Name: Mike Wolfe (from American Pickers)
Born: 6 November 1964
Occupation: Professional treasure hunter, business owner, reality TV star
Mike Wolfe was born in Joliet, Illinois and was the second of three children. He was raised by his single mother in Bettendorf, Iowa and began ‘picking’ at a very young age. He would raid the neighbor’s trash cans in search of treasures like old thrown out bicycles. As he got older he was also interested in bicycle racing and spent some time as a competitive racer. He owned two bike stores and his love of bikes is still evident when he comes across one on his show, American Pickers.
The show is based on Mike and his childhood friend Frank Fritz traveling around the US and looking in old barns, garages, and buildings in search of treasures. He has a keen eye for things others think is just old junk. He takes his finds, cleans or refurbishes them, and then sells them in one of his two stores, called Antique Archaeology. One is located in Iowa and the other in Tennessee.
American Pickers is the brainchild of Mike and it debuted on the History Channel in 2010. The show’s first episode attracted over 3 million viewers and is still one of the most highly rated shows on the History Channel. Mike has also recently started a lighting business, turning old fixtures into new one of a kind pieces. He has also started an online site that gives children the information on how to spot treasures of their own. In 2011 he released his first book entitled American Pickers Guide to Picking, and a second book is in the works. He recently sold another television idea to CBS, a comedy based on an antiques shop. From his salary on the show, his businesses, and the money he makes by picking, we estimate Mike to have a net worth of $3,100,000 (GBP 2,000,000).
So how much is $3.1 million dollars really?
Since we know Mike is a huge fan of bicycles, we thought maybe he could use his money to buy some bikes. With the money he has, he could purchase a retro looking Huffy Cranbrook Bike. Actually, he could purchase 31,778 of them. That’s a lot of riding.
But if you’re finding yourself jealous of his money, just remember that even he could only purchase six of the Damien Hirst “Butterfly” Trek Madones. At $500,000 a piece, he’d even have to get a part time job to pay the taxes on them.