The original Mast General Store is not only a great place to shop, it’s a fun trip back in time. It’s only 10 miles from the entrance of Sugar Mountain in the scenic area of Valle Crucis. Find an amazing mix of modern goods combined with old-fashioned toys and candies that you haven’t seen in many years. It’s a browsers paradise as you walk the creaking wood floors, and a fantastic place for unique gift buying.
Today, you can visit the “original” store built in 1882 and the smaller Annex just 2/10 of a mile down the road. In the main location, find gourmet country food, gourmet cookware, cast iron, gifts, top brand shoes, hardware, old-fashioned toys, knife shop and more.
Check out the old timey post office and get your 5¢ cup of coffee. Be sure to look up high above the shelves for an amazing collection from yesteryear.
Next door to the original store is Rivercross Made in USA, a fantastic gallery featuring regional artists. In the former schoolhouse, find their clearance center. There’s plenty of free parking behind the store. Their staff is highly knowledgeable and friendly. In fact, it’s an employee-owned business!
The Mast General Store Annex is just 2/10 of a mile down the road. It was built as a competing general store in 1909. It houses casual and outdoors clothing, camping and hiking gear and dozens of barrels filled with old fashioned candy. Out back is an ice cream stand.
Location: Scenic Drive from Sugar Mountain
Take a scenic 10-mile drive from the main entrance of Sugar Mountain to reach both Mast General Store locations in beautiful Valle Crucis. From the main entrance, take a left onto NC Highway 184. At the stoplight in Banner Elk, turn right onto NC 194 N. Drive about seven miles (curvy road) to the stop sign in Valle Crucis. Turn left for original store and right for Annex. Return via NC 105 for less curves!
Mast General Store History
The first rooms of the Mast General Store were built and opened as The Taylor General Store by Henry Taylor in 1883. In 1897, he sold half interest in the store to W. W. (William Wellington) Mast, a member of another pioneer family. The store was known as the Taylor and Mast General Store up until 1913, when the remaining half of the enterprise was purchased by W. W.
The store was sold by the Mast Family in 1973 to a doctor from Atlanta and a professor at Appalachian State University. The store was named to the National Register of Historic Places as one of the finest remaining examples of an old country general store. In November of 1977, the doors were closed for the winter season, but did not reopen. Residents of Valle Crucis banded together in an effort to save the old store. Fortunately, John and Faye Cooper purchased the Mast Store and reopened it in June of 1980. The Mast General Store became an employee-owned business (ESOP) in 1995.