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Kovels - Antiques & Collecting

Kovels Antiques & Collecting: Week of Jan. 26, 2015

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Written by TERRY AND KIM KOVEL   
Monday, 26 January 2015 13:56
Charles Hart carved this 9 1/2-inch-high wooden penguin in about 1937 to be sold as a souvenir. It sold 76 years later at an Eldred's auction in East Dennis, Mass., for $501.

BEACHWOOD, Ohio – Carvings of birds, especially ducks and other wild species, are collected by those who consider the best examples to be art, while other examples are to be used as decoys when hunting. While both types of decoys can be found at antiques auctions and shops, most are sold in auctions or shows that specialize in decoys, wood carvings and related pieces.

The best of the 20th- and 21st-century carvers are famous, and collectors can name the most talented. A stone carver named Charles H. Hart (1862-1960) hunted and made decoys for his brother and friends. At first Hart specialized in just a few species, including black ducks, Canada Geese, goldeneyes and mallards. About 1900, he started making a stick-up black duck that had detached wings that flap and a head that could be turned. Hart was soon selling his birds to stores in Boston. In the 1930s, when the country was fascinated by the explorations in Antarctica, he began carving penguins. Most had applied flippers and color showing at the neck of theblack and white birds. He made them in all sizes from about 6 inches to 4 feet high.

Today, because of the movies Happy Feet and Madagascar featuring penguins, there is renewed interest in the penguins and the work by Charles Hart. The 8-inch-high birds have been auctioning for $400 to $750.

Q: I bought a secondhand Ethan Allen drop-leaf side table back in 1967. It's still in very good condition. It's maple and in a typical Early American style. It's marked "Ethan Allen" and "Baumritter." Why Baumritter? And what is the table worth?

A: The furniture company we know as Ethan Allen was founded in 1932 as Baumritter Corp. The owners were Theodore Baumritter and his brother-in-law, Nathan S. Ancell. The company, based in New York City, made and sold housewares and decorative items the first few years. It didn't start manufacturing and selling furniture until 1939, three years after the partners bought a closed furniture factory in Beecher Falls, Vermont. The company named its Early American line of furniture "Ethan Allen" after the Revolutionary War hero from Vermont. The company's name was changed from Baumritter Corp. to Ethan Allen Industries in 1972. Your table is an early one if it's marked "Baumritter," but it's not an antique. Still, the table is well-made and solid and could sell for $100 to $250.

Q: I have a gasoline ration card from July 10, 1942, that belonged to my husband's grandmother. It has a large capital letter "A" and the words "Basic Gasoline Ration, United States of America, Office of Price Administration" on the top. My grandmother's name and address and the make, model and date of her car are written in ink. Is this worth anything or just a piece of the past?

A: During World War II, gasoline, tires, sugar, meat, shoes and other items were rationed. Gasoline rationing began in 1942 and lasted until World War II ended in August 1945. Gas rationing was meant to reduce driving so the supply of rubber and gas could be used for military needs. The car owner received a ration book with coupons that had to be redeemed when buying the gas. A sticker with the appropriate letter was displayed on the car's windshield. Most people were issued the "A" sticker and card, which allowed three or four gallons of gas a week. People working in the war effort who needed to drive to work were allowed up to 8 gallons a week and had a "B" card. "C" was for doctors, nurses, ministers, mail delivery, farm workers, construction workers, and several other groups, "E" for emergency vehicles, "R" for nonhighway farm vehicles, "T" for truckers, and "X" for members of Congress and other special groups. Gasoline ration cards sell for $1 to $3.

Q: I have a signed Phoebe Stabler brass Madonna and child statue that was my great-grandmother's. Is this of any value?

A: Phoebe Stabler (1879-1955) was an English sculptor best known for her pottery figures. She also made figures in bronze and stone. Bronze figures made by Stabler have sold for over $1,000 at auction. A 13-inch bronze Madonna and child with John the Baptist, made by Stabler in 1907, sold for $3,686 in 2012.

Q: I have a pewter chick and cracked eggshell figural napkin holder that's been in our family well over 80 years. Can you tell me who made it and its value?

A: Napkin rings were fashionable from 1869 to about 1900. Most were made of silver plate, though sterling silver, porcelain, glass, wood and other materials were also used. Silver-plated figural napkin rings are popular with collectors today. Several companies, including Derby Silver Co., made figural chick and egg napkin rings. Most figural rings with silver plating in good condition sell for $100 to $300.

Tip: It can be hard to thread a needle, especially with the old pure cotton thread that should be used for repairing old fabric. Put hairspray on the end of the thread to stiffen it.

Terry Kovel and Kim Kovel answer questions sent to the column. By sending a letter with a question, you give full permission for use in the column or any other Kovel forum. Names, addresses or email addresses will not be published. We cannot guarantee the return of photographs, but if a stamped envelope is included, we will try. The amount of mail makes personal answers or appraisals impossible. Write to Kovels, Auction Central News, King Features Syndicate, 300 W. 57th St., New York, NY 10019.

CURRENT PRICES

Current prices are recorded from antiques shows, flea markets, sales and auctions throughout the United States. Prices vary in different locations because of local economic conditions.

  • Cracker Jack toy, Zephyr train, red paint, Tootsietoy, 1930s, 2 1/4 inches, $25.
  • Razor, horn handle, pearl escutcheons, twisted silver edge, Morocco leather case, Wade & Butcher, 1800s, $210.
  • Louis XV-style commode, walnut, inlay, metal mounts, marble top, 3 drawers, c. 1975, 33 x 36 inches, $470.
  • Sterling silver place-card holders, fishermen, fish, basket and cage carriers, Japan, 2 1/4 in., 10 pieces, $590.
  • Paperweight, pink flower, black ground, Paul Stankard, 1972, 1 3/4 x 2 1/2 inches, $625.
  • Bohemian wine glass, cranberry flash, gilt designs, c. 1910, 7 1/2 inches, 10 pieces, $705.
  • Chanel purse, satin, black, flap closure, gold-tone metal CC, braided metal chain strap, 6 1/2 x 5 inches, $835.
  • Grueby Pottery tile, entwined geese on island, green trees, cuenca, metal mount, 4 x 4 inches, $1,080.
  • Match holder, Great American Tea Co., woman holding basket, die-cut cardboard, 10 x 6 inches, $1,610.
  • Toy car, Stutz Roadster, nickel-plated parts, yellow, green, Kilgore, 1920s, 10 1/2 inches, $1,780.

Order the special reports set: "Buyers' Guide to 20th Century Costume Jewelry," Part One and Part Two. Only $34.95. These reports identify the most popular makers and designers of costume jewelry. European and North American costume jewelry, Mexican silver jewelry and mid-century jewelry. Recognize Hobe and Sigi jewelry and rare pieces of Bakelite. For the serious collector and the beginner. Available only from Kovels for $34.95 plus $4.95 postage and handling. Order by phone at 800-303-1996; online at Kovels.com; or mail to Kovels, P.O. Box 22900, Beachwood, OH 44122.

