If you are visiting nearby Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, take a short little detour and head to the Charles Town Farmers Market to purchase some goods from the local farmers and merchants. If you’re anything like me you’ll be inspired and humbled at the hard-working local people who sell their goods there.
Charles Town Farmers Market welcome sign.
Founded in 1786 by Charles Washington, the youngest brother of George Washington, Charles Town was the county seat of Jefferson County, West Virginia (then Virginia, prior to the Civil War). Most of the street names are related to the Washington family and also reflect the political climate of their time with names like “Congress” and “Liberty.” The farmers market is located on Samuel Street which was named for another of Charles’ brothers. Charles Town was also the site of the trial of the infamous John Brown and many historic markers there will tell you much more about that event if you are interested. You can learn a little more about Charles Town and some additional things to do if you visit by going here.
While you’re strolling down Samuel Street surrounded by the historic buildings you will find yourself immersed in homemade and locally sourced products of all kinds. The market itself is small, but the goods are a-plenty. On the recent Saturday when I visited you could find local honey, fresh herbs and flowers, organic grass-fed beef, poultry, pork and lamb, apples, award-winning sauces, fresh-baked pies and scones … the list just keeps going! I purchased ground beef from Tudor Hall farm (which made delicious cheeseburgers for dinner that night I must say), white cheddar Mountaineer Popcorn, and a Charles Town Farmers Market tote bag with their logo on it. I’m a sucker for things that are uniquely branded like that. If someone had been there who could monogram it with my initials I would have been in farmers market heaven, complete with homemade pie and fresh coffee. After all West Virginia is “almost heaven” according to John Denver, right?!
A selection of local honey.
Local apples for sale.
Fresh herbs available for purchase.
Menu of items for sale from Tudor Hall Farm Market.
I love so many things about farmers markets. Not only can I get amazing products but I know that my money goes right back into the operations of the farmers and small business owners who sell them. While I was there I also noticed something very important: everyone at the market was cultivating (pun intended) more than just food, they were growing (another pun intended, ha!) a sense of community. People were sitting at small table setups with coffee from the local roaster Black Dog Coffee letting their children play amongst friends while a local musician provided a little background music. Have I convinced you to visit a market in your area? To find farmers markets in your area click here. For more about the Charles Town Farmers Market visit their Facebook page.