The General Store was common on the prairies, selling and trading a wide variety of goods from harnesses to sewing needles.
Mennonite pioneers were largely self-sustaining and most food needs were met from their gardens and farms. The General Store then did not bother stocking fresh groceries such as eggs, milk, and vegetables but offered imported goods such as salt, sugar, spices, and tea. As well, it provided a place to order fine china or bolts of cloth from the catalogue, and a small pharmacy of popular medicines.
The Mennonite Heritage Village General Store is a replica building, based upon photos of the H.W. Reimer Store in Steinbach.
In 1886, H.W. (Heinrich Willms) Reimer set up a store on Main Steet, Steinbach across from his father Klaas Reimer’s general store, selling such items as glass windows, coal oil for lamps, and tinsmithing services.
Hardware always remained a large and important component of the store but gradually dry goods, shoes and men’s clothing were added. Later, groceries, house wares and furniture were given their departments as the store was repeatedly expanded. By the 1920’s the store was a 2 story 17,000 sq. ft. emporium which had no equal in rural Manitoba. Its huge plate glass show windows were unheard of outside of Winnipeg.
October – April
The General Store is closed.*
May – September
Tuesday – Saturday: 10:00 am – 4:30 pm
Thursday: 10:00 am – 7 pm
Sunday: 12:00 am to 5 pm
If you would like to be a crafter in our General Store, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to apply.
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