Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Main Street

Barnett's Dress Shop                           201 North Main Street

A motorist brushes off the heavy snowfall in the winter of 1974 in this shot.

He is parked in front of Barnett's Dress Shop at the corner of Main and Jackson.  Sorry, but I can't tell you a thing about this clothing store ..... don't remember ever setting foot in there.

This building is currently the site of Poor Billy's Seafood restaurant.


  1. I remember Barnett's Dress Shop. Her husband had a TV repair shop next to it or up stairs, or around the corner. He later moved it out on North Main in a little building near Woodnine.

  2. I seem to remember two tv repair shops on Roanoke Street, on opposite sides of Main Street. The one on East Roanoke had a big Sylvania sign in the window.

  3. In the mid to late 60s there was a TV repair shop on North Main between the bus station and Cooks. I can't remember the name of it, but I remember the owner spoke with an accent and had a daughter a year or so younger than me named Sabina. (I stuck a pencil in her hand when I was 4 year or five years old and the lead broke in her skin. Ouch!) Funny what kinds of memories stick in a kids mind. I guess I was really scared of getting in big trouble...enough that it stuck!

    1. Susan, I don't know when you were at BHS, but I'll bet you are talking about Sabine Schwatzlaff, who was in the class of '76. I am pretty sure that she was born in Germany, and her parents moved to Blacksburg in the early '70's. I remember Jeff Burr sold me an old color TV for $5 once because he thought it was unrepairable. He got hugely pissed when that TV repair shop you mentioned fixed it for $25. I don't know why we were so enamored with that thing. It sounded like a bad case of tinnitus, and everybody on screen looked like they had a sunburn. Sorry, Herve, if I still had it I'd sell it back to you for $35!

  4. Oh I was going to comment on Barnetts. In 1968ish, I happened to wander through Mrs. Barnetts shop to kill some time. She had the most incredible mini-dress with a mod belt and I just HAD to have it. I loved it. I saved up enough money to eventually buy it. Then all I needed was white go-go boots from Whitaker's Shoe Shop just a couple stores away. (I never did get those boots made for walking!) I remember on my 11th birthday, which just happened to fall at Easter Time, Mrs. Barnett had a sign in her window advertising a contest. Everyone who came in could put their name in a box to win a free ham. Well, I couldn't pass that one up, so I went in and filled out my name. I always wondered two things about that event: 1. Did they really blindly pull my name, or did they rig it so I would win because it was my birthday....and 2. Did I experience my first "re-gifting"? The Barnetts are 7th Day Adventist who don't eat ham. Did a sales person give it to them...and then they decided to give it away to a customer??? LOL I got to know the Barnetts better when I was in my mid 30s and had moved back to the NRV area. They are wonderful folks!

  5. Great story Susan, thanks for taking to time to write.

  6. I was looking into history of the Barnetts and I ran across this page. I actually live in their house now! Everyone who knew of them says they are/were so nice. Mrs. Barnett passed away in January. Her husband is still alive. I love hearing about the history of things and knowing who was here before me. Thanks for the information on her shop. It made me smile :)

  7. Mr. Barnett made several repair trips to our house to fix tv's, and, maybe even radios. We always thought that his rates were so cheap, we wondered how he made a living. But he did a great job and was very conscientious.

    Debbie Glossbrenner Francis