Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Sharp's Store

We were driving north on US 219 Saturday afternoon through Slatyfork in Pocahontas county when we saw this:


For once I didn't have to ask Larry to turn around--he did it on his own. Well, you know, a car and a rare one at that, was bound to turn his head.



As we pulled in the door of the store opened and owner Tom Shipley came out to greet us. "It's a Bantam," he said, "made in Pennsylvania around 1940."



I'm not what you might all a car buff, but I liked the look of this little car. I bet it got good gas mileage too.


Of course, we had to go inside the store. It was like stepping back in time. Tom told us that he had inherited Sharp's Country Store, which had been opened by his great-grandfather in 1884.



Little had changed inside since his grandfather's time. The counters and shelving are original as are many of the other fittings in the store.



As we chatted, Tom mentioned that there was a log cabin out back that had been the original home; he'd removed some of the clapboard siding to expose the logs.



That, of course, got us talking about our two log cabin projects, and Tom invited us to look around inside the cabin. We jumped at the opportunity.

Check out the size of these logs.


Inside the cabin the fireplace dominated. It's lovely stonework.



I noted the blue paint--an old-time remedy to keep witches and evil spirits out. Or maybe the blue and gold was a WV color scheme?

 Larry liked the way the stairs were built,


 but the area out back that was probably a kitchen at one time attracted me.

 This photo came out looking like a painting.

When we went back to the store, Tom said that Confederate General Robert E. Lee had stayed in the cabin twice as the guest of his great-grandfather during the Civil War. (The cabin outdates the store by a good many years.)

There is much more to see at Sharp's. I can imagine the difficulty of operating such a place in these times, and I hope Tom can keep this piece of history open. We will certainly return, and should you ever happen to be in Pocahontas county, visiting Snowshoe Resort, Cass Railroad or the many other attractions, I hope you'll take time to stop in. You won't be disappointed.

Just don't let this guy scare you. He's just hangin' around.

16 comments:

Nance said...

My husband and I have wanted to ride the Cass Co train . . . it's been full when we were out that way! I love that car, the store but more! I love the cabin, the big logs, the fire place, the kitchen and yes, maybe most of all, the stairway! Well, I just plain admire the whole thing. I'll be out in a year or two to visit.

Mama-Bug said...

Wow, what a treasure of a place you guys found. The old cabin is awesome especially the inside. I love old general stores too!

FOLKWAYS NOTEBOOK said...

Granny Sue -- thanks for the log house tour very well furnished with authentic pieces -- barbara

Angel said...

I am so jealous! :) The stairs are exactly like what is in my Great Grandparent's farmhouse, which was built about the time of the civil war. Thank you for sharing such wonderfulness.

Granny Sue said...

I am glad you all like this place. It's quite a period piece--well, actually it covers a lot of periods, from early settlement to the 50's, I'd guess. The owner has much work to do, certainly, and I wish him well. It will be quite an undertaking to get it back to the condition it was probably once in, but if he can do it, what a gift to the rest of us. There is also a 300-acre farm too. Lots of work.

Nance, when you come you be sure to let me know. We have got to get together.

Gingerbreadshouse7 said...

What a nice piece of history to visit..I would have enjoyed that visit too!

WVSimplicity said...

Hi Granny Sue,
My husband and I have visited "Sharps Country Store" on a few occasions. What a gem! We love the original counters and shelving. What caught our eye at first was the dummy hanging from the barn as if the ladder slid. I never knew about the cabin out back. It's been quit a few years since we've been down that way. Probably before the siding was removed and maybe before this generation inherited the store. Thanks for sharing. Love the size of those logs and the staircase. We both seem to have the same taste in things. I'm sure we'll meet up someday because the same attractions seem to attract us both. Love your blog. Wishing you the best on your retirement!

Granny Sue said...

Thank you, WV! Only 4 days left :)

The current owner hasn't been there long. He said his family persuaded him to come and take over the place. I hope he makes a go of it.

I hope our paths meet somewhere along the way too. Email me if you're ever in my area.

Country Whispers said...

What an awesome find on your ride through.
So does he actually sell stuff from that store or is it more of a museum type thing?

Laura of said...

Oh... how lucky you were to come across all of this! The store looks wonderful, and that ol' cabin is amazing! The logs are enormous! What a treasure of a day!

Granny Sue said...

Jessica, many of the items in the store are for sale. I didn't look too closely because I was way tired after watching the race and the awards in Marlinton--and honestly, this guy was just plain too interesting so we talked more than we shopped. The maple syrup was a good price, though and mighty tasty!

Granny Sue said...

You know, Laura, our best discoveries happen when we take time to stop, look, and talk. That's when we see things and hear stories we would have missed. I know I pass hundreds of good stories and interesting places every week; it's time that is a problem. I hope I have more of it in the coming years because I have a mental list of places I want to go back to and explore.

Chip "Rocket Man" Allen said...

I have to add Pocahontas County to my list if places to visit.

Granny Sue said...

Chip, you'd love it. The National Radio Observatory is there too, at Green Bank, The Cass Scenic Railroad and old preserved logging town (where you can rent the houses--it's a state park), there is a great bike trail along the river, caves, good fishing, incredible views, Watoga State Park...and not too many people.

Janet, said...

That is such a neat place. I'd love to see it. I've seen stairs like that in an old house somewhere, but can't remember where. You and Larry sound like me and Charley when we go places, we get to talking and visiting and end up spending a long time somewhere when other people would be in and out of in minutes.

Granny Sue said...

Janet, I know you'd be intrigued. Lots to see, from a long period of time. And you know, those steps reminded me of Harper's Ferry houses. They have similar steps. Have you been there?

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