The Open Air Fresh Fruit Market was started in 1934 by O.L. (Doc) and Cleora Smith. It was as simple as could be, four poles and a roof. They sold watermelon and other fruit in the summer, Christmas trees and wood in the winter.
By 1938, it was Doc’s Market, with real walls. They sold general groceries and meat in addition to fruit and winter seasonal stuff. In 1946, they expanded and added a drive-in restaurant. Besides his amazing barbecue, Doc had the first soft-serve ice cream machine in town, and it drew customers from all over the county. Eventually, the grocery and meat business took a back seat to the always-busy restaurant and finally disappeared. But Doc would still sell you a box of shells or cartridges.
Doc had a stroke in the late 70’s and was unable to work. Cleora closed the doors in 1979. When Doc died in 1985, the building was demolished.
Information from Polly Pat Dobbins, daughter to Doc and Cleora.