Mike Wolfe and Frank Fritz are on a mission to recycle America. Their job: to dig through junk piles, abandoned barns and neglected garages for hidden memorabilia. Sometimes they make a buck; and sometimes they walk away with little more than the history of an item. They love their work, and the open road is their office.
Part sleuths, part antiques experts, and part cultural historians— Mike and Frank, business partners of Antique Archaeology based in Iowa, are professional “pickers,” trolling America’s small towns to salvage rare collectibles and good junk from regular folks. AMERICAN PICKERS, a ten-part series from HISTORY, follows the adventures of Mike and Frank, through small towns and back roads for a glimpse at this little-known side of the antiques business. The all new series premieres Monday, January 18 at 9pm ET on HISTORY.
Buddies since 8th grade, Mike and Frank have an entertaining rapport and an instinct for unearthing relics of historical, collectible and pop culture value. Although buying and selling is their livelihood, the thrill is in the chase. Each treasure hunt leads them to fascinating, quirky characters – everyday people with stories about their artifacts and themselves that open a window into American life.
AMERICAN PICKERS follows the highs and lows of the “picking” trade as Mike and Frank get their hands dirty in search of weird and wonderful Americana. It takes amazing expertise to tell good junk from bad. Whether tracking down a one-of-a-kind Ferris wheel or sizing up a vintage Harley-Davidson, they must be prepared to verify an object’s history and judge its value. The pressure mounts as they strike the ultimate deal, find just the right buyer and turn around the item fast. It’s not uncommon for them to contend with a farmer’s physical threats and verbal abuse one minute and laughing with him over a beer the next.
“We’re caretakers of treasures and the stories behind them,” says Mike. Traveling along with the duo, viewers will meet an assortment of American originals and watch as a patchwork of history unfolds – one treasure at a time.