These Elevator Mechanics Found More Than Just Dust and Dirt While on the Job

What goes up must come down...and may wind up at the bottom of an elevator chamber.

One Redditor posed the question "what is the weirdest thing you have found at the bottom of the elevator chamber?" on Tuesday to the "elevator-maintenance folks" of the internet. Their responses did not disappoint, as they ranged from expensive jewelry to a dozen eggs and rubber duckies.

One Redditor's father who used to supervise mechanics recalled a time when thousands of magazines were found sitting at the bottom of an elevator chamber in a mental hospital. The elevator was half an inch off the grounds because of the magazines, and it ultimately took a small crew to get them out.

"When it was all done, my dad decided to stay behind and pretend to read a newspaper while he sat in the lobby," the user said. "After about half an hour, he sees an elderly patient holding a magazine, shuffling slowly toward the elevator. He stops in front of the doors, glances left, glances right, and quickly stoops down, slides the magazine into the gap, and shuffles away as fast as he can with a huge grin on his face."

"My dad could not help but laugh hysterically," they continued. "This guy had probably been sliding magazines in there multiple times per day, every day, for decades."

Chrysler Building Elevator Doors
Ornate elevators are seen in the Chrysler Building as the press were given a tour to mark the 75th Anniversary of the New York Landmark May 27, 2005 in New York City. Mario Tama/Getty Images

Another Redditor recalled finding magazines, plus a weapon. "Bundle of Watchtower magazines (Jehovah's witnesses pamphlets) wrapped in duct tape," they said. "Inside it was a Rossi .44 Special revolver and a screwdriver."

A former elevator department worker at a major transit hub listed some of the stuff they found during their tenure: "Chucky doll head. 13 rubber duckies in one pit. Drug needles almost daily. Silicone Gimp mask," they said before adding "Every day is an adventure."

A former department store security employee said that they routinely had to fish cell phones and wallets out of elevator chambers. One day, they recovered a $2500 necklace after someone attempted to shoplift the necklace, and while hiding it, it dropped down the elevator. "We arrested him anyway, much to his surprise," they added

One former hotel worker recalled a time when a guest dropped their phone down the shaft. "After a few failed retrieval efforts, we called the elevator guys. They went down got the phone and also found a carton of eggs," they said. "Rotten, but not cracked. I don't even understand how that could happen accidentally."

Another said that a three-foot-tall pile of guest folios had accumulated at the bottom of an elevator shaft. "A few years ago one of our elevators stopped working. Turned out when they opened it up they found a 3-ft pile of guest folios that were never delivered to the rooms," they said. "Later when we looked on the camera we found it was a security guard that got tired of delivering them to the rooms and instead dropped them down the elevator shaft." The Redditor said that the security guard did it for months before he was caught.

A user's father who worked 15 years as an elevator mechanic recalled one time he found a cat that was still alive, which seemed to be an extremely rare and pleasant surprise. "He got a call that someone was hearing weird noises from the elevator. He got inside, rode the elevator up and sure enough, he could hear it too. For half a second he thought it was a baby crying and realized it was a cat. When he got to a certain floor, he could hear this sad meowing.

"It obviously wasn't in the elevator car, so he got into the shaft and found this little orange kitty!" they said "It had somehow (and I don't think he figured out or told us how) got into the elevator shaft and was sitting in a spot between the floors where it wouldn't get crushed by the elevator, but it couldn't get out."

One user who worked 40 years in the trade recalled one man who found a $7K diamond ring. He "kept it for six months no one ever asked about it and he gave it to his wife," they said.

Perhaps the most baffling comment was this: "Been in the game 12 years now. Found a full Christmas tree last month."