Two Morristown natives are combining life lessons taken from a family tradition of curating the many little things that make up an individual’s life here on earth.

When given the care and respect due them, those little things can add great value to homes and businesses, as siblings Melissa Krummel Wheeler and Cassandra Krummel Golden well know.

“As sisters, we grew up with antiques, collectibles, and crafts,” Melissa said. “We enjoyed going to flea markets, auctions, and estate sales.”

The girls helped their mother, the late Betty Krummel, in The Tree House, her gift shop that was located on West Main Street in the location of the former Taylor Shoe Store that is now the Main Street Christian Book Store. Their father, Clay, a lifelong treasure seeker, was involved with the music and theater programs at First Baptist Church for a number of years and served as its historian and special events coordinator.

“After leaving home, we have raised our children and cared for our husbands, building businesses and teaching high school. Throughout it all, we have kept our love of old things and appreciation of quality and family treasures. Together, we have over 40 years of experience in sourcing, valuing, and selling vintage, antique, and hand-crafted items,” Cassandra said.

Their children are now grown, and the sisters have taken their interests, knowledge, and skills and created a joint venture they’ve named Heirloom Treasures Estate Sales.

“We look forward to helping people transition into new stages of life, from downsizing to a smaller space to full estate liquidation,” Melissa said. Our goal is to make the process of change as easy as possible for our clients, while ensuring they are provided with a return on their initial financial investments.”

“We are so excited to begin this adventure and bring you all along with us!” Cassandra said.

Melissa is officially one-half of Heirloom Treasures Estate Sales. She has lived most of her life in East Tennessee and the majority of her working career has involved the customer service industry. After working in retail management for 13 years, she opened Megan’s Corner, a catering and wedding design company that eventually involved the full operation of food services at Walters State Community College. During that time, the business was also an award-winning participant in the Taste of Morristown fundraising events, and Melissa lent her food service expertise, along with edible delectables, to a number of Mountain Makins’ Preview receptions, as WINK readers may remember with fondness.

While in retail, Melissa was a district manager over eight area locations with more than 80 employees. During her 17-year catering career, she organized and decorated hundreds of weddings and events. Her commitment to customer satisfaction earned her many awards and accolades.

“With my years of experience, our clients can expect their sales to be impeccably planned and organized for the most profitable outcome with a focus on superior customer service,” Melissa said.

She currently owns and operates Megan’s Corner Chic Antiques with multiple on-line platforms selling antique/vintage treasures and booths in two area antique malls.

“Throughout my various careers, my main interest has centered around historic preservation, whether through properties or rescuing treasures of the past. That passion has culminated into decades of attending estate sales, auctions, thrift stores, rummage sales and a bit of trash picking. But mostly researching and learning everything I could about all things vintage to now share that knowledge to help others,” Melissa said.

Melissa’s husband, Rob, is a district sales manager with Performance Food Service and the couple has been married nearly 25 years. They live in a 106-year-old home filled with treasures from the turn of the century Victorian Era to Depression and Mission styles.

“Many are inherited family pieces, but most are collections that started during my childhood,” Melissa said.

The couple’s daughter, Megan, is 23, a pharmacy technician at College Park Pharmacy and recently married to her husband, Dylan. She will be handling much of the marketing and is the specialist for anything from the mid century. The couple’s son, Ryan, is 16 and a junior at Morristown East High School and attending Walters State Community College.

“He has extensive knowledge of books, music and historical artifacts. They will all be popping in from time to time and assisting with sales,” Melissa said.

The sisters’ father, Clay, helps out too, when his health permits. He serves as an official greeter at select estate sales where he provides information to casual visitors and serious shoppers alike.

“He loves to talk!” Melissa said.

Cassandra refers to herself as the “other half” of Heirloom Treasures, Born in St. Louis, Missouri, she moved to Hialeah, Florida at the age of three, and then to the East Tennessee area when she was 13. She lived in the volunteer state until her graduation from Carson-Newman University.

She relocated to southwest Georgia where she met her husband and raised a family. She has spent more than 33 years as an educator, and currently works online as an assistant professor with Truett McConnell University in Cleveland, Georgia.

Cassandra’s background is diverse, and she has a wide range of interests.

She earned a Bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts, and is familiar with photography, pottery, painting, and sculpture. She taught art and music for several years. She also earned an Master’s degree in English, leading to over 15 years in the high school English classroom, later transitioning into the college setting.

“I love the history behind the literature, and have studied both American and British literature and its historical background,” Cassandra said.

Her interests have, in an eclectic way, helped prepare her for working with Heirloom Treasures.

“I have spent countless hours in antique shops and flea markets, at auctions and estate sales, and have even plundered a few dumpsters to pull out treasures for my father!” Cassandra said. “I grew up with collectors, and my parents taught me a great deal about quality antiques and vintage collectibles. My mother taught me to be ‘crafty’ and introduced me to traditional needlework and sewing. My father provided a veritable playground of tools, paints, and supplies where we could be creative and messy. He even bought me a 100-year-old loom that I enjoyed using throughout high school.”

Cassandra brings a variety of skills to Heirloom Treasures. She has worked with many traditional arts and crafts, including sewing, weaving, stained glass, simple woodworking, pottery, along with gardening and canning.

“I enjoy working with yarn and thread, such as embroidery, cross stitch, crewel, needlepoint, and crochet. My art background helps me to identify quality artwork,” she said.

She has worked in theater, designing sets and costumes for period and fantasy productions, and she is passionate about research and accuracy on the stage, including the use of vintage and antique costumes and set decor. Her years of teaching taught her organization and time management skills.

“I feel that my greatest strength is my love for research. I want to know the back story for every item I sell online, every artist I study, and every novel I read. In fact, as a child, you could often find me reading the encyclopedia when I was bored! I believe that research and organization are vital in putting together a successful estate sale.”

In addition to her skills and experience, Cassandra said she is blessed to have a husband who is a retired firefighter. Paul loves everything about hunting and knows a great deal about weapons, she said, and he will also be a help when dealing with tools of all types.

“Most of all, having his support in this venture is a blessing and an encouragement! I am excited to work with my sister as we grow this new venture, and I look forward to working with our clients in the future,” Cassandra said.

The girls teased WINK readers that their next big sale that will be held over the first weekend of June.

Melissa said embarking on a second, or third, career has been a “blast.”

“It’s kind of been my calling; I’ve just had to get there,” she said. “I needed to grow up and figure out what I want to do with my life. I guess I never really looked at this as being a career, because it’s something we’ve always just done. It’s the right thing at the right time in our life.”

To be added to the preferred customer list, email heirloomtreasurescontact@yahoo.co