Last Friday, John Haggerty and I headed off to retrieve a painting from a friend in Greensburg, PA. On the way, we stopped by Churchtown Supply Co. on Route 23, 2049 Main St., Narvon, PA, 17555, to pick up some enamelware dishes that I had asked them to set aside. Bethann and I bought each other burgundy and cream speckle and moss green and cream speckle dishes for Christmas and had asked for that from everyone else in the family, as well. Lydia and April had not gotten their money to their Aunt Susan in time for her trip to Churchtown Supply, so they were going to get us a gift certificate to the Washington House instead. It turned out that Churchtown Supply didn’t have enough of our colors on hand to make their contribution useful at the time. But the Washington House was closed the day of Christmas Eve, so they could not get the gift certificate.
I called Churchtown Supply. After several attempts, I spoke to Nancy on Wednesday, Dec. 28. She had just received a new shipment of our colors of enamelware and would set aside the plates and bowls that I requested for me to pick up on Friday morning.
Churchtown Supply Co. looks like your typical, main street hardware store from the 1960s or 70s. It is a bit unusual in that it is just on a ribbon of road with houses and churches strung out alongside of it and a lush valley falling out immediately behind it. You park diagonal nose in, like they do out in Kansas. You walk in and Barry and Nancy invite you to help yourself to coffee and cookies from a folding table, where you can also pick up your free wildlife calendar. The place is comfortably lit, with most of the light provided naturally by the plate glass windows across the front, facing south toward Main St.
I had them tally up the pieces that I had them set aside for me, to see what the damages were; then I shopped for some more pieces to complete the collection. We got to talking. I asked them how they managed to only be open Tuesday through Saturday 8am to noon, and that I was envious. Barry said they had worked for 30 or 38 years for 90 hours a week so this was comp time. He had had some health issues and now Nancy is battling breast cancer, so it’s about what they can handle. They said, “It’s something to do. It pays the utilities and the taxes.”
John, Barry, Nancy and I spent some time swapping stories about the pros and cons of dealing with customers. We had a very nice time. I intend to go back and get more dishes. I encourage any of you to patronize their place, as well. They are hard working folks who could use a break. Their shop is about 4 .3 miles west of Morgantown on Rte. 23.
Tell them Cranford sent you.