Thee Thrifty Peddler owner Scott Cross at his Brinkerhoff Store
Combining a love for researching old machinery and getting great deals, Scott Cross has made a business being the “Thrifty Peddler.”
“I’ve always been a collector and a picker, there comes a point you can’t keep everything you find,” Cross said.
Cross’s store, called Thee Thrifty Peddler, is located at 18 Brinkerhoff Street and has been open for 6 months but Cross said the business of locating hidden treasures has been in his blood long before opening the store.
“I’ve always loved picking and finding things using my metal detector,” Scott said. “My mother had her own shop before me and when she started having hip problems I decided I should keep the picking and antiquing business going.”
Cross calls the store both a “catch all of local treasures” and a “shop of randomness.”
Cross finds items for his store at local garage sales, estate auctions, from local individuals and by going out and exploring local trails and former battlegrounds with his metal detector.
The store is packed with random items including vintage buttons, boxes of matches from the 1920’s, silverware, plate sets, serving trays, children’s toys, vinyl records, video games, art work, antique fishing equipment, farming equipment, mining tools, furniture and the list goes on and on.
“We have items in this store you won’t find anywhere else and unlike eBay you know these items come either right from Plattsburgh or from people in the area,” Cross said.
Cross said he is constantly switching out items to make sure there is always something new to see. Most sought after items are the collectibles and random vintage pieces.
“We try to bring in a lot of variety in our collectibles. The most exciting things to some people aren’t the same for other people and we love to see our customers excited to add to their collections when they find something here,” Cross said. “Collectors are truly dedicated and you just never know, what doesn’t have value to one person can be extremely valuable to another person.”
Shopping vintage items also brings new life to an almost forgotten treasure.
“In essence shopping at stores like mine is recycling and saving items from being abandoned or thrown out,” Cross said. “Really, they just don’t make a lot of items like they used to.”
One of the hardest parts of the job, he said, is letting go of some of his interesting finds.
“We get these treasures and get very excited and then have to consider we don’t have space or need for something in our home, so we have to sell it,” Cross said. “My favorite things are old war items and farming tools I find with my metal detector.”
Cross said his favorite find for sale in the store is a mining helmet from the 1920’s that he found in Lyon Mountain last year.
Holding the helmet up, it is noticeable that parts of the helmet have rusted through but Cross said he see’s so much history in it and believes the piece tells a story.
“I’m not sure of its exact age or how it was used but I can guess it was a miner’s helmet, it’s hard to imagine this was what they had to wear going underground, equipment has changed so much and improved,” Cross said.
Cross said he has gone through old homesteads with the metal detector, and even followed a former stage coach map through Willsboro and Chesterfield.
Cross warns those who want to shop at the Thrifty Peddler that should they become enchanted with a treasure at the store they should buy while they still can.
“People will come in and see something they want but leave to think about it, they’ll come back later, even a few hours later and it’s gone,” Cross said. “If something is screaming at you then you should buy it.”
Thee Thrifty Peddler is open Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
If you have any questions for Thee Thrifty Peddler call the store at 335-3756.