Our Story


We acknowledge that The General sits on the traditional territory of the Ojibwa/Chippewa people covered by the Williams Treaty, on the land of the Mississauga Alderville First Nations — an Anishinaabe speaking people located in Southern Ontario.

The Story of The General

Curated Eclectic Goods — Inspired by Local History

Local History

Inspired by the General Stores of days gone by and looking to the rich history of Trent Hills as the setting for our ‘General Store’, we learned of the Shantymen Camps that were once in the area. In the late 1700s, oak was needed for ship building in England, and the Trent Hills area had an abundance of oak trees. Lumberjacks known as ‘Shantymen’ were sent to the area to fell the timber and send it down the Trent-Severn Waterway. The Shantymen of
Trent Hills have become the backstory for THE GEN.

The Shantymen

Steeped in the lore of Shanty Life, the narrative of THE GEN was born. The iconic buffalo check plaid, the ‘feel’ of a shanty shacks, the sweet maple syrup, the beavers, moose, wild turkeys, the smell of the wood stove, the burn of whiskey, cold noses and wool toques — this story is reflected in every part of THE GEN, from décor to products. Our motto “YOU ONLY HAVE THE FUN YOU MAKE YOURSELF” was born of the same will and drive of these hardy fellows and has become the cornerstone of THE GEN.

Finn – The General

Community is most important thing amongst us contemporary ‘Shantymen’. At THE GEN we love to share a laugh, break out in song, bust a move to the music that’s always playing! Did we mention dogs? Our beloved four-legged Finn, ‘The General’ presides over THE GEN. Finn was a pup with a big smile and found fun everywhere she went. We are thrilled that she lives on through the store.

Illustration: Emma Clark


Drop in and see us if you’re in the neighbourhood. Bring your voice and your signature moves with you! We’d love to meet you. We also are excited about 'growing forward' with you and welcome both new and old customers to our website and online shopping experience.  

Welcome to ‘THE GEN On-Line’!

Trish, Jo and THE GEN Team


Trish grew up in Nottingham, England hanging out with her grandfather in his Sweet Shop — where locals came to chat, kids bought 'penny sweets', and miners picked up their daily paper and chewing tobacco.

As a social worker and psychotherapist, Trish's professional life has always been about community. As a proud member of the LGBTQ2S+ community, The General is, for Trish, a perfect expression of her passion for creating a place of diversity, inclusion and heart.


Jo was born to Danish immigrant parents and raised on a farm in Central Alberta. At an early age, Jo left the farm to forge a career as an award-winning Film and Television Costume Designer. 'The Farm' has always remained in her heart, and a move to a century farm in the Warkworth area a few years back brought her life full circle.

Inspired by the general stores of days gone by (and a few film sets!), The General is the perfect combination of creativity and community, and, for Jo, the perfect blend for rural life.

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