I spent some time today on Google maps looking for Myrtle Ave. or Street in Brooklyn, NY. I didn't find Myrtle Street but there IS a Myrtle Ave. It runs East-West from Flatbush Ave. to the Van Wyck Expressway.
The mention of Routes 1 & 9 in my previous post was no help. I can't find Route 1 OR 9 anywhere near Myrtle Ave. so, either that information is wrong, they moved the roads, or renamed them. A rename is likely since there is a few Interstate type numbered roads in the area.
Without further clues I used the Google "fly by" feature which is the next best thing to driving down the street in a car. There are lots and lots and lots of old store fronts along the avenue but there's nothing that looks exactly like our photograph. No, I didn't really expect to find the place in a state of preservation but, I did hope to find a possibility or two. Nothing.
Unless one of us wants to go to Brooklyn and walk up & down Myrtle Street, talking to 100 year old, life long residents, that is the end of the road for the Hardware Store story.
By the way, I also did a Google "fly by" of Sayre Street in Elizabeth... 'our' house is still there and looks about the same. It's strange that I can remember all the houses where other kids lived and I remember most of their names. How odd that we humans carry around that kind of useless information around for, I guess, all our lives.