Mike Wolfe and Frank Fritz, of History Channel’s American Pickers, made a visit to the hamlet of Lincoln last fall to pick for antiques and came up with footage that aired Jan. 17 and Jan. 24.

Scouring the countryside picking for treasures out of junk piles, old barns and moldy basements, Mike Wolfe and Frank Fritz, of History Channel’s American Pickers, are on the loose. And their favorite habitats are back country roads and small towns, which led them to the hamlet of Lincoln last fall.

In their glory, Wolfe and Fritz picked through three stories of a former cheese factory building, circa 1867, loaded with relics and even a rusty old car that tempted them.

“They were good people to work with,” said Al Plumb, owner of the building and of ALPCO Recycling in Macedon. “I enjoyed my time spent with them.”

 But Plumb got more than he bargained for.

The realtor for the people he purchased the building from had contacted “American Pickers.”

“We didn’t know what was in the building,” said Plumb.

The building was owned for many years by an eccentric woman who was a collector of antiques herself. She also owned a store that sat kitty corner to the cheese factory, at the corner of Plank and Lincoln roads. The store has since been demolished.

After scrounging around and filming for four to five hours, Wolfe and Fritz didn’t come up with a lot — other than 10 minutes of show time, which aired Monday, Jan. 17 and again last night.

Apparently, the oldest stuff had been skimmed off sometime before the 1970s. Much of what was left was trash. Still, Wolfe and Frtiz found some interesting items, including an antique toy and a contraption that may have come from the cheese factory days.

The producers made the best of the visit, including a mock “Blair Witch” scene in black and white.

And members of the Lincoln Fire Department also got some airtime, as they used their equipment to help the pair get into the building and provided ladders so they could get to the second level.

Vital work

An essential link in the food chain of antique shops and museums, pickers locate and identify abandoned or forgotten treasures, drag them out of obscurity and sell them. Without pickers, many an antique shop would have no stock to sell; museums nothing to display.

It’s a risky business, picking, Wolfe and Fritz said.
After all, one person’s trash doesn’t always turn into treasure.

“You’re only as good as the last deal you made,” they said.

In the meantime, Plumb’s stint on national television has caused him to become somewhat of a celebrity, with locals hounding him for an autograph.