David Melson

Picturing the Past 202: Country stores

Posted Friday, June 27, 2014, at 7:16 AM
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  • Ah! What memories of the old wood floors cracking and popping as you walked across. The days when you didn't worry about people robbing you. But the best times was sitting on porch of the store hearing how to solve all the worlds problems or so they thought. Man I wish we still had them old stores just seemed so much simpler times.

    -- Posted by dw76 on Fri, Jun 27, 2014, at 10:45 AM
  • When I was a kid, on occasions me and dad would get a thick slice bologna sandwich in stores like that...there was something about those sandwiches that was magic back then and different then what you can even make these days...I also remember a few that sold wedges of a hoop cheddar cheese...dw76 your right, it was a worry free era in life you could sure pass the time with a whittling stick and a good pocket knife.

    -- Posted by chefgrape on Fri, Jun 27, 2014, at 1:28 PM
  • The old store at Newtown was operated by the parents of Carl W. Smith, past manager of Gowen-Smith Chapel. I have seen the old store since it was moved to Kenneth's property, but have not been inside, but am looking foward to seeing it restored, so I can experience what is was like when Carl was young. Carl has shared many stories about his growing up in the north part of Bedford County and I'm sure there are alot of people that would enjoy reading about his life growing up in our community and the many years of service that he gave to several generations of our communities.

    -- Posted by doak on Fri, Jun 27, 2014, at 5:26 PM
  • I would like to see a list of all the old country stores and even the ones in the city Westbrooks, Johnny Walkers, Floyd and Huffman Poplan's Crossroads Hub Farris' at Longview If you can remember it get it it in here I wonder how many there were?

    -- Posted by abner_t on Fri, Jun 27, 2014, at 10:39 PM
  • My grandfather had a small business that supplied most of the rural stores and gas stations with candy bars, cigarettes, aspirin, etc. His clients included, but were not limited to, businesses in Bell Buckle, Wartrace, Longview, and Halls Mill. As a kid I rode his route with him several times. It was great how he knew everyone, and everyone always seemed glad when he arrived. Because of this I probably visited most of these stores during the 60's and 70's. I recall how I would get impatient to move on to the next store, but he seemed to do more talking than business.

    -- Posted by Gauss on Sat, Jun 28, 2014, at 1:19 PM
  • What is amazing the fixtures,coke coolers,bottles and other misc things in the store are worth more now than what the owner likely made in a lifetime.

    -- Posted by kings11 on Sat, Jun 28, 2014, at 2:40 PM
  • Spencers store was in El Bethel, and just past that was a store where Nowlin Auto Sales was, and then two miles further near the 2200 area of 41A was a store that is now covered in vines as seen on Google.

    -- Posted by Cal t on Sat, Jun 28, 2014, at 6:22 PM
  • I remember the name "Westbrook's", but I can't remember where it was.

    I remember in Flat Creek there was three small grocery stores and one service station, which I always was surprised that such a small community could support them. This was back in the early 50's. One was Greer's.

    -- Posted by cookie on Sun, Jun 29, 2014, at 8:40 AM
  • Westbrook's was on Derry St. where the pawn shop is now. Also, there was Jobe's Market near East Side School. I think that Mr. and Mrs. Jobe lived upstairs.

    -- Posted by Gauss on Sun, Jun 29, 2014, at 9:14 AM
  • Sam and Ruth Moore, the little store in Bakertowm. Everything came by the pound in a little paper bag.

    Mr.Sam trusted everyone, I'm sure he went to heaven knowing my mom owed him for a bag of pinto beans. And knowing my mom, she is still trying to pay up.

    -- Posted by moonwalker on Sun, Jun 29, 2014, at 7:55 PM
  • The Floyd and Huffman store in the Village was a major meeting place for playing checkers around the potbelly stove in the center of the store and ladies buying materials, buttons and lace in the side section of the store and for kids to sit on the cool concrete porch step drinking pops and candy bars. My visit to the first supermarket was Mitwede's in town. No comparison to the Village Store.....

    -- Posted by caligal on Fri, Jul 4, 2014, at 11:09 AM
  • You have stirred some good memories for me with this one. A couple of stores that I would like to mention were in the Fall Creek area just past the Halls Mill Road. The first was operated at various times by Sam Osburn, my Great Uncle Harvey Claxton, and Lee Sudberry. Then a little farther West just before you get to the Chapel Hill Road Lee Sudberry built a new store and for many years after the Annual Egg Roast was moved from the Fall Creek Store it was held at Lee Sudberry's store.

    -- Posted by leeiii on Sat, Jul 5, 2014, at 2:47 PM
  • Don't forget about Haynes Grocery in Bell Buckle. It seemed that Miss Jean lived for her customers. She was always happy and helpful and loved everybody. I remember the big old stove that sat in the middle of the floor in the rear of the store. Everybody that came in would gather around it to warm up and swap news. Big boxes of beans, salt, sugar etc. served as seats around that old stove. I can see Mr. Bill and Miss Esther Parker puttering around helping Miss Jean with customers. Also Mr. Bob Arnold was there most days to brighten your day. What good memories and what wonderful days.

    -- Posted by Oldbbguy on Tue, Jul 8, 2014, at 11:00 AM
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