‘American Pickers’: Mike Wolfe and His Brother Once Forked Over Small Fortune for Vintage Soda Shop Sign

by Clayton Edwards

American Pickers has aired over 300 episodes in the past decade. Over the course of those episodes, fans have watched the crew drop stacks of cash for rare antiques. For instance, when Frank Fritz was still on the show, he offered $9k for a collection of vintage tattoo machines and a touchup on his tattoo.

Additionally, Mike Wolfe has no problem spending big money on items that excite him. However, he doesn’t just buy things to have them. Instead, he knows that he’ll make his money back and then some. His passion for those items just makes it easier for him to splash out the cash.

Those who have watched American Pickers for any amount of time know that a few things really get Mike’s interest. Wolfe is all about antique motorcycles and bicycles. Additionally, he’s always in the market for antique advertisement. Mike Wolfe loves vintage signage, especially if it’s ceramic or double-sided.

In a recent episode of American Pickers, Mike Wolfe and his brother Rob hit the vintage sign motherlode. They were in Mount Hope, West Virginia. During their trip, Mike and Rob came across brothers Doug and Dean. They had a treasure trove of antiques beneath their home, according to Looper.

Doug and Dean’s family owned and operated a handful of businesses in Mount Hope over the years. One of those was Bon-Bon Confectionary and Hardware. That store was a central part of their town for a hundred years before it closed in 2020. The brothers had two signs from that store, among others.

American Pickers Spend Big on Antique Signs

The brothers had two signs from the early days of their family’s store. One of those was a double-sided Coca-Cola sign that announced that the Bon Bon store had a fountain with Coke products. The other was a Dr. Pepper sign for the store. Those who are familiar with American Pickers know how much double-sided signs in good condition are worth. Furthermore, Coca-Cola is a huge part of American advertising history. Mike had to have both of those signs.

However, the brothers had more than just Bon Bon signs. They also had marquee signs from a now-defunct local theater. After a little haggling and some deep thought, the American Pickers team decided they couldn’t walk away from the signage. In the end, they offered a whopping $10,000 for the whole package.

As you would expect, the double-sided Coke sign was the most expensive part of the purchase. Mike dropped six grand on that piece alone. The Dr. Pepper sign only cost the American Pickers team $500. They dropped another $3,500 on several pieces of the theater marquee sign.  However, they didn’t plan to hold on to the antiques for long. It sounded like Mike and Rob already had buyers in mind for the signage before they spent the money.