News & Politics

Gas, Grub & Gossip: Merchandise and Memories

Country stores are good places to get what you need and to see everything from friendly faces to ghosts.

Larry Mayhugh outside Mayhugh’s Country Store in Greenwich, Virginia.

When Gordon Mayhugh was 14, a girl who was learning to drive crashed her car through the front of his father’s store in Greenwich, Virginia. “The hood was sitting right over there by the Coke machine,” he says. For Mayhugh—a retired high-school teacher who returned to run Mayhugh’s Country Store with brother Larry after their father died—the store is stocked with as many memories as it is with merchandise. Once, a robber from California barged in and slapped his father with a pistol. Even the walls in Mayhugh’s seem steeped in remembrance; on one, there’s a picture of an eagle with a tear in its eye.

Photograph by David Deal