© 2015 by Cowles Syndicate Inc.



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE
Charles Hart carved this 9 1/2-inch-high wooden penguin in about 1937 to be sold as a souvenir. It sold 76 years later at an Eldred's auction in East Dennis, Mass., for $501.
Last Updated on Monday, 26 January 2015 15:42
 

Kovels Antiques & Collecting: Week of Jan. 19, 2015

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Written by TERRY KOVEL   
Tuesday, 20 January 2015 15:07
This sterling-silver teapot has a handle and finial made of pear wood and a silver border with floral engravings. The side has an engraved heraldic design possibly identifying her customer. Auction price, $2,832.

BEACHWOOD, Ohio – In 18th-century England, most women married when young, had children and learned to cook, take care of the house and children, make textiles or at least create bedding or clothing, and be her husband's helper when needed.

Hester Bateman was an exception. She married a man who made gold chains. He died after they had six children. He left the metal-working tools to his wife in his will so he must have known what a skillful silversmith she was. Hester became a registered silvermaker in 1761 using the mark "HB" in script. By 1774 she was in her own business with two of her sons. They used the latest methods and made their silverware from thin sheets of silver rather than the Sheffield plate-type made by others. They stayed with traditional styles and made everything from tea caddies to inkwells. Hester retired in 1790, and died in 1794. She was the first well-known female silversmith in England, and her work has always been popular with today's collectors.

I knew about the pioneering woman. While in college I looked for, bought for $15, and still have a pair of Hester Bateman silver sugar tongs. It was one of my first antiques. Brunk Auctions in Asheville, N.C., sold a Bateman teapot in the fall of 2014, for $2,832.

Q: In 1960 we bought a queen-size birch bed and dresser marked "Cal Shop." I can't find any information about the maker or value. Can you help?

A: The trademark "Cal Shop" was owned by California Furniture Shops Ltd., which was based in Los Angeles. It was in business from at least the late 1940s into the 1970s or '80s. Your bedroom set would sell as used furniture if it's in excellent shape. Try selling it locally, though, so shipping costs will not be high.

Q: I have a 300-400 pound iron anvil that was given to me almost 40 years ago. I sprayed it black because it was rusting, and it's rusting a little bit again. The anvil is dated 1917. I used it as a decoration in the past, but I have no use for it anymore. Can you give me some idea of its worth?

A: Cast-iron anvils have been made in different sizes and shapes for different uses. Anvils weighing several hundred pounds were primarily used in industry, while smaller ones were used by farmers. Someone who collects old tools or vintage farm equipment might be interested an old anvil, but a large, heavy anvil could be harder to sell than one that's easier to pick up and display. The date on your anvil adds interest. Recent prices include $192 for a 115-pound anvil and $380 for a 160-pound anvil.

Q: I have several figurines (resin, I think) that range from 3 to 5 inches tall. Each is marked with "KFS" on the back. They also are marked on the front of its base with a character name, including Hans, Fritz, Prince Valiant, Popeye, etc. One of them is a man in a sailor suit and is marked "Tim Tyler." Can you tell me something about him, how many different figurines were made, and if they are collectible?

A: The initials "KFS" stand for King Features Syndicate, who owned the comic strips and the rights to the characters. A series of 24 figurines was made by Syroco for King Features Syndicate in 1944. Twelve of them, including Tim Tyler, were offered as Pillsbury Enriched Farina premiums. Tim Tyler was a cartoon strip that debuted in 1928 and was featured in newspapers, comic books and movies. The last strip ran in 1996. The figurine is shown in a Navy uniform because it was issued during World War II. Most of these figurines sell online for $15 to $30 each.

Q: I have a mug that reads "Ovaltine's Golden Annie-versary" in black, gold and white letters on one side. It has a big gold number "50" with a picture of Little Orphan Annie and her dog, Sandy, inside the zero. What's the anniversary and what is the mug worth?

A: This mug was issued in 1981 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Ovaltine's sponsorship of the Little Orphan Annie radio show. Ovaltine sponsored the show from 1931 to 1940. Their advertising agency wrote the scripts for the show, which promoted Ovaltine. Ovaltine was first made in Switzerland in 1904 and originally was called Ovomaltine because it included eggs and malt. The name became Ovaltine in English-speaking countries in 1909. Ovaltine's Annie-versary mugs sell for $5 to $15.

Q: I'm trying to find out something about a picture of Giuseppe Verdi I inherited from my grandparents, who emigrated from Italy in the early 1900s. Verdi is looking to the left in the picture. It's 10 inches high and 7 inches wide. I've seen this picture before, but this one is woven in what looks like silk. Along the bottom left it reads "Nato a Roncole (Bufseto) il 10 Ottobre 1813" and on the bottom right "Morto a Milano il 27 Gennaio 1901." Any information would be appreciated.

A: Giuseppi Verdi was an Italian composer best known for his operas, including "Aida" and "La Traviata." Memorial pictures like yours were made after Verdi died. Your picture lists his birth and death dates and places. He was born Oct. 10, 1813, in the village of Roncole, commune of Busseto, and died Jan. 27, 1813, in Milan, Italy. Large silk memorial pictures like this sell for $200-$500.

Tip: Stains on crystal stemware sometimes can be removed by rubbing the stain with a cut lemon or a cloth dipped in turpentine.

Take advantage of a free listing for your group to announce events or to find antique shows, national meetings and other events. Go to the Calendar at Kovels.com to find, publicize and plan your antiquing trips.

Terry Kovel and Kim Kovel answer questions sent to the column. By sending a letter with a question, you give full permission for use in the column or any other Kovel forum. Names, addresses or email addresses will not be published. We cannot guarantee the return of photographs, but if a stamped envelope is included, we will try. The amount of mail makes personal answers or appraisals impossible. Write to Kovels, Auction Central News, King Features Syndicate, 300 W. 57th St., New York, NY 10019.

 

CURRENT PRICES

Current prices are recorded from antiques shows, flea markets, sales and auctions throughout the United States. Prices vary in different locations because of local economic conditions.

  • The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. memorial token, portrait, 1929-1968, "Free At Last, Free At Last," silver-tone metal, 1 1/2 inches, $15.
  • Louis XV-style table, parquetry inlay, metal mounts, quatrefoil, shell decoration, cabriole legs, 30 x 25 inches, $125
  • Roseville vase, Pine Cone, fan shape, green, marked, 6 5/8 inches, $175.
  • Silver bracelet, Hector Aguilar, splayed links, box clasp, Mexico, c. 1940, 8 3/4 inches, $310.
  • Ship's compass, brass, domed cylindrical case, oil lamp compartment, 10 1/2 inches, $375.
  • Chandelier, 5-light, Louis XVI style, gilt metal, beaded glass, c. 1950, 34 x 15 inches, $565.
  • Sled, pine, painted sunflower, iron runners, 1800s, 15 inches, $840.
  • English silver nutmeg grater, George III, engraved, hinged, interior screen, W. Robertson, c. 1790, 2 1/2 in., pair, $1,125.
  • Sampler, verse, trees, flowers, silk on linen, Hetty Ann Kennedy, frame, Pennsylvania, 1822, 20 1/2 x 21 3/4 inches, $1,680.

