My Visit to a Country Store

It was a thursday morning and I had alot to do. The dishwasher was broke and the water heater was broke. The weeds were growing and the floors needed mopping. Even though Kaos was happening I lay awake thinking I need an adventure. Usually when I need an adventure but have limeted time and gas money I have to have a close adventure. I decided to take a drive, of course camera in tow looking for something fun! Well as I drove thru the country side through the rolling hills of Pa, through farm land and small country towns I was amazed at the beauty of it all. I found incredible views and horses grazing and incredible houses and structures but I kept driving. I was in a town called East Berlin and I saw a really cool country cafe which I made a mental note I need to return. The town of East Berlin was Named after Berlin Germany. Then I saw a sign for Biglerville, Pennsylvania. That was the town I wanted because I read there was a country store there that was 100 years old and Dwight D. Eisenhower had visited there!.

Biglerville is a borough in Adams County, Pennsylvania, United States. The population was 1,200 at the 2010 census. The National Apple Museum is located on West Hanover St. in Biglerville.[1] The borough is served by the Upper Adams School District and is home to Biglerville High School.

As I entered Biglerville I started to get excited to find this famous Country Store. Ok so there it was; I had arrived. Surrounded by small town store fronts this business surely stood out. Right out front was a sign stating that this was the famous country store you had read about in all the newspapers and magazines across the country!! 100 YEARS OF FUN! The Thomas Brothers Store!

Thomas Brothers Store, also known as Biglerville Country Store, is a historic general store and residential building located at Biglerville in Adams County, Pennsylvania. The store was built in 1912, and is a three-story, rectangular brick building with a shed roof. It sits on a stone foundation, has a three bay front elevation with a prominent cornice, and has Classical Revival style influences. It measures 40 feet wide by 100 feet deep. Located on the third floor is a large meeting room known as Thomas Hall. Attached to the store building is a three-story, two bay house also built in 1912

Check out the sign!

As I entered the store there was a little old lady sitting on some boxes opening some new merchandise for the store. Her name was Marion, my middle name! She had on bright gold specialty shoes, a bright salmon colored shirt with a big pink hairbow in her hair. Right away she informed me that she spray painted her shoes herself. She welcomed me to the store but she was on the phone talking to a vendor or customer or publisher. She is having a book published about her and her business. I didnt find out why but the store is run by her and her sister Jean but yet it is called the Thomas Brothers Store. I thought that was a coincidence since my name is Jeanne Marion. Anyway, she welcomed me as she finished her phone call. I started to walk around trying to wrap my eyes around all the differnent nooks and cranny’s of this very old and disorganized country store and Museum. Marion inforrmed me later that she went to NYU to study fashion so the store is part fashion show, part vintage and general goods and part museum peppered with photos of history of the store and nearby Gettysburg and presidents etc. You can tell Marion’s Love of Fashion in her front window.

Here is Marion’s love of Fashion!

I forgot to mention the wonderful music playing from the 30’s and 40’s that you hear as soon as you walk in. Pop Standards were playing which in this day and age would be thought of as Jazz standards. It immediately got me in the mood for a vintage treasure hunt. She got off the phone and I asked her if I could take some pictures and she said as long as they were good. Ha! Marion has a sense of humor but I  guess I already knew that when I saw her spraypainted blinged out specialty shoes. I decided to ask her if I could take a picuture of her. She said yes but as I started to focus she said I have a better place you can take my picture so help me up! I said Ok are you sure it’s not too much trouble and she said no. So I helped her up and we shuffeled over to her counter. She said this way I can get a picture of her and the pictures in the background of her Daddy with the President when he visited the store back in 1960. There was also a picture of President Lincoln and her one and only husband.  Marion told me that the president really loved country stores and he liked thier store so much that he gave her father and her a very expensive gift which is located in the nearby Library that Marion owns in Biglerville.

Here is Marion, in the background you can see her father and Dwight Eisnehower who visited there in 1960.

She told me that she went to NYU for Fashion and she met he husband ; her love there. They were married and he died very young at 22. I asked her if she ever married again and she said no. I said why, your so pretty and she said they all wanted to boss me. The didnt think I knew anything. I said who they and she said all the men. She said she never met a man she liked; loved as much as her first husband. You can see a picture of him in this photo, the handsome fellow with the pipe.

I walked around one more time and came across some more pictures in the Museum part of the store. I definatley want to go back at Christmas time. She then showed me the merchandise she was opening and I fell in Love with it. I just found the perfect present for my mother for Christmas!! I can’t share that picture until after Christmas!

President Dwight Eisenhower
Some vintage fabric

After I was done looking I told her I would come back another time. She wanted to know what I did and where I was from. She asked what I did for work and she asked me to sign her visitors book. She said she met so many people that she couldnt keep track and I should write details of myslef under my name. We talked about her book coming out and she told me she wished she could buy regular shoes but she had problem feet and she only has that one pair of shoes. Ok, by now I realized it was getting quite late so I paid her “CASH ONLY” No credit cards taken for the perfect Christmas gift for my mom. I told her I had to get back home to make dinner. She handed me a flyer about the store and she then instruced me where to get myself a bag behind the counter. I told he I would come back and she grabbed my hand to hold it and said please dont forget to come back. I said Of course I won’t forget , how could I forget. I said you will see us around Christmas Time and she said ok as long as you promise. What a sweetie. I had a great time but now I had to get back quick; time was tic tocking away! This was just what I needed to refresh my creative juices and get my Retro Fix. So if your ever in Biglerville; five miles from Historic Gettsburg take some time to smell the roses and meet Marion in a 100 year old Country Store. Maybe you will find the perfect gift too!

Love and Happiness, Jloz

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