Trash removal crew cleans out home near Bushwick Brooklyn, finds Rheingold Beer memorabilia and 1970s family photos
My trash removal crew and I recently cleaned out the basement of an old two-family house in Ridgewood, Queens, right on the border of Bushwick, Brooklyn. It’s no surprise that this job came along, given that Bushwick, which some consider to be the “new Williamsburg,” has been steadily evolving as the up-and-coming neighborhood that has attracted young artists and students who enjoy its industrial feel and affordable housing.
This particular Bushwick home had a brand new owner. The homebuyer had recently closed the deal and inherited all of the stuff you see in these photos. To some, it’s considered junk, but to me, it’s absolutely treasure.
Rheingold Extra Dry Lager Beer
Let’s start with the Rheingold Extra Dry Lager Beer memorabilia, which covered much of the place, making me think that the previous owner had maybe even worked for the company. The beer company was introduced in 1883 and originated in New York. Not only did it start in our very state, but it held 35 percent of the state’s beer marketing for 10 years, from 1950 to 1960. In the photos here, you see Rheingold’s napkins that say “Friendly, fresh’ning happily dry…,” Rheingold tins, and more.
State Fair Pinball Machine
Aspects of the arcade game pinball date as far back as the 1700s, but it wasn’t until the 1930s that the game really grew, as more than 150 companies, mostly Chicago based, were producing pinball machines.
What’s funny is that one of the photos I found on this job revealed a small girl standing by the staircase in the very basement where I was hired to remove all this rubbish. It’s amazing how almost 45 years can go by and these memories remain almost untouched. The basement looks the same as when she was a child, with the exception of the dust, debris and disorganized belongings to sort through.
I’ve collected a lot of family photos over the course of my more than 20 years in the rubbish removal business, and I take them seriously. For me, the photos aren’t simply images of people and places — rather, they’re a personal look into these people’s homes and into their lives. I feel honored and privileged that I’ve been able to experience so many families’ pasts, almost sharing in their memories. I take pride in restoring these photographs, rather than merely tossing them out with the rest of the garbage. Figures that a trash removal guy would be so sentimental.
More Trash Treasures:
- Junk removal job company finds 50+ year-old mattress in Glendale, Queens
- DiMola Bros trash company encounters Brooklyn Heights brownstone history in Brooklyn interior demolition job
- Rubbish removalist finds vintage 1950s PET Tools drill-saw in Ridgewood basement junk removal job