A Brief History of Zook's Fabric Shop

Lizzy Zook’s story starts in the early 1960’s when as a wife, mother and an active member in the Amish Community she found her family drowning in medical debt. Several of her children had to be operated on at Children’s Hospital in Philadelphia.

Just as a slight digression – it is interesting to note that the attending surgeon was C. Everett Koop, who later became the 13th Surgeon General of the US, appointed by Ronald Reagan in 1982.

And now back to Lizzy…

Her family found themselves in the unfortunate position of mounting medical debt – a position that far too many families found and even continue to find themselves in (Note – if you find yourself in a similar position, GoFundMe has some help and advice which be very useful). To help her family earn money Lizzy started selling fabric around 1965. She would take a cab to 4th Street in Philadelphia (fabric row) and purchase fabric, then sell it from her home.

Shortly afterward, she moved to Ronks over top of a Blacksmith Shop. However, at the time, the Bishop of that area was very strict and frowned upon Lizzy running a business. As a result the family moved to Georgetown, PA where that Bishop was more liberal and she officially started her first Fabric Shop.

As the business grew Lizzy moved to Intercourse, PA and opened her second Shop, which still carries her name. Originally Lizzy owned and operated 3 different businesses at this location. There were fabrics on the first level and sewing machines and notions on the lower level. The back shop was all household goods and the shop in the middle was everything else you could ever look for. Today, Zook’s has both the first and lower levels for fabric and the middle shop has become Nancy’s Notions which is full of all things sewing related and the back shop is still household goods.

Kate with Herb ScrivenerIn 1998, Lizzy was getting older and wanting to retire. She turned to one of her favorite Fabric Salesman, Herb Scrivener, whom she had dealt with for several years and offered to sell him the Fabric Shop. The two worked together and were co-owners for 3 years and then in August of 2000 the torch was officially passed to Herb.

Zook’s still continues as one of the premier Fabric Shops in Lancaster County and has a global reputation as the place to go for quality fabrics.

Plus, in keeping with the ever growing Internet, you can now find all of the wonderful fabrics from Zook’s on line. Simply go to www.this-n-thatfabrics.com or visit them on Facebook.

Courtesy Sandy Jenkins

Materials found at Zook’s Fabric Store.

Materials available at Zook's fabric store
Amish clothing materials at Zooks Fabric Store

Zook’s Contact Information:

Zook’s Fabric Store
3535 Old Philadelphia Pike
Route 340
Intercourse, PA 17534
Phone: (717) 768-8153