Woman Accidentally Junked a $200K Apple 1

Recycling company would like to cut her a very large check
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted May 31, 2015 10:44 AM CDT
This undated photo shows a vintage 1976 Apple 1 computer that is among the items being offered for auction on Oct. 22, 2014 by Bonhams auction house in New York.   (AP Photo/Bonhams)
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(Newser) – One woman's electronic waste turned out to be someone else's treasure. A recycling center in the Silicon Valley is looking for a woman who dropped off an old Apple computer that turned out to be a collectible item worth $200,000. The computer was inside boxes of electronics that she had cleaned out from her garage after her husband died, said Victor Gichun, the vice president of Clean Bay Area. "She said, 'I want to get rid of this stuff and clean up my garage,'" Gichun said. "I said, 'Do you need a tax receipt?' and she said, 'No, I don't need anything.'" It wasn't until a few weeks later that workers opened the boxes to discover an Apple I computer inside.

The San Jose Mercury News reports it was one of only about 200 first-generation desktop computers assembled by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, and Ron Wayne in 1976. "We really couldn't believe our eyes. We thought it was fake," Gichun told KNTV-TV. The recycling firm sold the Apple I for $200,000 to a private collection, and because the company gives 50% of items sold back to the original owner, Gichun said he wants to split the proceeds with the mystery donor. He said he remembers what she looks like and is asking her to come back to claim her $100,000 check. "To prove who she is," Gichun said, "I just need to look at her." (Read more Apple stories.)

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