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Somerset County Then and Now

Then and Now

136 West Main Street

136 West Main Street


Address: 136 West Main Street
Built: 1884
Builder: Isaac G. Jones
Architect: Adam Ridinger
Previously: Jacob Schneider house, Barnett House
Owners: George Ross Parker, John H Sifford
Extant: Yes

George Ross Parker was born into a mercantile family in Somerset 25 Oct 1835. His maternal grandfather was Adam Schneider who along with his brother Jacob opened the first store in Somerset. His father George Parker opened a store with General George Ross in 1823 on the Northeast corner of the Diamond. This partnership lasted until 1846 when the elder Parker went into business for himself. In the early 1860's his youngest son, George joined the business and they operated as Parker & Parker until the death of George Sr. in 1871. George Jr. operated his business alone until 1882 when he partnered with his nephew Webster Bateman Parker. Two years later they built the Parker Building on the site where the Barnet House hotel burned in the 1876 fire. Before the Barnet House, the site was the home of Jacob Schneider who rented a room for use as a court room from 1795 to 1801 when Somerset's first courthouse was built. The rent was $30 per year. In 1897 George R. Parker retired and sold his business to L. M. Shepherd and J. S. Kuykendall. Mr. Shepherd quickly sold his interest to John H. Sifford and the business operated under the name Sifford and Kuykendall. That business lasted only a year before Mr. Kuykendall was forced to retire due to illness. It then became J. H. Sifford’s and operated under that name until 1946. Mr. Sifford died in 1940 but the store was managed by his son Herbert until he joined the Red Cross and served overseas in WWII. It was then managed by Mrs. Homer Enfield and Mrs. Fred Cupp. Immediately after Sifford's closed in 1946, Dusenberry's Drug Store moved into the space. They were previously located in the Casebeer-Frease Building which was razed in 1950 for the construction of Newberry's. In 1954 the drug store became Findley's Pharmacy which it remains to this day.