hidden treasures unearthed in the bungalow

Our friend Sean is helping us with the house, working on various construction projects. While gutting the bungalow, he found several relics from days long gone. Knowing I would want these, he saved them. (Thanks Sean.)

There was  life in our bungalow before it fell into disrepair. I’m imagining the families that moved in and out – working, trying to make ends meet, having fun, enjoying the beach, maybe getting married and having kids or maybe getting separated or maybe a single old Irish grump who loved Turkish cigarettes lived there? I wish I knew who these people were but they only left these clues behind…


They read The Daily News. These papers from 1927 were found in-between the walls – I’m guessing as an insulator? Seems like a huge fire hazard to me…


They ate Nabisco Sugar Wafers and had a preference for vanilla. This is a good one, I love the graphic design. I did some research and our box seems to match a box from 1909.

Nabisco Ad

I found a few boxes online, the latest version I found was from 1930. They didn’t change the package much, primarily just the color. Imagine 2o years with the same package design – that would never happen today! The interesting thing is our bungalow was built somewhere between 1920-1930, The box pre-dates it’s dwelling  unless this design continued to the 1920’s but wasn’t recorded online… Oh the mystery!



They had good taste in art. Above are two cool painting with even cooler frames. I see these and try to picture what this apartment looked like back in the 1930s, who kept this house, where did they get the paintings and why did they like them?  Or maybe they didn’t, maybe it was a gift and they felt obligated to hang it up! Thinking about the lives that have passed through our bungalow gives me a strange, excited feeling.


They had a gorgeous staircase. This staircase was uncovered and found in almost perfect condition. It was hidden behind a plaster wall.  We think the bungalow in earlier days was a one family.  It seems that it was converted into two apartment later on, by covering this staircase and making a second entrance.


They liked Turkish Cigarettes. According to the Googleverse, this was a popular specialty brand in the early 1900’s. The design is incredible, check out a cleaner version of our box and details about the artist here.

And the Murad ads are spectaular too –  Women rides turtle to catch a floating Murad box is a particularly good one.

Via Weird Universe

Here’s a collection of other fantastical Murad Cigarettes ads, I can’t get enough of this stuff. 


She cooked. This one hits home. A Women (most likely) cooked for her family here, which is exactly what I will be doing almost in the same spot, for many years to come.


tagged in b91, renovation, rockaway