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Da Big Find Link

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Hey all,
This is the big stash of goodies that I found here in pittsburgh and is now in my happy (and splintered) hands.. I realise that this should probably be in the "Tiki Finds" topic, but wanted to get some feedback on what yall think.
I am a PC loser and have a bitch of a time trying to figure out how to post the pics here sooooo
Here is the link and password.....
[email protected]
The password is not a reflection on anything...
Lemme know what you all think, and feel free to e-mail me at if yer interested in anything...

[ Edited by: rustbeltcat on 2004-03-02 19:52 ]

[ Edited by: rustbeltcat on 2004-09-15 21:05 ]


Unreal find. If you're not familiar with Shutterfly, these are kinda hard to get to. I hope you don't mind I posted some.

Hey Rust belt,

That's certainly a lucky haul. Nice finds. If I had a place to put one of those beauts and if shipping didn't cost an arm and a leg to Canada, I'd ask how much you wanted for a pole.

Big Thanks Alnshely!!!!
I couldnt get figure it out for myself, the tikis stacked against the wall are going to need a little help, thanks god that my father in law is an expert woodworker (dontthink hes everdone anything like this before) but he may help us out with patchwork, and filling in some of the missing peices with the correct wood.
We (my wife and I are also probably going to rewire the lights that were behind them.
Oh yea IAny infor on where these carvings may have come from I would appreciate it, or if it resembels anyones work from the past I would appreciate it.

[ Edited by: rustbeltcat on 2004-03-02 20:33 ]

Nice haul Rustbeltcat...
Where'd you'ns (little Pittsburgh accent) find a stash like that around Pittsburgh?

Holy crap, dude! Looks like you hit the mother load!
Where and how did you find all that stuff?

Hey all, I just cut and pasted this post I put up in "Tiki Finds" This is the tale of "Da Big Find",

Ok well it all came out of a place close to pittsburgh called "The Connely Inn" aparently it is a chain in the area. This partivular location had bee sold and is now an econo lodge. They at some point used to have a Hawiain floor show, I am unsure of when it started, but it seems to have come to an end around 4 years ago when a fire strted in the rear part of the hotel, (where the Dancers lived) They were then kicked out and all of the decorations were uncerimonialy thrown into storage around the hotel. (closets and basement)
I put the age of the goods in the sixties (course I'm no expert) I hope to have the pics up shortly, (like somtime this week)
The wife and I are going to hang onto two peices then the rest is up for grabs......
Will keep everyone informed..

[ Edited by: rustbeltcat on 2004-03-02 20:43 ]

A major archeological discovery!
Have no clue who made any of these! The only thing I can say is that one pole, the one you are holding up in pic # 6 (without head dress) reminds me of a Tiki that was massproduced and sold by ORCHIDS OF HAWAII. Maybe whoever carved these also provided the molds for those plastic Orchids Tikis...

What a weird story:
A forgotten tribe of Polynesian floor show dancers plieing their trade selfsufficiently, until the firedance rehearsal goes awry. They are cast out, and abandon the gods that seemingly abandoned them. The gods are discarded in dark caves, until an urban archeologist comes along...

Everybody, dig thru your postcards and match books for "Conelly Inns". I wanna know more!

That's just craaaaazy.... :0

Wish that the tale was that glamorus, Apparently the fire was in a back part of the hotel where they lived.
The Connelly Inn chain still survives here in Pittsburgh area, unfortunatly there are no floor shows at any of the other ones,
Seems that a bunch of my fellow Pittburghers
Used to have their birthday partys there, at the indor pool.
I've also ben looking for postcards and other goodies from there and have come up with nothing.
However, I wonder if that weird highball glass from the Hu Ke Lua, in pittsburgh is from there....
Yea kind of an amazing right place right time find....
We got some CRAZY looks when we brought the four poles home!!!
What fun!

Holy $@%!!!!

Al, thank for posting those. I went to shutterfly and didn't have the patience to figure it out.

Where exactly was this at rustbelt, I use to live in Pittsburgh. I''m originally from the Youngstown area and I think that there is a lot of undiscovered tiki in that surrounding area. I use to find mugs all the time when I was up there compared to here in Florida. Unreal find you lucky bastard.


The only thing I can say is that one pole, the one you are holding up in pic # 6 (without head dress) reminds me of a Tiki that was massproduced and sold by ORCHIDS OF HAWAII. Maybe whoever carved these also provided the molds for those plastic Orchids Tikis...

I have seen the same Tiki also in wood as well as the fiberglass version (Chef Shangri-La has a pair flanking the entry to the bar and I think there are some at the Honolulu in Lyndhurst, NJ). I think that maybe Orchids originaly offered them in palm wood (possibly mass-carved on a jig since they are the same size and style) before making molds and selling them in fiberglass.

