Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

Antiquing in Wisconsin: A stop in Poy Sippi November 20, 2013

POY SIPPI.

The words roll off my tongue with a sound that pleases me.

Just like this small Wisconsin town. Poy Sippi. Off the beaten path. Sandwiched between busy State Highways 21 and 10. A community discovered a year ago while searching for an alternate route to avoid road construction along U.S. Highway 41 from Oshkosh to Appleton, where my second daughter lives.

Private property or a business? I don't know. But this is one of the first places I notice entering Poy Sippi from the south.

Private property or a business? I don’t know. But this is one of the first places I notice entering Poy Sippi from the south.

This October, my husband and I are back in Poy Sippi, named after the Pine River, called Poygan Sippi by the Pottawatomie because it flows into Poygan Lake, according to the Poy Sippi Public Library website.

As we drive by the Tire Center, I snap this photo.

As we drive by the Tire Center, I snap this photo.

The uniqueness of the name fascinates me as do the poetically pleasing vowel and consonant combinations in Poy Sippi.

Our first glimpse of The Shop in October 2012. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.

Our first glimpse of The Shop in October 2012. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.

We have not explored Poy Sippi, except for The Shop, a delightful antique shop along Main Street/Highway 49.

The corner grocery store and meat market.

The corner grocery store and meat market.

Dan Chier and Co. run the place, directly across the road from “49” Meats & Groceries, the corner grocery store/meat market touting “the best steaks around.” And I don’t doubt that. These small town meat markets often do offer the best in meats, this one specifically noting its home-smoked meats.

Looking toward the front the antique shop.

Looking toward the front the antique shop.

At one time the building which houses Dan’s shop operated as a general store. Dan shows me photocopies of historic photos. It’s no stretch to imagine the former mercantile occupying this space with the worn wood floor, wainscoting on the ceiling and aged double front doors.

Oh, how I wish I had bought this clock, crafted by Don's mom (recently deceased) from an old album.

Oh, how I wish I had bought this $5 clock, crafted by Dan’s mom (recently deceased) from an old album.

I wish I had known about these vintage blue canning jars when my daughter was planning for her September wedding. I rented quart sized jars like this for $2/each. Don is selling them for $3/each. He sold lots for weddings, he says, but the wedding demand seems to be fading. Now some are using the jars for lights.

I wish I had known about these vintage blue canning jars when my daughter was planning for her September wedding. I rented quart sized jars like this for $2/each. Dan is selling them for $3/each. He sold lots for weddings, he says, but the wedding demand seems to be fading. Now some are using the jars for lights. Oh, and see that fruit print on the top shelf. I spotted that framed piece a year ago, liked it then and still like it now. I should have negotiated a deal with Dan. He’s open to negotiating.

More merchandise.

More merchandise, leaning against the building next door which is for sale.

It’s the perfect place for an antique shop.

Friendly shopkeeper, Don Chier.

Friendly shopkeeper, Dan Chier.

I appreciate Dan’s warm welcome as much as the old stuff he offers for sale both inside and outside his shop in Poy Sippi. Off the beaten path. A short-cut between two busy highways.

BONUS PHOTOS:

I was a bit creeped out when I spotted this deer head on the garage next to Don't main shop last fall. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.

I was a bit creeped out when I spotted this deer head on the garage next to Dan’s main shop last fall. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.

Same spot as above, just looking the other direction toward Main Street. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo 2012.

Same spot as above, just looking the other direction toward Main Street. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo 2012.

The building to the north of the garage (and deer head) that's for sale.

The building to the north of the garage (and deer head) that’s for sale.

The entry to The Shop.

The entry to The Shop.

© Copyright 2013 Audrey Kletscher Helbling

 

26 Responses to “Antiquing in Wisconsin: A stop in Poy Sippi”

  1. cecilia Says:

    Poy sippi.. what a name for a town! c

  2. Beth Ann Says:

    What a great town name! I am surprised that fruit painting did not go home with you. It just says “Audrey” all over it!!! And if it was still there a year later it seems like it was yours!

