photo via Pinterest
Photo via Pinterest

Another longtime Baltimore area business is closing. This time, it’s Baynesville Electronics, a well-known independent retailer of electric parts and computer equipment, located at 1631 East Joppa Road and operated by the Smith family.

For six decades, it has supplied parts for radios, televisions, tape decks, video recorders, and home computers, to customers all around the Baltimore area. Patrons say it became an institution that stocked parts no one else would carry.

“This is a letter than none of us wanted to write, but the time has come to let our loyal customers know what is happening to Baynesville Electronics,” the owners wrote in a post on Facebook.

“As of October 1, we will be liquidating our stock and preparing to close our doors on or before the end of the year.

“For 61 years, it has been our pleasure for Baynesville Electronics to serve the generations of families that have come through our doors. These families, as well as our loyal customers, have allowed us to thrive these past years in this wonderful community.

“Although we have tried to keep up with the changes in our industry and retail sales in general, we have been unable to continue to keep ourselves profitable.
“It is our hope that you understand and ask that you wish our employees the best with their future plans.

“From our family to yours… thank you for allowing us to serve you.”

Baynesville Electronics was like another local institution that closed this year, Gundy’s Gifts in Roland Park, in terms of having a loyal and aging clientele. Both were also subject to changes in their respective fields.

Baynesville opened long before chain store competitors such as Best Buy and Circuit City.

County Councilman David Marks, who represents the district where Baynesville Electronics Is located, said he is a customer and will be sad to see the business close. He suggested that more and more people are buying computer parts online and not going into brick-and-mortar stores.

“I think it’s a reflection of the internet being used for parts,” he said. “They were beloved in the community.”

“It breaks my heart to hear this news,” Steven Hairsine wrote on Facebook. “I can’t tell you how many items I fixed and or rebuilt as a result of getting the parts I needed from Baynesville Electronics.”

“You have always been my go-to store for anything electronic,” added Jim Hunter. “First Radio Shack (I know, no comparison) and now you? Where will we now go for our parts?”

“The last shining example of how retail service and independent business was meant to be,” said Benjie Loveless. “It is sad to see the country and the public attitude fail to keep such institutions alive. It is a great shame that we have all shot ourselves in the foot in this cloudy era of instant gratification and cutthroat disloyalty to our local, earnest and necessary services to save pennies while sacrificing knowledge, community, and loyalty.”

“Remember when we bought our police/fire scanner there,” said Kelly Monroe-Kellner. “”Nowhere else would carry the one we wanted.”

“Very sad to hear this,” Linda Santoro posted. “”This was a great store & one you thought would be there forever.”

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Ed Gunts

Ed Gunts is a local freelance writer and the former architecture critic for The Baltimore Sun.