Do you like secrets? Uncovering hidden surprises? Being enchanted?
If you answered yes to any of the above, you’re in luck. Ogden’s colorful history, unique architecture and vast variety of commerce, art and antique shops will charm you to your toes. Our little O-town is full of magic folks. You just have to know where to look.
Intrigued? I have the perfect place for you to start.
Less than a block from Union Station, and just east of Grounds for Coffee (could there be a more perfect location?) at 115 25th street, Bill Arrowsmith, one of Ogden’s most experienced antique dealers has recently set up shop. Formerly the Crowley Gallery, Arrowsmith Gallery offers an inspiring collection of American and European antiques, a noteworthy assortment of fine art, and a veritable feast for the senses.
Standing just outside his open storefront, a passer-by can hear the literal heartbeat of time; the sound of Bill’s impressive antique clock collection from around the world, ticking out the seconds right here on H25. Even better if you happen by on a morning when Bill has decided to demonstrate one of his antique music boxes. The mysterious tinkling of notes floating out into the summer air will whisper of times gone by, and is sure to beckon you inside
Once inside Bill’s shop, it’s immediately obvious he’s no amateur. He has spent a lifetime collecting furniture, dishware, jewelry, clocks and more from across America and Europe. The first time I stepped inside, the writer in me went into sensory overload and I had to take some deep breaths in order to continue. So. Many. Stories!
Once I took some deep breaths and was able to start a conversation, I found Bill to be one of the nicest people I’ve ever met. He was very accommodating and didn’t seem bothered at all by my eight-thousand questions. Bill also offers clock and watch repair, and is more than happy to explain in detail the history and workings of the pieces he offers.
Read my interview with Bill, and then head into H25’s Arrowsmith Gallery for a little enchantment of your own.
Interview with Bill Arrowsmith, owner of Arrowsmith Gallery
How long have you lived/worked in the Ogden area?
I’ve lived in the Ogden area for 33 years.
Tell me about some of the other places you’ve lived and worked.
I have lived in Germany for 11 years. During that time I did a lot of travel to different countries experiencing the difference in European cultures (living environment, food, personal values, social values and perspectives) and collecting antique artifacts for the regions.
I continue to travel to Europe every two years or so. I have also been to Austria, Spain, Belgian, Czech republic, France, England, Netherlands, Germany.
What made you decide to start collecting antiques?
I grew up in Germany and pretty near my house was a little antique shop. I frequented the shop and befriended the owner, an older gentleman who repaired clocks. So I became interested in antiques at a pretty young age, and that led naturally into my wanting to collect my own.
Why do you think restoring old things is important?
I think restoration of any kind gives history back its glory.
What do you offer that other antique stores might not?
A chance to enjoy and experience a difference in our thinking, values, and intellect. From old master paintings to modern art and a perspective on what the artist is communicating. Using wood, paint, writings, or music to communicate values and perceptions of the world as they view their existence.
What do you think shops like yours bring to the community of Ogden?
A chance to enjoy and experience a difference in our thinking, values, and intellect in a non-judgmental and enjoyable medium.
What do you hope to see for Ogden in the near future?
A community that is more progressive, tolerant, inquisitive, selfless and respectful.