- story by Rebecca Orfila, photos by Ellis Anderson
Walking into the yellow building on the corner of Second and Main - Magnolia Antiques - could be described as a visit to a museum, but one that allows purchases from its collections. Magnolia Antiques is a particularly welcoming mini-museum where history, fantasy, old music, furniture and toys meet providing a special experience for visitors.
Before Hurricane Katrina, the Carvers owned and operated Jerome’s Department Store at that location. Their product focused predominantly on work clothes, such as blue jeans, overalls, hats and boots, and uniforms. Boy Scout uniforms and equipment, plus dancewear were also available.
On the Shoofly
Dozens of ukuleles hang from the ceiling and Harvest Gold pattern casserole dishes stacked on display shelves. Crystal and silver serving ware and jewelry can be found throughout the store. For fans and collectors of modern memorabilia, Magnolia Antiques provides a great place for a treasure hunt!
Music plays a large part in the antique collection. A variety of historical and modern musical instruments can be found in the newest section on the west side of the store. A vintage accordion is the first eyecatcher. For radio and stereo connoisseurs, the new area contains a 1940’s era countertop radio, stereo turntable, and several boom boxes. There are several locations in the store with piano music from the 30’s and 40’s. Player piano rolls and 33-1/3 LP vinyl records are for sale near the front of the store.
The oldest of the store’s antiques currently in stock includes an 18th C. French tapestry of Spanish flamenco dancers and musicians complete with a Victorian satin cord wall hanger, and an antique railroad depot bench (late 1800s) located outside on the patio. The oldest items for sale are small prehistoric fossils.
Of note in his section is the one-man crosscut saw, complete with a landscape painting on the blade. Other items include a variety of basic tools, hammers (Viking-looking hammers), pinchers, and pendulum weights. According to Glenda, five or six consigners/vendors rent space, but the majority of the items are the Schornicks.
Annie Holbrook, an officially certified Doll Doctor restores and repairs old dolls, teddy bears, and delicate christening dresses. While talking about the doll section, Annie recalled a 1972 Kenner brand “Blythe” doll that was sold for $3,000.
Cocktail shakers, wine carafes, martini and highball glasses, and Michael Bublé playing on the store’s stereo system reflect a more glamorous time of cocktail parties and late night dinners. Recalling Audrey Hepburn in “Breakfast at Tiffany’s,” hat pins were de rigueur for chapeaus of the period and were decorated with jewels, pearls, and fine metals. The most fragile pins were topped with blown glass or crystal. For the same look, check the jewelry case on the north side of the store. The pins - short or long - can be found sticking in a vintage, stuffed pillow.