ANTIQUING IN MONROE.
Around the turn of the 20th century, cotton was king, and Monroe, Georgia, thrived as a textile giant. Fast-forward more than a century, and now those same historic buildings that once overflowed with cotton bolls spill over with antiques. After a 55-mile ride from Buckhead, you’ll be strolling the brick-lined sidewalks of downtown Monroe to two restored, red-bricked mills and cotton warehouses that have been lovingly rehabbed and converted into shops. Here, you can explore booth after booth filled with furnishings, do-dads, glassware, memorabilia and repurposed items— all waiting for their next owner.
Two must-see stops take variety to an almost unimaginable level.
At Vintage Revival Antiques, located at the Monroe Cotton Mill on Madison Avenue, more than a hundred booths are stacked head high with rare prizes and historic treasures. Its most unique and rustic area, Architectural Alley, is located in the rear. In need of old barn wood? A claw-foot tub? This space stocks raw architectural antiques from timber and beams to window panes and stone—anything you might need for your next do-it-yourself home project.
From this antiquing hub, it’s a short walk to South Broad Street and Ian Henderson’s Antique Mall, located in the 1899 Walton Mill. A father-son team offers 539 booths of hard to find gems such as a Martin B 57 Canberra ejection seat from a 1950s bomber aircraft. Henderson’s is a go-to for television prop masters in search of a unique period piece. Remember tulip chairs? Lindy’s Trains? You’ll find them here.
“It’s well worth the drive to find something special or something you didn’t know you needed,” voices shopper Joy Boskoff, who makes it a point to visit Monroe regularly. Whether a collector or enthusiast, a drive east of Buckhead will land you in the heart of this antiques mecca where you can discover the past in a whole new light.
IF YOU GO…
Sparrow Hill Inn
This historic bed-and-breakfast offers an eclectic design with an antique vibe—1800s architecture, stained glass, heart pine floors and a grand staircase. Enjoy the comforts of home, including a full gourmet breakfast in your bathrobe. Lather up in locally crafted soaps from Rinse, and if you’re celebrating a special occasion, let innkeepers Jill and Kimberly know for that unexpected touch. Expect a map in the room of antique destinations, all within walking distance or a short drive away.
June Special: In celebration of its two years in business, book two consecutive week nights and enjoy a complimentary bottle of wine and fresh flowers for your suite, $335.
Sparrow Hill Inn
410 E. Church St.
Where to eat:
Pair a 100-year-old building with the perfect cup of Athens’ Jittery Joe’s coffee, and there’s no better way to relax after a long day of antiquing. Enjoy live music Thursday through Saturday with a glass of wine or local ale. Owner Alexis Burton recommends the house favorite, Chicken Waldorf Sandwich. Everything is made from scratch. Even the tables were crafted by local artisan Randy Chestnut.
136 N. Broad St.
Where to shop:
Vintage Revival Antiques
601 S. Madison Avenue, Suite #100
Ian Henderson’s Antique Mall
600 S. Broad St.
STORY & PHOTOS: Judy Garrison