A Homesteader’s Yard Sale Treasures

Saturday we decided to go yard sale-ing on a whim. Jerry had seen a few signs not too far from us, so we went to check them out. We couldn’t believe our luck! We found some really awesome stuff.

canning jars

At one yard sale we went to there was an elderly couple selling a wood stove in their basement. We went down to check it out, and immediately I noticed that the walls of half of the room were filled with shelves of empty canning jars.

I asked the woman if she would be interested in selling some of her jars, and to my delight she shrugged and said, “Sure!” She offered them to me for $3/dozen, which was exactly the amount I’ve resolved to pay for my jars, so I scooped up as many as she would part with- 8 dozen pints, quarts, and a couple of half gallon jars.

I also noticed on the top of one of these shelves there sat two dust covered water bath canners. Since I didn’t yet have one I asked her about them as well.

She said she had another one in her kitchen, so she didn’t see why she needed three. I was really excited when she pulled the biggest one down and said I could have that one… for $3.

This thing is huge! It will hold 8 quart jars:

large water bath canner

She was happy that somebody was going to be getting use out of these things, and I was excited to have found some things I could really use for awesome deals!

She gave me her telephone number and told me to call her if I ever have any canning questions. She also has an apple tree, pear tree, and fig tree in her yard that she said she just lets people come and pick from since she no longer cans much anymore. What a blessing!!

A little up the road was another yard sale where I found these two cute skirts for $2 each. They are just a tad too big, but nothing that can’t be easily taken in. The tan skirt was brand new with the Old Navy tags still on it. I desperately needed some new skirts, so this was a wonderful find!


We stopped at one more yard sale up the road, but after checking out the prices I thought they were a little too high. I really liked this kerosene wall lamp, but the man had it priced at $5 and wouldn’t budge. I set it back down, and we headed home.

kerosene lamp
an old yet functioning oil lamp

Once back home though, I flipped through my Lehman’s catalog, and found that they sell lamps very similar to this one for $120!! We ended up going back to the sale and picking the lamp up for the very reasonable price of $5.

I also picked up this outdoor kerosene lamp:

yellow kerosene lamp

But let me share with you the pièce de résistance:

wooden hand crank washing machine

An old wooden, hand crank washing machine with clothes ringer, in excellent condition. We debated over this one for some time, but ended up going back to get it the next day. We just couldn’t let this gorgeous contraption slip through our fingers. And I do plan on using it!

*Update (3/27)- We decided to sell the old washing machine after all. It needed some work to be useable, and we soon realized that we could wash our clothes in a bucket with a scrub board for much less! So, I sold it to a man who is opening a museum locally, for the same amount we bought it for. So, no loss. It was fun to show off while we had it!

Exciting, huh?! I’m so thankful for all of the neat stuff we found this weekend.

Did you go yard sale-ing over the weekend?? Find any awesome deals?

18 thoughts on “A Homesteader’s Yard Sale Treasures”

  1. I am going to be praying that the Lord will open some doors for me like this. I would really like to begin canning soon and I am in the stage of discovering/learning how and obtaining the supplies needed to do it. To buy new is sooo expensive. You have given me hope that these CAN be found at yard sales and maybe change my yard sale tactical routes to locate some of these kind of goodies. Thank you for your post! Be blessed!

  2. hey I was just looking to value a washmachine exactly like yours .now this made me extremely happy… I picked this thing up for 25$!!
    there is also a back bar that came around the horn of Africa in 1901! and its mine if I want it . I want it ! don’t know where ill put it but itll be for sale . don’t know how much hes going to charge me but based on the washer price ill be happy again!

  3. What fun finds! Just a quick question if it’s okay to ask, You shared the price you paid for all of the items except the washer… would you mind sharing that too? I’ve been looking at “off-grid” washers for the last few days and trust me, I just might have been doing a happy-dance all the way down the driveway on that one!

  4. I cant wait to hear how the washer works! can you just imigine the use that thing has seen over the years? probaably some mother was so proud to have it new many years ago, instead of a tub and wash board! wouldent she be surprised to know its still a much wanted item?

  5. Wow, that’s great! You really hit the jackpot! And what a great deal on the washer! I watch for the same kinds of things at sales and auctions–usually don’t find much like that at garage sales around our area, but sometimes at auctions. It’s so great when you can get a whole box of stuff for a couple of dollars. We’re slowly building up our oil lamp/lantern supply. We have a bunch of candles, too, but the lamps put out so much more light.

  6. Test the oil lamps first. I had one I bought second hand, and it leaked like a siv. It ended up in the trash, although I saved the glass and the reflector for another lamp I bought.

  7. Lst year I got about 40 old style Ball canning jars from freecycle and yesterday I got quinces and apples (she had way more than she AND her horses could handle!) also from freecycle 🙂

  8. Awesome finds!! I absolutely love the old, antique stuff that is still usable and comes in very handy. I didn’t personally go yard saling, but my mom did go to a flea market and picked up an almost new cast iron dutch oven and small griddle for me at good prices, so I was pretty excited myself! 🙂

  9. Wow you are braver than I! I consider myself pretty green, but even I don’t think I would attempt a hand cranker clothes washing machine. Good luck to ya! Love your blog!

  10. Wonderful treasures !! I couldn’t find anything this weekend that was worth sharing. I can see that, like Delinda Lea and myself, it would be difficult to shop together. We both love type of items. Oil Lamps, crocks and quilts are my weakness. I absolutely love your $5 Kerosene Lamp treasure, and I am not going to covet…:) You really scored !!!

  11. That’s much better stuff than we have around here for sale. Of course I still live in the somewhat suburbs (we’re on the outskirts of town) so I’m still surrounded by 21st century consumers. Oh how nice it would be to be around country folk again…

  12. Now *I’m* the jealous one! All those canning jars. What a great price. I yard sale frequently, but no one around here seems willing to part with them. When I ask if they’ve got anything like that, they say they aren’t selling for fear they may need to use it, even though they haven’t in years. Ugh.

    Congrats on the great deals!


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