Roy Gladding, the mayor of Tappahannock, has observed the decline of small retail businesses in the town he has called home for over 60 years. He says that the crumbling of local retail began decades ago.
“The area that causes probably the biggest problem for citizens is clothing,” Gladding said. “We had a lot of small independent clothing stores in Tappahannock in the sixties and seventies and into the eighties, and most of those are all gone now. It really makes it hard for people.”