Part one of a million pt.9

Some of you know the story with this spot by now, but here it is in condensed form if you’re new: very multigenerational house starts tossing stuff after a century plus of rarely doing so. This was definitely one of my favourite all-time spots, and I feel safe now saying that in the past tense because I haven’t seen any new trash there since the early summer. It was a great run – I found quality junk here nearly every week for like a year – so I can’t complain. Anyways, I need to post pics or get off the pot as they say. I have lots still to share, and a decent sized shelving unit full of stuff still to deal with.

Anyways, I won’t spend too much time on each picture. Here’s a load of wool blankets I found here, which did fairly well at auction. None were super fancy, but all were nice enough to sell.

These folks seemed to like celery a lot. I’ve never seen celery “flakes” before, and can’t imagine how they’d be used.

Most Canadians are probably familiar with Habitant pea soup, which is still one of the better canned soups out there (and pretty cheap as well). I sold this to a friend who plans on opening a restaurant one day, and who’ll probably use this as a display.

Metal scissors are always easy to sell, and there’s a couple of interesting ones here as well. The one on the left with the little wheelie thing in the middle are old buttonhole scissors. These ones are marked “H. Cromwell Criterion – Korn’s Patent” and I was only able to find two others on Google. The pair at the bottom with the stitching wheel were made by Pribyl Bros (if you can tell me what they sold for please do!).

I found lots of old books here.

A lot of what I have left to sort are really old photos and paper ephemera.

I’d never seen batteries like this before. I think they were probably used for photography sometime around 1950. They probably contain a lot of lead and other nasty stuff, so it’s good I saved them. I sold them to another junk oriented fellow who plans on turning them into some kind of industrial art.

These antique Persian tiles were pretty busted up, but fortunately I found all the pieces.

I saved a whole bunch of old films in varying condition.

I gave / sold (we have an informal arrangement) them to a local archivist who knows how to deal with film that’s in poor condition.

A lot of them were close to 100 years old, so it’s likely they contain footage that’s impossible to find elsewhere. There were a few mass produced cartoons in there as well, which aren’t so irreplaceable.

There’s a pretty good market for old flags from my experience. This Union Jack was marked “British Made” and in great condition for its age. I sold it on eBay, I think for 150-200$.

I found a lot of silver here, but the most valuable piece was probably this William Spratling Mexican silver & obsidian necklace which dates to the late 50s or early 60s. I remember it was missing two chunks at first, and then a week or two later I found one of them. Unfortunately, I never did find the other. Regardless, I listed it on eBay for 350$ and it sold very quickly. Spratling is a sought-after designer, and the missing chunk didn’t have obsidian so it might not be too hard for someone to reproduce.

Usually when I have an interesting “spot” I make a file folder on my computer devoted to the related photos. Right now I have 14 folders, several of which are getting pretty dated, so I want to clear out that old stock and stay more on top of the fresher junk. I’ve said that before, but now that people are selling stuff for me I feel like I have more time for blogging.

The rusty blue dumpster pt.2

It’s a new year, and I have lots of aging garbage pics to share before they stop feeling relevant. This dumpster was an exciting destination for me in the late summer. I must have spent a few hours in there all and all, pulling out intriguing old junk while trying to avoid cutting myself on broken glass or stabbing myself with nails.

I really had to dig deep in the dumpster to pull out this 1930s light therapy lamp made by Hanovia Chemical in Newark NJ. The top section pops out, so that wasn’t too bad, but the bottom section must have weighed 100 pounds and was sitting at the very bottom of the dumpster. It was quite the feat of strength to get it to the top of the dumpster, and then I used a piece of wood to roll it out.

I brought it to the auction, and it ended up selling for 5$. After all that effort, all I could do was laugh! At least it probably sold to a tinkerer who’ll probably do something cool with it, but if I knew I was only going to make 5$ (- fees) I might have left this beast in the dumpster. At least it was a good workout. Unfortunately, the actual bulb broke before I got there, likely from being thrown in a dumpster, so that definitely reduced its value.

