Saturday, December 13, 2008


E. R. Tweed built it about a hundred years ago but for a long, long time it's been Penland's Department Store. For those folks in our end of the county who didn't choose to travel the long, winding river road into Asheville, Penland's was the place to go for overalls, boots, ladies' housedresses, children's wear, sheets and towels and so on and so forth

Today the store is run by Barbara Penland. You can still get overalls and boots and man's and women's clothing to which Barbara has added the popular line of rugged Carhart clothing for men, women, and children. What's more, you can find crafts by Madison County crafters and books by Madison County authors -- as well as fresh produce, moonshine jelly, bread and butter pickles, artisanal bread, quilts and quilted purses,long underwear, fragrant homemade soap, suspenders, walking sticks . . . if Penland's doesn't have it, you probably don't need it.

From the old tin ceiling to the mezzanine, the three-way mirrored alcove, and the original fittings, Penland's is a nostalgia trip to a gentler era of retail. If you're in the area, go on in and look around -- remember, if you're old enough, when shopping used to be like this.

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Auntie Knickers said...

It sounds wonderful! And -- moonshine jelly??? I need to know more about this!

Vicki Lane said...

I have to admit I saw it but didn't purchase any so can't report on flavor. Maybe I'll get some to use as a prize for some future contest.

Pat in east TN said...

Boy does that bring back memories from when I lived in Madison Co ... yes, our store of choice on many occasions! Thanks for the wonderful pictures Vicki.

Vicki Lane said...

Still a great store -- and nice to have it and Bowman's and Coal Feed still in business as a balance to the newer shops.