Antiques and Stuff Blog

Antiques and Stuff Blog

Coca Cola Oak Barrel/Keg--5 gallon

by Rebecca Grube on 06/14/14

This barrel was used in the 1930's to ship Coca Cola syrup. It was found in a Lancaster, PA attic of a former employee of Keppel's Candy.  The label on one end shows some deterioration but remains very readable.

In addition, it is stamped with a shipping location of "Keppel & Rouf Inc., Lancaster, PA." The barrel measures 20 1/2 inches tall by 12 inches in diameter.

Many years ago there was a Keppel's Candy, circa 1925 - 1965, manufacturer on North Queen Street in Lancaster, PA which made hard candy sticks of many flavors. This barrel of syrup may have been used there to favor candy.

Pie Safes

by Rebecca Grube on 12/22/12

Pie Safes were used by early PA Dutch to keep pies, cookies, jellies, jams, bread, and other baked goods safe from flies, mice, and other vermin. The reason for the screen or the punched tin panels was so that the baked goods would have some ventilation so they would not become moldy.  You can understand how the pie safe was a very important piece of furniture! It was usually a free standing piece or, in this case, a hanging cabinet. It was kept away from the wood stove so the goods would not get too much heat. Some were kept on porches. The pie safes were made from local wood. The inside of the cabinet had shelves to hold the food placed within the cabinet.

Xtian Newswanger

by Rebecca Grube on 03/30/12

Xtian Newswanger

Xtian Newswanger is an internationally known artist from Lancaster County, PA,  who created primitive-style paintings/etchings portraying the Old Order Amish people and lifestyle.

Xtian Newswanger was a Fulbright Scholar at the Dusseldorf Art Academy in Germany and at the Barnes Foundation in Merion, PA. He turned down scholarships from Yale and the University of Pennsylvania so that he could apprentice in art with this father while he attended Franklin & Marshall College.  His drawings have been exhibited in the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Philadelphia Museum of Art and also in the White House, the Library of Congress and other places.

Along with his father, Kiehl Newswanger, he also published a book entitled Amishland. In addition, he has been the recipient of many awards and accolades from art critics.

Newswanger’s descendents were Lancaster County Mennonite Farmers.  

Antique Foot Warmers

by Rebecca Grube on 03/13/12

Antique foot warmers used during the 18th Century were made, usually, of pierced tin in a box with a hinged door. The ember cup or tray, filled with hot embers, was placed inside the door and this was the source of heat. The tin box, the actual foot warmer, was contained in a wooden frame that had a wire handle attached for carrying. These foot warmers were used in carriages or sleighs in very cold weather. They could also be taken into church for use there. To keep the embers hot, people stopped on the way to and from their destinations, if they were traveling a distance, at various homes and taverns to add hot embers to the tin box to keep themselves warm.  You can see a pierced tin foot warmer in the picture on the center top of the grain box.

Wilbur Chocolate Letterpress, Lititz, PA

by Rebecca Grube on 05/27/11

We recently acquired in our shop some rare Wilbur Chocolate Letterpresses signed Lititz, PA. For Lititz collectors, these are one-of-a-kind pieces. Each one is different as each was used to print different boxes for different product types. A couple of pictures have been added for you to see some samples.


You can get more information on letterpress printing at these links:  Wikipedia information  Introduction to Letter Press Printing


Susan Landis's Show Towel--May 19,2011

by Rebecca Grube on 05/19/11

Who is Susan M. Landis? 

In the shop we have a Show Towel for sale made in the 1800’s by Susan M. Landis. There is a note on the towel that says: “Susan M. Landis, Grani’s great aunt; Show Towel, East Lampeter Township, Lancaster County PA. Made in 1800’s.”

I became curious to see if I could find out some information about Susan M. Landis. I was not disappointed. Susan M. Landis was born on September 14, 1829 in West Lampeter Township, Lancaster County, PA. She died on June 30, 1901 and is buried at Longeneckers Reformed Mennonite Church Cemetery, West Lampeter Township, Lancaster, PA along with her husband.

Susan’s father was John B. Landis, born on November 17, in 1795, also in W. Lampeter Township. Her mother was Martha Mylin, born on October 15, in 1803.  Susan was their only child.

Susan married Sample Trout in about 1860 in Lancaster County.  Their children were Sarah Ann Trout, probably born in that same year, and Amos H. Trout born about 1867.

It’s fun to know the “real people” behind the artwork, quilt, or, in this case, fancywork in the form of a show towel.


What's New?

by Rebecca Grube on 05/07/11

Since the New Year, various pieces of vintage jewelry, including pins, rings, and bracelets and necklaces, have been added to our collection.  You will also find some crocks and jugs, a delightfully red painted and hand decorated children’s table with 2 matching chairs, a walnut dropleaf table, and several delicate and beautiful pieces of art glass vases.

Other additions include an interesting "Lightning Ice Breaker," an Edison Player with a hand-painted horn, an iron piggy bank, several vintage cookie jars, a cherry dropleaf table, some vintage books and ads, several old bottles, some tin children's toys, and other items too numerous to mention.

Welcome to our blog!

by Rebecca Grube on 05/07/11

Welcome to our Blog! We hope you will enjoy this section of our website. We welcome your comments. Please email us your comments. If there are questions you may have about a certain antique or vintage item, please email us with your question and we will do what we can to help you find an answer!


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