Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Bow Chicka Wow Wow: A Thrift Score, Indeed.


Consider this a small disclaimer: The following contains suggestive adult material which some thrifters may find unsavory. Now, with that out of the way...On to all the sordid details!

It was during last week's rummage-o-rama at  the Feasterville Impact thrift store when I found it. Something so dirty, so taboo, so wickedly a part of American history that I just had to have it.

Hiding beneath a stack of mismatched dinner plates, tangled in a mess of Christmas decorations in an over-stuffed tote of unsorted 99 cent bric-a-brac was a bronze keepsake that just didn't quite belong.

Vintage Mustang Ranch Thrift Store Find

I held the shining bronze medallion in complete shock for a moment. There, amidst some sweet ol' Granny's charitable donations was a customer token from Nevada's most infamous brothel.

The Mustang Ranch was Nevada's first licensed brothel in 1971, which led to legalized prostitution in certain counties of the state. Now advertised as an "adult resort and spa," Mustang Ranch is a recognized name in the seedy annals of Americana. 

Taboo? Yes. Inappropriate? Yes.
Likely found in a thrift store rummage sale? Um. No. 

And whatever your personal opinion of brothels and prostitution, admit it. This vintage brothel token is quite a find.

Apparently, the former owner was given this token by Arlene, a lady of Mustang Ranch. From what information I could find, high tippers and valued guests of the brothel would be given these tokens as a reminder of which lady to request for a future visit. 

I date this particular token to maybe the mid-to-late 70s...and found it buried beneath Christmas decorations...at the thrift store...for 99 cents. 

Talk about a thrift score!  Now, only one question remains: What does that single key open? I wonder...

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11 comments:

Jill said...

That's a pretty neat find!

Melissa said...

That's awesome!!! You should totally hang it on your Christmas tree this year!

Blondie said...

You have an amazing talent for finding such original and awesome thinga majigs... I love it!

Van said...

I LOVE the sexual scores. We really need to collaborate on the thrifted museum of historic oddities one day. Would be incredible!

Jackie Jardine said...

Thanks, Jill! I like to think it's something, alright. Ha ha.

Jackie Jardine said...

That's a great idea, Melissa. Right next to the vintage nativity scene ornament. It'll definitely be a conversation starter =P

Jackie Jardine said...

And thank you, Blondie. I have had a pretty good stroke of luck at the thrift lately. Let's hope I don't go on a secondhand dry spell any time soon!

Jackie Jardine said...

I know, Van. Between the two of us, I'm sure we have curated quite the collection. Think we could get a grant to open up a thrifted oddity muesum one day? Ha Ha!

Sir Thrift-A-Lot said...

This is an absolutely fabulous find. I am extremely jealous, Jackie.

Jackie Jardine said...

Why thank you, Sir. I certainly was fortunate in the thrift this week!

Anonymous said...

Your Arlene token is a fantasy token according the the fantasy token book. It was never used at the ranch. I have had over a thousand of these 150 different ladies names & many different crib numbers. I have 450 in my collection of these tokens. Is your token for sale?