Thrifters and used-book nerds alike can appreciate the reward of digging through piles of items to find one very special, very precious piece. That’s what happened to one Reddit user, who volunteers at St. Helena’s hospice in the U.K., after digging through a Doritos box full of donated books finding, not Doritos, but a first edition of The Fellowship of the Ring.
It was almost destined for the trash but they were able to save it. As CrawlLikeASpider-Man writes:
I work for a charity and sometimes I sort through the masses of donations that we get on a daily basis. This day a Dorito’s box full of books came in and I took it, after it fell apart and spilt the contents everywhere. The books inside were bog standard. Apart from the grail sitting at the bottom like it was nothing. Lord of the Rings hardbacks were kept the same for so long that most people treat it as a throwaway book, as in we literally throw it away, but I gotta check it. I always check, just in case and today it paid off. The charity is a First Edition First Impression Lord of the Rings Fellowship of the Ring, 1/3000 richer. Literally the holy grail for a lot of people. And I took the box off of a volunteer literally about to throw the box away because it was full of old books. They don’t sell they would say. The charity is small and I imagine the books that are thrown away during this process across the world and I am gutted that there are not more people like me in the business who will take a moment and check out the “old” books that “won’t sell”.
As shown in the photos, the Redditor found a 1st Edition 1954 Hardcover copy of The Fellowship of the Ring. Apparently only 1500 of these UK copies were ever printed, and with the original dust jacket, can go for up to $6,500. And he found it in a Dorito box. ‘Tis truly a treasure that all of Middle Earth would covet Thorin no stop you can’t have it not everything is for you.
The Redditor has put the 1st Edition hardcover up for auction on eBay, with all proceeds to go back towards the charity he volunteers for. As of this writing, the winning bid scored the edition for £2,250.00