Couple opens gallery in Martinsburg, W.Va.

June 23, 1997


Staff Writer, Martinsburg

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - Area art lovers found a new place to tickle their senses when the Queen Street Gallery opened downtown earlier this month.

Greg and Janie Henry's shop at 213 N. Queen St. offers everthing from Jonathan Heath's humorous cat prints, to oils, watercolors, limited edition prints, federal duck stamp prints and framing supplies.

The Berkeley Springs couple completed an extensive renovation of the building, which used to house the Music and Gift Shop and the Flower Basket, giving the interior an attractive contemporary look.


The outside of the building was painted, tin ceilings replicating the original ones were installed inside, as well as track lighting to display artwork.

"It's been all positive," said Greg Henry, describing the town's reaction.

The building has been a part of downtown's business trade for years. The Music and Gift Shop operated there for decades, sharing space during part of that time with a sporting goods store. In the 1930s, an ice cream parlor known as the Coney Island Cafe operated there, according to the Henrys.

When workers were gutting the building, they found trash from the old businesses hidden behind interior walls, including a bottle of vanilla from the ice cream parlor, said Janie Henry.

The Henrys ran a custom framing shop from their house on Harrison Avenue in Berkeley Springs, but wanted to move the business to a separate location.

The busy operation often kept them up until the early hours of the morning working on frames, and customers would knock on their door after hours wanting to see artwork, said Janie Henry.

"Then they'd spend an hour picking out something, and I'd say, `Gee, this is exhausting,''' said Henry.

The Henrys said the reason they picked Martinsburg was because there were few galleries in the Berkeley County area that have the line of art they like, and because they believe downtown Martinsburg has potential.

Greg Henry said he believes a new $1.9 million train station and a proposed convention center on East Martin Street will be a big boost to downtown. The business district could figure prominently in growth downtown if it focuses on creation of specialty shops and stays away from chain operations, he said.

"It could look good, but it needs shops like this," said Greg Henry.

"Someone else will have to come up with one. We came up with this one," said Janie Henry.

Artwork at the Queen Street gallery, which opened June 3, ranges in price from $20 to over $1,000.

The Henrys said they expect to add pottery, art glass and mission oak furniture to their inventory.

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