Auntie Bellum's

For more information on Auntie Bellum’s, pay them a visit during the hours of 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Monday through Saturday or give them a call at 478-454-7055. The store is located at 127 N. Wayne St., Milledgeville.

Even after decades in the antique business, Larry Houston still finds joy in running Auntie Bellum’s in Milledgeville. 

It all began back in the 1970s. Houston said that he would go to auctions on Thursdays and Fridays before setting up at a flea market on Saturdays and Sundays. His interest in the antique business evolved from that point and has not waned. Upon making the move to Milledgeville in 1979, Houston and his wife Debbie went from selling antiques at festivals and flea markets to having a booth in a store. 

Houston said he originally told Debbie that they could just box everything up and put it in a spare room until they could not fit another box in there. Once that room got full, the plan was to open a store of their own. When they realized that a store was already open in the area, they made the decision to have a booth at the existing store. Over time, they expanded to two booths, and then later three booths before Houston became part owner of the store. 

They remained there for a while but decided to move out and get an antique store of their own. That evolved into three stores instead of just the one, but these days, Houston and his wife are back down to the single store at 127 W. Hancock St. 

The name “Auntie Bellum’s” came from Debbie, who came up with it one night while the two were brainstorming. He said that this name sort of “stuck with them.”

Auntie Bellum’s offers all sorts of vintage, rare and sometimes even slightly strange antique items. The store has about eight or nine vendors, though Houston mentioned that most of the inventory belongs to him. Depending on the time of the year, the store also offers fresh vegetables, pecans and even shelled peas. The store also sells eggs year-round.

The business is well known within the community and beyond, attracting customers from all over. 

Larry and Debbie used go to yard sales and auctions to find items to fill the store but times have changed. Nowadays, customers often bring items through the doors to see if he wants to buy them. When he decides to buy, those customers continue coming  back to sell. There are also the occasional estate sales and calls from folks that do not want items that their mothers and fathers owned before they passed away. 

Larry said that he “probably averages once a day buying something” to fill the store. He adds to his inventory often but does not get rid of items to make room. 

“We have a little bit of everything people are looking for,” Houston said.

For more information on Auntie Bellum’s, pay them a visit during the hours of 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Monday through Saturday or give them a call at 478-454-7055. 

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