The weather can often be inconvenient. Rain All Day days like today will keep most people at home and out of the stores. Shopping is not usually what I think of doing on a rainy day. I sometimes think of major house cleaning [yeah, I know, that's strange too.] but rarely shopping.
Back when I was a young child the weather didn't always mean no shopping. There were a few Stores that actually came to us. Yes, that's what I said. The one that was really significant was the grocery store. It was an old Bus called The Rolling Store and My Dad's brother Uncle Dewitt Williams drove it along a route in the country. This was only a part of his business. He had a real bonafide grocery store in town and he and aunt Lennie and their brood lived next door about 10 inches away. Well, not quite that close. My uncle was always in the grocery business as were other Williams cousins in Alma [Ga.]
When my family lived with my mother's parents in Mershon I recall Grandma Mobley and Mama carefully making a list before the rolling store came. We looked forward to the store rolling up the lane probably more than children today anticipate a trip to the shopping mall. I believe the store came once a week. I am not quite sure about that but it was without question the highlight of our day, perhaps week. Uncle Dewitt was every bit the business man. He'd rather work than anything I think and when it came to taking care of the customers he knew what he was doing.
If we stay on this subject for a while we'll come up with more chapters to this story. This is just a friendly challenge to a really special cousin "grannyO" to put in her two cents worth..She will have different parts to this puzzle picture because you see it was her Dad that owned and operated that Rolling Store.
Justa note: Other stores had routes in the country too. Some sold Coffee, some sold Candy, and all kinds of cleaning brushes etc
Additional Thoughts from Janell Overstreet. Janell is my first cousin and it was her Daddy and his ROLLING STORE that my post above discusses.
"Things I remember about the Rolling Store.
Me and Daddy would go up to Bacon Grocery Company in Alma when it was in a big tin warehouse building before daylight and we would buy groceries by the cases and load them into the Bus. Then we would stop by the ice plant where Farmers' Supply is now and purchase ice to put in wash tubs to keep sodas cold. Each day we would take a different route,but the same day each week we would go back the same route so the people would know exactly what day we would be going by. I remember stopping at Tobacco barns, cotton fields and the workers would literally run to the bus to get mostly R.C. Colas and MOON PIES. They also bought Vienna Sausage, Potted Meat, saltine crackers and a soda. That would be their lunch. Also passing by men would be dipping tar [ from pine trees] and we would stop. I remember when families would buy groceries from Daddy and charge on a weekly and pay up in August of the following year. That is when share croppers got their money or other folks would be able to sell their tobacco. The bus had a small porch on the back and that is where we would put peoples groceries. You could come onto the bus and choose your groceries but inside was very crowded with one tiny isle and there were shelves on the inside where the groceries were put up and wash tubs of drinks and feed on the floor. People would buy groceries and did not have money we would trade groceries for Eggs and chickens. The chickens would be in a wire cage on the little porch. Daddy would always keep his money he collected in his shirt pocket . One day he dropped it out we guessed it was in somebody's grocery bag. We never found it. That was not a good day for sure. I would put up the groceries on the shelves as the bus was traveling down the road to the homes. To this day I have a bad toe nail because a can of pineapple fell off the shelf and hit my toe. I guess I will never forget that. Also on the Bennett Still highway close to the Bacon County line there was an old old wood bridge that We had to cross to get to Appling county. I would always walk across that bridge. I was so scared that the bus would fall in. Sure enough, one day Daddy almost got across it and the front of the bus was on the road and the back was hanging down in the bridge. I remember I wold always sit up front of the bus beside Daddy where he drove. Even though it was our little business I would never get a drink, candy or anything to eat unless I asked him. Folks did not go to town often in those days. that was the only way most farmers could get things they needed. If you could go to town you went on Saturday. I went along on the grocery bus until I was to big to go; I mean too old. Oh, by the way, I still like Vienna Sausage and potted meat occasionally.
Thank you my dear cousin Janell~I knew your viewpoint would be different. You were the "town girl" same as "city girl" I guess and your family owned and operated the grocery business. It was a demanding business. I know because we saw how long and hard your parents worked that business [the one in town and the rolling store].
My viewpoint was the other side of the story. My Dad was one of the sharecroppers who made their list and watched for the grocery bus coming down the lane.
This added post: September 13, 2010