By Marsie Hall Newbold
Who: Leslie Maret, 54, of Westwood, a retired electrical maintenance professional with a passion for wooden boxes.
On display: Eight hundred boxes from all over the world. (He owns more than 1,000, but doesn't have room to display them all.)
Where: Exhibited on shelves in the living room of the apartment he shares with his son, Tom, 21.
In the beginning: Maret began collecting wooden boxes 16 years ago by chance.
"I walked into a thrift shop and this box caught my eye," he recalls. "It was from Russia and so beautifully detailed that I had to have it. I paid $25 for it."
A family affair: Since then he was been haunting yard sales, flea markets and antiques sales. Tom has joined his father's quest.
Lovely to look at: "To really appreciate them," the elder Maret says, "you have to see them. To me, it is a new art form. The diversity of craftsmanship is just amazing. And the species of wood are absolutely beautiful. . . ."
Soup to nuts: Maret's collection includes shoeshine boxes from eight different companies, stamp boxes, 300 music boxes, a portable bar and a glove box. He also owns cigar boxes, an 1850s cash box from a general store, cigarette boxes, wooden purses, a theater ticket box and a Procter & Gamble box from the 1940s.
Future plans: Maret's goal is to share his collection with the public. He has begun contacting museums and galleries.
"These boxes are a strong history of our culture," he says, "and I want to make certain that they are preserved for generations to come."
Share your prize possessions with Marsie Hall Newbold by mail: c/o The Enquirer, 312 Elm St., Cincinnati, 45202; e-mail: email@example.com. Please include a daytime, weekday telephone number.
Youth choruses booming
More composers writing for young voices
Children should get head start in choirs
Community choruses for kids
Youth chorus profiles:
TEMPO COVER STORIES
Music industry 'spoofs' illegal file traders
Get to It: A guide to help make your day
ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
Springfest earns place on music calendar
DEMALINE: Theater can counter 'youth drain'
Invisible actors still in spotlight
Festival hits high note with 'Requiem'
CCM's 'Pelleas' lusty and stunning
Play looks squarely at Big Brother
Brainy Prophet evokes musical kaleidoscope
DAUGHERTY: Prom survivor shares advice with son
In the classroom with photographer Jimmy Heath
Collector's box score 1,000 and counting
Wallace uses dance as therapy
KENDRICK: Not all guide dogs, owners are same
Great books, for every kind of cook
Catch wild Alaskan salmon at Palomino
Peppers can be such sweet heat