Wow, America’s Oldest Record Store is in Kirksville, Missouri?
When I first saw this, I did a double-take. But, I've discovered it really appears to be true. America's oldest record store is in Kirksville, Missouri. Wow.
I have to give Only In Your State some mad props for being right about this one. I admit I doubted them, but it appears their claim is correct. They named Rinehart’s Music and Video in Kirksville, Missouri as the oldest location of a record store. They're not wrong.
How old is Rinehart's Music and Video?
Their official Facebook page (and the Only In Your State article) says they opened as a record store in 1897. In those days, it was just phonographs, but technically that's still a record. Remember that date.
If you Google "oldest record store in America", you'll see many places that make that claim. Parade Magazine claimed it was George's Song Shop in Johnstown, Pennsylvania. Vinyl Lives agrees. It opened as a record store in 1932. That's 35 years after Rinehart's so they lose.
NBC New York claimed the oldest record store was Music Country in Cliffside Park, New Jersey. They opened in 1934...37 years after Rinehart's so they lose, too.
I can't find any other contenders that come close to Rinehart's beginnings in 1897. By the way, if you're wondering what "records" were like in 1897, this will give you an idea. It's an original phonograph from (you guessed it) 1897.
There you have it. The oldest record store in America is in little old Kirksville, Missouri. Who would have thought it? Congrats Rinehart's Music and Video. You're a record-setter. Literally.