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Our History

Our history first dates back all the way to 1799, when RI local Timothy Wilmarth built a residence and a hattery on Main Street in Chepachet, Rhode Island.

Shortly after, the beautiful 2.5 story clapboard building in the center of town was then sold to Ira Evans in 1809 who wanted to start a general store. Over the next few years it went through quite a few different owners and shopkeepers until 1921 when James Brown and William Hopkins (pictured below with a clerk in the middle) became business partners, and decided to renamed their store, Brown & Hopkins. Historically known as the oldest, continuously operating store since 1809, Brown & Hopkins continues to be a must-stop destination for local residents and tourists.

In 2004, RI native Elizabeth Yuill purchased the building and became the 19th owner and shopkeeper of this infamous store that has truly stood against the test of time. Gone are the barrels of molasses, long underwear, rifles, suspenders and the like. Although keeping in touch with the old days and historic roots of Brown & Hopkins there are still many parts of the original general store that have stayed perfectly preserved inside. When visiting Brown & Hopkins it truly feels like you are taking a step back in time, the original penny candy counter still stands along with walls filled with original vintage relics and antiques dating back to the store's first opening.

Nowadays you will find a more modern mercantile with stylized home decor, great gifts, soy candles, and delicious gourmet specialties creatively merchandised, along with good old fashioned hospitality.