I have a copy of a late Orchids catalogue which shows them in fiberglass– maybe someone has an early catalogue or other source where they were offered in wood?


I sent you a PM. I might be interested in a pole as I'll be in your neck of the woods soon.


Bit more info,
Mr Connelly aparently was a driving force behind the Pittsburgh Regatta,(Powerboat races) the Gateway Clipper fleet,(paddleboats that go up and down our rivers),
And a whole string of Hotels, The one that these Tikis came from may have been his first according to my source, I am still looking into other unknown Tiki sites in the Pittsburgh area. as well as trying to find out more on the Connelly inn.
PS It opened somtime in the early sixties, there was an aparent Tiki boom in the area around then..


Knowing the history of an item really makes it worth while. Sometimes the history is even more interesting than the item itself! Soooo cool.

Congratulations, I'm happy these guys are seeing the light of day and will be enjoyed by tiki enthusiasts for years to come!!!

Hey all, thanks for all the interest in the large Tikis that I found, For right now I am sitting on them, (damn splinters).
I have a few really nice offers, and am still considering them, but am putting the project of selling them on the back burner for now.
Thanks again


I am just in AWE, Jay!!!! Those are all bloody aMAZing!! (I couldn't even imagine they'd be so thrilling when you wrote about them on "Finds".)

It's like - like - like you found a closed-up Polynesian restaurant, and all the goodies were just sitting around, waiting!

Oh, wait. That's EXACTly what happened! ha!

The only thing better I can imagine is if:
A) The tiki genie in your Steve Crane mug appeared one day, blinked her eyes, and made all these appear in your basement
B) The Connely Inn folks gave 'em all to you free.

But we won't be greedy, now...


On 2004-03-10 10:08, Formikahini wrote:

B) The Connely Inn folks gave 'em all to you free.

Hey thanks Formikahini!
It wasnt an easy deal to swing, had to deal with a VERY pushy little Indian dude, My wife wanted to sock the poor guy,
He kind of told me that he would work with me on the pricing, then decided to go high on the deal at the last minute, but when he realised that I was ready to walk away from it all he came to what I wanted to pay.
Really wish that some of the carvers had inputed on the style of the larger peices, but no luck........who knows maybe tommorow!
When I decide what is going to go on with them I'lllet yall know.

Hey.....Back again!
Just wanted to let yall know that I added another album of pics, these are from the day we picked everything up.
There are some pics of othergoodies that we are keeping for ourselves, (the Plexiglass Tikis) There are also pics of the wallhanging masks, (you can see what I mean by their needing to be a little rehab)
Also a couple pics of our collection of mugs and tiki stuff...


trying to access the pics, but its kickin back the email address during log-in..

Hey all, I changed my password to shutterfly if you want to check it out the new password is "ratfink"

[ Edited by: rustbeltcat on 2004-03-21 20:55 ]

how tall are those poles?
great find!

BTTT, I just wanted to bump this back up in ligh of our decision to sell some of the goodies


You need to open up your own tiki lounge!

You going to help me finance it? LOL Wish I could, but I want to own my own home first, then I'll have my own tiki lounge!

RUSTBELTCAT,check PM'S for offer to buy or trade for some KON-TIKI cleveland stuff. cell phone number is there TD



What's the total count on those items? I've looked at the pictures and read the posts...you said there are four poles? Two of each design? How many masks are there? And the Ku carving on the white board...is there one of those only?


[ Edited by: Ku Ku Ahu on 2004-10-18 17:11 ]

Hey Ku Ku Ahu
I recently rearranged the pics on shutterfly and started an album of which pieces we are selling, we are seling 15 pieces total, One of the large poles, the two different orchids poles 66 masks, and all 6 of the screens, also in the new album we have dimenssions of those peices. check out the pics on shutterfly. The login is [email protected],com
the password is ratfink.
Are you in Columbus? we have a bunch of freinds out there.
Anyways feel free to e-mail me directly at the hotmail addy if you are interested.


I just got to thinking about this motherload story from like 5 years ago and wondered how it ended. Too bad the photos are all gone now and the shutterfly login doesn't work either. Anyone still have the photos? Rustbeltcat, are you still out there????

LOL Yep I am still out here and in the world.. I still have most of the items, but have sold off some of it..
A couple of the masks are gone, the two smaller orchids of hawaii poles are gone, leaving me with the two giant Ku poles, and a bunch of panels and some masks...
Still looking to sell them tho..
I will try and get some newer shots up..

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