Straight Outta Storage

One thing we have learned from being the Sussex County, NJ storage business for so long is that you never know what you’ll find in a storage unit.

People love to buy abandoned storage units. They enjoy rifling through others’ discarded junk in hopes that they will discover something valuable. What lies inside some of the abandoned storage units across America, is representation of our collective strangeness. From mothballs to oddballs, here are the 6 of the most strangest (and most valuable) things straight outta storage.

The Storage Unit Who Loved Me

Looking for some luck, a Long Island man put in the winning bid of $100 for an abandoned storage container. On first look, nothing much seemed to be in there, just a few old blankets and sheets. On closer inspection, it turned out that under those sheets was a car, and not just any car.

This was the Lotus submarine car from the 1977 James Bond film, “The Spy Who Loved Me.”

The man had the car authenticated, restored, and repaired. Then, decided to put the car in an auction. He discovered that the car had cost over $100,000—the equivalent of almost $500,000 today—to make, and he hoped that he could make a similar amount. The car was sold for $997,000. Billionaire Elon Musk won the car, and he hopes to create a working version of it.

It’s a Bird, It’s A Plane, No It’s a Comic

In 2011, a man contacted collectibles expert Mark Balelo with an incredible story: he’d just purchased the contents of a storage locker in San Fernando Valley, CA and found Action Comics No. 1—the first Superman comic—inside. He wanted to sell it, but it wasn’t meant to be: The issue he’d found in his newly-purchased locker had been stolen from actor and comic book fan Nicolas Cage’s home in 2000.

In 1997, the actor purchased a 1938 first edition Action Comics book featuring Superman on the cover for $150,000. The comic was returned to Cage. Cage’s publicist released a statement at the time about the actor’s joy of getting his comic back but having recently filed for bankruptcy he put it up for auction. The comic ended up selling for $2,161,000, helping Cage to pay off his $13 million-dollar debt.

Snakes on a… Storage Unit?

Snakes on a plane is very unusual but imagine finding 42 in a storage unit.

In May 2017, 42 ball pythons were found in a storage unit in Arroyo Grande, California. Of the 42 found, 22 of the discovered snakes were dead. Animal services was notified by the storage facility after they noticed “something unusual ” and checked out the unit. When they arrived, they found the snakes in plastic storage containers that were stacked inside the unit.

Let’s just be clear on this. Do not store animals or any living thing in a storage unit.

Houston, We Found Your Rocket.

On an episode of Spike TV’s “Auction Hunters” in 2011 the crew found a NASA countdown clock and a rocket inside a Miami storage unit.

The duo of Allen Haff and Clinton “Ton” Jones won the bid on the space items with $1,500. The storage facility happened to be close to Cape Canaveral, which could explain why NASA items were placed into a unit. “Only in South Florida can you find so much space loot in one room,” Haff said.

Haff and Jones met with a space memorabilia expert to authenticate the items before reselling them. NASA did not ask for their rocket back.

And Even, Real Treasure

You’d expect to find pirate treasure buried somewhere on a secluded island or perhaps in the depths of the ocean. Not in a storage unit.

One San Jose man found over half-a-million dollars’ worth of treasure after winning an auction for the contents of a storage unit. He paid $1,100. The blue Rubbermaid tub he reportedly found the treasure in housed a number of Spanish coins and silver bars.

Not a Very Smooth Criminal

A Mr. Ronald Dennis of St. Joseph, Missouri, came up with the not-so-bright idea that a local storage unit facility would be an easy target for pilfering.

On one Saturday night, Dennis decided to make his move. He managed to cut the lock of a storage unit and step inside, closing the roll-up door behind him. After finding that the unit didn’t have the jewels he had dreamt of, he went to leave. But the door had other ideas-it jammed and trapped him inside.

It wasn’t until the next morning, that a security guard making his rounds heard noises coming from inside the unit. The guard called the police, and they promptly arrested Mr. Dennis. Making him the only burglar ever to be found locked inside a storage unit.


Thankfully or not-so-thankfully, depending on the item, we have not found anything similar to these items in our units. We find that our Ogdensburg storage customers like to store things like furniture, and out-of-season clothing. Crazy we know! Whatever your storage needs we have a unit for it, just remember no living things-including criminals.


AA1Self Storage provides self storage, storage units, moving storage, and secure storage in Southern, Ogdensburg, New Jersey

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