“A Diary: How to Settle a Collector's Estate,” our new week-by-week record of the settlement of an estate, from your first days gathering legal papers to the last days when you're dividing antiques among heirs and selling everything else – even the house. How to identify pottery, jewelry and other popular collectibles. Tips on where and how to sell furniture, jewelry, dishes, figurines, record albums, bikes and even clothes. We include lots of pictures and prices and explain the advantages of a house sale, auction, selling to a dealer, or donating to a charity. Learn about how to handle the special problems of security and theft. Plus a free current supplement with useful websites, auctions lists and other current information. Available only from Kovels for $19.95 plus $4.95 postage and handling. Order by phone at 800-303-1996; online at Kovels.com; or write to Kovels, P.O. Box 22900, Beachwood, OH 44122.

© 2015 by Cowles Syndicate Inc.



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE
This sterling-silver teapot has a handle and finial made of pear wood and a silver border with floral engravings. The side has an engraved heraldic design possibly identifying her customer. Auction price, $2,832.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 20 January 2015 15:30
 

Kovels Antiques & Collecting: Week of Jan. 12, 2015

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Written by TERRY AND KIM KOVEL   
Monday, 12 January 2015 11:48
This unusual 'sculpture' held a slot machine representing a woman. It sold without the slot machine for $3,000 at a recent Morphy auction.

BEACHWOOD, Ohio – Mysterious antiques and collectibles often appear in shops and shows. Price is then decided by how unusual the collectible is, how attractive it is and how it can be used.

A recent auction offered this statue of half of a woman, from the waist down. The statue is life-size, 3 1/2 feet tall. The legs are dressed in tights, boots and a cloth skirt. There is a purse that has jewelry and brothel tokens from the Silver Dollar Hotel in Denver. Those who go to casinos probably know that this is an old base for a special type of slot machine. The base-and-slot-machine pair is known as the Prairie Rose Saloon Brothel Lady. She is dressed in 1880s style, but Prairie Rose was a famous cowgirl from the early 1900s, known all over the world. She performed in the Irwin Brothers' Wild West Show. In 1917, she went out in a blizzard to check on her animals, got lost and died. Her body was found years later.

It is not surprising that the Lady was sold at Morphy's Victorian Casino Antiques auction along with many other gambling collectibles. Price: $3,000.

Q: I have my parents' kitchen table. I've used it all my life. Markings under the table and leafs look like "Abraham-Richardson Mfg. Co., Beaver Falls, Pa." I can't find any information on the company. Can you help?

A: Your table was made by Ingram-Richardson Manufacturing Co., not Abraham-Richardson. The company was founded by Louis Ingram and Ernest Richardson in 1901. It made porcelain enameled signs, sinks, refrigerator linings, walls, license plates and other items. The company was sold in 1965 and closed in 1967. Kitchen tables with enameled tops were very popular in the 1930s-'50s. They are still very useful, and sell for about $350-$500 if the enamel is not chipped.

Q: I own a tennis racket that belonged to my uncle, who served in the military during World War I and died at age 26. One side of the handle is marked "Greenwood," and the other side, "A.G. Spalding Bros." Please tell me what it's worth.

A: Albert Goodwill Spalding (1850-1915) played major league baseball from 1871 to 1878. He and his brother, J. Walker Spalding, founded their sporting goods company in Chicago in 1876. By the mid-1880s, the company's products included tennis rackets. Spalding introduced its Greenwood model racket in 1905. Antique and vintage wooden rackets are collectible. We have seen the Greenwood model for sale at prices ranging from $90 to $190. Spalding still is in business, but it no longer makes tennis rackets.

Q: I have an antique scale made by the Computing Scale Co. of Dayton, Ohio. It has a barrel-shape top with a glass dial. The numbers from 1 to 60 are on the bottom of the dial. There are numbers for pounds and prices in the dial. There is a flat, round glass "tray" that the item can be placed on to weigh it. Can you tell me anything about it?

A: Your scale has a history that connects it to IBM. Julius Pitrat of Gallipolis, Ohio, invented the first computing scale in 1885. It figured the price of an item by combining the weight and the price per pound. Edward Canby and Orange Ozias bought the patent and founded the Computing Scale Company in 1891. The company merged with two other companies and was renamed the Computing-Tabulating-Recording Co. in 1911. The name became IBM in 1924. Your scale was made between 1891 and 1911. You may be able to date it by researching the serial number. Your scale with the glass tray is a butcher's scale.

Q: Forty-one years ago, a member of the Martell family of France gave me a Baccarat decanter filled with Martell cognac. It's still sealed. How can I sell it?

A: Martell's history dates back to 1715, but its Cordon Bleu cognac wasn't created until 1912. The cognac's special Baccarat glass decanters appear to date from the early 1970s. A full sealed decanter with its presentation box auctioned for nearly $3,000 in 2013. Without the box, it would sell for less. You should contact an auction house that holds special sales of bottled wine and liquor.

Q: I have a Lady Squeezy Beauchamp figural cookie jar, marked "The Last Elegant Bear, Dennis Kyte, Sigma, the Tastesetter" and with a copyright date of MCMLXXXV (1985). The bear is wearing a yellow dress and is holding a fan. Is it of any value?

A: Lady Squeezy Beauchamp was one of the bears in the book "The Last Elegant Bear: The Life and Times of Abiner Smoothie," by Dennis Kyte, which was published in 1983. Your cookie jar is one of a series of cookie jars made by Sigma, a division of Rockville International in Garden City, New York. Sigma is no longer in business. The value of your cookie jar is $100-$300.

Q: I bought a "Fiji Mermaid" at auction a few years ago. It looks old and has been handled quite a bit. Please tell me something about it and what it's worth.

A: The original Fiji Mermaid was the feature of a 19th-century P.T. Barnum circus sideshow. It was a mummified concoction combining the top half of a monkey and the bottom half of a fish. Since then, versions made of resin, plastic, clay or some combination of materials have been created for sale around the world. We have seen the "mermaids" offered for sale from $15 to $400.

Tip: Make sure your nightstand, the small table next to the bed that usually holds a lamp and a phone, is large enough. Find a vintage or antique table that is 28 to 31 inches high to use next to the bed. A small desk also will work.

Sign up for our free weekly email, "Kovels Komments." Terry Kovel writes about the latest news, tips and questions and her views of the market. If you register on our website, there is no charge.

Terry Kovel and Kim Kovel answer questions sent to the column. By sending a letter with a question, you give full permission for use in the column or any other Kovel forum. Names, addresses or email addresses will not be published. We cannot guarantee the return of photographs, but if a stamped envelope is included, we will try. The amount of mail makes personal answers or appraisals impossible. Write to Kovels, Auction Central News, King Features Syndicate, 300 W. 57th St., New York, NY 10019.

 

CURRENT PRICES

Current prices are recorded from antiques shows, flea markets, sales and auctions throughout the United States. Prices vary in different locations because of local economic conditions.

  • Holt-Howard mustard jar, yellow flat head, annoyed face, spoon, c. 1958, 4 1/2 x 4 inches, $60.
  • Peking glass vase, blue, fruit, flowers, branches, carved, Chinese, 11 inches, $120.
  • Blushing Frankenstein toy, tin lithograph, vinyl, cloth, battery-operated, Mod Monster, Japan, 1960s, 13 inches, $180.
  • Thermometer, Whistle orange soda, "Any Time, Any Weather, Thirsty? Just Whistle," boy, bottle, chalkware, 1950s, 12 inches, $300.
  • Sewing tape measure, winking devil's head, porcelain, orange, early 1900s, 1 3/4 inches, $330.
  • Neoclassical chair, mahogany, tablet crest, conforming slat, scrolled supports, saber legs, c. 1810, $360.
  • Movie poster, My Fair Lady, Audrey Hepburn, Rex Harrison, Warner Bros., 1964, 39 x 55 inches, $375.
  • Porcelain tureen, underplate, Meissen style, painted, flowers, couples, applied flower handles, 6 1/4 x 8 1/4 inches, $485.
  • Silver creamer, beaded rim, square base, Christian Wiltberger, Philadelphia, c. 1795, 7 1/2 inches, $1,440.
  • Northwood Glass vase, swirled blue, yellow, white pulled feathers, folded, scalloped rim, 3 x 4 inches, $2,240.

Keep up with changes in the collectibles world. Send for a free sample issue of our 12-page, color-illustrated newsletter, "Kovels on Antiques and Collectibles," filled with prices, news, information and photos, plus major articles and opinions about the world of collecting. An important tool for anyone who buys or sells antiques and collectibles. To subscribe at a bargain $27 for 12 issues, write Kovels, P.O. Box 8534, Big Sandy, TX 75755; call 800-829-9158; or subscribe online at KovelsOnlineStore.com.

© 2015 by Cowles Syndicate Inc.



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE
This unusual 'sculpture' held a slot machine representing a woman. It sold without the slot machine for $3,000 at a recent Morphy auction.
Last Updated on Monday, 12 January 2015 12:00
 

Kovels Antiques & Collecting: Week of Jan. 5, 2015

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Written by TERRY AND KIM KOVEL   
Monday, 05 January 2015 13:08

The convict is trying to smell the smoke from the dancing girl’s cigarette in this Old Judge cabinet ad. The wooden tobacco cabinet sold at auction for $780 by Garth's Auctioneers in Delaware, Ohio, in November.

BEACHWOOD, Ohio – "Vernacular Tobacco Cabinet" was the name of this piece in a Nov. 2014 Garth's auction. It doesn't seem to be made by a skilled cabinetmaker. Although it looks like two pieces, the back construction shows that it was made to be one piece – a fitted cabinet at the bottom behind the ad and an empty space behind the mirrored door.

Few collectors know how it was used.

The cabinet is a little over 5 feet high. The ad of Old Judge Cigarettes identifies the probable maker, Goodwin & Co., an American tobacco manufacturer from New York City working before the Civil War. Old Judge was one of its brands. The company merged with others and became part of the American Tobacco Co.

Collectors today like their tobacco cards picturing baseball players; one set called "Old Judge," issued in 1887-1890, was 1 7/16 by 2 1/2 inches. A larger set, called "Old Judge Cabinets," issued from 1888 to 1889, was 4 1/4 by 6 1/2 inches. The mirrored section of the wooden cabinet seems to be missing some sort of shelf or racks, probably pipe racks. The lower part has cubbyholes, drawers and partitions that may have held loose tobacco, a mixing bowl, humidor, pipe cleaners and cards. The ad, showing a convict held in the stocks, dates from about 1900. An unusual piece, it sold for $780.

Q: I inherited my mother's black Catalin Mah Jong set, which she got in the 1940s. Some of the paint has worn off some of the Jokers and Flowers. What is it worth, and how can I sell it?

A: Mah Jong originated in China, and early sets imported into the U.S. had ivory, bone or bamboo tiles. Catalin, a polymer developed in the 1930s, has the look of ivory at a lower price. Sets made in the 1920s and '30s didn't include jokers. Sets made since 1971 include eight jokers and eight flowers. Collectors want sets that have the full set of tiles, in good condition; you can't buy single tiles to replace lost ones. The backs won't match. Mah Jong sets often sell online. The value of your set is reduced a little because of the missing paint. A full set in a box sells for $200-$250.

Q: I have a blue-and-white plate with a picture of Paul Revere on it and a border of fruit and flowers. I found it in an old steamer trunk in my grandmother's attic. I'm over 80 years old, so I think the plate was made about 1800. The back of the plate reads "Ride of Paul Revere Apr. 18, 1775. Staffordshire, England," and it's marked "RM CO." in a diamond shape. How old is it, and what is it worth?

A: This mark was used by Rowland & Marsellus, an importer in business in New York City from 1893 to about 1937. Several factories in Staffordshire, England, made historical blue souvenir plates and other chinaware decorated with American scenes. Historical scenes, important buildings, landmarks, cities and colleges were transfer-printed onto the china. Plates with rolled edges are the most wanted. Rowland & Marsellus used a diamond-shape mark from about 1893 to 1900. Your rolled-edge plate is worth about $55.

Q: I recently acquired an old bottle marked "J. Hindle & Co." with what looks like a picture of the Soldiers and Sailors Monument in Indianapolis on it. What is the history of this, and what is it worth?

A: J. Hindle & Co. (Ltd.) was formed in 1894 as successor to James Hindle of Hull, England. This isn't the Indianapolis monument, it's the Wilberforce Monument, located in Hull. The monument was erected in 1834 to honor William Wilberforce, an English politician who worked to abolish the slave trade. J. Hindle & Co. manufactured aerated and mineral water and other beverages, and was listed as an "agent" for other manufacturers. Your bottle is worth $15-$20 or less.

Q: I have an autographed 8-by-10-inch glossy black-and-white photograph of boxer Gene Tunney. It's in perfect condition and is about 75-80 years old. Does it have any value? If so, where should I try to sell it?

A: The price an autographed picture will bring depend on the fame of the celebrity, rarity and authentication; autographs of many celebrities and sports stars have been faked. American boxer Gene Tunney (1897-1978) was the world heavyweight champion from 1926 to 1928, when he retired from boxing. Autographed pictures of Tunney are fairly common. Some sell for $20 to $40, while some that are declared real by a recognized authentication service sell for over $100. You can sell it to an autograph dealer or at an auction. It's difficult to sell it online because there are so many fakes.

Q: I own an antique Kodak folding camera with a leather case. There's a 1910 patent date on it, and it's also identified as a "No. 1A Autographic Kodak Jr." Please tell me more about it, including its value.

A: The Eastman Dry Plate Co., founded in 1881, became the Eastman Kodak Co. in 1892. It introduced the No. 1A Autographic Kodak Jr. camera in April 1914 and made 48,000 of the cameras. Today the model sells for about $75.

Tip: Keep heirloom fabrics like quilts, tablecloths or christening gowns away from scented candles, cigarette smoke and cooking smells. They all cause damage.

Terry Kovel and Kim Kovel answer questions sent to the column. By sending a letter with a question, you give full permission for use in the column or any other Kovel forum. Names, addresses or email addresses will not be published. We cannot guarantee the return of photographs, but if a stamped envelope is included, we will try. The amount of mail makes personal answers or appraisals impossible. Write to Kovels, Auction Central News, King Features Syndicate, 300 W. 57th St., New York, NY 10019.

CURRENT PRICES

Current prices are recorded from antiques shows, flea markets, sales and auctions throughout the United States. Prices vary in different locations because of local economic conditions.

  • Depression glass biscuit jar, lid, Mayfair, 14 inches, $10.
  • Cupboard, blind-paneled door, drawer, green paint, 1900s, 18 1/2 x 19 x 35 1/2 inches, $70.
  • 1899 calendar, Greenwich Insurance Co., "Crossing the Stream," lithographed cardboard, full pad, 8 x 14 inches, $90.
  • Jack Armstrong ring, whistle, brass luster, Egyptian symbols, Wheaties premium, 1937, $115.
  • Bronze bell, cast panels, inscribed text, verdigris patina, Chinese, 1800s, 10 inches, $120.
  • Majolica compote, lion masks, allegorical handles, raised feet, H. Lonitz, Austria, circa 1890, 16 x 9 inches, $405.
  • Carnival glass fruit bowl, Peacock at the Fountain, ruffled edge, Renninger blue, $800.
  • Window cornice, neoclassical, giltwood, pediment, masque, anthemia surround, 18 by 74 inches, $920.
  • A. Walter figurine, two brown mice, yellow rocky base, pate de verre glass, 2 inches, $1,560.
  • Toy airplane, "America," stars in circles, tri-motor, open cockpit, pilots, cast iron, aluminum, pull toy, Hubley, circa 1950, 17 x 13 inches, $2,960.

New! "Kovels' Antiques & Collectibles Price Guide, 2015," 47th edition, is your most accurate source for current prices. It's available now and includes a special bonus section that will help you determine prices if you're downsizing and selling your antiques. It's the best book to own if you buy, sell or collect – and if you order now, you'll receive a copy with the author's autograph. This large-size paperback has more than 2,500 color photographs and over 32,000 up-to-date prices for over 700 categories of antiques and collectibles. You'll also find hundreds of factory histories and marks, a report on the record prices of the year and helpful sidebars and tips about buying, selling, collecting and preserving your treasures. Available for $27.95 plus $4.95 postage. Purchase online at KovelsOnlineStore.com; by phone at 800-303-1996; at your local bookstore; or write to Price Book, P.O. Box 22900, Beachwood, OH 44122.

© 2014 by Cowles Syndicate Inc.

 



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE

The convict is trying to smell the smoke from the dancing girl’s cigarette in this Old Judge cabinet ad. The wooden tobacco cabinet sold at auction for $780 by Garth's Auctioneers in Delaware, Ohio, in November. 

Last Updated on Monday, 05 January 2015 13:33
 

Kovels Antiques & Collecting: Week of Dec. 29, 2014

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Written by TERRY AND KIM KOVEL   
Monday, 29 December 2014 11:46
This elaborate mahogany tall case clock with nine tubes and two different chimes dates from about 1890. It auctioned recently for $13,743 at Neal Auction Co. in New Orleans.

BEACHWOOD, Ohio – The sound of chimes ringing 12 times at midnight blends with the "10, 9, 8 ..." chant that ushers in the new year on Jan. 1. Today we may watch the year change on a television screen, but in years past the celebration was timed by a chiming grandfather clock. Even earlier, New Year's were timed by a clock in the church steeple or the city hall tower. Before that, time was judged by daylight and darkness, and summer and winter climates.

Today the cell phone is always handy to let you know exactly what time it is. The grandfather clock was originally known as a tall case, longcase or floor clock. The 6- to 8-foot-tall clock has a weight-driven pendulum. It was invented in 1670 or so. In the early 20th century, it was the most accurate timepiece available. There are two types: the expensive eight-day clock that has to be wound once a week, and the less-expensive 30-hour clock that has to be wound once a day.

An unusually large 1880 carved mahogany clock, 107 inches high and made by J.J. Elliott of London, sold in September at Neal Auction Co. in New Orleans. The clock has elaborate carving, fretwork, rosewood panels with inlay, chimes, and a brass-and-silvered dial. It brought $13,743. To tell the accurate time for New Year's Eve, it must be placed in a room with a high ceiling – over 9 feet – and leveled.

Q: My four-piece bedroom suite includes a headboard, dresser, chest of drawers and nightstand. Each piece is marked with a triangle, a large letter "K" and "Korn Industries, Incorporated, Sumter Cabinet Company." It's solid oak and in excellent condition. What price could I ask for this set?

A: Sumter Cabinet Co. was a division of Korn Industries. Chester Korn started a timber company and sawmill in Cincinnati in 1889 to make buggy parts and other wood products. The company moved to Sumter, S.C., in 1921. Bedroom furniture was first made in the 1930s and dining room furniture in 1989. The company was sold in 2000 to Chromecraft Revington, which continued to use the Sumter brand name until late 2006. The price of used bedroom furniture depends on style, quality, condition and age. It probably can only be sold locally, because shipping is expensive. It should be priced as a bargain, about half the cost of a new set.

Q: How much is a bottle of Dom Perignon vintage champagne worth? I have a 1995 bottle, 750 ml, in its original box.

A: An unopened bottle of Dom Perignon vintage 1995 in its box is worth about $175 to $200. Empty, the bottle could sell for about $12 and the box for less than $10. Remember that in some states, you need a special license to sell bottled alcohol.

Q: Every time I used to visit my aunt, she asked me to polish her fancy silver tea-and-coffee service. When she died, she left the set to me. It includes a teapot, coffeepot, creamer, sugar bowl and waste bowl. Each piece is elaborately decorated, and each lid is topped by a pheasant finial. My aunt said she bought the set, which she thought was sterling, from an antiques dealer. The hallmark on the bottom is a circle surrounding the words "Meriden B Company." Also inside the circle is an image of a balance scale between two stars. Who is the maker, and what is the set worth?

A: Meriden Britannia Co. was organized in 1852 in Meriden, Connecticut, by brothers Horace (1824-1890) and Dennis (1828-1886) Wilcox and several other partners. Although its first products were made of Britannia metal (pewter), the company was making silver-plated hollowware by 1855. Your silver-plated (not sterling) set probably dates from the 1860s or '70s. In excellent condition, it could sell for over $1,000.

Q: I have a plastic clown bank in its original box. It must be at least 25 years old. The clown is 11 1/2 inches tall and is wearing a red-and-white polka-dot cloth shirt, yellow pants and orange shoes and hat. When you put a coin in his right hand and lift his left arm, the coin falls into his mouth. The box reads, "The more coins he eats, the bigger his belly gets." It's marked "J.S.N.Y." How much is it worth?

A: The initials stand for "Jeffrey Snyder New York," a company that made and imported giftware, housewares and toys. It was founded in New York in 1975, but its products were made in several Asian countries. It was part of Etna Products Co., a New York firm founded in 1945. The clown bank shows up online for about $15 without the box and for $30 with the original box.

Q: I have two souvenir paper needle books in fairly decent shape with all the needles still inside. One is from the 1939 New York World's Fair and pictures the Trylon and Perisphere. The other needle book reads "Ambassador of Good Will" on one side and pictures flags from several countries. It says "Lone Eagle" on the other side and pictures a plane flying over the globe, a ship and a train. Are they worth anything?

A: "The Lone Eagle" was a nickname for Charles Lindbergh, who flew a goodwill tour of Latin America in 1927 and 1928. Vintage needle books usually sell for $5 to $10. Needle cases that are Lindbergh souvenirs or mementos from a World's Fair are collectible. Each one might sell for about $15.

Tip: Clocks should be cleaned and lubricated every five years.

Take advantage of a free listing for your group to announce events or to find antique shows, national meetings and other events. Go to the Calendar at Kovels.com to find, publicize and plan your antiquing trips.

Terry Kovel and Kim Kovel answer questions sent to the column. By sending a letter with a question, you give full permission for use in the column or any other Kovel forum. Names, addresses or email addresses will not be published. We cannot guarantee the return of photographs, but if a stamped envelope is included, we will try. The amount of mail makes personal answers or appraisals impossible. Write to Kovels, Auction Central News, King Features Syndicate, 300 W. 57th St., New York, NY 10019.

CURRENT PRICES

Current prices are recorded from antiques shows, flea markets, sales and auctions throughout the United States. Prices vary in different locations because of local economic conditions.

  • Soda bottle, stoneware, cobalt-blue spout, shouldered, stamped "J.E. Ferris," c. 1870, 10 inches, $85.
  • Betty Boop doll, wood, string-jointed, painted red dress and shoes, 1930s, 4 1/2 inches, $110.
  • Cupboard, step-back, two glass doors, two panel doors, two drawers, yellow paint, c. 1900, 48 x 82 inches, $205.
  • Dopey, walker, tin lithograph, clockwork, Walt Disney Enterprises, Louis Marx, 8 inches, $235.
  • Meissen porcelain plate, turquoise ground, center courting scene, gilt rim, 7 1/4 inch pair, $240.
  • Aviation medal, "Feriam Sidera" (Strike the Stars), bronze, Art Nouveau nude attaching wings to her ankles, storks taking flight on reverse, engraved by Paul-Marcel Dammann, 1920, 3 1/2 inches, $545.
  • Alabaster bust, girl wearing bonnet, mourning dead bird in her basket, Italy, 16 1/2 inches, $625.
  • Blackamoor, turban, striped rolled-up pants, papier-mache, 68 inches, $1,000.
  • Silver-plated epergne, Georgian, six arms, crystal bowls, armorial engraving, England, c. 1900, 26 x 24 inches, $1,375.
  • Art glass vase, black silhouettes, dancing nudes in forest, turquoise, oval, c. 1950, 22 inches, $1,500.

Ralph and Terry Kovel, syndicated newspaper columnists, best-selling authors, avid collectors and national authorities on antiques, hosted the HGTV series “Flea Market Finds With the Kovels." Enjoy the shows all over again, and explore some of the most exciting flea markets in the United States. In each episode, Ralph and Terry share their secrets about when and where to shop, what to look for at shops and flea markets, and how to make a good buy. The DVDs of Season 3 include three DVDs, 12 episodes in total. Available online at KovelsOnlineStore.com for $29.95, plus $4.95 postage; by phone at 800-303-1996; or mail a check to Kovels, P.O. Box 22900, Beachwood, OH 44122.

© 2014 by Cowles Syndicate Inc.



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE
This elaborate mahogany tall case clock with nine tubes and two different chimes dates from about 1890. It auctioned recently for $13,743 at Neal Auction Co. in New Orleans.
Last Updated on Monday, 29 December 2014 12:07
 

Kovels Antiques & Collecting: Week of Dec. 22, 2014

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Written by TERRY AND KIM KOVEL   
Monday, 22 December 2014 13:15

This Santa is a bit thinner than usual so he can fit in his vintage tin car. It's a windup toy made in Japan before 1940. The toy sold for $37,760 – more than three times its presale estimate – at a 2013 Bertoia auction in Vineland, N.J.

BEACHWOOD, Ohio – Santa Claus traditionally arrives in his sleigh, but children born in the past 100 years or so have wondered why Santa doesn't use faster, newer ways to make his Christmas Eve journey. Writers and toymakers have modernized the Christmas story in several ways – with a train to the North Pole, an airplane, an early car, modern cars and even Santa in a rocket or spaceship. Of course, some still wonder how he can go around the world in one night while stopping to deliver gifts. One rare toy made in prewar Japan has Santa in an open car that's decorated with pictures of toys, children and a Christmas tree. Santa is seated with his bag of toys. The car has a clockwork drive wound with a key. It can zoom across the floor. The 7-inch-long toy sold for $37,760 at a 2013 Bertoia auction.

Q: Our family has complete collections of both Bing & Grondahl and Royal Copenhagen Christmas plates. We understand only a limited number of these plates have much value, but we would like to know the value of the collection as a whole. Is it greater than the sum of its parts?

A: Bing & Grondahl, a Danish porcelain factory, began making annual Christmas plates in 1895. The company became part of Royal Copenhagen in 1987. Royal Copenhagen, another Danish porcelain factory, had introduced its own series of Christmas plates in 1908. Many of the old plates can be found on the resale market. The first Bing & Grondahl Christmas plate, "Behind the Frozen Window, 1895," sold at auction for $2,320 in 2012. The first Royal Copenhagen Christmas plate, "Madonna & Child, 1908," sold for $2,722 in 2011. But most Christmas plates sell for about $20. Only the very earliest plates and those made during World War II are rare and sell for more. We have never seen a complete set of either company's plates offered for sale.

