Steak & Seafood
Living The Good Life
In 1968, George Liggett and Tim Flynn started an antiquing business in Rocheport under the name Stone Swan. Four short years later they picked up and moved the store to Columbia, at 819 E Walnut, and renamed it the Nostalgia Shop focused primarily on acquiring antiques and flipping them for profit.
For 10 years, they crisscrossed the country, stopping everywhere from flea markets to the Smithsonian to buy and sell vintage rarities. In California, they would pick up fine wines and cigars and drive them across the continent to Washington, D.C., for shows at the Smithsonian. Liggett who is always good for a story or two, recalls a time when traveling through a dry county in Texas and were able to talk the state trooper out of throwing them in a cell.
By the 1980’s, they two were stocking fine cigars and liquor at the Nostalgia Shop which had started to stocking Halloween costumes in the store.
The two later sold the costume inventory to a longtime employee Aaro Froese, who still sells the garb out of his own store Gotcha!
In early 2008 Liggett and Flynn moved the Nostalgia shop from its longtime home on Walnut to the Liggett’s building that houses the Grand Cru restaurant. If you ask Liggett why he started a restaurant he’ll tell you that he was forced into it due to the city’s smoking ban in 2006.
In 2010, Flynn got married and retired from the Nostalgia shop.
Nowadays Liggett gets around the shop with a skull topped cane but one would be hard pressed to not see a smile on his face as he chats with customers and smokes a premium stogie.
The Nostalgia Shop has remained a Columbia institution and is considered one of the most unique places in the city.