Digital Exclusive: Local collector shares memories—and his lunch box collection

Digital Exclusive

SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU-TV) — A lot of kids will be attending school online this fall, but many still love their lunch boxes.

Eyewitness News Photojournalist Joseph Butash talked to Jeff D’Angelo in Scranton.

“I like to surround myself with my childhood and that’s why I collect certain things like this: lunch boxes, toys,” said D’Angelo, a prop designer and lunch box collector.

“A lunch box is something that you can put your lunch in. At the time I wasn’t a brown paper bag type of guy, they didn’t do that as much. Everyone went to school and show what clothes they’d wear, but kids would show off their lunch boxes. They’d come in saying ‘I have Archie,’ ‘a Fred Flinstone,’ ‘I have a Partridge Family.’ It was how people would start conversations when you’re a little kid.”

“They made this in red and blue and they used to give it to the workers. And they had so many lunch boxes left over the company didn’t know what to do so they put a sticker on it… Hopalong Cassidy, put a thermos in it and that’s how the character lunch box started.”

“My mom used to make me a cheese sandwich everyday—and chips—and I would open that and I had white milk. Everyone had chocolate but I had white milk. And everybody would open their lunch boxes and say ‘I’ll trade you those chips for that pretzel.'”

“One of my favorites is Get Smart. I used to love the Get smart show. That’s the Brady Bunch. I used to love that show but that was just given to me by a friend.”

“Cupcakes, I love Tastykake cupcakes. We used to all get them. And then once in a while she’d throw a note in there and that was the greatest. Break your heart, even at nine years old, eight years old to get a note from your mom.”

D’Angelo tells Eyewitness News that old, metal character lunch boxes can run anywhere between 40 to a couple hundred dollars.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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