Storage Wars: Texas debuted over the A&E Network on December 6, 2011. Treasure hunters Ricky and Bubba Smith, Lesa Lewis, Morris "Moe" Prigoff and Victor Rjesnjansky bid on abandoned storage units in the great state of Texas with Walt Cade often serving as auctioneer. Treasures uncovered include uranium glass, antique guns, old wine cabinets and an array of collectibles.
Storage Wars: Texas airs over the A&E Network. It follows the adventures and exploits of four treasure hunters who buy abandoned storage lockers in the state of Texas, hoping to cash in on their forgotten contents.
A&E's Storage Wars: Texas Debuts
Storage Wars: Texas is a spinoff series of the highly-rated Storage Wars (2010-present). Storage Wars: Texas debuted over the A&E Network on Tuesday, December 6, 2011, with the episode "Texas Sold 'Em." Like its parent show, the Texas version follows four business owners as they bid on abandoned storage lockers in the Lone Star State. Ricky Smith and his nephew Bubba Smith are billed as "The Rangers," with Victor Rjesnjansky as "The Outsider," "Lesa Lewis" (along with her assistant Jerry Simpson) as "The Boss" and Morris "Moe" Prigoff as "The Doc." Walt Cade a.k.a. "The Colonel" often serves as the auctioneer.
Lesa Lewis and Jerry Simpson in Storage Wars: Texas - A&E
Storage Wars: Uranium Glass, Teak Wine Cabinet, Indian Grounding Table
On a recent episode the treasure hunters gathered for an auction at a Texas storage facility. Moe Prigoff purchased one abandoned unit for $500 while Lesa Lewis was the top bidder at $1,475 for another unit. Unfortunately, a thunderstorm moved into the area, producing a tornado which effectively canceled the auction.
Victor Rjesnjansky didn't get a chance to bid while Ricky Smith and nephew Bubba hightailed it out of town and drove two hours to another auction at a place called Abby's Storage. Here they successfully bid on one promising unit, paying $800 for the privilege.
Bidders of course are not allowed inside the units before the auction, but must rely on a quick look at the contents from outside in order to guage the potential value. Many valuable items could be hidden in back or inside containers, making the entire bidding process a crapshoot at best. The moment of truth comes when successful bidders enter the units, rummaging through the contents in order to determine what's there.
Lesa Lewis' unit, which contained several jewelry boxes minus the jewelry, proved to be an initial disappointment. After discovering a pair of white "hooker boots," however, she and her big, beefy assistant Jerry uncovered an old teak wine cabinet and a collection of green colored glass. The latter proved to be from the 1920s and was identified by an antique store owner as valuable uranium glass, which actually contains 2% uranium and glows in the dark under a black light. As for the teak cabinet, Lesa quickly sold it to Moe Prigoff for $500, who later slapped a price tag of $3,400 on it after having it appraised. Later, at a wine and cheese party at Moe's gallery, Lesa was both astonished and angered to learn of the appraised value of the cabinet she had just let go for 500 bills.
Ricky and Bubba Smith transported the contents of their unit back to their warehouse in Lampasas, Texas. One of their more unique items turned out to be a 1950s grounding table from India. It was later appraised at $350.
At the end of the segment the final estimated profit/loss totals were tallied. Lesa Lewis came out $308 ahead, Moe Prigoff $2,275, Ricky and Bubba $365 and Victor $0, as the latter did not secure a unit.
Storage Wars: Texas – Everything's Bigger in the Lone Star State
The 2011 premiere of Storage Wars: Texas attracted an estimated 4.1 million people, making it the most watched series debut in the history of the A&E Network. No doubt contributing to the show's successful premiere was the fact that it followed big brother Storage Wars on A&E that Tuesday evening.
Like Storage Wars, Storage Wars: Texas features quite a cast of colorful characters. Ricky and Bubba Smith – this is Texas, you got to have a Bubba around – are the resident good ol' boys, Lesa Lewis is the tough ol' gal, Moe Prigoff is the dapper podiatric surgeon/gallery owner and Victor Rjesnjansky is the caustic, fast-talking transplant from Long Island. Victor may be the most interesting character of the bunch, priding himself on NOT being from Texas while he takes verbal pot shots at the local natives. Victor, who calls out his bids in his distinctive New York accent ("Five hundred dollars right here!"), sagely opined in one segment that a jeans jacket is considered formal attire in Texas.
Storage Wars: Texas is a fun show and educational to (cowboy) boot as well. Antiques and collectibles buffs will especially enjoy the series, as you never know what treasures our entrepreneurs will uncover. In one episode, Victor became the owner of a replica medieval knight's costume, complete with sword, helmet, chain mail vest and boots. Estimated value: $600.
Victor Rjesnjansky of Storage Wars: Texas - A&E
- Lesa Lewis and Jerry Simpson, foreground, gather with other bidders in Storage Wars: Texas - A&E
Copyright © 2012 William J. Felchner