The Little Corner Store

I was thinking about memory lane for some reason today and thought of the little corner store that was across the street from where I grew up for my first five years.  It was Mr. Sammon’s (Bobbin, Free help me with spelling it’s been 36 years) store.  I would like to describe it to you and see if you had a similar experience growing up.

First, I remember that my Mom would give me about 40 cents and I would come back with one of those little brown paper bags filled with candy.  I could get a drink, a sucker, some pixie sticks, jolly ranchers, and more before I got the 1 cent pieces of gum to top it off.

The little store was a cinder block building with two gas pumps in front.  It had one of those old store screen doors that went WHACK!!! when it slammed back to the door jam.  This store couldn’t have been a room bigger than 20ft x 20ft. 

There was a soda pop cooler (not machine) immediately to the left when you came in and you lifted the lids to see what was laying in it.  I remember that most of the bottles all looked different.  There was a myriad of colors and flavors.  As a kid I always went for the colorful one which usually wasn’t the best tasting drink. 

From the door on the right was Mr. Sammon’s counter and candy display cabinet.  Many a kid drooled on the glass and left finger prints on that display.  It must have been a great way to catch the last kid’s cold by rubbing your face on that glass, but it was mesmerizing.  There were so many choices.  If you were a younger kid like me, you would tell him how much money you had and he would tell you what you could get.  Then, he would reach into the cabinet in slow motion for effect and put it on the counter until you spent every last cent. 

The other thing he had for kids in the store was a small toy selection.  I mean good cheap crap that you should never buy, but you could get for a dime back then and have a toy to play with while you filled up on your sugar high.  He had those little wooden airplanes that broke by the end of the day.  He also had bolo paddles that the elastic and ball fell off also by the end of the day and my favorite the parachute man who got tangled within about 10 minutes, what treasures for a five year old boy.

How about you?  What was the name of the corner or country store in your childhood?  Do you remember?  Childhood days were awesome weren’t they?

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11 Responses

  1. No corner store where I grew up. We lived out in the middle of no where in Suwanee GA. Of course look at Suwanee now and you think open country was really here at one time. There was a little old grocery store called “Maulder’s grocery” on buford highway. No cash register just an adding machine. The bldg. at that time must have been 100 yrs. old. Or at least it looked like it. Mom and Pop grocery stores there’s nothing like them. Everybody knew everybody!

  2. “Frog’s” 7-11. It was owned and operated by a man named “Frog” Welch. I don’t remember his real first name. It seemed that most of his customer’s were the kid’s in the area. We would also just hang around the outside of the building with our friends. This was in Middlesboro, KY. I don’t get back there much anymore, but next time I find myself in my old home town, I’m going to drive by there to see if the old 7-11 is still there. I kind of doubt it.

  3. Store Name: Bostick’s
    Remember the brown bag full of goodies that I got for a quarter or fifty cents. Remember the toys you named and had my share of them, along with little baby dolls the size of a finger where the legs would fall off sometimes and the eyes got stuck and the necklaces that broke in a day. Don’t recall the inside of the store at all.

  4. EJ Moores was the name of it, i remember as a 7 year old riding my bike to his store and thought i was a grown man. we didnt need money mom and dad had an account there. times sure were alot nicer back then..it was a small town maybe you have heard of it
    Lilburn Ga. kind of grew a little now.

  5. I grew up in Florida but my grandparents lived in Jasper Alabama. We would visit every year or however often it may have been. They lived across the street from Walker College. I remember this little hangout which was actually just around the corner from the apartment but was part of the college. It almost seemed like a cellar but you could walk in there right off of the street. I don’t remember the name of the place but I do remember they had a 5 cent coke bottle machine in there and a pool table. As kids, we were in that place a lot when we visited. I was there a couple of years ago when my grandmother passed and we went touring around the town to see the old places but I didn’t think to look for that place. Maybe a road trip on the bike is in order for next spring so I can check that out. Plus “visit” with my grandparents.

