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Kovels - Antiques & Collecting

Kovels Antiques & Collecting: Week of Feb. 3, 2014

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Written by TERRY AND KIM KOVEL   
Monday, 03 February 2014 11:06
Cadette Borated Baby Talc was sold in this 7 3/8-inch-tall tin. The yellow and gray tin was used by Cadette Products Co. of Rutherford, N.J. It sold for $184 at a 2013 auction held by William Morford of Cazenovia, N.Y.

BEACHWOOD, Ohio – Hunting for treasures seems to be an inborn trait. Perhaps it's from the need of the caveman to search, find food and store some for later use. For centuries, the very rich surrounded themselves with expensive art and artifacts to impress each other and "the peasants."

Today, many people enjoy collecting a variety of things, like costume jewelry, bottles, tools, prints, pottery, 1950s furniture, advertising and sports and political items. Sometimes the best information about collections comes from the clubs and publications devoted to the subject.

One subcategory of advertising we recently noticed are talcum powder tins, since lawsuits related to talcum powder have been in the news recently. Talc is a mineral. It absorbs moisture, and in powdered form it has been used for centuries to keep skin dry. Some natural talc contains asbestos, which can be dangerous to health, so since the 1970s the talcum powder sold in stores has been processed to be asbestos-free.

Collectors like old talcum powder tins because of their clever designs made to attract buyers. Tins were decorated with images of babies, flowers, nursery-rhyme figures and clever graphics. Egyptian talcum powder made by Palmolive was in a tin that looks like an Egyptian column. Mennen's early tins feature a seated baby that we are told was actually the brand owner's child. A 1964 can of Beatles "Margo of Mayfair" talc has a drawing of the four Beatles. Look for tins by Watkins, Colgate, Johnson, Caswell-Massey and other major brands, and also brands from other countries or long-gone companies. Prices range from $10 to about $150 for most tins offered online, but the rarest and most beautiful may cost as much at $800.

Q: About 40 years ago, I bought an oak lawyer's rotary desk at auction. It was in awful condition, having been used in the office of a grain elevator for many years. I refinished it and used it as my office desk for many years. One side section of the desk swivels and the other side has a large drawer for files. Pasted inside one of the small drawers is a form for ordering accessory items from the E.H. Stafford Desk Co. of Muskegon, Mich. Any history?

A: The E.H. Stafford Co. was founded in 1890 and was reincorporated as E.H. Stafford Manufacturing Co. in 1904. The company made school, church and office furniture as well as opera chairs. It was in business until at least the 1920s. Because it's an interesting desk, it probably would sell for $500 to $700.

Q: I'm trying to find information about my old copper barrel. It's stamped "Lippincott, 8 gal." and "916 Filbert St." It also has an eagle on it and the abbreviation "Phila." Can you tell me who made the barrel and how old it might be?

A: Several members of the Lippincott family ran a business at this Filbert Street address from 1832 until about 1911. John and Charles Lippincott of Philadelphia made special copper machinery before expanding into the production of soda water, syrups and equipment for carbonating water. Charles took over the business from John, his older brother, in 1865. He made ornate soda fountains with multiple spigots for different flavors. Charles Lippincott & Co. joined with three other companies to form the American Soda Fountain Co., a trust designed to monopolize soda fountain manufacturing, in 1891. When Charles retired, his sons A.H. and F.H. Lippincott took over the business. They withdrew from the American Soda Fountain Co. in 1907 and moved to a different address in about 1911. By 1916 the company was no longer making soda fountains. Your copper bucket was made before 1911.

Q: I have about 100 different-colored airplane cards that were packaged in Wings cigarettes during World War II. They picture U.S. and Royal Air Force warplanes with identification and other information on the back. The cards are 2 by 2 1/2 inches. What are they worth?

A: Wings cigarettes were first made by Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corp. of Louisville, Ky., in 1929. The company sponsored a radio show called "Wings of Destiny" from 1940 to 1942, and the cards were issued as premiums in cigarette packs during those years. They are part of a series called "Modern American Airplanes." There were three sets of cards with 50 cards in each set. The company originally intended to issue just one set, but later decided to issue two more. The sets are labeled A, B or C, although not all of the first set had a letter code. Cards from the first set are harder to find than those from later sets. The cards, in good condition, sell for about $1 to $2 each today.

Q: I have a leather card case marked "Wilro Shop." Can you tell me something about the maker and possible age of the case?

A: The Wilro Shop was founded in 1902 by sisters Rose and Minnie Dolese of Chicago. They made leather and metal goods, dower and wardrobe chests, pottery and other items. Tooled purses, card cases, desk sets and illuminated leather book covers were decorated in the Arts and Crafts style popular at the time.

