In May 1867 W.H. Thorne General Hardware Merchants was launched by Senator W.H. Thorne as a retail and wholesale store on the corner of Dock Street and Market Square in Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada. In 1875 Senator W.H. Thorne was joined by Richard C. Scovil and the firm of W.H. Thorne & Company was formed. To better provide for the needs of customers, the retail and wholesale businesses were separated and a new building was erected especially for the wholesale division on Canterbury Street. The retail division carried on at the original Dock Street building.
In 1877, the Great Fire of Saint John destroyed both stores and their contents. To provide for the continuation of the business, a temporary two-story structure was built on the Market Square site and, within ten days, business resumed. In the meantime, provision was made for the building on Prince William Street and eighteen months later the new premises were occupied.
In 1923 W.H Thornes’ nephew, J.G. Harrison succeeds as president until 1943 when the company was acquired by KC Irving. The company, newly named Thornes Hardware Limited, opens its modern 200,000 square foot facility on Chesley Drive which is still today the company’s head office, distribution center, and largest branch in Canada.
Source Atlantic was created in 2001 through the consolidation of a number of independent and long-standing companies with Thornes being one of those companies. Many of these businesses shared common customers thereby enabling Source Atlantic to become a single source of distribution and service across a multitude of verticals.
Today, Source Atlantic Limited is an innovative and industry-leading wholesale distributor serving the needs of the industrial, government, commercial and residential contractor markets in Canada and beyond. We are partnered with hundreds of world-class suppliers, offer a multitude of specialized and technical services, and have many business solutions designed to optimize the industry.