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Nathaniel Conklin House
280 Deer Park Ave, Babylon, New York 11702

The Store

    Nathaniel Conklin did not include a store in the plans for his house. But after the house was sold to T. Platt Carll in 1821 and after Mrs. Carll was widowed, she converted one room to a store. This was not unusual. Typically, Mrs. Carll carried baked goods from her kitchen and vegetables from her own garden.

    Groceries then were not boxed and packaged. They were delivered in large barrels or wood boxes, sometimes in decorated tins. Food items were weighed on a scale or measured. They were wrapped in brown paper or funneled into brown paper bags.

    A general store carried everything from shoes and aprons to bread and vegetables. In many ways, it was the precursor of the department store. Mrs. Carll closed her store in 1869 when she moved to New York City.