Q: I have a Bols Ballerina liquor bottle with a figural windup ballerina inside. When it's wound up, it plays music and the ballerina spins and moves her legs. A label on the bottom says "Le Bleu Danube" and "Bottle and Unit Made in France." The liquor has evaporated a little, but the ballerina works perfectly. The label says "Sale Distributors for the USA, Brown Forman Import Company, New York 16, New York." Does this bottle have any value?

A: Bols Ballerina bottles were made between 1957 and 1978. They came filled with different kinds of liquor made by Lucas Bols, a Dutch distillery. Two versions were made, with the ballerina wearing either a red skirt or a white skirt. The Bols family opened a distillery in Amsterdam in 1575, making Lucas Bols the world's oldest distillery brand. There have been several changes in ownership, but the company is still in business. Brown-Forman offered the Bols Ballerina bottle as a Christmas item in 1959. It was produced in limited quantities at that time but proved so popular that thousands more were made. Collectors like unique bottles. A full bottle in its original box sells for the highest price. Your partly full bottle without the box is worth about $50.

Q: We inherited a bird's-eye maple bedroom set that has been in the family for years. It consists of a bed, dresser, dressing table, rocking chair and straight-back chair. There is a sticker on the back of the dresser that reads, "The Upham Mfg. Co., Marshfield, Wisconsin, Manufacturers of Chamber Suits [sic] and Side Boards." The drawers to the dresser have little locks and we have the keys. Can you tell us anything about this furniture?

A: William H. Upham and his brother, C.M. Upham, built a sawmill in Marshfield in 1879. In 1881 they opened a furniture factory and veneer mill. Upham Manufacturing Co. was incorporated in 1883. By 1890 the company included a flour mill, grain elevator, general store, railway, waterworks and electric light plant. The 1904 Furniture Journal said the company sold "cheap, medium and high grade chamber suits, odd dressers, chiffoniers, sideboards and buffets." Upham Manufacturing was in business until 1927. Your furniture was probably made in the late 1890s or early 1900s.

Q: Are my old Budweiser Christmas steins worth anything?

A: Budweiser has issued an annual Christmas beer stein every year since 1980. The ceramic steins are made in Brazil. Today only the oldest, sold in 1980 and 1981, sell for more than $100. We have seen a 1980 stein listed for $130.

Tip: Coffee and tea stains can be removed from the inside of silver or porcelain pots or cups with warm water and a denture-cleaning tablet. Use a five-minute tablet in two cups of water, let it stand for 10 minutes, rinse and dry. If some loose residue remains, clean it with a wet brush.

Need prices for your antiques and collectibles? Find them at Kovels.com, our website for collectors. You can find more than 900,000 prices and more than 11,000 color photographs that help you determine the value of your collectibles. Study the prices. Go to the free Price Guide at Kovels.com. The website also lists publications, clubs, appraisers, auction houses, people who sell parts or repair antiques, show lists and more. Kovels.com adds to the information in this column.

Terry Kovel and Kim Kovel answer questions sent to the column. By sending a letter with a question, you give full permission for use in the column or any other Kovel forum. Names, addresses or email addresses will not be published. We cannot guarantee the return of photographs, but if a stamped envelope is included, we will try. The amount of mail makes personal answers or appraisals impossible. Write to Kovels, Auction Central News, King Features Syndicate, 300 W. 57th St., New York, NY 10019.

CURRENT PRICES

Current prices are recorded from antiques shows, flea markets, sales and auctions throughout the United States. Prices vary in different locations because of local economic conditions.

  • Depression glass salt and pepper, Doric, pink, $25.
  • Fireplace surround, cast iron, wreath, leaves, S. Thompson, c. 1880, 35 inches, $315.
  • Popeye bag-puncher figure, pipe in mouth, tin, windup, Chein, 7 inches, $480.
  • Keno goose game, mahogany balls, turned wood, supports, c. 1880, 22 1/2 inches, $540.
  • Enterprise coffee mill, No. 750, cast iron, countertop, 1 wheel, red, blue, gold, 21 inches, $560.
  • Santa Claus nodder, composition head, fur beard, wood body, Germany, 11 1/2 inches, $590.
  • Decoy, trumpeter swan, sleeping, carved, white, black paint, Chesapeake Bay, 32 inches, $1,140.
  • Chanel necklace, bronze, 12 plaques, 4 mounted stones, rhinestone surround, marked, box, 1997, 24 inches, $2,390.
  • Bookcase, L. & J.G. Stickley, oak, gallery top, paned glass doors, shelves, c. 1910, 55 x 49 inches, $3,200.
  • Cane, oak, turned, carved names of 55 men executed at Auburn Prison, 1890-1916, A. Lamb, 31 inches, $7,340.
Keep up with changes in the collectibles world. Send for a free sample issue of our 12-page, color-illustrated newsletter, "Kovels on Antiques and Collectibles," filled with prices, news, information and photos, plus major articles and opinions about the world of collecting. An important tool for anyone who buys or sells antiques and collectibles. To subscribe at a bargain $27 for 12 issues, write Kovels, P.O. Box 8534, Big Sandy, TX 75755; call 800-829-9158; or subscribe online at KovelsOnlineStore.com.

© 2014 by Cowles Syndicate Inc.



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE

This Santa is a bit thinner than usual so he can fit in his vintage tin car. It's a windup toy made in Japan before 1940. The toy sold for $37,760 – more than three times its presale estimate – at a 2013 Bertoia auction in Vineland, N.J. 

Last Updated on Monday, 22 December 2014 13:27
 

Kovels Antiques & Collecting: Week of Dec. 15, 2014

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Written by TERRY AND KIM KOVEL   
Monday, 15 December 2014 14:06
It seems odd that cherubs drinking wine, not beer, are carved on the outside of this ivory beer stein. It has a hinged lid and a handle. It sold for $5,760 at Fox Auctions of Vallejo, Calif., even though there are extra problems involved in selling old ivory.

BEACHWOOD, Ohio – Tradition claims that it was the bubonic plague in the 14th century that inspired the creation of beer steins. Many people had noticed that there were more deaths in filthy places in town than in clean sections, and that there were clouds of insects along with the illness in Central Europe. By the early 1500s, laws had been passed that all food and beverages served in public must be covered to keep insects away. The common drinking glass was a mug, so a hinged lid with a thumb-lift was added – and the stein was created. Since beer was already a common beverage and its taste was improved when lids helped prevent spoilage, beer consumption increased and so did the manufacture of steins. They were made of pewter, wood, stoneware and, for the very wealthy, ivory. Painted or carved decorations were added. A 1-liter stein made of carved ivory with scenes of cherubs drinking wine sold at a Fox stein auction in September 2014 for $5,760.

