Thrift Store Opens in Church’s Unused Space

Pictured is the new Underground Thrift Store Upstairs at Plymouth Church in Brooklyn Heights. The historic church had been an active hub in the Underground Railroad. The church is now fighting slavery again, by donating some of the thrift store proceeds towards fighting modern day human trafficking. Photos by Aki Tuccu.

Compiled by Linda Collins

BROOKLYN HEIGHTS — A new thrift store — the Underground Thrift Store Upstairs at Plymouth Church — has been operating successfully in newly renovated unused loft space since its opening this fall.

The store, a project of the congregation of Plymouth Church, donates a portion (25 percent) of its proceeds to organizations fighting modern-day slavery and human trafficking.

Open every Sunday from noon to 4 p.m., it can be found at 65 Hicks St., between Orange and Cranberry streets in Brooklyn Heights.

Project chair Jeanette King describes the offerings as a “fine, curated collection of upscale and designer clothing and accessories for women, children and men, and beautiful collectibles for the home.”

According to King, some of the high-end brands currently in the store include Prada, Oscar de la Renta, Rick Owens, Chloé, Balenciaga, Donna Karan, Coach, Cynthia Rowley, Diane von Furstenberg, Ella Moss, Olga Kapustina and Rebecca Taylor — for women.

And for the men, there’s Paul Stuart & Brooks Brothers, Ralph Lauren, Rag & Bone, Tommy Hilfiger, Hickey Freeman; and , for kids, Petit Bateau, Brooks Brothers and Ralph Lauren.

“The Underground Thrift Store is a lovely little shop, and you never know what you’ll find — so you have to come each week,” said King.

Founded in 1847, and declared a National Historic Landmark, Plymouth Church began under the ministry of well-known abolitionist Henry Ward Beecher, who is known for his connections with the Underground Railroad — the secretive network of people who helped slaves escape to the North and Canada. Documentary evidence lends support to the belief that Plymouth was an active hub in the Underground Railroad, known to some as Brooklyn’s “Grand Central Depot.”

Said the Rev. David C. Fisher, senior minister, “While slavery is no longer a government-sanctioned institution in the United States, it is a vicious social ill still among us — even here in America. Plymouth is proud of its anti-slavery heritage, and is committed to doing what we can to stop it in our time.”

Donations can be dropped off at the church offices around the corner, at 75 Hicks St.

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