Crowd turns out to hunt antiques and collectables

Robin Tolge of Country Living Antiques of Edinburg, right, is ready to assist potential customers for her antique wares. (The Leader-Herald/Eric Retzlaff)

MAYFIELD — The Mayfield Historical Society’s 17th annual antique collectibles fundraiser Saturday was a combination of both talk and action.

Shoppers and dealers enjoyed talking about antiques, but also buying and selling, as potential customers came in waves to the elementary school.

“We have quite a variety [of antiques], and quite a variety is going out,” said Mara Kerr, co-owner with her husband, Jim, of Cavern View Antiques in Howes Cave.

Rodney Methany of R&L Antiques of Northville was selling old milk, soda, beer and medicine bottles, among other items.

This was a treat for people who remember home milk delivery. Methany displayed soda bottles that he said had Hutchinson-style tops from 1870 to 1900. He said the origin of the term “soda pop” came from the sound the bottles made when drinkers pressed down on the top to open the bottles.

Nancy Hroncich of Perth looks over handicapped doilies and other table covers during the Mayfield Historical Society's antique show fundraiser. (The Leader-Herald/Eric Retzlaff)

Pack Rats Den of Gloversville had some military memorabilia that caused Richard Mack of Perth browse its tables.

But sojourners to its tables also could learn a lot about Civil War history and lore from Pack Rat Den’s owner Jerry Arnold–from general information to trivia. Arnold said many young people don’t know much about American history because they are not taught it.

Country Living Antiques of Edinburg had an array of goods, especially tables of jewelry.

“Most people look and look until something catches their eye,” said its owner, Robin Tolge.

Tolge opined that the antique business has changed a lot from a time when collector/sellers had to compete for items that would be resold immediately. Now, she said, antiques are abundant, but buying is weaker.

People aged 50 or older “don’t have any needs” [for more antiques] but are “downsizing,” selling the antiques they got from parents and grandparents in order to fund other plans they have, such as traveling.

The under-50 crowd is mesmerized by any electronic, she said, and as far as antiques go, “they don’t know what they’re looking for.”

Nancy Hroncich of Perth does know what she’s looking for, and there’s a strong element of nostalgia behind her buying.

“I like to go antiquing,” she said. “It reminds me of my childhood.”

Hroncich said she recalls the crystal jewelry her mother wore and the rolling pins she used, and the doilies and tablecloths her mother-in-law and other women crotcheted.

Chris Dahl, treasurer of the Mayfield Historical Society and organizer of the antique show, said the society generally garners about $2,000 each year from the show, as well as public attention.

“We haven’t gotten as many dealers this year,” she said, because some are sick or getting older. “We get a few news ones every year.”

The society plans a talk by Mike Hauser about Mayfield’s baseball history at 7 p.m. April 17 at Mayfield Presbyterian Church, 22 N. Main St., which complements the society’s ongoing baseball exhibit at the Rice Homestead on Riceville Road.

The homestead will exhibit handcrafted fiber arts and woven items from the 1800s when it opens for the season. The homestead’s hours will be from noon to 4 p.m. on Wednesdays and Saturdays from the second week in June until the Saturday before Labor Day.