The Floyd Country Store served the community through most of the twentieth century. Although its origins are lost in obscurity it is known that in June 1910 a business called Farmer’s Supply opened its doors in the building and the store has remained open ever since.
Under a series of owners the store continued to operate as a hardware store and a general store until the late 1990’s when changes in the way people shopped made it hard for local businesses to keep going. Nevertheless, the store remained open for one evening a week, for the now famous Friday Night Jamboree.
A restoration of the store in 2007 revitalized the business and now the retail store and cafe are back in full swing. Although there are many new products on the shelves, it is still possible to buy a good pair of bib overalls, a jar of local apple butter or a good old-fashioned dish cloth.
Over the years the store has played a central role in the Floyd community, as a supplier of all kinds of merchandise, and as a community meeting place where folks would gather round the wood stove to exchange stories and the local gossip. In the early 1980’s, when it was known as Cockram’s General Store, it took on another role. Two of the store’s former owners were in a local bluegrass band that gathered at the store most every Friday night for a practice session. People passing by would knock on the doors, asking to be let inside so they could better hear the music.
Pretty soon, the band got tired of being interrupted every few minutes to let someone else in the store, and so they just left the doors open. As the crowds grew, other musicians came to join the fun. And the rest, as they say, is history.
The store is now acknowledged far and wide as a haven for traditional musicians and dancers. In 2007, with the establishment of The Crooked Road, Virginia’s Heritage Music Trail, The Floyd Country Store became part of the mission to honor and preserve the extraordinary music of the Appalachian region.
Articles about the Jamboree have appeared in many state and national newspapers, including the New York Times, The Washington Post, Smithsonian Magazine, National Geographic Traveler, Southern Living, NPR, and local television and radio stations.
At the Jamboree, we’re all very proud of and grateful to the musicians who bring their instruments and their talent to the store every week. The show starts every Friday at 6:30 p.m and they will play till we close around 10:30.
The store continues to be a community gathering spot, hosting a variety of music events, films, parties, classes, presentations and lots of informal gatherings of friends. Everyone is welcome to relax and participate in this community.