‘American Pickers’ Star Mike Wolfe Went Behind-the-Scenes of Show’s 10-Year Smithsonian Exhibit

by Shelby Scott

There’s no doubt “American Pickers” star, Mike Wolfe, has found and collected some uniquely historic finds throughout his career. However, in an earlier sit-down in 2015, the collector revealed some interesting behind-the-scenes information regarding the show’s 10-year Smithsonian exhibit. The exhibit points to the prominence of “American Pickers” and the historic significance of some of Wolfe’s most unique finds.

During the interview, Wolfe confirmed that he and former costar, Frank Fritz, pieced together a display for the Smithsonian Museum.

Wolfe shared that the History Channel was approached by the museum to put together a display of the pickers’ finds. Although, the approach was a bit strange for Wolfe as he likened their request to a grocery list. He shared that the museum representatives were very specific regarding the objects’ year, color, condition, etc.

In response, the “American Pickers” star said, “The only way we’re going to be able to do this is if we just hand them stuff that we think is cool.”

Despite the museum’s specifications and the pickers’ lack of adherence toward them, he shared the institution displayed the picks anyway, “which is a mind-blower to me,” Wolfe shared.

The picker’s items receiving a feature in one of our nation’s most famous museums is noteworthy. Although, the length of the exhibit lends true credibility to the picker’s work. “It’s going to be in there for ten years,” Wolfe said disbelievingly.

So, we’ll continue to follow “American Pickers” on the History Channel. However, fans apparently have the additional opportunity to view some of the show’s items in the Smithsonian.

‘American Pickers’ Merch Still Features Frank Fritz’ Image

Wolfe spoke about the “American Pickers” exhibit in the Smithsonian several years ago. And while “American Pickers” continues to premiere new seasons, some things, inevitably, change over that amount of time.

Most significantly, the History Channel show saw the recent (official) departure of Mike Wolfe’s former costar, Frank Fritz. And while Fritz hasn’t actually featured on the show since March of 2020, the brand still features the former costar’s image on promotional items.

As far as Fritz’s departure from “American Pickers,” reasoning remains rather unclear, although the former costar did share his recovery from an intense back surgery as well as his recent struggle with alcohol addiction.

Further, while Mike Wolfe has previously painted his relationship with Fritz in a positive light, wishing his former costar nothing but the best, Fritz has put a different spin on the fallout.

He previously shared he and Wolfe haven’t spoken in two years; that Wolfe never once reached out about the back surgery following the ordeal. Fritz further shared that, while he remained Wolfe’s No. 2 on the show, he never took issue with it. “I found my spot,” he said. “I’m second and he’s number one on the show. That’s no problem with me, maybe he does have a problem.”

Regardless, things currently appear unresolved. And while we probably shouldn’t expect to see Fritz back on “American Pickers” any time soon, we can at least take solace in that the show hasn’t evicted the former costar from their merch just yet.