Olde Good Things and a controversial religious sect

Olde Good Things is a unique, fast-growing store filled with a variety of old, interesting artifacts specializing in rare New York City architectural finds. 
The shop is as an antique and high-end architectural salvage store, where a door knob from the 1800s might sell for as much as $750, or a silver-plated chandelier for more than $17,000. Many items in the shop come from old building or factory parts that have been refurbished in the company’s Scranton, Pennsylvania, warehouse.

The chain has five shops  in New York and  two in Los Angeles.  There are antique entryways and doors, porcelain sinks, cast iron bathtubs, stained glass windows, glass and brass doorknobs, and rare pieces of wooden furniture. It is magical spot where you can discover where time stood still. You will not find any true crap here, just wonderful antique objects and architectural elements.
 Almost everything that is on  sale has its own history. 

When I visited the shop at Bowery,  two doors from   Houston and Bowery intersection in the East Village,  I   spotted a vintage street light from Paris. There were  lot of mirrors with nice frames  and a lot of chandeliers.  Olde Good Things is a favorite of the city’s top decorators (Calvin Klein buys store embellishments here, as does BCBG) and those who just want a piece of history.

Olde Good Things is familiar to many New Yorkers, but almost nobody know that The Church of Bible Understanding ,  a controversial religious sect, is behind this chain. A sect was founded  in Allentown, Pennsylvania, in 1971 by Stewart Traill,  a former vacuum-cleaner salesman. Traill teaches that he is the reincarnation of Elijah, and that he knows the date of the return of Christ.   Central belief if the cult is: The Bible is written in a color-based code only COBU leader Mr. Traill can understand.
The members of the church live communally and receive little   and very little money goes to charitable works.  Most of the proceeds of the church business go to Stewart Traill, though properties and bank accounts are in the Church of Bible Understanding's name, not Traill's name.  

The group has been accused of being a cult, and it has been estimated that Traill became a millionaire from it.
Traill controls every aspect of members’ lives through harsh criticism, shame, and public humiliation. The church, which members say is financially separate from the Olde Good Things antique stores it owns, reported income of $3 million and expenses of $2.8 million in their tax filings from 2011.  The longtime leader and pastor, Stewart Traill, lives today in a 12,000-square-foot home in Coral Springs, Florida.

The   owners  of the shop  tell customers that part of the proceeds go to pay for an orphanage the group runs in Haiti. The latest eye-opener about the Haitian orphanage was uncovered by an Associated Press investigation, which sent reporters to Haiti to check out the orphanage for themselves.  The church     claims in IRS filings to be spending around $2.5 million annually on the charity. The home for boys and girls  in Haiti was so dirty and overcrowded during recent inspections that the government said it shouldn't remain open.



  1. My mother was a member of COBU in the 1970s and 80s. In 2015 or so, we visited the store near Union Square. I thought it would just be an interesting diversion, surely she wouldn't see anyone she knows. The woman running the store turned out to be my mom's BUNKMATE from the church's communal housing in the 80s. By sheer coincidence, the woman was the last member of the church that my mom talked to when she finally escaped the cult after almost 10 years. She recognized my mom after a second, and within 2 minutes asked her what church she was going to these days... Stay away, everyone.

  2. I love these stores. First of all, they do architectural salvage, which is very important. When buildings are being razed, it's critical their insides get reclaimed. Second of all, OGT prices are very good for NYC. Thirdly, what do I care about their inner workings? If someone is weird enough to enter a cult, that's their own business. It's only my business when it's Trump's cult of crazy and he's destroying the entire nation. If it's some private issue, that's the members' issue. Clearly, the people who work in the stores are free to leave ... they are employees who have to function under NYS law. They must get paid enough to live in NYC -- I mean, the ones who do. As for Haiti, that country has so any issues, as far as anyone knows the problems with everything down there are 100% the government's fault. Haiti is a disaster. I wouldn't talk about Haiti as being indicative of anything. If an antiques dealer is rich ... well, a lot of them are. If employees remain, well, that's their business. I am sure they know their business owner lives in a big house. Most CEOs do. I am sure if the AP did a story ... then the IRS got on the case. Thus far, they are still open. That means, whatever tax business they owed or reported or misreported, it is being scrutinized. Tax issues are also not my business. My business is where I buy my furniture. I love their offerings! I'm not going to pass up a great piece of furniture, because someone is religious. That's their business. I also think the Pope is weird. He has a lot of more expensive antiques, but they're not for sale. But call me if they are ....

    1. Of Course you don't give a shit about others, Your a DEmocrat! NUFF SAID

  3. They are a very scary CULT.