By Charlie Hutson

A sign that marked the end of an era in Lafollette.

LAFOLLETTE, TN (WLAF) – Powell 5 cent to $1.00 was started by Gordon Powell in 1948. The first store was in the former Josie’s Beauty Shop location and shortly after that it moved next door to the Ahh Spa building today.

Powell’s operated in Lafollette for 34 years closing in 1982. At one time, there were Powell stores in Lake City, Tazewell and Jamestown. Today, 41 years later, many still have good memories of Powell’s, from the smell of popcorn when you went through the door or going up stairs to Toyland at Christmas time.

If you were a Lafollette Jr High kid from the 50s, 60s or 70s at sometime you may have eaten at the lunch counter or the candy counter on the other side of the store. Just the other day, a high school friend told me she still had some dress patterns she bought at Powell’s.  Powell’s, one of Lafollette’s best remembered stores. (WLAF NEWS PUBLISHED – 06/29/2023-6AM)

5 Replies to “Powell’s was a downtown Lafollette fixture”

  1. I talked my mother into buying a “walkie talkie” set of wired microphones at Powell’s when I was 8 years old. This inspired my curiosity for all things electrical and electronic. I continued my quest for knowledge through an electrical engineering degree. A cousin/neighbor who crafted radios and other contraptions with me was drafted into the US Signal Corps and later to a career in electronics. Thank you Powell’s.

  2. This community must have been really something awesome back in the day. Too often things are allowed to change and not for the better.

  3. Walking to town with my grandfather when I was small always led to a visit to the 5 and dime for a toy and bag of candy. Of course that was after a visit to the old city cafe and a plate of pancakes.

  4. I worked there my senior year 1973 – 1974. Charles Taylor ran the store for his family. I can remember working upstairs during Christmas was exciting, and working behind the counter where the huge variety of candy and peanuts were. Powells 5 & 10 was located between The Leader and Balloffs department store.

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