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Monthly Archives: March 2012

B and B Bargain and Pawn, Grangeville, Idaho

The small town of Grangeville, Idaho sits on the Camas Prairie, nestled between the Snake and Salmon Rivers and against a mountain range that spreads to the Gospel/Hump and Frank Church Wilderness areas.  This small community was once supported by the logging and farming industries.  As mills have closed and the railroad has gone the way of the telegraph, it has had to adapt.  For a town that once supported a JC Penneys and a Sears, they have had to turn to buying their goods from local businesses.  As are many small towns across the nation, Grangeville is a “buy local” community without the need for posters, and t-shirts that promote the cause.

B and B Bargain and Pawn (or The Bargain Store) is where the locals can find many of their dry-goods.  Here you can buy anything from used horse tack to flatware, chainsaws to dinette sets and every tool and household item in between.  They also sell new and used appliances and furniture.  As is the story of many small town “junk stores” their focus IS NOT on cleanliness.  You will find layers of dust on everything on the outer walls of the store.  It is also not a place to make friends.  The owner Milt and his son Brian run the store.  You can hear Brian’s voice boom through the concrete block building when he answers the phone, “Bargain Store”.  They will answer your questions, just don’t ask too many.  They will load things into your vehicle, just don’t try to help.  They are not impressed by a sweet smile or a cute giggle and may ask you to leave if you walk in with dreadlocks and a puppy in your arms.  Don’t talk to them about politics or ask them to turn-off fox news.  These are small town people that don’t want you to tell them that having a syth on the floor is dangerous.  You will likely hear them say, “Well, if you’re too stupid to watch where you’re going, you probably shouldn’t shop here.”  But if you are looking for some great finds, this place is a gold mine.  You just have to be willing to spend some time looking.  They have some wonderful old crystal that is sitting in a display case collecting dust, cast-iron pans and dutch ovens, a 3’x2’ cast griddle and old Ball jars tinged with green and purple.  There are stacks of records on the floor and tools strewn about a make-shift table at the front counter.  You can find antique oak iceboxes, oak, crank telephones, lamps, oil lanterns and books from the past 100 years.  Don’t forget to check the backroom.  It is even more unorganized than the rest of the store, but there are still some fantastic finds.  I found a beautiful headboard and an old wood-burning cookstove.

If you are looking for something specific, ask.  If they don’t have it they can always ask Geof.  He hangs out there all of the time and seems to have everything stored away in his multiple shops around town.  If he doesn’t have it, he will find it.

As junk stores go, I really like this one.  I spent a couple of hours in there just digging through piles and stacks, going through cupboards and boxes.  They didn’t bug me or bother me and were fair and reasonable on most prices.  Just remember that value is in the eye of the owner.

B and B Bargain is located just off of Main Street, behind the US Bank.  Go in on a weekday to avoid Fred (grumpy old man that works every-other Saturday).  They are open Monday through Saturday 9:00am to 5:00pm.

Good luck and happy Thrift-Whoring!!!


I have finally done it.  I have been talking about creating this blog for a couple of years.  I am a 30-somthing year-old thrift-addict.

I grew up with a father that collected anything and everything.  I learned to dumpster-dive at the ripe-ole’ age of 3.  My Dad would lift me into the dumpster and point to the things he wanted to see.  He eventually bought the towns old dance hall and turned it into his shop.  When he sold it last year it was full, floor to ceiling, with only small pathways allowing you to walk through.  Many diagnose my Dad’s behavior as a condition called hoarding.  I don’t think he is a hoarder, but a man that sees wonder in everything he touches.  He values things that are well-built and American made.  This is not to say that he doesn’t like things made in other countries, but he has no patience for “crippy-crap”.

I, luckily, did not inherit his desire to collect.  I do have quite the collection of fantastic sweaters, but years of living out of a car and on the move have prevented me from holding onto items I cannot immediately use.  I try not to buy new and this results in hours of seeking and searching-out great deals in thrift stores, pawn shops, antique malls and consignment stores.  Throughout the years I have met some amazing and fantastic people that work at these businesses.  People that are willing to share their wondrous stories and help me find the perfect item to fill my need.  This being said, I have also encountered some bitter, unhappy people that have treated me terribly and inevitably convinced me not to patronize their store again.  I want those stores that have welcomed me to survive and thrive.  That is why I created this blog, to promote thrift stores, pawn shops, antique dealers and consignment stores that do a great job…and to “call-out” those that need a little work.

I cannot travel the entire country checking out every little town’s stores of thrift and great deals.  I will do my best to hit as many as I can when I am not in the backcountry (where I spend 80% of my time).  I also want to hear from you.  Tell me about your experiences.  If I find your observations, comments and quotes to be helpful and honest, I will happily include them in my posts.

So, we’re off.  Lets see where this ride takes us, shall we?!

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