The oldest operating general store in Minnesota is now selling ‘River of Refuge,’ St. Croix 360’s collection of essays written last year. All copies for sale are signed by me. This is the first local shop to sell the chapbook, thanks so much!
‘River of Refuge’ was published on Nov. 30 last year, containing essays and scattering poems. They were written from winter through late fall, following adventures on the water and on the bluffs, tracing the year’s uncertain arc.
The words are an ode to the river, the many living things that call it home — and a priceless place for many people.
The General Store has been doing business since 1848, with the current building constructed in 1870 — which was 150 years ago last year. When it was built, the Stillwater Messenger newspaper called it “the best wooden store building in the state.”
Originally built by a lumber company during the heyday of Marine’s logging industry, it included 70-foot pine beams still visible in the basement, and the flooring was made with the finest boards the company could provide.
Historic photos courtesy Minnesota Historical Society
Today, the store is still independent and family-owned, and it’s still where my family gets a lot of groceries, as well as sandwiches for days on the St. Croix.
I’m proud for my humble words to join the long story of the General. Thank you! Please shop local and stop by to pick up a copy. The address is 101 Judd St, Marine On Saint Croix, MN 55047.
KSTP News recently produced a report about the store’s history and its place in the community: