IU Surplus delivers antique items to Bloomington community


Many different items are for sale at the IU Surplus Store. The surplus store offers things from desks to athletic shoes. Claire Livingston

The IU Surplus store on East 10th Street emits an antique vibe.

The building itself is aged and worn, while the interior and its contents reflect a foregone era.

Walking through the massive indoor space, the music of The Buggles and Journey blaring overhead furthers the historical narrative of the store.

Littering the shelves of the warehouse building are gizmos, gadgets, books, album covers, clothes and virtually any random item one could imagine.

The store's function is to sell off old equipment, furniture, clothing and other random items that IU no longer needs.

Items owned by the school can be sold after a department determines it has university property they would like to get rid of.  If approved, the item can be listed on the IU Resource Redistribution Server, sold at an on-site auction by the IU Purchasing Department or put up for sale in the surplus store.

Here are a few of the wild items found in the store:


Shoes — hundreds of them. 

In addition to old classroom property, like desks and tables, the store also sells varying equipment from the IU Athletic Department. This includes footwear.

Scattered across numerous shelves, football cleats from the past few seasons are present for any IU fan to take the field in their own team-issued Adidas cleats.

The storage space also includes basketball shoes, sneakers and golf spikes.


Beyond the athletic department's locker room gear, the store is also an avenue for any wannabe chemists to stock up on their necessary materials.

Organized with beakers, measuring instruments and other varying science equipment sits a shelf of old microscopes.

One of the microscopes included was made by the Spencer Lens Company, which ran its business from 1895-1945. Thus, the models housed are anywhere from 74-124 years old.


While antiques are the surplus store’s specialty, there are plenty of modern objects housed.

One of those includes “Doggles,” a set of goggles designed to protect dogs from the sun’s ultraviolet rays.

Fashioned out of plastic and an elastic band that holds them in place, the Doggles boast 100 percent UV blockage and shatterproof ability.

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