Smoky Mountain Pickin’

Smoky Mountain Pickin’ always follows visits to our daughter who lives in Maryville, near the Smokies. Her hubby is a direct descendant of one of the original Cades Cove families, so we often visit the Cove or an obscure historic site if we can find one. Elkmont fills the bill, a fascinating abandoned village right in the middle of the Smokies, so interesting to visit for its crumbling vacation cottages, most of which are falling in.

old abandoned swiss chalet
Smoky Mountains Elkmont


Elkmont homes caving in
Homes caving in




Look at that fantastic chimney!

Most of these cottages were built between 1910 and 1930 and renovated over the years. Now the Park Service will save only a few, allowing the rest to fall in….demolition by neglect.

The pink cottage, the last one vacated, is in better shape than the others, and restored for modern use. The others? They don’t look too bad until you get up close, and see the deterioration, holes in the floor, holes in the roof, rot, water damage, etc.


The visit is not complete without seeing the site of the Old Wonderland Hotel built in 1911 with its heyday in the 1920’s.


Great Smoky Mountain Pickin
Ruin of the Wonderland Hotel



So back to pickin’~Speaking of antiques, Townsend, Tennessee, where we were staying, is LOADED with antique shops. A great place to browse¬†for us vintage lovers!


Unfortunately, the thrift stores were slim pickin’s. We went to about 5 & this is it!

Smoky Mountain Pickin
Thrift store Silver tray, candlesticks, and wall mount rack missing the rack
Smoky Mountain Pickin
Thrift Store Gold Candlesticks and wall rack














The real Smoky Mountain Pickin’ jackpot came on the weekend where we hit one estate sale, and several good yard sales. Here is the extent of that haul. This would have been impossible without GPS…Cheapskate Southern Girl Picker finally got one, even though hubby says reading maps is good for the mind.

TN Yard/Estate sale haul
Tennessee Yard and Estate Sale Haul


MOST¬†favorite finds…would you look at that cool 50’s pink can opener?? Vintage suitcase…no handle, and beautiful etched glass lamp…I LOVE old suitcases so this was a lucky find!

Smoky Mountain Pickin
50’s Pink Can Opener
Smoky Mountain Pickin
Vintage suitcase












The frosted vintage hurricane lamp came from a rummage sale. Examining it closely to discover why it was so cheap at $2, I discovered AFTER I got home~I may have just inherited a new lamp…I’m not so sure it will sell with this much damage…what do you think?


Kicking myself AGAIN for not examining closely enough…one of my biggest faults. (a bad fault to have)

Most of these will be going into my Etsy shop~

But here’s what’s already sold~

Vintage Rotating Tie Holder, Lighthouse Lantern, Boston Rocker Doll Chair, Pink Can Opener, Thrift store Silverplate Tray.


Hope you’ve enjoyed the mini tour of Elkmont! Perhaps it’s encouraged you to visit and pick the riches of Tennessee!




Smoky Mountain Pickin'
Smoky Mountain Pickin’













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As an experienced online seller for 19 years, I've just begun to reveal some of my selling secrets. In my Vintage Finds posts, I show what I buy for resale, and sell for. Because many items are vintage and need TLC, I show these DIY's, and how I refurbish to sell. I love picking, junking, thrifting, and shabby chic style.

16 comments on Smoky Mountain Pickin’

  1. My goodness Florence these pickins are fabulous. I love the little lighthouse lantern and the mini rocking chair is so cute. You definitley have an eye for these things. And that resort must have been magnificent in it’s heyday, too bad they don’t restore it.

    1. Thanks Mary! Yes I’m disappointed, too, that the Park Service won’t restore those old buildings, but they are letting them fall in so they can go back to nature. And they can’t tear them down because they’ve reached historic status.

  2. What a shame the state won’t restore the cabins. I know money is always tight, but those could be money makers!

    I adore that pink can opener! And some lucky duck already has it. Pretty quick sell, wasn’t it?

    (I like the new blog design, too.)

    1. Yes it is a shame & there’s so MUCH interest in them. I’m not sure it’s a money issue. From what I understand about it, the Park Service wants the area to go back to nature. They can’t tear them down because they’ve reached historic status. So they just let them fall in.
      Yes the pink can opener sold pretty quickly! I’ve never seen another one like it.
      And yes I like this blog design so much better!

  3. Such a fascinating place to visit, Florence. I’d so love to do a “photo-shoot” there. I enjoyed all your finds, but that pink can opener is something else–just wonderful. So glad you linked your posts up with us at Vintage Charm!

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