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Aunt Tinkie’s opens its doors in Springfield

POSTED: August 13, 2012 8:36 p.m.
Photo by Pat Donahue/

Mary Porter, “Aunt Tinkie,” her nieces and others show off her re-located business in downtown Springfield.

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Growing up in Effingham County, Mary Porter was known more by her nickname than her given name, she said.


Now, her name is part of the sign above her store on Springfield’s Laurel Street.


Porter has moved her business, Aunt Tinkie’s Antiques and Thrift Store, from Guyton and held an open house Saturday.


“We closed on a Wednesday in Guyton, put stuff in here Monday and Tuesday, and opened on Wednesday,” Porter said. “And about like to have killed ourselves.”


Porter’s store has vintage furniture, collectibles, linens and clothing for small children. There’s even an area of collectibles that might appeal more to men than to women.


When she went to work at Fort Howard, now the Georgia-Pacific Savannah River Mill, her boss asked her if she had another name to call her by, she said, since he didn’t want to call her Tinkie.


And to her three nieces, who rent space from her in one of Springfield’s business edifices, she’s Aunt Tinkie. Her nieces have their own spaces to repaint and refinish furniture.


Porter’s store is in the old Mingledorff building, which until recently had been home to Ever After Formal and Bridal. Porter remembered the old Mingledorff store and its shelves stocked with wares, including linens.


“You could buy anything in here,” she said. “It almost feels like the old building and the old company. We hope it works.”
Jamey Stancell, president of the Springfield Merchants Association, is Porter’s next-door neighbor on Laurel Street and welcomed another business to downtown Springfield, bringing the number of businesses on the street to nearly a dozen.


Merchants in downtown Springfield and the Springfield Merchants Association will sponsor the Second Saturday in the City. The event, to be held on the second Saturday of each month, includes refreshments, including hot dogs, drinks and chips, from 11 a.m.-1 p.m.


The inaugural Second Saturday in the City is set for Sept. 8. The Springfield Fall Festival will take its place in October.


“It will line up well with Olde Effingham Days and our Fall Festival,” Stancell said. “It also lines up with the Mars Theatre and what they’re doing there.”

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