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      Yes, I know, I know. I should have purchased that fruit painting. I could not believe it was still there. Sigh. Maybe it will be there next trip… What was I thinking NOT to purchase it?

  3. Jackie Says:

    Another fun little place to explore….I think you and I could have sooooo much fun on a road trip! Love that dresser in the last photo.

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      But would we ever get anywhere, Jackie, with all those stops for photo ops?

      You and I are kindred spirts. I love that chest of drawers, too. I have this thing for old furniture and have a Helbling family dresser in my dining room (for my vintage linens) and a Kletscher family dresser in my living room (for misc. storage). Nearly all of the furniture in my home is second-hand, from family or purchased at garage sales.

      • Jackie Says:

        I bet your home is beautiful, I only have one piece of antique furniture in my home…and end table I bought at the antique store in Kasson 20+ years ago. Does the 70 yr old table of my Grandmother’s count, not sure if 70 yrs is considered antique yet, regardless it was my grandma’s and we used to sit at it during our Christmas celebration every year 🙂

      • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

        Oh, yes, yes, your grandma’s table counts. That’s the joy of owning an old piece of furniture–the memories and connections.

        My home isn’t fancy and my kitchen and basement are horrible. But I’ve done the best I can to reflect our family’s personality in furniture and decor choices. You are welcome here anytime. Randy tells me I need to have a blogger get together. And I had planned to do just that last summer. But then Amber got engaged and I got distracted with the busyness of wedding prep. Next spring or summer…

  4. What a Unique Name for a Town – Great Captures – loving that dresser in the last photo – right up my alley! Happy Hump Day:)

  5. Fun! I’ve noticed there are a lot of Native American place names in Wisconsin that have wonderful sounds; that’s one of my favorite things about driving across the state. Poy Sippi is no exception. The deer head is mighty amusing.

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      I’ve noticed the same thing, Kathleen. And you and I would notice that, the sounds of town names.

      Ah, the deer head. I should be amused rather than freaked, shouldn’t I?

  6. treadlemusic Says:

    Once again, through your lens the world is brought to us!! The photo that caught my eye was the building for sale (north of the garage). The worn paint color is totally awesome, as is the wood detailing!!! I could stare at that for hours as the daylight shifts!! Hugs……

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      I always love reading your comments, Doreen, because you offer the most contemplative insights. I, too, celebrate the look of weathered wood and the details in old buildings. Other readers have noticed the deer head and the old dresser. My readers are the best, I tell you, the best for studying my images and then commenting on how they connect to them. I appreciate that because sometimes they see things I did not even notice.

  7. ryanware Says:

    Something about the businesses reminds me of downtown Carver MN. “Oh, how I wish I had bought this $5 clock, crafted by Dan’s mom (recently deceased) from an old album.” Please tell me it was Bill Haley’s “Rock Around the Clock” 🙂

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      Ryan, you are good. That song would be perfect.

      The album is Tennessee Ernie Ford’s “Standin’ in Need of Prayer.” I did not realize that until this moment, when I looked at the photo. Now I really know I should have bought that clock. If only Poy Sippi wasn’t like 300 miles away.

  8. hotlyspiced Says:

    The clock was only $5.00? I love it! I wish you’d bought it for me. My husband would love that for a Christmas gift – it’s so retro xx

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      Charlie, if you’re seriously interested, I can email Dan Chier’s contact info. I will, in fact. His mom made lots and lots of these, so you may even have a choice of albums. I’d be willing to phone Dan and ask what he has and if he would ship to Australia.

  9. McGuffy Ann Says:

    Your findings and photos are wonderful!

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      Thank you so much. I just love discovering towns like Poy Sippi and shops like this one. Watch for another delightful small town Wisconsin antique shop in an upcoming post.

  10. I love those blue jars. My mom has a couple. I want some. And the lids are nice, too.

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      These jars seem to be all the fad now. I have one, too, although my mom had more, which I think are now in the hands of siblings.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.