(Editor’s Note: In 2016 Fortune & Glory Pawn moved out of the Downtown district. They can now be found at 3884 Farmville Road, Farmville, VA 23901.)
In Farmville’s Downtown District a polished red motorcycle with wide chrome grips and footrests strikes a pose between shelves full of Call of Duty and EA Sports games, Tarantino-esque cult classics, and romantic comedies spanning back to the late ‘80s.
Reality TV has sensationalized pawn shops into an exotic business where oddities and collectibles like hoarded baseball cards and pirate coins can mean big returns for the average American.
Christopher Jackson, owner of the motorcycle, video games and movies at Fortune & Glory Pawn, keeps the more time-honed tradition of barter down to earth with his expertise.
“My dad was in the business and I worked for him for 11 years before opening my own store in Clarkesville then moving to Farmville about three-and-a-half years ago,” said Jackson.
Beneath the golden Tiki idol that is Fortune and Glory’s trademark, the storefront holds a full drum kit and a Blue Bird studio microphone in the front windows. The pawn shop’s display changes with every customer’s needs and demands—and their fortune.
“We get all kinds of customers,” explained Jackson. “We meet needs from A to Z.”
On the shelves are tools that itinerant workers have traded in from the fall and winter. Wares change hands quickly: it is not unusual for customers to put tools on loan at the shop or to sell or buy a new game system for their spare time.
As Jackson said, “As far as people’s needs, we are able to provide cash money quickly as a public service with reasonable fees.”
There isn’t one kind of customer. Jackson adds, “We get a variety of customers. The only fixed thing is people who likes deals and who doesn’t like deals?”
In the pawn business, there is no one group of hot items. “Jewelry is a big thing. Phones, electronics, tools,” said Jackson. “We don’t carry guns even though it’s a big part of the market. It’s all about condition, condition, condition. As long as it is in good condition, we are able to make a loan offer or even to buy it.”
In the end, Jackson believes pawn shops are more than a trend popularized by television. Fortune & Glory fills a need on Main Street. “It’s very humbling. It’s a financial service, the oldest financial service there ever was. We provide a kind of financial security.”
Fortune and Glory Pawn is open 10am to 5:30pm on weekdays and from 10am to 4pm on Saturdays. You can walk right in for assistance or call 434-392-7296. Buyers who would like additional pawning options and services in Farmville can visit The Attic at 136 North Main Street or call 434-392-2259.