steps
Ray Locke, who was born in Bonham and served in WWI, stands on the stairs of his shop in Sherman, Texas (Sherman Public Library).

a 1969 photograph of Ray Locke's Tin Shop at the corner of Houston and Montgomery streets in Sherman, Grayson County, Texas. (Sherman Public Library).

Another Historical Commission photograph shows that the tin shop, built originally as a church, stood in Sherman's warehouse district (THC).

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