I picked up a whole lotta hardware here – more pics below.

That wrench was the biggest one I’ve ever found, or maybe even seen.

I haven’t been able to test this grinder yet but I’m betting it works.

Otherwise, I picked up a shoe shine box, which included some very old paste made by Palmer McLellan in Fredericton, New Brunswick…

… a few interesting framed things (unfortunately, no group of 7s);

… a collection of old books, mostly for kids (I just brought most of these to the auction in the past week);

… a collection of vintage blankets, many of which were wool (the Ayers one in the pouch on top got a nice price at the auction, I’m thinking 75$ but it sold a while back now);

… and a c.1950s Wood Arctic Junior “Sleeping Robe.” Apparently these replaced wool blankets as the go-to for winter camping and travel in the late 1800s/early 1900s, but were later set aside in favor of more modern sleeping bags starting in the 1960s. You can find a good explanation of the history, as well as more pics here. Vintage camping gear seems to be a popular market, and I expect this old robe to sell for around 200$.

Moral of the story: most of the time dumpsters are full of renovation junk, but occasionally they can get stuffed full of quality junk as well.

Otherwise, the Fiesta from part one only got to 80$ at auction. Thankfully I put a reserve at 100$, so I got them back (at a cost of 10$) and gave them to a friend to sell. She got 250$. It’s often a buyer’s market at the auction, and it’s hard to know whether a specific niche will generate a bidding war, so I’m glad I have a few people now who’ll list this stuff for me. If you put in the effort yourself, you’ll almost always get a better price, I just don’t have time to do it all myself.

Pass-pour pt.3

My brain hasn’t been in writing mode recently, perhaps in part because I’ve been focused on the search for a new car. I finally bought one yesterday, another Hyundai Accent, a little newer (2011 instead of 2007). It has a sunroof, a working CD player, and an auxiliary cable so I could use an iPod if I wanted. We’ll see how it goes, but I feel like I got a good deal. I’m mostly glad the car buying process is over, it’s a real pain in the arse.

After driving a bigger car (a rental, 2021 Hyundai Kona) I’m thankful to be getting into the spacious subcompact class again. When driving around this city, it’s nice to be small and maneuverable, especially when you’re looking for trash. I plan on getting a roof rack, so that I can maybe stash a bit of extra junk up there if necessary. But more often than not, I focus on smaller things and rarely wish I had more space.

This spot provided gold cufflinks and that 1000$ Lusitania nutcracker late last year. I didn’t see much after that, however. One day I picked up a nice 1950s CCM bike which was an easy sell, and then there was this little haul.

It was someone’s old collection of flag, pennants and patches, some of which seem to date back to WWII. Those CFB Trenton pennants are pretty cool and generally do well on eBay. The little flags are the bottom left look Scottish; this guy seems to have been a proud Scot. According to this obituary from 1969 (there’s not a heck of a lot of information out there otherwise), Camp Laclouwhi operated near Joliette, QC until 1952 after which it was bought by Scouts Canada and became Camp Jackson Dodds.

I suspect some of these patches date back to the war. If anyone knows a bit of their history, please share your wisdom in the comments! Some cool designs regardless.

And finally, my most striking find was this small Nazi pennant, which I’d guess was made to go on a car. I’d guess that this fella, who seemed to have had an interest in history, got it from someone who served overseas. I can understand why someone might want to throw this out, but I’m a “those who forget the past are doomed to repeat it” kinda guy.

Regardless, a week or two after this haul I saw an ad for an estate sale at this location. I wish I could have gone, as there was probably a lot of interesting stuff, but I think it was my last chance for garage sales that same weekend (this was in October I believe). All in all, a lot of stuff got tossed that could have easily made some extra money at the sale, but sometimes families do some sorting themselves before calling on the experts. After all, there’s always some “old junk” kicking around that surely no one will buy! Or, they try to deal with the things themselves, then get overwhelmed and call a liquidator.