Queens garbage company finds vintage art deco-style dresser in Manhattan estate cleanout
Ah, estate cleanouts — one of the more depressing jobs in my line of work. It’s never easy to clean out a deceased person’s home, especially when the family starts arguing over who should take what furniture, or which sibling should get certain photos. It can be heartbreaking, really. But in most cases, you’ll get an amazing story about the family’s history, and maybe even an antique or two.
I got this dresser from a Manhattan apartment whose owner had just passed away. As usual, the late owner’s family had to get rid of everything in the apartment, so most of the stuff got tossed out. But when I saw this dresser, I knew I had to save it.
It was a family heirloom, and the family didn’t want to throw it away, but nobody had room for it. The family members either didn’t have a way to transport it, didn’t have room for it in their houses or apartments, or lived too far away and didn’t want to have it shipped. So, naturally, they gave it to me, and I knocked a few dollars off of the job.
What I particularly love about this dresser is curving shape throughout the wood, which gives it unique art deco look. The art deco style was most popular in the 1920s and ’30s, when many people adorned their homes with dressers just like this one.
You could probably find dressers like this at yard sales, auctions or antique shops, but I prefer to get mine from the trash.