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100 year Anniversary Party
August 22 @ 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm
The city of Carmel has granted us our PROCLAMATION for April 15, 2021 as Hughey Hartman Upholstery Day.
What a great event! Thanks to my friends and clients that made it out to this event.
Mr. Larry's speech at the anniversary party
Good Afternoon. Is everybody having a good time so far?
How about the entertainment so far? Shane Rodimel?
Huge thank you to legendary broadcaster and Indianapolis icon,
Jay Baker! I so am blessed and grateful to have him helping me
today by emceeing this event. One trivia fact: Jay and I have the
same birthday: November 19th.
As my father always said” It just doesn’t HAPPEN! YOU GOT TO
MAKE IT HAPPEN!” This day started for me a couple days before
Jay and my birthday in 2016. Five years ago. I was at the 100th
round about grand opening at Rangeline and 126th street. Mayor
Brainard was doing the ribbon cutting and a speech. It was a nice
event. I met Mr. Brainard and told him about my company
coming upon the 100 year mark. He said Larry contact my office
a couple months before the date and we will have a proclamation
made up for you. I held this promise dear to my heart. I decided
that the date should be April 15th 2021 because that is the
anniversary date of my father’s passing. 4 years, four months
and 7 days ago. Because of Covid we postponed until today for
I really want to express how really special it is for me to have so
many family members, my dearest friends, associates, clients
that are here today, all together, for this centennial celebration. I
am touched by your support and want to especially acknowledge
those who traveled – my mother, Carolyn, and her husband,
Gary, from Clearwater, Fl, My Aunt’s are here from the Hughey’s
to the Hartman’s. Aunt Jeanne and Aunt Marcia, my cousins are
here. My daughter, and grandkids, my brothers are her. My
clients who I thank you from the bottom of my heart to put your
trust in me to refurbish your heirlooms and furniture. This is a
day that I will never forget.
We live in a very different world from the one in which our
grandparents lived in, and the craft of upholstering is
disappearing. For this reason, I am so proud that we still exist,
and that we are among the one-half percent of businesses that
make it this far. Let’s think about that for a moment. One half of
one percent. Wow! I did not even know that until I looked it up
on the internet.
I just want to acknowledge my Dad, Emerson “Dee” Hughey, who
passed away four and a half years ago … I hope your spirit is
here with us today. I now fully appreciate the exceptional
foundation he gave me in life — as the Carly Simon song goes, he
made the river flow right to my door. I still feel a strong
connection with the White River, and the role it has played with
my family, up to and including my involvement here at the White
River Yacht Club. Both the Hughey and Hartman families grew up
close to the river, and I have pictures on display at the table –
please take a minute to enjoy the pictures.– Please grab a pen
with the entire Colts schedule on it, How do they do that? or any
other promotional item. We have key chain flash lights also.
Every time I was with my grandpa and grandma Hartman it was
always an experience. When I was a youngster one day grandpa
and grandma Hartman were fishing with me on their pontoon
boat. We were fishing at the opening of Sandy Point. This
landmark is very close to the Hoaglin Party house. We were
anchored out by a 55-gallon drum and I caught this large crappie.
As many fishermen know crappie are very good to eat. They can
grow up to 15 inches, and mine was at the top of the scale.
When we got back to the house, I didn’t see him do it – but
Grandpa took the fish, cut off the head, and mounted it to a piece
of wood and gave it to me. I was speechless. I have no idea
where that fish head is now, but the memory will live with me
forever. Grandpa and Grandma absolutely loved Hawaii, and he
had a giant swordfish he had caught mounted on the wall–I’ll bet
it was 14 feet long and 1,400 pounds. I always marveled at that
fish, and what a character my grandpa was: he had a parakeet
that sat on his shoulder during meals.
The Hartman’s were Christian Scientists and my favorite story
about Grandma Lucille is the time I fell in the garage on River
Heights Drive. I got the wind knocked out of me … I was gasping
for air. I could not catch my breath, Grandma stayed calm and
came up to me in the garage, wrapped her arms around me and
started to pray! The astonishment of the prayer and her hug
made me stop crying. Prayer energizes the heart of a
believer through the power of the Spirit. AMEN The other
story of Grandma Lucille that sticks out is when both of us were
walking down College maybe down by Evans’s cafeteria and she
told me I should walk with the tips of my feet pointed out. Maybe
back in the day it was an etiquette thing. Even as a young boy I
knew that walking like a duck was not in my future. I kept
thinking to myself. “What is she talking about?” Little did I know
at that age that I would be getting my hip replaced this October.
Now on to the other side of the family.
