East Harlem's secret museum of gorgeous junk rescued from NYC's trash

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Love it.


“gorgeous junk”

I got a house full of that…


The collection of photos is kind of bittersweet. Terribly interesting to see, but saddening that people threw them out.


And this is one very good reason I don’t work for the sanitation department. I’d be rescuing “junk” all day.


In 1998 I directed a short film set at The Museum of Pre-Plastic Junk in Red Mountain, CA. I drove past it last year on a trip up 395 to Yosemite and saw it was all gone.


There’s so much perfectly-good furniture that gets tossed out behind my apartment building. I can only assume that the necessary infrastructure to catalog all this stuff and get it transported from place to place would be more costly to set up and maintain than it would be for people to keep buying new furniture.

Please suggest to people throwing things out that FreeCycle might be worth trying: https://www.freecycle.org/

I prefer Freegle, but I think it’s UK only.

Freecycle is a good place to start because there are Freecycle groups in several countries and I have used Freecycle in the US to dispose of computer gear that I no longer needed.

Of course there are lots of alternatives. Here, in Norway, I can just put a free entry on a big national marketplace, Finn.no, and get rid of stuff that way. I’ve also been told that one of municipal rubbish dumps not far away has a space where you can put stuff to be taken away by other users.

Freegle looks interesting because it actually is associated with a Provident society whereas Freecycle is much more informal and is mostly just an online bulletin board with moderators.

The basic idea seems very similar to Freecycle so I’m curious to know why you prefer one over the other.

Off to see what they have to offer in my home town (just out of curiosity, I’m only there about once a year these days).

Freegle split away from Freecycle because of disagreements with the US about how to run their local groups, which led to the dismissal of UK moderators. I was part of a UK group at the time and there were a lot of upset people when that happened.


I’m not saying don’t use Freecycle, especially when they are the main group in your area, but I do feel that just because some things work in one place doesn’t mean that they will work in another, and groups should have the freedom to choose what they think is the best way to run their group in their community.

Ultimately if both groups are doing what they say they are supposed to do, that is a good thing.

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It’s a great pity that such things happen. I hope they don’t end up competing in any given area, that would almost certainly reduce their impact.

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