By Sarah Foster
Tom Boyle can’t help but poke through his shelves. He’s in search of a movie poster that only he can visualize. It’s somewhere among the newspaper clippings, the vinyl records, the buttons and the books.
“Let me see,” he says, furrowing his brows and shuffling through his inventory.
After searching for a few minutes himself, he sends his colleague over to the other corner of the store, hoping he can help find it. Poking and prodding through the posters, the pair finally pull it out of the pile: “A Stratton Story.” Their eyes glance over the picture depicting the 1949 film about an injured baseball player. They notice the faded red-and-white hues and the way James Stewart embraces June Allyson.
“This is it,” Boyle says with a smile.
But they weren’t searching through their inventory for fun. They were hoping to retrieve the poster for a customer, who has the same last name as Stewart’s character.
“It’s like finding a home for abandoned children,” Boyle said. “When we can find a good home for these items, it makes us happy.”
Intimate customer service and an ability to provide rare items from the past are exactly how Boyle’s store, a memorabilia shop called Yesterday, has managed to stay open for 42 years.