Eclectic collectors have passion for their hobby

By Michael Tully | Most of us know someone with a collection. You know what I mean, the lady with the spoon collection from all 50 states or the the guy with the baseball cards containing all the ‘greats’. These are just a couple of examples, but I’ve found that collections can be as varied as the people who start them.

My first encounter with how varied collections can be actually came from my mother. She had this huge glass jar filled with buttons of all shapes, sizes and colors. Of course from a practical stand point she would always be prepared to replace a missing button but she liked collecting buttons. But why?

Who knows why people start collections. Maybe it’s for personal reasons like inheriting Grandma’s blankets and continuing the trend, or practical reasons (like my mother’s buttons) or profitable reasons like a gold coin collection…or even some combination of the three.

I don’t claim to know why people start collecting but I can claim that I have seen some very interesting accumulations.

One gentlemen I met had an unique selection of helmets. Old firefighting helmets, World War 1 and World War 2 soldier helmets and even old coal miner helmets.

A local fishermen I met who’s been trolling these waters for over 30 years has found bottles dating back to the 1800’s and has a very impressive bottle collection.

Another local guy I met has a megalodon shark tooth collection that would be the envy of anyone who has walked the Sands Beach in search of a tooth.

I’ve even heard of (but haven’t seen) a lady who has acquired wind chimes from around the globe. Then there’s another local with a vintage guitar collection and finally a hard to find bottle cap pursuit from my favorite waitress.

The list just goes on.

The common factor for all these people is that they have a real passion for their hobby. The enthusiasm that goes into acquiring, displaying and showing their items is infectious. Certainly I enjoy the uniqueness of seeing the collection but equally enjoy the zeal in which it is presented and shown.

My goal in writing this article is to connect with and possibly share stories of other collections and the people who start them. That and the fact that I’m always eager to show off my driftwood “walking sticks” I’ve found while kayaking the Lowcountry.

It’s my collection, what’s yours?

Mike Tully is a retired Marine and local business owner who has lived in the Lowcountry for 15 years. If you would be interested in contacting him you can reach him at