WHEN the collecting bug bites a hobbiest, one never knows what the outcome will be. Some victims react the usual way and save coins, stamps, match covers, etc., but others aren’t satisfied with interests so ordinary. They choose unique fields, to say the least. But they are equally as fanatic as their more conventional brothers and sisters and consider their collections just as valuable. Here are some of the curious collectioneers and their strange hobbies.

Albert Brouse. Los Angeles music teacher, with collection of early phonographs dating from 1895 to 1910. He also saves music boxes, spark plugs, old cars, hub caps and many other items.

Gerrie Larson, another Californian, above, began collecting small rabbit replicas during last war. Many are in foreign garb. Some represent famous rabbits of poetry and fiction. She has over 2,000.

With specimens from every state in U.S. and some foreign countries, game warden Earl Smith, above. New Orleans, has collected almost 3,000 wild bird eggs since 1898.

Ed Diller of Butte, Montana, has a dilly of a collection, below. It’s 305 different and unopened brands of bottled and canned beer. Many of these brews are from foreign countries. Prosit!

Really on the ball is Ted Kimpel, below, of Denver, Colorado, with the huge ball of string he saved. It weighs 111 pounds, is 7 feet in circumference and solid white from core to surface.

  1. experiment 626 says: July 20, 20128:35 pm

    I collect Inflateble pool toys but I don’t have the quantity or the age but either way does that make me curious?

  2. experiment 626 says: July 20, 20128:49 pm

    I have an inflatable pool toy collection but I have nowhere near the age or quantity in comparison to these people but does that make me curious?

  3. experiment 626 says: July 22, 201211:53 am

    I collect inflatable pool toys but I only have about 200 and my oldest one is is a tiny wobble thing from the 50s that is not a pool toy but does inflate but does that make me “Curious? “

  4. Toronto says: July 22, 20124:57 pm

    Do you keep them inflated?

  5. Hirudinea says: July 22, 20127:47 pm

    @ Toronto – He blows up hot water bottles professionally.

  6. experiment 626 says: July 22, 20127:48 pm

    whoops! I tried to use my ipad for the first three comments and they didn’t go through and it showed that when I used my computer to make the fourth,how weird! Sorry! Count the 4th as the real one.

    @ Toronto I used to but now I I don’t hell I have them in trash bags at my brothers garage! Its big enough for a for an rv and he only uses one side! One thing is I’m trying to design my own so Im way into this.

  7. experiment 626 says: July 22, 20127:49 pm

    @Hirudinea lol

  8. Charlene says: July 22, 20129:47 pm

    I could write a 2,000 word essay on the social factors behind collecting now and sixty years ago and how popular perception of the hobby differed depending on the nationality, age, class, and (most importantly) sex of the collector. Suffice to say that in this time period, collecting was considered a middle-class hobby for women (safe, not threatening, showed that her husband was a good enough provider that she could afford to collect) but a working-class hobby for men. Nowadays collecting is a middle-class/nerd hobby for men but a working-class hobby for women. In contrast, in this time period knitting was a working-class hobby (done to save money) but nowadays with the price of yarn and equipment it’s distinctly middle-class/nerd/hipster. (You can buy 10 – heck, 50 at a bargain store – pairs of socks for the cost of the yarn to knit one pair, but of course the hand-knit pair will be of far higher quality.)

    I will not spam pictures of my hand-knit socks.

  9. Charlene says: July 22, 20129:48 pm

    Man, that wasn’t far off 2,000 words.

  10. Toronto says: July 23, 20128:32 am

    Charlene – are you contributing to the “Airplane Cozy” project? A group of knitters are making a cozy for a DC3 in Whitehorse.

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