  6. Yes Eric, I remember Mr. Sammons store. I believe it was called Speedway Market. I used to live on Hartsook Dr. up the street from Freeman’s house. My grandfather would take me there just about every day. I could just about fill up one of those paper sacks for a quarter. Loved the Moonpie’s and RC. I could never get those planes to last more than a day or two either. Those were some very fond memories for me. All the candy was 1 cent each and drinks were either a nickle or a dime, can’t remember for sure. Thanks for the memory Eric, Mr. Sammons was a very nice man!

  7. OHHHH….we touched a few heart strings, huh? Cool memories.

    David: An adding machine….awesome!!

    Sandy: I’m diggin’ FROG. You’ve got to see if the place is still there.

    Ellison: That little brown bag of goodies from a girl’s prospective…great!

    Robert: Lilburn….yeah about 600,000 living there now…wow!

    Jeff: I say you hit the road dude.

    Scott: That’s it!! Speedway Market!! Wasn’t it a coke sign too? I wish I had a picture. Mr.Sammons was a nice guy. I lived next door to him in a duplex that’s still there, but his place is gone. Thanks for reminding me.

  8. Eric-Yeah, Speedway Market, 20’x20′, I doubt if it was even that big. My fingerprints are probably still on that glass counter. They had every 1cent piece of candy probably ever made. Remember B.B. Bats, Mary Jane candy (kinda like today’s Bit-O-Honey)? You could get 2 Hersey kisses for a penny. What a steal! And the best chocolate drink ever, Birley’s. You had to shake it to get the chocolate out of the bottom and you could down the whole thing without even turning the bottle down. When I was in grade school I remember when the sodas jumped from 5 cents to 6 cents. That was my first experience with the word “inflation”. If you took the bottle with you, you had to leave a 2 cent deposit. That created one of my first jobs. I would go around the neighborhood with my little red wagon and collect empties to sell back to Mr. Sammons. Yessir, that was a store that had “character”. I’ll never forget the phrase, “that’ll be 15 cents and a penny tax.”

  9. When I was a little girl I remember walking up to the Old Hog Mountain Store with my dad, mom and sisters, most of the time barefooted. Mr. & Mrs. Ledford lived next to the store in a little ole country house with a front porch. For those of you who live in the Dacula area, Mr. Ledford’s store sat right where the Rite Aid is located at the intersection of Hwy 124 & 324. We lived just around the big curve on the left headed to downtown Dacula. (A beautiful new strip mall is currently being built where my home once stood.) Candy and glass bottle cokes were always a treat from the old country store. Those were the days…….memories that I love to share with my boys and wish they could experience.

  10. I grew up in Smyrna, so it wasn’t too country, but it was much simpler than it is now. The place to go for me was Jonquil Plaza Shopping Center. It had the barber shop where my dad and I got our hair cut. The same men worked there for as along as I can remember. Next to it was the grocery store we shopped at. A couple of stores down from that was Jonquil Sporting Goods. That was my favorite hangout. After that was Dunnaway Drug Store. It had a diner style grill in it and they made the best grilled cheese sandwiches ever! Next to it was Redfords 5 and 10. It had a little bit of everything in it. Next in line was McIntyre’s Bakery (another favorite hangout). Last in line was the dry cleaner. No need for us to go to any other shopping center!

  11. The Union 5 & 10. It was a town called Union(upstate NY). The 5 & 10 referred to cents. It was a general store. Hardware store in the rear, and household items & clothing towards the front. adjacent to the front door was the confectioners counter. I spent many a nickel & dime in that store. Shoestring licorice, Bazooka Joe, rock candy, Topps baseball cards(many a Mickey Mantle card ended up in my bicycle spokes). A fifty cent bag would net at least a afternoon’s worth of sugar shock. Next door to the five and ten was Lou’s. This was a grocery store/butcher shop. I never bought any grocery or meat items there. Cupcakes, pies, popcicles, and soda. a boy has to have some solid foods and something to was it down with, c’mon now. I can’t leave out Pat Michell’s Homemade Icecream. This time of year reminds me of a Pumpkin milkshake. I would hit all of these places almost daily on the way home from school, spend less than $3.00, and struggle a little to eat dinner. I tell people all the time I was raised on meat & potatoes. I just realized I was raised on sweets.

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