I didn’t know they sold that!

Advance Auto Parts opened its doors in 1932 in Roanoke, Virginia, back when driving was still in its early days and you could buy parts for just a quarter. Our stores have changed over the years, but did you know we used to sell quirky items like pickles, chocolate covered cashews, and toys during the holidays? In the spirit of our upcoming 85th anniversary, we invite you to look through our fine inventory below.

Yes, those are lucky fox tails hanging on a string for sale.

Hello, welcome to Advance. Yes, those are indeed fox tails hanging on a string for sale.

Advance’s Unique Items

Step inside and take a gander. Would a lucky fox tail to hang on your radio aerial interest you? How about a new, state-of-the-art washer and dryer to make laundry a breeze? Does your little one enjoy toys? We carry remote control cars and trucks that “Santa” would be proud to deliver. We also have handcrafted dolls and tea sets for more sophisticated play time.

Toys for all ages. Did your child make the

Toys for all ages. Did your child make the “nice list” this year?

For drivers, we have everything you need to make your road trips more enjoyable. Choose from one of our many highly-regarded brands of cigarettes for a relaxing smoke. Hungry? Try our proprietary chocolate covered cashews—they are delicious! Not a sweets person? No problem. Snack on our tasty beef jerky, perfect for those late-night trips when the service stations are closed.

You will be amazed of the savings you will realize here, and at all times you are assured of courteous, intelligent service.

You will be amazed by how much you will save here, and at all times you are assured of courteous, intelligent service.

Make sure you bring back something for the home as well! How can you pass up on our highly modern kitchen appliances? We stock refrigerators, ice chests, dish washers (a miracle of an invention), gas and electric cook tops, and much more. Stop in any time. Remember, you must be satisfied or your money is cheerfully refunded.


Was there anything on this list that you wished we still carried? Did you ever receive a toy from Advance as a child? Share your comment below!


  1. I shopped at the Salem Turnpike store in the late 50’s and early 60’s. Where was the address of the main store… I don’t remember it.. ‘course there’s a lot I don’t remember these days

    • Rusty Hale says:

      I remember watching tv at my grandparents house that was purchased at Advanced auto. I still hunt with a rifle that was bought at Advance in 1973.

  2. Leo Rowland says:

    I was born in 32 but never heard of Advance until I moved to SC in the 70’s, but we had Advance bought out a parts chain that was in FL

    • Leo Rowland says:

      The comment is incomplete as some how I deleted most of it when I hit post. We had
      Western Auto which Advance bought out as well as a parts chain in FL I have some Western Auto tools over 70 years old.

      auto which

  3. jeff brown says:

    when I work for advance in the mid 90s I got two tractor one I put in my collection the other went to my grandson for Christmas

  4. Samuel Conte says:

    I purchase ALL my motor oil change needs, at ADVANCE AUTO, and have for the past 10 years. You need to carry 10W-50 weight motor oil for us old real car fans who still have older model cars and own high performance cars. The latter have oil consumption problems(read car magazines and factory service advisorys) for VW GTI, SUBARU WRX STI,, NISSAN GTR., 02 & newer CORVETTE, BMW M6 6 CYl., and others

  5. Loved the chocolate covered cashews when I started working there around 2006. Wish they still had them today.

  6. Reminds me of the old Western Auto and Pep Boys stores that sold lots of items for 19 cents and 29 cents in the 1950’s.

  7. Thanks for sponsoring Courtney Force. I saw a picture with the new paint scheme. She will make you proud.

  8. I just looked at the 50’s catalog page above. My sister actually had the $3.98 Doll House shown. I actually had the $3.98 Service Garage also shown. I remember wanting the machine gun pictured there but never got it. My friend had the $5.98 Electric Football Game.

    Wow. I haven’t thought of these things for maybe 40+ years. And here they are – all on one page.

    And, about the $10.98 Juvenile Table & Chair set. My sister got one. 2 chairs & the table. Only ours is white & green. I kept it when my mother closed out her house 30 years ago. My son grew up with it. I still have it and it’s in pretty good condition 60 years later.

  9. Mrs. Christine Papai says:

    Always love to hear the history of American businesses. Love that yours was centered around the machines that take us back and fourth to work so we could spend the holidays/ vacations with our families. Love that your business is still making history in our family.


    I worked for Advance a little over 10 years ago now and I ask for them every time I go in just hoping they have returned. Honestly most people in the stores now don’t know about them. We used to have customers come in regularly for chocolate covered cashews and nothing else. 9/10 times I could up-sell them even if it was something small. Usually wiper blades because they were regular faces and I’d convince them to let me install them then while it wasn’t raining.

  11. Larry d Smith Sr says:

    they are right I didn’t know that they sold all of that stuff I thought they just sold auto parts

  12. D.lee-Bachard says:

    The salesman, that wait on was kind and helpful

  13. Frank Holsinger says:

    I remember refrigerators floating out of Waynesboro, Virginia’s Advance Store July 20, 1969 as a result of hurricane Camille.

  14. Wesley Wooten says:

    I am in advance all the time. The cashier never ask if you are in the system to gain your perks or discounts. You have to remind them. I was just in there a couple weeks ago, spent about $90.00 bucks. I have reminded the cashier each time, that I am in the system.

  15. It is an incredible and amazing company history, the goods and services provided are absolutely excellent.

  16. Arthur I Radjenovic says:

    When I travel,and me and my wife Connie-Rae do quite a bit of it being retired now, Advanced is the only store I look for when I need parts. I encourage my son’s and daughters to use that store. When my boy needs parts I take him there. It’s just a good habit for me. I’m always treated kindly and I can get answers to alot of my questions. If I get stumped those boys and girls there get me the answer or put me in front of someone who can figure it out. I’ve learned a lot from them. They all know me and Connie-Rae. I live in Jacksonville NC and I want all of those employees to know just how much I appreciate each of them. God bless all of you there on Western Blvd. Extension. Good job.

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