The business was started after World War II by Roy Walter (the “W”) and Pereira Bros. (the “P”). Walter, a local farmer and veteran, was able to buy surplus military tools and equipment. The partners built a large shop where trucks and tractors were rebuilt and converted to farm and industrial use.
Walter found there was a need for a forklift that could be used in the fields and designed the first field lifts for farming operations. The W&P Forklift became so popular, they were manufactured here and sold throughout the western U.S. in the 1950s and ’60s.
The hardware store specialized mainly in farm and industrial tools and supplies, reported Walter’s son, Ron.
In the photo above, left to right: Mac McGee, employee; Al Pereira, George Pereira and Roy Walter, all owners; and George Swanson, salesman.
Identifying those in the photo were Ron Walter and Linda Alegre, children of Roy Walter. Jeffie Thompson Evans identified the business and location. Barry Matthews operated the business before it was closed. Ben Goldberg reported that he owns the building, which was constructed in 1938. It now houses three businesses — BLG Design, Tri-State Rock and Recycled Treasures.
Today’s mystery photo, at right, shows a Tracy resident packing up to move out of town in 1989. Who was he, why did many people know his name and where he was going?