Tag Archives: hoarding

Newspaper Clippings of the Collyer’s of New York–The Original Hoarders

Newspaper Clippings of the Collyer’s of New York–The Original Hoarders


Clipped from The Plain Speaker,  24 Mar 1947, Mon,  Page 1


Clipped from Janesville Daily Gazette,  21 Mar 1947, Fri,  Page 5

Clipped from Lancaster Eagle-Gazette,  24 Mar 1947, Mon,  Page 1


Clipped from The Decatur Daily Review,  09 Apr 1947, Wed,  Page 13

Clipped from News-Journal,  09 Apr 1947, Wed,  Page 8

Clipped from The Wilkes-Barre Record,  09 Apr 1947, Wed,  Page 1



Found amid 120 tons of junk in their Fifth Avenue mansion: The story of the Collyer brothers


Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun and Screamin’ Mamas (USA)

Come and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read. Also check out The Tales of Carleton Place.


Was Your Grandmother a “Saboteur!”? Hoarding Before Television




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Friday October the 13th– 6:30.. meet in front of the old Leland Hotel on Bridge Street (Scott Reid’s office) and enjoy a one hour Bridge Street walk with stories of murder mayhem and Believe it or Not!!. Some tales might not be appropriate for young ears. FREE!–


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No, You Can’t Take The Stuff You Hoard To Heaven




Did you know that May 10th was National Clean Your Room Up Day?  I would love to see some raised hands from some of you who knew about this special day or participated. May 1oth was your chance to make a small dent in that clutter for all mankind. You know, to go forth to where no man has gone before?

I told a loved one many times that no matter what he bought from the QVC network there was no way it was going with him, and at last count he had stored over 167 brand new Christmas tree light boxes throughout the house. I asked him why he needed so many and he told me that the items were on sale or he needed them. Who needs that many lights unless you are trying to make yourself seen on Google Earth.

When I ordered clothing for my business it was always one for me and one for the store. Half the stuff I never wore and I continued to collect everything under the sun. Eventually all of those Bradford Exchange plates I paid top dollar for became worthless. The bottom had fallen out of Scarlet O’Hara’s ceramic dress.

So one day I got up, looked at the stuff around me and decided enough was enough. The house fire had taught me that what you own can go in a nano minute so I proceeded to start donating and decluttering.

Here are a few decluttering tips from Craig Kanalley from The Huffington Post that I figured you might enjoy with some of my thoughts.


Start with one area at a time.

I realize for some of you getting started is much like experiencing an in-house dream with Ghandi. But there no worries of drive bys or early birds like garage sales if you set up your own schedule.

Toss Papers you don’t need.

Oh, I am the Queen of tossing papers. Leave things on a desk for more than 24 hours and it is gone quickly to the local landfill site. If your loved one does not see it they have no idea it came in the mail.

Listen to Music while you Clean

Put on some Janet Jackson music, get nasty and begin getting rid of that 80’s stuff.  Believe me, not even Goodwill wants those padded shoulders. When I used to volunteer for a thrift shop we tossed out a lot of donations. If you find the item ugly or outdated chances are we will too. Just because you no longer want it does not mean we want it. Be also careful where you store your donation bags. Opening a bag and finding a snake in it like I did once is not pleasant.


Find someone to help

Preferably someone who will not gossip,  sell the pictures to the National Enquirer or blog about it.

Have a Trash Bag handy at all times!

You have no idea how freeing that it can be to load those bags with stuff and possibly the odd annoying human being. Maybe take pictures of the loved ones first for your keepsake photo book. Scanning them should be easy.


Set a deadline

Preferably in this century.


Treat yourself when it’s done

That does not mean you can go out and buy more stuff like a friend of mine did. She ended up buying more clothing than she threw out.

Remember that if you choose not to do any of the above and ignore the clutter, this will be the final tip your family will have to deal with– and really– do you want anyone touching your stuff?


Dedicated to Steve and Kevin

Photos by Linda Seccaspina 

I am Mcpheeeeee on Twitter

Was Your Grandmother a “Saboteur!”? Hoarding Before Television


In the First World War, the Canada Food Board began to produce posters urging Canadians to be patriotic in their food use. The Dominion Government created the Poster War Service to help with the production of propaganda for war-related purposes.

Some posters emphasized the need for food conservation with a fearful undertone like the one below.


  • Date Created/Published: Hamilton [Ontario, Canada] : Howell Lith., [between 1914 and 1918]



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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal, 13 Apr 1942, Mon, Page 7

Chicago Tribune, November 21, 1942.

Canadians were also exhorted and legislated to save and recycle. One pound of fat supplies enough glycerine to fire 150 bullets from a Bren gun … bones produce fat and aircraft glue … save and strain every drop to speed victory.”To preserve cardboard, milk bottle caps were banned. To preserve sugar, no icing was allowed on cakes – wedding cakes excepted. To preserve cloth, the width of the lapels on mens suits and the length of ladies skirts were regulated.

If your grandparents hoarded it was a crime punishable by up to two years in prison. As usual, behind much of the homefront war effort was a well-organized government propaganda machine. Official wartime communications took many forms ranging from government directives to colourful billboards and stirring documentaries.One government ad tried to dissuade Canadians from hoarding with one word—


It was Flannelette your Grandmother was after, twelve yards for three nightshirts. But when the clerk mentioned flannelette was getting scarce, she bought the whole bolt. Grandma didn’t mean to a saboteur–but she was!


This is a great 10 minute video about two 40s gals and rationing.


Historical Photos from the war from the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum


Private Arthur John Simons dressed in the uniform of the 2nd Battalion (Eastern Ontario Regiment) in September 1914. Before joining up, Simons 18, was a stove mounter at Findlay’s in Carleton Place. He had emigrated from Somerset England.


The first troops of the 42nd Lanark and Renfrew Regiment left Carleton Place to serve in the First World War. They travelled by train to Perth before moving to Valcartier Camp in Quebec for training.

Horace Brown, brother of Howard Morton Brown, age 18, wrote in his diary:

“Sat. Aug 15 – Busy getting ready. Went over to the drill hall about 10 a.m., leaving on 11:20 train. Marched down, the band led and then rigs with the council, then the fellows who were not going across then ourselves. Got to Perth about 12:20 am. Marched about the town and out to the grounds. We had dinner shortly after arriving. Did nothing much all day in the afternoon. Started a march around town but it rained so came back. Had made arrangements to spend Sunday at home, so went down about 12 o’clock to the station. Spent the night there. I had some sleep. When we left the mayor Mr. Smythe, made a speech and all the men who had driven down shook hands with us. Nearly everybody was down to see us off. It seemed hard when the band played “Should Auld Acquaintance be Forgot.”