Grandpa and Grandma Hughey– Edward and Yolanda –fun times
being with cousins and fantastic thanksgiving days. They had
three sons, Ed, Dee and Kenny All the Hughey men were very
athletic. Uncle Kenny and my father Dee were track stars. They
were both on the Broad Ripple high school mile relay team and
held the record for many years. My father also played fast pitch
softball at Englehart stadium. My father was also very proud
about being in the senior Olympics and one year he was fifth in
the nation in the pole vault. My father was quite the wood worker
and you could count on getting a special wood bowl or piece he
had made for Christmas. It was great how he wrapped the
presents. He would use dacron as the wrapping paper and spring
twine as the tape. He taught me many things about working with
power tools, setting up jigs and making precision parts out of
All the men in the family – my brothers and I included – have
been good at working with our hands and have always been hard
workers and owned businesses. Uncle Kenny was an upholsterer,
my father worked at Allison Transmission, which gave him
experience in building jigs and fixtures, and Uncle Ed owned his
own company – Hughey Boats – where he silver-soldered RC
model boat drive shafts and sold them all over the world.
My family grew up at a historical location at 840 E 64th Street,
across from the Whistle Stop and down the street from Lobraico’s
historical drug store. Dad kept buying properties in Broad Ripple,
fixing them up and making them into businesses. He created the
Village Framer, which is now the Bike Line. and The Town
Stitchery – a shop designed to sell needlepoint and crewel
supplies. That location is now Renaissance Studios where making
music is their mission. At one point Dad had a 1.8-million-dollar
portfolio from Broad ripple REAL ESTATE. I was the one in our
family who followed Dad into the upholstery business, but not
until I had a chance to explore my love for motorcycles. I worked
for Bill Dake at Cycle City and raced Suzuki’s and was 2nd in the
state in 1974. In the year 1975 In one of these little houses, that
my father owned at 6552 North Cornell Ave., we remodeled it so
I could live upstairs, and I had a retail motocross shop
downstairs. This was one of the first properties to get zoned for
business on Cornell Ave., and I named my business “World Class
Products.” I had started out maybe 50 years ago with my
fascination with motorcycles. I worked at a motorcycle accessory
shop called Sunday Rider Accessories across from the Speedway,
and I was assistant manager with my good friend Dennis Locke
as manager. When they went out of business, I went to the
liquidation sale and bought 3000.00 of accessories which I did not
have. It was a fantastic buy because at auction I was buying at
10 cents on the dollar. Dad fronted me the money, and that’s
how I started my motocross shop. Those were exciting times.
Back in the day I had a BMX team. – I even developed a product
called Mud Muckers which are motorcycle hand guards and sold
them all over the country. Over the years I have met many
super stars of the sport. I am so excited about attending an
event in Chicago for the International Motocross Museum on Oct.
the 2nd which for me will be a once in a lifetime event. Finally
another interesting fact about me is “ I was a head referee with
the Indiana Wrist Wrestling Association. I did that for 13 years
with my best friend Pete Elsbergs. Enough about me. Let me get
back to my father.
Dad had taken over the upholstery business from Grandpa
Hartman in 1962 – although we’re not sure how the transfer
happened since at one point Grandpa had fired him.
Nevertheless – Dad was a consummate merchant and always
expanding – he just didn’t know any other way. So eventually
Dad had all these properties – He always wanted a bigger
workshop and he got the opportunity to buy a huge plant from
the Amy family. The Amy’s owned Handy Hardware which was
started in 1949. This iconic hardware store was owned by
Charles Amy and Del the son. You could walk down these narrow
paths with all the merchandise laid out on the floors. Nothing like
the hardware stores of today. The Amy’s were family friends –
and since Dad had outgrown his shop in Broadripple he decided to
make the move to So Bro and buy the building and property at
5335 N. Winthrop from the Amy’s. In this building the Amy’s set
up self serve car wash equipment and it was called AutoTeria. It
was designed to show prospective buyers the equipment.
So, when I had to close the motorcycle shop at the end of ’78 – I
guess I ran out of steam since I started so incredibly young – it
was not a disaster. I could take these kinds of risks because I
had a feeling I could always go back and work for my father.
Back in the early days, I wasn’t thrilled about the upholstery
business – I was doing most of the menial tasks. But at the
same time, that’s when I got my foundation in business and
learned valuable lessons from Dad. If I complained about not
having anything to do, my father would say: “Son — There is
ALWAYS something to do.” My father had other short sayings he
would always use to teach, especially when we were driving
around in the big white ’82 step van. Which by the way I still
have in my possession?
*Just do what you say you’re going to do.
