The liquidator pt. 3


I’ve been checking on the trash of the liquidator (part one, part two) every garbage day since I found some great stuff there near the end of June. At first I assumed they were clearing out the house but it’s now clear that they actually live there themselves. I guess they bring their work home with them sometimes because I’ve been finding small quantities of interesting stuff there on a semi-regular basis.


Often I’ll just find a few thing worth saving, such as this photograph from around the turn of the century.


Sometimes there will be a bin full of broken or mediocre china. The pieces are occasionally very fancy but those are always broken beyond repair (or at least are not worth the price to repair). I’ve added a few functional if unspectacular pieces for my home collection.


For the last couple of months I’ve been keeping my eye on a spot in Westmount. In a bit of a twist I discovered that this liquidator was working a job at that same house – a few things I saw in their garbage bore the names of the people who once lived there. It was a bit funny and strange to this stuff pop up in a totally different part of town.

I’ll share some of my finds (mostly great ephemera!) from the Westmount place soon. For now, here’s the related stuff I found at the liquidators. Here are four sealed high quality cassette tapes. These actually sell pretty well on eBay, but they don’t go for quite enough for me to bother listing them. They’ll go to my yard sale pile instead.


There was a bunch of 1976 Olympic ephemera, including four competition programs, four “all about the games” booklets, and a general information brochure. A similar competition program (but in worse condition) recently sold on eBay for 20$ so I might be able to make a bit of money here.


The booklet on the right is a guide to the Swiss Olympic delegation, while the one on the right is actually veiled Christian literature.


It’s actually kind of funny. It starts out looking very official and not unlike like your average information booklet. However, the last few pages (and these final two in particular) are filled with religious references. There’s also a “please send me more information” insert. I wonder if this worked on anyone? It was published by a local organization called Literature Crusades.


Otherwise, I found a bit of Expo 67 related stuff, including a 1969 map of Man and His World …


… and a pamphlet called “Introducing Expo 67” which seems to have been published before the event.


I also saved three old yearbooks from the 1930s. They’re pretty cool to look at, as you might expect.


One peculiar historical oddity is the number of casual Hitler references. I noted several (and two on this page alone!) while only briefly looking through them. These were written in the pre-war days of course, so most people weren’t yet aware of how terrible Hitler actually was.

On a side note: if anyone knows what Marcelle Lambert means by “kirk” let us know in the comments! I couldn’t figure that out.

I’ll share some of my Westmount finds soon!

25 thoughts on “The liquidator pt. 3”

  1. The 3 k’s for women were kinder, kuche, kirche (children, kitchen, church). I don’t know if my spelling’s right!

  2. Kirk = church and I believe that Marcelle’s destiny quote is referencing a German slogan: “kinder, kuche, kirche”/”children, kitchen, church,” which were the only things a “good German woman” was supposed to be concerned with.

    1. Thanks for the link, something to consider though I have so many thinks to deal with already that I doubt I’ll get into saving this china.

  3. She’s possibly originally from
    Scotland – here kirk is commonly referred to as church (as in Church of Scotland).

  4. Martin,michelle here. Running a bit late i can be to coloniale for +- 230.

    Sent by Outlook for Android

  5. You g o to trash-picking to Verdun West,but never to LaSalle.LaSalle has 5,000 more residents than all of Verdun.Please do not ignore the borough of Lasalle so much.You have aldready done LaChine.

    1. Lasalle is one I’m going to leave for the locals. There are some nice parts but it’s a long way to go for a twice a week trash day (they do two pickups on Wednesday and Saturday from June to the end of September) with separate recycling day.

      Even when that period of two trash days a week ends Lasalle has the misfortune of having the same trash day as Mount Royal, a much closer (and much richer) neighbourhood.

      Maybe I’ll go someday, but it likely won’t be anytime soon. My desire to travel long distances for garbage has been slowly evaporating.

  6. Martin,I live in a tiny 200 square-feet apartment and as a result rent a storage locker with a famous company.Recently,I was visiting my locker and I found one of the guys who had a locker on the same floor was opening a few boxes and throwing some items in the trash.He said to me he was moving to Laval,and was moving out of his locker and that he had lost interest in some of his knick-knacks—which he was junking.I rescued three figurines,seven or eight great cookbooks,a wooden horse and some magazines from the trash.Do you find treasures sometimes in the trash outside self-storage buildings?May be you should.Now I will keep an eye out for this kind of stuff more often.

