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Montrose Voice, No. 277, February 14, 1986
File 022
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Montrose Voice, No. 277, February 14, 1986 - File 022. 1986-02-14. University of Houston Libraries. University of Houston Digital Library. Web. July 3, 2020. https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/montrose/item/4675/show/4667.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

(1986-02-14). Montrose Voice, No. 277, February 14, 1986 - File 022. Montrose Voice. University of Houston Libraries. Retrieved from https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/montrose/item/4675/show/4667

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

Montrose Voice, No. 277, February 14, 1986 - File 022, 1986-02-14, Montrose Voice, University of Houston Libraries, accessed July 3, 2020, https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/montrose/item/4675/show/4667.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

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Compound Item Description
Title Montrose Voice, No. 277, February 14, 1986
Contributor
  • McClurg, Henry
  • Wyche, Linda
Publisher Community Publishing Company
Date February 14, 1986
Language English
Subject
  • LGBTQ community
  • LGBTQ people
  • Gay liberation movement
Place
  • Houston, Texas
Genre
  • newspapers
Type
  • Text
Identifier OCLC: 22329406
Collection
  • University of Houston Libraries Special Collections
  • LGBT Research Collection
  • Montrose Voice
Rights In Copyright
Note This item was digitized from materials loaned by the Gulf Coast Archive and Museum (GCAM).
Item Description
Title File 022
Transcript FEBRUARY 14. 1986 / MONTROSE VOICE 21 Neighborhood Junk for One Can Be Art for Another By Connie Woods Montrose Voice Staff Reporter Have you been searching for the right pair of cat-eye glasses? Or do you need that perfect pillbox hat which even Jackie Kennedy would envy? If any of these items could fill your heart's desire, Bob Novotney of Texas Junk Company can help you out. The large warehouse, located at the corner of Taft and Welch, is filled to the brim with unique items. Owner Novotney, a native of Wisconsin, came to Houston in 1968 to visit a friend. He stayed. After having worked for an interior decorator for a while, he started a garage sale business called the "Church Sale" as it was located in an old church on Westheimer. A holdover from the hippie days, Novotney said he was "trained in nothing," although he wa_ reared in a family of mechanics. He did and still does enjoy traveling. During his travels he worked wherever he could find work including Alaska. Novotney has been at his present location for seven years. He recalls a few really unusual items he has fallen into: stuffed ducks painted gold and silver; a collection of bones painted to look like a ceiling fan; and even a stuffed longhorn head with one eye missing. However, all of the merchandise in the store is not as unusual as these. Pointing to several animal skulls hanging on the wall, Novotney said he prefers skulls to stuffed heads because the stuffed ones "look too real." He has accumulated an array of period clothing including old band uniforms and Bob Novotney slinky dresses representing several decades, not to mention the slacks, skirts, blouses that even Bette Davis would covet. "I bought the band uniforms from a Houston Independent School District auction several years ago," he said. Some of the uniforms were shipped to New York for use by theaters. He also pointed out that local theaters as well as movie production companies have purchased items for use as props or production wardrobes. "Someone came through (Houston) from Paris and bought some old license plates for an American-theme restaurant in Paris," he explained. Although Novotney likes "things dealing with history" he never researches any of the items he receives. He said he simply does not care to bother with the research or "market value" of an item except for what it is worth to him and the customer. He said that many of the people who patronize his store are artists. "People who come in here must be creative," he said while speaking of some of the items customers have bought. "I had gotten a number of test tubes during a sale. I figured someone would eventually want them. An artist came in and bought all the test tubes—who knows what he'll do with them!" he exclaimed. He pointed out that much of his merchandise comes from cleaning out peoples' garages or storerooms. That could certainly account for the number of nails, screws, nuts and bolts he has accumulated through the years. He pointed out that most of the merchandise he sells is sold "as is." He does not have the clothes cleaned nor does he "fix" any of the items. He did relate a story about a buyer from San Francisco who purchased some of the clothing from him and how good they looked in the "fancy" California store. Novotney is careful about some items in his shop including records and books. He checks the records for scratches and if they are scratched he discards them. The primary books he offers are first editions and classics—no dime store romance novels. Novotney quickly pointed out that he does not buy stereos, cameras or bicycles because those types of items could be "hot." He said that he will not buy any items that could he stolen including tools. And what about the man behind all this junk? "I like being my own boss. I only have to answer to Uncle Sam and the governments," he explained. "I like the junk. It's a means for me to make a living. And for artists it's something they need, want or can make something out of." Although Novotney enjoys traveling at least a month during the year, he spends most of his time at his place of business1. He lives in an apartment above the store. His store is not just a place of business "it's a place to socialize," he said. "My friends stop by on their way to work or after work just to talk." Novotney is, no doubt, proud of his business and the "junk" that artists and other customers seek. "People just keep dropping by," he said. But if you do go shopping for that unique, unusual or period item, don't look for a sign on the building as there is none. Just watch for a storefront lined with mannequins, bathtubs, a formica and chrome table or even a barrel heater. While standing near the front door, Novotney reached his hand in a plastic bag filled with numbers wrapped in cellophane. Holding the pieces in his hand he said, "I don't know what someone would do with these numbers, but I am sure some artist will find a use for them—maybe a number collage." Leather by Boots proudly presents their newest location at the Venture-N! All Medusa Type Odorizers $12 (thru Feb. 19)
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