Lu told us that Poor Charlie’s is the second oldest business in New Bern and one of the oldest flea markets in the state.
Poor Charlie’s is home to 14 vendors and offers a wide variety of items, although they specialize in antiques.
Thea asked Lu who Charlie was. She told us that he was Charlie Miller who passed away a number of years ago. He was an artist and antique restorer. He had his shop in Poor Charlie’s and it was known as “Poor Charlie’s Art Guild” because he taught art there. Charlie also restored automobiles and antiques. The way it got started as a flea market is that Charlie would restore antiques and maybe people didn’t want them after they came to pick them up because they didn’t realize how much they cost. So Charlie had to sell them. Sometimes he would buy things to restore. He would have a sale on Saturdays inside Poor Charlie’s.
One day two ladies came in and asked how much he would charge them to rent the front corner so they could have a garage sale. That’s how everything got started. It used to be open on weekends only, but now they are open every day, but Tuesdays.
Visit Poor Charlie’s at 208 Hancock St., call them at 252-638-2798, or check out their website for more information.
Special thanks to Lu Hoff for visiting Thea and I during our video “Shout Outs” on the Third Thursday of each month. Join us next week on April 18th from 10am – 11am at the DoubleTree by Hilton’s Inn on the left side of the hotel to share what’s happening with your non-profit or business!
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