Tip: Don't ignore vintage transistor radios (1955-1963) if you see them at house sales or flea markets. Collector interest in all kinds of radios is growing and the supply of old radios is shrinking.

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 photos that help you determine the value of your collectibles. Study the prices. It's free at Kovels.com. Our website also lists publications, clubs, appraisers, auction houses, people who sell parts or repair antiques, antique shows 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.

  • Sterling-silver ladle, Mechanic Sterling Co., 8 3/4 inches, $180.
  • Federal stand, cherry, maple, drawer, scrolled legs, 28 x 19 inches, $180.
  • B.O. Plenty walker toy, holding baby and gift, tin lithograph, clockwork, 9 inches, $210.
  • Redware pitcher, applied hearts, scrolls, Pennsylvania, 1800s, 5 1/4 inches, $595.
  • Madame Alexander Wendy bride doll, plastic, walker, garter, veil, white gown, box, 18 inches, $225.
  • Sampler, alphabet, urn, flowers, butterflies, strawberry border, silk, linen, Caroline Malilda, age 8, 1835, frame, 19 x 13 1/2 inches, $300.
  • Dog doorstop, seated, leash, collar, locket, stoneware, brown mottled, Albany slip glaze, circa 1890, 9 1/2 inches, $430.
  • Bohemian pottery vase, amethyst, iridescent, wavy rim, bulbous base, Rindskopf, 7 x 14 inches, $440.
  • Magnifier, tabletop, figural, nude girl, kneeling, reflecting pool, bronze, 3 1/2 x 5 3/4 inches, $525.
  • Empire-style table, mahogany, gilt metal mounts, round, tri-part base, 18 3/4 x 33 inches, $1,000.

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
Cadette Borated Baby Talc was sold in this 7 3/8-inch-tall tin. The yellow and gray tin was used by Cadette Products Co. of Rutherford, N.J. It sold for $184 at a 2013 auction held by William Morford of Cazenovia, N.Y.
Last Updated on Monday, 31 March 2014 12:50
 

Kovels Antiques & Collecting: Week of Jan. 27, 2014

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Written by TERRY KOVEL   
Monday, 27 January 2014 13:19

This Federal worktable probably was made in the early 19th century in Vermont. It sold for $3,900 at a Skinner auction in Boston in October.

BEACHWOOD, Ohio – Sewing was as important as cooking in centuries past. The most valuable things in an 18th-century American home were linens, bedcovers and drapes. The wealthy could import fabrics from Europe. The average family made their own fabric. They raised sheep or plants, sheared the sheep or harvested the plants, and went through many steps to make thread, color it and weave it into cloth. Then the cloth had to be cut and sewn into clothing or household items.

So it is not surprising that the sewing supplies in a well-to-do home were stored in a special sewing worktable in the main room. The women of the household could take out the fabric and sew whenever there was time. It often was a winter job done while sitting near a fireplace. Most sewing stands looked like small tables and stood about 28 inches high, the height of a desk. There was a drawer to hold sewing tools, needles, thread, scissors and measuring tape. Many were made with a large fabric bag hanging below the drawer, accessible when the top of the table was lifted. It is a form not seen in the average 20th-century home, so when the bag is missing from a table, collectors may not realize they're looking at a sewing table with a missing part.

An October 2013 Skinner auction offered an early 19th-century sewing table missing its original bag. The maple and mahogany worktable with an attractive patterned top sold for $3,900.

Q: I have a 14-piece set of kitchen canisters that are the color of mother-of-pearl. They're decorated with gold trim and red roses. There are six large canisters labeled Coffee, Rice, Oatmeal, Flour, Sugar and Tea; six smaller canisters for spices labeled Ginger, Cinnamon, Cloves, Nutmeg, Allspice and Pepper; and two cruets labeled Oil and Vinegar. The marks on the bottom are "Ditmar Urbach" above a star, the letter "Z," an image of a wing and "Made in Czechoslovakia." When were they made and how much are they worth?

A: The mother-of-pearl glaze on your set was popular in the 1920s. Sets like yours sell for about $200 to $400. The pottery where your set was made was founded in 1882 as Brothers Urbach in Turn-Teplitz, Bohemia, Austria (now Trnovany, Czech Republic). In 1919 it merged with Ditmar and became Ditmar-Urbach. It was taken over by the Nazis in 1938 and became Ostmark-Ceramics AG

Q: My mother bought a beautiful American Character doll for my ninth birthday in 1932. The doll's eyes open and close and her mouth is open in a smile that shows her teeth. She can't say "Mama" anymore, but other than that she is in fine shape. Can you tell me her present value?

