A Silicon Valley recycling firm is looking for a woman who unknowingly dropped off a rare and very valuable piece of history. The woman, who was cleaning out her garage, wanted to recycle some of her late husband’s old electronics. In one of the boxes she dropped off, the recycling firm found an Apple I, the first ever product from the electronics giant.
The Apple I, released by Apple (then known as the Apple Computer Company) in 1976, was hand built by Steve Wozniak in his garage and sold by Steve Jobs for $666.66. Roughly 200 units were produced, and a working model was sold last October to the Henry Ford Museum in Michigan for $905,000.
The computer that was dropped off at the Clean Bay Area recycling firm was recently sold to a private collection for $200,000. Clean Bay Area’s policy is to return 50% of all items sold back to the original owner. They would like to contact the woman who dropped off the valuable computer.
“We really couldn’t believe our eyes,” said Clean Bay Area’s vice president Victor Gichun. “We thought it was fake.” The woman, who claimed she was just trying to clean out her garage, didn’t leave her name and declined a tax receipt. However, Gichun says he remembers her, and could spot the SUV she arrived in. “I just need to look at her,” Gichun told the San Jose Mercury News. “I ask this lady, please come over to our warehouse… and we’ll give you a check for $100,000.”