NEW YORK, NY.-(EFE) Dick DiMola, president of a New York trash-collection company, found among the belongings of a deceased artist some Mexican figures of Mayan origin that could date back to 300 B.C., he told Efe Monday.
DiMola Bros. has been cleaning the apartment of American abstract artist Clinton Hill for the five years since his death and stored in the company president's garage some of the containers taken from the basement of the painter's apartment, located in New York's SoHo district.
"A week ago I was cleaning out my garage and came across that container that I had forgotten all about," DiMola said, adding that he never imagined he would find objects "so ancient and valuable."
New York antiques dealer Howard Nowes studied the pieces and said their total value could be in the tens of thousands of dollars, since they could date back to 300 B.C. and be Mayan relics used in funerals.
One of the figures is a stone goddess that was probably used in sacrifices, the dealer told Efe.
"These are the most ancient objects that have ever come into my hands," DiMola said, adding that he was not surprised by the discovery because trash so often contains "valuable objects, everything you can imagine, from jewelry to antiques from centuries ago."
DiMola said that his intention is to sell these figures to whoever offers him the most money.
"I'm not like other trash collectors. I like to collect things like old radios, coins or items that date back to the world wars, but I don't collect ceramics," he said. EFE