I’ve been going to auctions with my parents and Grandma for as long as I can remember. The smell of an old fairground building and a cold, metal folding chair bring me back to my childhood every time I encounter one. Looking through all the tables of old items was an endless adventure and learning how to sit still in a chair without raising my hands suddenly was probably a great skill to learn at a young age
My Grandma’s house is full of antiques and she loved to collect items from an early age. Her parents and grandparents came to the US from Holland with a few material possessions so the history and story behind items was very special to my Grandma. She was given items to keep in her hope chest as a young lady and she never stopped collecting.
Estate auctions and antique stores were a couple of the ways my Grandma collected her prize possessions. When I was over the other day giving her some beets from my garden she got very excited when I told her of the treasures I got at an auction last weekend. She is almost 90 and her eyesight is not the best so she can no longer enjoy going to auctions. But she does get a kick out of me taking after her in that way. But the main difference between my Grandma and I? I like to get items that I can use, not just pretty items to collect. At least that’s what I tell my husband, but I do have a few collections that are just for looks: orange carnival glass and silver on crystal come to mind.
The auction I went to over the weekend was an estate sale of a family who has lived in Livingston, MT for 150+ years. There were many beautiful pieces of history that were in great condition. I bid on a lot of items but since my Mom said I can’t store anything else at her house (I’m still living in an apartment until my husband & I get our dream farmhouse) I didn’t go too crazy. I picked up some cute colored plates, two sauerkraut slicers, a 3 gal crock, a few cast iron pans that need some work, a skinny wood door, and 10 boxes of glass jars/bottles. The last item made me smile for a couple days straight! It was like Christmas when I unwrapped all of them. Most exciting for me was the Kerr jars from 1915; there are enough of them that they will be perfect for storing dry goods in my future pantry.
My Dad also got some beautiful items for my Mom! A crock bowl that is extremely light so it’s probably 100 years older than the other ones she’s collected, a nesting bowl set that came to Montana in a covered wagon and was in The River Runs Through It, and some crock handles to replace lost handles on their crocks. I’m glad my Dad went during the day when I couldn’t be there as he was there when they auctioned off the crock I wanted
Over the winter I’m going to have to organize all of my collections. I have boxes and boxes of items that I’ve gotten at auctions over the years. It’s time for me to clear out some items that don’t interest me anymore and get a better inventory of all that I have. That should be a fun wintertime project!
Do you collect anything?