May 24, 2018 | By Lourdes Linares
During my trip to Texas for Antique Weekend, I stayed in a small town called Ledbetter, with a population of under 50 and everyday on my way to the flea markets I kept driving by an old general store that advertised “lunch in a real antique setting”. After a few days into my trip I finally had time to check out the Stuermer General Store for the hopeful interior and a good Southern lunch. The store has been in the same family since it opened in the 1870s and was revamped into a semi-museum in the early 1980s to show some of the old store stock from the first 30 years of the store’s existence. The antique shirts, jeans and button boots in perfect condition, shelved and behind Plexiglas on the first floor, amazed me. But other than the displayed items and architecture the store’s contents were like any other corner convenience store. I wandered around to the café and expressed my enthusiasm regarding the displayed items to the girl cooking lunch and asked if there we any other old store stock items in the building. She giggled and kindly took a quick break from cooking to lead me upstairs.
As I reached the top of the stairs I almost hyperventilated because the upstairs room looked like it had in the late 1800’s. There was a wall of shoes and boots, from the turn of the century as well as undershirts, work shirts, accessories, clothing, patterns and everything else a general store would have carried. This was a true fashion time capsule unlike anything I have ever seen. Everything was unused and in its original box. After I had regained my composure, the storeowner was kind enough to let me photograph some of the incredible items.
While the Stuermer General Store is definitely worth a visit, don’t go buying your tickets to Ledbetter just yet, because absolutely none of it is for sale; believe me I tried. Check out the full Texas Antique Weekend report coming soon to the Vintage Vault as well as all the pictures from the Stuermer Store in the search.
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