Bill Koerber discovers shelves he made as apprentice in the 1940s are still in use

Narooma man Bill Koerber, 85, is pleased to find the wooden shelves he made as a 16-year-old carpenter’s apprentice are still standing.

The shelves are in the back room of the Narooma New and Used shop, but back when he helped build them, the shop was W.B. Smyth General Produce.

Seventy-odd years ago, Mr Koerber was apprenticed to carpenter Les Ralph, who also built the tower at what is now the Uniting Church.

The pair made the hardwood shelves by hand saw, hammer and nails.

“Back then Smyth’s general store had the groceries up the front with hardware and husbandry off to the side,” Mr Koerber said.

Arthur Costin used to own the building and Bill Smyth rented it from him.

The Smyth family of Narooma made news recently, announcing that after 82 years of trading in town, they would be closing up their other shop.

Mr Koerber said it was a “bit sad” that the Smyth family was ending its long history of trade in Narooma, and that his brother Charlie had had a lot to do with Bill Smyth.