Tag Archives: rusty gold

Attention teachers of Picker Nation: One of your very own, has created a way to use rusty gold as an extra credit opportunity. Send your teacher appreciation fruit baskets to Mifflintown, Pennsylvania, care of History teacher, Brian Strawser, at Juniata High School.

The Inspiration

Brian has been an A.P. U.S. and 20th Century U.S. History teacher for more than 20 years now and like most teachers, he was leery to offer extra credit fearing it was too easy and wouldn’t make the students work as hard. “I wanted to create a way for my students to fall in love with the subject and appreciate it for its role in the world, but was stumped on how I would do that,” says Brian.

A few years ago while watching American Pickers, Brian observed how enthusiastic Mike was as he unearthed historic picks and retold their stories to the world. It was right then that Brian had the “ah ha” moment to mimic that same treasure hunt in his classroom. And just like that, the idea for “Antique Day” was risen out of the ground like a roached car grill on mega-pick.

How it Works

-Every Friday, students looking to earn some extra credit points, are invited to bring a unique antique.

-Students take turns showing their picks.

-Everyone jots down their best, educated guess as to what the item is/was used for.

-If the student successfully stumps their classmates, they’re awarded 10 points.

-If a single student guesses correctly, they’ll earn 5 of the 10 points.

-If multiple students guess correctly? A tiebreaker is created.

Left: Brian Strawser and his classroom’s collection of picks. Right: Brenna shows here classmates an antique elephant cigarette dispenser.

“Antique Day has been a great way for my students to interact beyond the classroom with their grandparents or any person from a previous generation,” says Brian. “American Pickers is an important tool to tie the past to the present and I am excited to be able to encourage that same attitude within my students.”

What do you think about Brian’s extra credit through rusty gold? Whose classroom is next to try Antique Day? Pin and share with your other teacher friends who are looking for some extra credit classroom options!



In 1872, Von Maur opened its first upscale department store in a rented space that was a mere 20 by 50 feet in Davenport, Iowa. Now, the chain has grown to 30 stores located in 14 different cities across the Midwest.

Standing on the legs of tradition, quality, and great service, founder C.J. von Maur created a legacy of offering people name brand apparel and accessories. A unique offer that stands true today is that all purchases include free shipping, free returns, free gift wrapping and even a live pianist, carrying on the brand tradition that C.J. von Maur began several generations ago. Departments stores like Von Maur were, and still are, vital to the community and neighboring cities as a one stop destination for shopping.

A Display of Children’s Apparel, Photo: Von Maur Facebook
A Gift Display, Photo: Von Maur Facebook

At the helm is Jim von Maur, C,J. von Maur’s great-grandson, who became president of the department store chain in 2001. Here’ s where Mike Wolfe and Jim share a common denominator: Both guys got their modest start in Iowa.

Von Maur’s headquarters has remained in Davenport, Iowa since the late 1800s, right around the corner from where Mike Wolfe began picking rusty gold. It was only a matter of time before these two crossed each other’s paths and became friends. Paying it forward, the guys want to make it easy to give the gift of quality American made apparel this holiday season.

Von Maurs recently unveiled two exclusive Antique Archaeology American made, vintage inspired tees for women. All customers are encouraged to remember that all purchases whether in person or online will receive Von Maur’s policy of free shipping, free online returns, and free gift wrapping.

Von Maur stores
Antique Archaeology Shirts for Sale at Von Maur

Available at Vonmaur.com and in select locations:

Southpark Mall – Moline, IL

Northpark Mall – Davenport, IA

Iowa City – Coralville, IA

Oxmoor Center – Louisville, KY

Any of you remember shopping at your local department stores growing up? Where was it and what was the name of it? Let us know in the comments below!


Our soft full canvas style hat will be the go-to accessory for any Picker