*A man is only as good as his word.
*Always improve on the piece you’re working on and make it
better than the last guy.
* Do on and above what you promised. Maybe you see an
improvement you can make to the piece that you did not
charge for, but you throw that in.
These old-fashioned values are not so easy to find in business
So, I got the best of both worlds … by the time I took over the
business, I got the old-fashioned values and I got technology – I
can’t even imagine running my business without QuickBooks. It
is fascinating to look back and compare how Grandpa ran the
business, which he started when he returned from WWI in 1921.
Grandpa Hartman was known for canning furniture, and Grandma
Lucille was the seamstress. What a memory he had … no matter
how many pieces of furniture he had in the garage, none of it was
tagged! Maybe that was a point of pride with him. When Dad
took over the business, he was confident he had a better way to
do things. Right away, he started tagging the furniture. My
father never opened a computer, but I would watch him intently
while he went through the 3 x 5 index cards in his front pocket.
He had names and notes written down and he would map out a
plan for the day. When we would go on deliveries, we would use
the Indianapolis city directory the yellow crisscross directory to
look up the address – remember those? You’d use the letter and
number and follow it across and down to locate the street. We
would get lost all the time trying to find clients. We never got
upset it was just the journey…. My father was a huge fan of the
YMCA, where he would go early in the morning to work out.
Many people would see my father driving his Toyota van with his
dog, Nicki, sitting right next to him. I think in the mid-eighties he
ended up buying three of these Toyota vans. One of them I
acquired and used it to start my business. That picture is over on
the table also. It’s kind of hard not to feel nostalgic thinking
about the business landscape of yesteryear.
As for me, I finally took the plunge and invested in my own
upholstery business in 1990, establishing Larry Hughey’s Interior
Refurbishing LLC. Through a lead from my dad, I got a job
recovering office panels with Safeco — formerly American States
Insurance. I was on site for 1 year and 8 months making the
most money I had ever made, so you could say I started out with
After working in my home-based business for nearly 10 years and
proving my worth and staying power, Dad asked me to lead
Hughey Hartman Interiors in 2010. I changed the name back to
Hughey Hartman Upholstery. I always come back to the family
But I must back up a few years to something – the most
important thing – that happened to me, that truly changed this
old river rat’s destiny. It’s time for me to pay homage to Linda
Mordoh, the most amazing woman who became both my life and
my business partner and introduced me too so much. Believe it
or not, we met on Match.com, and we love to tease each other.
While lying in bed and a Match dot com commercial would come
on we would turn to each other and say “that shit never works!”
(laugh) Linda came along at a time when my energy was starting
to diminish, so I guess it was a God thing. She’s a whirlwind …
an extremely talented designer, extremely successful, she adds
flair and beauty to everything she does, and we have built a rich,
exciting, and very full life together. We have an incredible
community of friends and associates, and we have the chance to
participate in and be leaders in our community … I even rode in
the Carmel Fest Independence Day parade this year. … that was
an incredible feeling!
Together we found my location on Gradle Dr. Happy to announce
we have been in the same location for 11 years. Dad and I were
always driving up to Carmel for his clients so now it’s a relief to
be in Carmel. Plain and simple, it is not an exaggeration to say
that, had Linda not come along when she did, it is doubtful
we would be here today.
And at this point, I also must acknowledge and thank Rosemary
Peters for helping prepare for this wonderful party. Freddie and
his family. The Hughey Hartman associates and employees that
have made my business what it is, especially my upholsterer,
Craig Woods, who has worked with me for many years. Miguel
Villalpando, Lisa Sutherland, Willie Parker, Daphine Lindsey, Linda
Timmons, Randy Schwind. The list goes on and on. All the
assistants and friends that have helped me. Many are here
today. Big thanks to my new assistant Michelle Norgren.
Michelle is an interior designer herself and has interjected a new
enthusiasm in my approach to business which is very refreshing.
Her best friend Cameron works for my wife Linda.
At this 100-year mark, you may wonder – what keeps me going?
(besides Linda!) It Is the joy and sheer delight on our clients’
faces when they see their pieces transformed. It is not common
in today’s world to make things with your hands, like upholstery –
and it is amazing to keep such an ancient service available, like
shoe cobbling and repair … it’s truly a precious commodity for
those who seek it, for those who appreciate well-made furniture,
heirloom pieces, and tradition. My family taught me the value of
hard work, and I am a very hard worker to this day. Another
secret to our longevity is that I do enjoy my business. I am so
grateful today to bring the spotlight to our accomplishments and
to reaching this magical mark. Grandpa and Dad … We did it!
Thank you thank you thank you