Nowadays, general stores are pretty scarce. But in some New Mexican towns they continue to provide a convenient place to stock up on both supplies and local news. These general stores will leave you feeling nostalgic for simpler times.
1. Five and Dime, Santa Fe
Load up on all the magnets, miniature cars, and cowboy hats you could possibly want at this iconic store on the Plaza. Then head to the snack counter at the back, which is famous for dishing up Frito pie, in the bag.
2. Hillsboro General Store Café, Hillsboro
This café is housed in the storeroom of an old general mercantile building. It makes the list because it has been used as a general store—as well as a stagecoach stop and telegraph office—since 1879. Plus, the walls are decorated with general store memorabilia that is sure to make you nostalgic.
3. Terrero General Store and Riding Stables, Terrero
This is a true general store and social hub, selling everything you could possibly need for your camping trip in the surrounding Pecos Wilderness: fishing supplies, groceries, and first aid supplies. The list goes on. There’s even a coin-operated washer and dryer.
4. Arroyo Seco Mercantile, Arroyo Seco
Until the 1950s, this was a straight-up general store. Now its inventory is heavy on hand-crafted goods and gifts, but you can still buy practical items like stationery and basic tools. The mercantile is inside a charming building that dates back to 1895.
5. Butte General Store, Elephant Butte
The façade of Butte General Store transports you back to the Wild West. You almost expect to find a horse tied up outside and a cowboy lounging on the bench. Inside, things are much more modern and geared towards preparing you for a day on Elephant Butte Lake. In addition to ice cream, you can load up on minnows!
6. Henderson General Store, Golden
As of last year, Golden had a population of 46 people, which explains why some refer to it as a ghost town. When you visit, it’s like someone has paused time. In 1825, Golden became a boomtown during the first gold rush west of the Mississippi. The general store opened in 1918 but, in recent years, its focus has shifted to selling Southwestern, Native American arts and crafts.
7. Folsom Museum General Store, Folsom Village
For a heavy dose of nostalgia, visit the Folsom Museum. Housed inside the Doherty Mercantile Building, it contains exhibits on local history and everything from memorabilia to saddles and ranching equipment. Admittedly, this is no longer the general store it once was, but it does give you a blast from the past.
8. Bode’s General Store, Abiquiú
Bode’s really is a one-stop shop. Part restaurant, part store, you can score wine, outdoor gear, or a great burger. The store was called Grants Mercantile when it first opened in 1890. Even then it had several purposes, one of which was a jail!
Have you been to any of these general stores? Share in the comments below.