D.B. Cox original store (behind the buggy) at the corner of Robinson St. and the railroad tracks, next to the Cox home. This building no longer exists.
The first D.B. Cox store was begun as an addition to the family dwelling fronting the east side of the RF&P railroad, on the site of the present Ashland library. According to the Ashland Sentinel of March 9,1872, D.B. Cox, General Merchant sold: hats and shoes, dry goods and notions, confectionery, hardware, stationery, and fancy articles.
- D.B. Cox home on east side of railroad tracks. A second-floor passageway connects the home and the store. This building no longer exists.
In 1869 , a second wooden building was constructed on the west side of the railroad tracks. This was a general store established by D.B. Cox, J.M. Leake and C.M. Woolfolk. .The wooden structure was destroyed in the Great Fire of 1893.
A third building was erected of brick on the west side of the tracks before 1899. The Hanover Weekly Herald mentioned that Mr. Cox had two places of business. D.B. Cox General Merchant carried groceries, hardware, feed and fertilizer. D.B. Cox and Co., a partnership formed with J.M. Stone and his nephew, James M. Cox, sold dry goods, shoes and clothing. That building today is the Caboose Wine and Cheese at 108 S.Railroad Avenue.
By 1913, D.B. Cox and his nephew, J.M. Cox, had purchased two lots at the southwest corner of Thompson and Railroad Avenue , where they built a two-story department store that year. The building is the present Iron Horse restaurant building. It is owned by McKinney & Co., an engineering firm with offices on the second floor. It was the fourth Cox structure to be built in the downtown area.
According to Dorothy Jones of Ashland, “the new store was the most impressive structure in Ashland at the time. It was so elegant that it was widely referred to as the ‘Miller and Rhoads’ of Ashland. On the first floor were departments for clothing and shoes for men, women,and children, piece goods and patterns, jewelry, cosmetics, kitchen utensils and appliances. On the mezzanine, reached by a wide, handsome stairway, was the millinery department presided over by Miss Dessie Carter and Miss Fannie Hutcheson.” Many townspeople recall gathering at the store about 1948 to watch the first television broadcast on the first set for sale in Ashland at Cox’s in the television and appliance department.