Mom And Pop Grocery Store

Wednesday, February 7th 2007, 10:55 am
By: News On 6

There are not too many Mom and Pop type grocery stores operating anywhere anymore. Most are long gone, replaced by the supermarkets and supercenters.

A viewer called News On 6 reporter Rick Wells and suggested he come to Muskogee and visit that city's last one. So he did and found Buchanan's Grocery in its 58th year on the same corner at 321 West Southside Boulevard.

JW Buchanan is the last of a breed of entrepreneurs who came back after World War II and opened a business, in his case a grocery store. His mother had one a few blocks away, so it was a business he knew. “Mom and Pop stores I'm the last one in Muskogee Oklahoma," RW Buchanan tells Rick Wells. “There's no other Mom and Pop."

The hand lettered signs and some of the specialty items on the shelves tell you this store is still a one on one business. In fact, he still has some order books in a box on the counter for his few credit customers. “All I've got Rick, is about five, that's all I've got left here."

For many of them, he still makes deliveries. "They'll call you and they'll say. Tell me to bring some milk and eggs and ice cream and bacon and what have you."

Most grocery stores are full of chrome and bright lights, but this small store is full of memories. The meat case he bought in 1949 and the Pepsi cooler in 1954. Every where you look there is something that conjures up a memory of a run down to the corner store for a loaf of bread for Mom or Grandma.

Buchanan's opened 1949 and he told Rick Wells, this will probably be his last year in business. The neighborhood is shrinking and it's harder and harder to stay open.