A: The American Character Doll Co. was founded in New York City in 1919. The company made baby dolls, toddler dolls, mama dolls and other dolls in several sizes. The dolls were made of composition, rubber or hard plastic. American Character dolls were high-end dolls with well-made clothes. Although they sold for only a few dollars in the 1920s and '30s, they were expensive at the time. The company's best years were in the 1950s and early '60s when its Betsy McCall and Tiny Tears dolls were so popular. American Character Doll Co. went out of business in 1968 and its molds were sold to Ideal. It's impossible to suggest a value for your doll without knowing exactly which American Character doll you have. But the loss of its voice lowers the value. American Character dolls sell for prices from under $100 to a high of a few hundred dollars.

Q: What is a "Mickey Mouse" telephone insulator? I keep getting that reference when I check online for Mickey Mouse collectibles.

A: Most telephone insulators, the glass pieces at the top of telephone poles that hold the wires, have rounded tops. A few varieties have protruding pieces that make the insulator look like a silhouette of Mickey Mouse's head. The protruding pieces look like large ears. Because the name and shape are unusual, these insulators are popular with collectors.

Q: I have a heavy brass letter opener marked "Harlow, Breed & Cooley Wool, 184 Summer St., Boston." Does it have any value?

A: Harlow, Breed & Cooley were wool dealers in Boston from about 1912 until about 1926. Advertising letter openers made of brass sell for under $20 to over $100, depending on the design.

Q: I paid $50 for a hanging scale I bought at a yard sale. The scale says, "Pelouze Mfg. Co., Makers, Chicago, USA, patent pending." It can weigh items up to 20 pounds. Can you tell me its possible value?

A: William N. Pelouze founded Pelouze Scale and Manufacturing Co. in Chicago in 1894. The company made several different kinds of scales. It eventually was bought by Rubbermaid, which was bought by Newell Co. in 1999. Pelouze scales are now being made by Newell Rubbermaid. The price of a collectible is what someone will pay for it. You paid $50 for the scale, so it was worth that much to you. Other similar scales have sold for $35 to $60.

Tip: Put ceramic saucers or glass or plastic plant holders under vases of flowers or potted plants to protect your furniture. You can buy inexpensive throwaway plastic dishes that have a rim and are exactly the right size and shape for a planter.

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.

  • Clifton Pottery teapot, Indian Ware, low lines, 2 7/8 x 8 1/2 inches, $25.
  • Spool holder, tiger maple, carved, cutouts, cast iron, 7 1/2 x 9 inches, $120.
  • Sterling-silver dish, Windsor pattern, lobed body, Reed & Barton, circa 1940, 8 1/2 inches, $215.
  • Whirligig, wooden, painted, man, green jacket, metal rod, circa 1905, 18 inches, $250.
  • Toy Heinz truck, pressed steel, white paint, Metal Craft, 12 inches, $300.
  • Peachblow rose bowl, tri-fold, Mount Washington Art Glass Society sticker, 3 1/2 inches, $375.
  • Tin shield, stars, stripes, red, white & blue paint, scalloped top, 17 1/2 x 14 inches, $600.
  • Synagogue wall hanging, 10 Commandments in Hebrew & English, silk embroidery, circa 1920, 24 x 34 inches, $625.
  • Corner cupboard, walnut, glass door, two panel doors, Pennsylvania, circa 1800, 82 x 41 inches, $650.
  • Store sign, top hat, sheet tin, red paint, silvered buckle and band, circa 1820, 12 x 19 inches, $1,185.

New! The Kovels.com Premium website is up and running. In addition to 900,000 free prices for antiques and collectibles – more than 11,000 of them with photographs – premium subscribers will find a dictionary of marks for silver and another for ceramics, with pictured marks and company histories. Premium membership also includes a subscription to the digital edition of our newsletter, "Kovels on Antiques and Collectibles," and its archives, where you'll find hundreds of articles about almost anything you might collect. Up-to-date information for the savvy collector. Go to Kovels.com and click on "Subscription" for more information.

© 2014 by Cowles Syndicate Inc.



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE

This Federal worktable probably was made in the early 19th century in Vermont. It sold for $3,900 at a Skinner auction in Boston in October.

Last Updated on Monday, 31 March 2014 12:50
 

Kovels Antiques & Collecting: Week of Jan. 20, 2014

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Written by TERRY AND KIM KOVEL   
Monday, 20 January 2014 11:47
Esmeralda, the vintage fortune-0teller, will nod, turn her head, move her jaws and hands and even blink. An Esmeralda machine was offered at two different 2013 auctions, but she did not attract a high enough bid to sell. Photo courtesy of DuMouchelles, Detroit. BEACHWOOD, Ohio – Fortune-tellers have been popular for centuries. In the United States, many 20th-century amusement parks had fortune-teller machines that enticed customers. Put a coin (or, in later years, a dollar bill) in the slot, and the life-size figure in the glass-fronted booth nodded and moved mouth, hands and even eyes while giving you a card telling your future.

