Dumpster in a bag


I saw a “dumpster in a bag” for the first time on my Monday night run. I thought it was kind of weird so I looked it up. Apparently you buy the bag at the store for around 40$, and then you pay an extra 100$ for them to come and pick it up. I can see why one might want to use this if doing renovations, but the bag was mostly filled with household junk that could easily have been put into regular bags. No matter, these people certainly have a little money to blow – the bag sat in front of a recently sold house in a nice part of town.


This box was the only thing in the bag that was of much interest.


It contained an original 1949 WISC (Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children). It’s basically an IQ test for children.


A lot of the science from that time was questionable. However, there doesn’t seem to be anything particularly offensive about this test, particularly when compared to my found copy of the DSM-II that listed homosexuality as a mental illness. (I later sold that book for 280$). Nonetheless, it’s still quite outdated – the most recent version is the WISC V, though I can’t claim to know what’s different about it.


There were several smaller boxes containing different tests.


The four wide and thin boxes contained drawings to be assembled.


This one was a face. I finished it in a minute. Do I win?


Another box contained nine coloured blocks. I’m not sure how they would have been used.


The largest box held a picture arrangement test.


It also came with a bunch of maze tests and unused report cards.

I really enjoyed finding this – I’m now able to better imagine what child psychology would have looked like in the 1950s. One of my favourite past-times is imagining what life was like in days gone by. As for value, I expect to be able to sell it for around 50-60$. It’d be worth a bit more, but I’m missing one book (which helps the psychologist interpret the tests) and it doesn’t come with a fancy suitcase.


I otherwise came across a collection of buttons in NDG. Whoever owned them was really into activism in the 1980s. My favourites were the two featuring Jean Doré. Doré was the leader of the Montreal Citizens’ Movement and Mayor of Montreal from 1986-1994. He replaced Jean Drapeau, the extravagant visionary who had served the 26 years prior. Doré recently passed away at the age of 70.

8 thoughts on “Dumpster in a bag”

  1. About the colored blocks: Probably in the testing books (or elsewhere), there would be various diagrams of the blocks. The person who was being tested would manipulate the blocks to be the same as in the diagram. What this tells the tester, I don’t know, but it probably has to do with frustration levels! Just kidding!!! But, maybe not! Seriously, it is probably testing cognitive skills and manual dexterity. There is probably some scale that coordinates with it.

  2. The colored blocks are design blocks made by the Embossing Company of Albany, NY. They were marketed as a developmental toy but quilt makers seem to like them, too. In Google images, type “vintage design blocks embossing albany” to see lots of examples. They’re pretty collectable, I think.

  3. The WISC is, I’d say, one of the two major intelligence tests for children (the Stanford-Binet being the other). Both are now in their fifth editions, and both have gotten a lot more complicated over the years.

    The various kits (Object Assembly, Block Design, Picture Arrangement) are for different WISC Performance IQ subtests, as opposed to Verbal IQ. Again, though, there aren’t just Verbal, Performance, and Full Scale IQs in the WISC V.

    I’d be surprised if there wasn’t at least some interest out there in the set as you found it. If not, as KerryCan notes, the blocks are cool and should generate some interest in their own right.

  4. You find such interesting things! Wonder if those people had the later editions of the IQ test too? Great button collection!

    I can’t imagine paying $40. for the dumpster bag and then paying $100. to get it hauled away – unless they had to clear the house out in a real hurry!

  5. A while back, the person who makes those Bagsters was on the CBC TV show “Dragon’s Den” pitching his company for investment.

    It’s wonderful to ponder how things were. I’m so glad you’re interested in such things. 🙂

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