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HCJ architectural salvage store reopens

by Layne Stracener | May 12, 2022 at 4:00 a.m.

Reduce, reuse, reclaim.

The grand reopening of Historic City of Jefferson's architectural salvage store, Reclaim, was Saturday. The store, at 601 E. High St., is now open 9 a.m.-noon the second and fourth Saturday of each month. The store sells historic items the local preservation group has rescued from older buildings before they were demolished.

It has vintage decor and architectural pieces for home rehab, DIY and craft projects, such as doors and windows, heater grills, columns, pews and more. The goal of the store is to divert historic architectural salvage from the landfill and into the hands of people who will reuse it.

"Our goal is really to price items below market value so they're getting back into people's homes and being reused, whether that's through rehabbing their own historic home or using the items for craft projects or DIY projects," HCJ Executive Director Anne Green said.

Green said she loves seeing items be reused in creative ways and continue living on in Jefferson City homes, like an old, wooden door that was turned into a desk or balusters from the 1800s turned into side tables.

"We see people doing all kinds of creative things with these items, and we want to help feed into that creative aspect of our community," she said.

The money from the sales goes back into preservation efforts in Cole County and surrounding counties.

"This has been a community effort, and not only community, but county, too," Green said. "We've seen people coming from all over to purchase materials and reuse them and donate them, so we're excited about how many people from not just Jefferson City but all over Mid-Missouri are getting involved in this."

The store started after a tornado struck Jefferson City on May 22, 2019.

HCJ had closed on its building just three months earlier. It was among more than 700 buildings the tornado damaged. After seeing all kinds of architectural features going to waste, they decided to convert part of the HCJ building to an architectural salvage store, Green said.

"We saw all these great architectural salvage materials that were just going in the dumpsters and going to the landfills, so we started just pulling materials into this building," she said. "While we were still trying to fix our own building that was damaged in the tornado, we were also pulling these materials in."

Last fall, HCJ received a $10,000 grant from the Mid-Missouri Solid Waste Management District, whose mission is to reduce waste in Mid-Missouri with funding, awareness and coordination.

HCJ used the money to build organizational materials, remodel the building, and purchase safety equipment for the volunteers to use while salvaging materials and a point of sale (POS) system so the organization can keep detailed records about materials that come in.

The system tracks where items came from and the weight of items that come and go -- so the organization can report (by weight) how much HCJ prevents from going to waste.

"Through the Mid-Missouri Waste Grant Program, we committed to diverting 25 tons of salvage waste this year," Green said.

The store, previously named Architectural Salvage Shoppe, was closed for six months while volunteers remodeled the building. Reclaim now serves all of Cole County and the surrounding counties.

The grand reopening of the architectural salvage store Saturday coincided with Historic City of Jefferson's inaugural spring rummage sale.

HCJ foundation member Cheri Morrow, who organized the rummage sale, said she hopes to have the sale every spring.

"It's really fun, and it's drawn a lot of attention to the salvage store upstairs, which is awesome," Morrow said. "Everybody seems to be having a great time, and there's lots of bargains, so I think it's a big success."

HCJ members donated items for the sale, including vintage glassware, cookware, rugs, paintings, wall art, trivets, candle holders, glass ash trays, games, vinyl records, bowling pins, radios, toys, books, tin boxes, Christmas items and much more.

"Everybody likes garage sales, and it's just a way to help raise money," Morrow said. "I knew there would be a lot of people that would have some things to donate."

The rummage sale and Reclaim had great turnouts Saturday, with many people browsing and purchasing a variety of items for their homes.

Morrow said she hopes the events will bring attention to HCJ.

"We're hoping to make people aware of Historic City of Jefferson as an organization, because people think we're the historic society, which is different," she said. "We focus on saving the past now for the future."

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