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Sunday, November 15, 2009

OLD VERNACULAR --STOCKERS GROCERY AND GENERAL MDSE -- UPLAND SOUTH

STOCKER STORE -- LONG RECTANGULAR FORM
The Stoker store sits amongst a few homes in a rural part of Madison County. A sign on the side declares the name as STOCKERS GROCERY AND GENERAL MDSE but underneath the name is a faded, unreadable former name.

Old general stores, similar and not so similar in construction, are scattered and can be found sometimes within miles of each other. Their time of life was before box stores and fast cars. At one time close proximity to the population being served was the important factor.

I've always been interested in country general stores. At one time they played multiple roles in their community, both as goods and service providers plus a community hub. In many areas in Kentucky structures still exist but are either in an out-of-business/state-of-decline or have been turned into a newer type of small country business or homestead. Very few remain as general stores.

They were where you met your neighbors, discussed local events, sometimes did a little horse trading, and picked up your mail. In the photo below a sign on the old store tells us it might have also served as an official wildlife check station.


SIGN AFFIXED TO OLD STOCKER GENERAL STORE -- MADISON COUNTY.
The last name of the store was Stokers, a prior name is shadowed underneath the black letters. I feel the siding is unusual. It is applied to the sides of the building in metal sheets rather than individual squares. The roof is metal and worn to a rusty brown. The store shows no sign of life.

KENTUCKY WILDLIFE SIGN ON STOCKER'S

Align CenterCLOSE-UP OF UNUSUAL PRESSED METAL SIDING ON STOCKER STORE
Unusual window awning -- made out of the siding.

I try to piece the parts together -- what part did this store play for the local community? I ask myself if the wildlife sign was a service of Stocker's business? The few homes now surrounding the store are newer so I can imagine that the store was very rural at one time. Also, where did this type of siding originate? I have seen it wrapped around porch foundations on early 20th century rural housing. It can be bought today as a historical siding on the internet. but that still leaves the question in my mind as to its history and how extensively was it used.

I hope to post more about general stores in the future.

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