There's junk and then there's salvage. Know the difference?
Junk is what some folks call trash and others call treasure. But, salvage is something totally different, especially architectural salvage which often recycles the past. One of the most interesting salvage warehouses is Vermont Salvage in White River Junction, VT, a former railroad center that has reinvented itself as an artists' colony.
Vermont Salvage is headquartered in a former grocery supply building, where it started some 25 years ago. It's easily found in the center of town, across from the train station. For the past 25 years, Vermont Salvage has specialized in salvage items. But, you won't find knick-knacks or flea market items there, just LOTS of things salvaged from homes, schools, hospitals, military bases and businesses. This diversity of salvage jobs means that there is a constantly changing and very unique on-site.
Maybe you're searching for a new sink, toilet or tub — no matter what color, you just might find it here. Maybe you just need some windows or a door, perhaps a period fireplace mantel or some unusual seating. And, if you can't find just what you're looking for, just ask and you may also learn the history behind a find — every piece HAS a story.
If you plan to visit in winter, bundle up because it's unheated. And, be sure to wear comfortable shoes so you explore ALL 3 floors encompassing some 30,000 square feet of inventory space. There's lots of categorized AND some uncategorized treasures.
We spotted these beige and orange benches from the Fairway Bowling Alley in Natick, MA, which featured candlepin bowling, a uniquely New England sport, that uses smaller balls and skinnier pins than traditional bowling, making it harder to score points. Fairway was founded in 1956 and closed in 2011, nearly 56 years afterwards. Vermont Salvage acquired all the alleys and some other nostalgic items from Fairway. Some of the alleys will be re-purposed into dining room tables.
At one time, many banks had grates and windows like this — look at the lettering above this one — fitting for this time of year.
(If you can't make out the lettering on the bank teller's window above, it reads Christmas Club . . . are these still around?)