The History of The Swamp Door
THE SWAMP DOOR was founded by Dave and Lisa Romero in October 2015 on historic Swamp Pike in Gilbertsville, PA, at the site of the former FREED’S MARKET, a mainstay in the community and a much beloved building to local folks who remember it as a thriving retail center for decades. (FYI: Freed’s remains a staple, having relocated to its “modern” facility next door in the 1960s.) More than an antiques/vintage store, this small and thriving business is a true co-op, in that all vendors contribute to THE SWAMP DOOR’s success! That’s why, as you walk around the building, you’ll see happy and fully engaged helpers who want to connect you to cool stuff at great prices. For us, this is FUN and REWARDING work, and you can see that in the way we do business!
WHAT ABOUT THE NAME?
While folks who’ve always lived here know about The Swamp Door, it’s a story largely lost to history. Back when conestoga-traveling settlers moved from ports like Philadelphia up through Montgomery and Berks counties, one of the main roads was Swamp Pike. It led through a large glacial rock formation – a ravine, if you will – that acted as a gateway to the meadowlands above. The German/Pennsylvania Dutch translation for “meadow door” sounded like “Swamp Door” to English speakers, and the name stuck.
Sometime after the Revolutionary War and before the Civil War, the rock formation was blown to smithereens, probably to make way for artillery. You can still see the rubble field around Schaffer Road, about 3 miles southeast on Swamp Pike.