When Ashley Woolridge advertised, in 1880, in Clearfield newspapers that his store in Woodland, Bradford Township, carried general merchandise, he wasn’t exaggerating!
His store was well stocked with most of the goods that the railroad, brickyard and mining working families of Woodland needed or would save money in order to buy. Quite a few items were noted in the ad shown.
Mr. Woolridge carried a good line of clothing and shoes for men, women and children.
Bedding and rugs were added to the store offerings, as well as fresh (seasonal) produce and dried fruits/vegetables.
Ordinary hardware offered paints and oils. Glassware and queens ware, which consisted of plates, bowls cups and other dinnerware items, offered an elegant home touch, as did the clocks and mirrors sold at the time.
Mining supplies were in demand as were railroad ties and wooden roofing shingles. Mr. Woolridge’s commercial acumen was passed on to an extended generational family of business operators and professionals.
Woodland was aptly named for its original timber resources. The village still lies a few miles east of Clearfield along today’s Route 322 corridor.
The coming of the Tyrone and Clearfield Railroad, and later the Beech Creek line, brought then state of the art transportation and thus prosperity to Woodland.
With the coming of both the Hope, and later, Woodland Fire Brick Companies, Woodland became, first and foremost, a brickyard town. Those works were purchased by the Harbison-Walker Company in 1884.
The street scene photo shows “downtown” Woodland in c. 1910, four years before a devastating fire burned out most of immediate center part of the town.
The town rebuilt and continued to boom until the demand for firebricks continued its decades long decline.
Woodland boasted, over the years, schools, churches, the BJW Fire Company, an array of small businesses and family homesteads. Today, the huge Wal-Mart Distribution Center lies on a hill above the town.
Jack Woolridge, engaged in the insurance business in Clearfield, pointed out that the original Woolridge Store is not shown on the 1910 photo.
The brick building, showing eight men standing or sitting in front was Fink’s Clover Farm Store. The building was purchased by the Woolridge Coal Company in 1950 and the store was operated by Robert and Nell Woolridge until closing in 1967.