The Philadelphia Real Estate Blog


Meet Your Neighbors: Gary Dawson of Locksmith on Wheels


Gary Dawson, owner of locksmith on wheels, is dedicated to those who lock themselves out or lose a key. 

Locksmith on Wheels

"The only time I'm not working is when I'm on vacation!" says Gary Dawson.

The 55-year-old Fishtown native, owner of Locksmith on Wheels, lives above his 24/7/365 locksmith business at Columbia and Girard Avenues.

It's a good thing for locals that someone from Dawson's shop is always around to let them in when they're locked out or lose a key.

You could say that being a hard worker is in Dawson's blood. Back in the 1940's, his father ran Dawson's Butcher Shop on the first floor storefront on East Girard Avenue in Fishtown. He was the neighborhood butcher until the '60's, when he closed shop because he could not compete with the large supermarkets. Dawson's mother decided to step in and opened the store up again in the mid 1960's until 1991. Her shop was called Alice's Sandwich Shop, also known as Dawson's. Gary remembers his mother's handmade crab cakes and potato salad that would keep her working into the wee hours of the morning in preparation for the following day's sales. People knew she was committed to making everything by hand and always fresh. Alice was famous in the neighborhood for her Delicious Steak Sandwiches.

When not feasting on Mom's sandwiches, Dawson kept busy. He took up locksmithing when he was 21. He decided to take his gig mobile in 1981, calling it "Locksmith on Wheels". In 1991, he turned his father's butcher shop and mom's sandwich shop into a locksmith office. Dawson works the shop with his son, Gary Jr., and they live upstairs in the very same house they grew up in. There's a lot of history and family legacy in this building.

We've used Dawson and recommended his services countless times. Think Local and think Locksmith on Wheels next time you need a professional locksmith.

We admire and respect you, Gary, and wish you many more years of success!

Locksmith on Wheels

321 East Girard Avenue Philadelphia, PA 19125-3930

(215) 425-0794

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Comment balloon 5 commentsThe Somers Team • June 07 2010 12:56PM


Sounds like a dedicated businessman.  Many years of great business.

Posted by Kay Van Kampen, Realtor®, Springfield Mo Real Estate (RE/MAX Broker, RE/MAX) over 10 years ago

Kay - Absolutely !  Gary is constantly working and a fixture in Fishtown !  He has helped us countless times with his locksmith services ! 

Posted by The Somers Team, Delivering Real Estate Happiness (The Somers Team at KW Philadelphia) over 10 years ago

The need of Locksmiths is increasing day by day. There is great value of locksmiths in the market. The main reason behind this is that people are now more conscious about their security and safety.  But it is very important to check the locksmith company that you work with before hiring them to do security job in your house.

Posted by Odis johnson about 4 years ago

I am really looking for Locksmith In Philadelphia and I appreciate you for sharing as this article is very helpful :)

Posted by Caroline James over 3 years ago

Gary is a racist piece of shit! He goes around calling people niggers on Facebook

Posted by Sally over 3 years ago