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NYC Sanitation Worker Collects Garbage
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Sanitation department

Summary: One man’s junk is another man’s treasure rings true for one New York City sanitation worker that has collected roughly $160,000 in hidden treasures.

People throw things out in the trash every day without thinking twice over whether or not the items are garbage or not. New York City sanitation worker has spent 30 years collecting the trash.


Read Garbage Man’s Kind Act for Autistic Boy to learn about another garbage man.

Nelson Molina started collecting the discarded items on his first day of work for the Department of Sanitation thirty years ago. Employees are not allowed to take items home they find on the curb so Molina used the first couple items to decorate his locker space.

See Leo DiCaprio Invests in Trash for an interesting read.

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Gradually, Molina’s coworkers added to his collection of items making it grow so large that it now fills a warehouse in East Harlem. The warehouse has a rainbow colored wall of Furbies, a table just for old typewriters, and hundreds of photographs, posters, and paintings.


The entire warehouse is organized by items with Elvis, Barbie, and American Girls grouped together, Buddha statutes filling a table nearby, and old black-and-white family photos respectfully spread out. Molina has since retired from the department but still visits the collection, which he values at $160,000, twice a week.


Tours of the collection are very limited during Open House New York Weekend in October.


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Furbie Photo:

Warehouse Photo:


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