    1. Storage units can definitely be a good source of trash. I’ve found several nice things in them, but haven’t really looked at them in a while. From my experience many of the bins are inside the building, and there’s often a fair bit of competition for the ones that aren’t.

      If you happen to be nearby fairly often I would definitely keep an eye on it.

  7. I saw two beautiful bar stools with the curbside trash on Darcy McGee street in Ville Emard last Friday morning.I was in a rush on my way to work.I hope someone rescued those two bar stools.Do you rescue such small furniture?Have you done Darcy McGee street in Ville Emard?A fair amount of furniture gets junked on Darcy Mcgee.

    1. I hope someone got them as well. There’s a lot of pickers out there so the odds are good. I’m not familiar with that street specifically, but I go to Ville Emard from time to time when I feel like changing things up. It’s a bit far though to go regularly. As for small furniture, I will rescue it if I think it’s worthwhile, somehow interesting, and of course bedbug free.

  8. I am a fan of your blog and of scavenging in general.A great lifestyle.I am also a huge fan of traditional books.Since last year I almost have stopped using my e-reader,even though I am only 21 years old.Please read the article by ALEXANDRA ALTER in the NEW YORK TIMES of SEPT 22-”The Plot Twist: E-Book Sales Slip, and Print Is Far From Dead”.Whenever you rescue books from the trash,I always applaud you.

    1. I’m glad you like the blog. I have never had an e-reader myself. I rescue some books, but not all. Some people disagree with this, but many books become dated with time and are often better off recycled than taking up space in thrift stores (where many are actually thrown out).

  9. A while back,you wrote in the readers’ comments section that a certain part of NDG does not get visited by many scavengers.You were refering to the post where the house owner called “LE Voleur Des Ordures’.I visit NDG to meet friends and sometimes check out the trash there in the process.Can you tell me which part of NDG receives few scavengers?Just want to know.I am careful when I scavenge.

    1. I can’t say I’m a true expert on the matter, but the area between Grand and Decarie (as well as the part east of Decarie) are not particularly heavily picked from my experience. I feel like the part further west is a bit more picked, but I can’t say anything for sure.

  10. Michael Black and you wrote a few months ago in one of your posts that there are better ways to make money in scavenging than by collecting cans,bottles and scrap metal.Yet most scavengers seem to be going for that.I l am 57,live on West Island on a meagre disability pension.I scavenge for cans,bottles and electronics to add to my income.Cans and bottles are easy to cash in at supermarkets;electronics I sell for a meagre price at the electronic repair shop in my area.Can you tell me what else can bring me easy money as a scavenger?I do not have an EBAY account or a Paypal account.A lot of people collect only cans and bottles because they do not have the technology or capacity to sell things online and arrange for shipping and handling?I have kept a radio I salvaged from the trash for personal use and also saved a ffew books from recycling bins for personal reading.Please do not hesitate to help me becoz I am in no competition with you.I only scavenge by bike in Dorval,LaChine and Pointe Claire mostly.Occasionally in other boroughs in the summer.But I live in Dorval and in winter only scavenge a few streets on foot.I am not savvy in technology;so please offer me suggestions to increase my scavenging income.Wish you lots of good luck.God bless.

    1. It’s a tough question because I make most of my money from eBay. You could sell things you find to local stores, or have yard sales. I make a lot of money from yard sales in the summer. Otherwise, I suggest getting familiar with gold and silver – I made a bit over 2000$ in the last year or so from selling gold and silver scrap alone. Sometimes you will get lucky and find a great haul of jewelry that’s worth hundreds of dollars.

      Some people also look for copper. I don’t personally, but there’s certainly some money to be made there.

      The key really is to keep and eye out for other things while looking for cans. I do well partly because I’m thorough – coins and jewelry for instance usually ends up falling to the bottom of the bag. I also know a good pile when I see it. Keep your eye out for “for sale” signs because those houses are more likely to produce than others.And when you find things be sure to do research on the internet to try to see what things are worth.

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