Q: I bought a Chinese lacquered cabinet from a friend who inherited it from her parents. Her father, a merchant seaman, bought the cabinet in Hong Kong years ago. It's 35 inches tall and 41 inches wide. The top opens up like a chest, and both the inside of the top and the outside of the cabinet are painted and inset with jade. Is the chest valuable?

A: Your chest probably would sell for a good price. Chinese antiques are "hot" these days – sought by collectors here and in China. Lacquered cabinets are especially desirable and can sell for prices into the thousands, as long as they're high quality and in great condition.

Q: I would like to know the value of a silver medicine spoon that belonged to my grandmother when she was a nurse at the turn of the 20th century. The handle curves back and turns under. There is a red cross on the back of the handle stamped, "Red Cross Medicine Spoon JB & SM Knowles, Prov., RI, USA." The gold-washed bowl ends in a pouring spout and is marked on the back "Pat. 1901, Sterling 925/1000." What's it worth?

A: Your medicine spoon, patented in 1901, was sold by druggists. The bent handle allows the spoon to rest level on a table so a teaspoon of medicine can be poured into it. J.B. & S.M. Knowles of Providence, R.I., was in business from 1875 until 1905. Your spoon is worth about $150.

Q: I have some Hess toy trucks from the 1960s and '70s. I think Hess Corp. releases a new toy nearly every holiday season. Are mine worth much?

A: The first Hess toy truck, sold in 1964, was a tanker-trailer that would sell today for about $120. Others from the 1960s and early '70s are even pricier. The 1970-'71 fire engine can sell for close to $500 if you have the original box, and the 1966 tanker ship with its box lists for well over $1,000.

Q: I have a Jim Beam decanter that's shaped like a baseball. It's 10 inches high, has a batter at the top and reads, "Professional Baseball's 100th Anniversary, 1869-1969." It has never been opened. What is it worth?

A: Jim Beam whiskey dates back to the late 1700s. The company started selling Kentucky Straight Bourbon in special containers in 1953. The bottles were made by Regal China Co. of Chicago, which made several series of collectible ceramic bottles. Your bottle is from the Sports Series. Jim Beam ceramic bottles are not as popular as they were years ago and are not easy to sell. Your bottle, full or empty, in excellent condition might sell for $80. In poor condition, it's worth $15 to $30.

Q: My father, born in 1889, worked as an electrician for the Sterling Bronze Co. of New York City. In 1916 he was working at a house in upstate New York, switching out a Sterling Bronze Co. six-light Colonial-style chandelier for a French Provincial model. He bought the Colonial model and left it to me in 1960. What do you think the chandelier would sell for today?

A: Sterling Bronze Co. was in business during the early decades of the 20th century. It made high-quality electric light fixtures, including chandeliers and sconces. We have seen pairs of Sterling Bronze Co. sconces auction recently for more than $2,000. Chandeliers may not sell for as much, though, because it's hard to find new light bulbs that work in antique fixtures. If you have bulbs for it that work and look attractive, ask a nearby appraiser to look at your chandelier in person to estimate its value.

Q: I would like to know if my picture titled Ulysses and the Sirens is of any value. It's 7 by 10 inches and is signed by Thomas Moran.

A: Thomas Moran (1837-1926) was born in England but moved to Philadelphia with his family when he was a child. He worked as an illustrator in Philadelphia before moving to New York City, where he became a magazine illustrator and landscape painter. His original landscape oil painting of Ulysses and the Sirens was completed in 1900 and is 28 by 40 inches. It sold at a 1999 Christie's auction for $178,500. Your small print of the painting would probably sell for under $20.

Tip: If two tumblers get stuck when stacked, try putting cold water into the inside glass, then put both into hot water up to the lower rim.

Terry Kovel and Kim Kovel answer questions sent to the column. By sending a letter with a question, you give full permission for use in the column or any other Kovel forum. Names, addresses or email addresses will not be published. We cannot guarantee the return of photographs, but if a stamped envelope is included, we will try. The amount of mail makes personal answers or appraisals impossible. Write to Kovels, Auction Central News, King Features Syndicate, 300 W. 57th St., New York, NY 10019.

 

CURRENT PRICES

Current prices are recorded from antiques shows, flea markets, sales and auctions throughout the United States. Prices vary in different locations because of local economic conditions.

  • Cracker Jack box, Jack saluting, Bingo the dog, red, white, blue, 1920s, 6 x 2 inches, $25.
  • Hermes scarf, Luna Park, jacquard silk, pleated, multicolor, black ground, Joachim Metz, 35 x 35 inches, $265.
  • Texas longhorns, leather strap, 7 feet, 6 inches, $330.
  • Empire-style headboard, mahogany, gilt, arched crest, downturned swan's heads, 62 x 65 inches, $375.
  • Tiffany silver cake stand, engraved strapwork, shell border, molded shell rim, footed, 10 1/2 inches, $720.
  • Document box, domed, red, green, yellow flowers, leaves, berries, painted, tin, Connecticut, c. 1820, 10 inches, $720.
  • Doll furniture, Sheraton bench, tiger maple, shaped crest, plank seat, scrolled arms, 17 x 27 inches, $780.
  • Candy container, boy with snowball, bisque, googly eyes, cotton clothing, Germany, 5 1/2 inches, $830.
  • Stoneware pitcher, cobalt blue fruit and vines, oval, rim, base incised, Rockingham County, Va., c. 1866, 1 gallon, $980.
  • Irish Belleek mask, bulldog head, collar, brown, tan, black mark, c. 1885, 8 inches, $2,000.

"Kovels' Buyers' Guide to Modern Ceramics: Mid-Century to Contemporary" is our special report on contemporary, modern and midcentury ceramics made since 1950-hot collectibles today. The report identifies important pottery by American and European makers and includes more than 65 factories and 70 studio artists, each with a mark and dates. Works by major makers including Claude Conover, Guido Gambone, Lucie Rie, as well as potteries like Gustavsberg, Metlox and Sascha Brastoff, are shown in color photos. Find the "sleepers" at house sales and flea markets. Special Report, 8 1/2 x 5 1/2 inches, 64 pp. Available only from Kovels for $19.95, plus $4.95 postage and handling. Order by phone at 800-303-1996; online at Kovels.com ; or mail to Kovels, Box 22900, Beachwood, OH 44122.

© 2014 by Cowles Syndicate Inc.



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE
It seems odd that cherubs drinking wine, not beer, are carved on the outside of this ivory beer stein. It has a hinged lid and a handle. It sold for $5,760 at Fox Auctions of Vallejo, Calif., even though there are extra problems involved in selling old ivory.
Last Updated on Monday, 15 December 2014 14:26
 
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