The most famous fortune-teller machine is the 100-year-old Zoltar, the exotic figure featured in the movie "Big." He turned a boy into a grown-up Tom Hanks. But many machines featured female gypsy fortune tellers dressed in appropriate clothes. The most famous of these is Esmeralda, a machine that has been made by several manufacturers, many of them unknown, since the early 1900s. An Esmeralda even sits on Main Street in Disneyland. She moves, hands out a fortune card and then winks. The rarest fortune-telling machine known today was discovered in a restaurant in Virginia City, Mont., about seven years ago. It's about 100 years old and spoke to you in a 100-year-old voice if you inserted a coin. The machine is said to be worth more than $2 million. Vintage fortune-teller machines sell for thousands of dollars. New ones are being made today and can cost $9,000 or more.

Q: I was given a child's rocking chair more than 40 years ago. I would like to know more about it. It's stamped "Gardner's Patent, May 21, 1872." It is wood with brass tacks and has holes in the seat in a pattern of a star in a circle. Can you tell me something about the maker, age and value?

A: Gardner & Co. was in business from 1863 to 1888 in Clarksville (now Glen Gardner), N.J. The company made several types of plywood chairs. George Gardner held the patent for a plywood seat made of a layer of canvas and three layers of veneer running in opposite directions. Value of your child's rocking chair is $150 to $200.

Q: I have eight place settings of Stangl Pottery's Thistle pattern dishes, plus serving pieces. Can you tell me how old they are and what they're worth?

A: Stangl Pottery of Flemington and Trenton, N.J., was originally named Fulper Pottery. The name of the pottery was changed to Stangl Pottery in 1929, three years after Johann Stangl became president of the company. The pottery was sold in 1972 and closed in 1978. Stangl made Thistle pattern from 1951 to 1967. Your set probably is worth about half of what similar new sets sell for today.

Q: I have an Aladdin lamp that has been in our family for generations. The knob on the burner is marked "Mantle Lamp Co., Nu-Type, Model B, Aladdin, patents pending, Made in U.S.A., Chicago, Ill." It has a green glass shade with a landscape design on it. I'd like to know more about it and how old it is.

A: The Mantle Lamp Co. of America was founded by Victor Johnson in 1908. The company trademarked the name "Aladdin" that same year. In 1926 Johnson bought a glass factory and began manufacturing glass lamps, shades and chimneys. His lamps were sold by traveling salesmen. Although electricity was common in cities, there were still many rural homes without it, and kerosene lamps continued to sell well. Nu-Type burners were first made in 1932. Model B burners were introduced in 1933 and were made until 1955. The Mantle Lamp Co. merged with Aladdin Industries, a subsidiary, in 1949. The lamp division was sold to a group of investors in 1999 and became the Aladdin Mantle Lamp Co., which still is in business in Clarksville, Tenn. Your lamp was made between 1933 and 1949, when the company merged with Aladdin Industries and moved to Tennessee. Aladdin Knights of the Mystic Light is a club for collectors of Aladdin lamps. The club's website, AladdinKnights.org, can give you more information about Aladdin lamps.

Q: Would you please tell me the value of a plastic model set of a Borax 20-Mule Team? We have an unassembled one we mailed away for when we were kids in the mid 1960s. The wagons are light blue and the animals black. There's also a paper insert that explains the history of the 20-Mule Team.

A: Unassembled sets like yours sell for about $20. They aren't rare. Apparently a lot of kids mailed away for the sets and never put them together. The cleaning brand named 20 Mule Team Borax dates back to 1891 and was named for the teams of 18 mules and two horses that pulled wagons of borax (sodium borate) out of California's Death Valley in the 1880s. Today, the brand is owned by Dial.

Q: My father served in the British army in World War I. I have his camera and case in excellent condition. Please tell me what the camera is worth and any other information you might have.

A: The value of an old camera depends on the maker. You can find information by searching online or by going to your local library. If you don't know the model number of your camera, look at photos of vintage cameras by that maker and try to find one like it. If you check values online, remember that the asking price may be higher than what the camera eventually sells for.

Tip: Do not wrap or store scrapbooks in anything made of PVC rigid or flexible plastic.

Take advantage of a free listing for your group to announce events or to find antique shows, national meetings and other events. Go to Kovels.com/calendar 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.

  • Bing & Grondahl oyster-shell dish, seagull on blue sky inside shells, Fanny Garde, Denmark, c. 1948, 3 x 3 1/2 inches, $20.
  • Mary Gregory vase, shouldered, lime green, painted children, 8 1/2 inch pair, $75.
  • Flow Blue shelf clock, pink flowers, blue and gilt shaped border, pendulum, key, 12 1/2 inches, $210.
  • Horn & Hardart advertising sign, "Plenty of Eggs, Coconut Custard Pie," frame, c. 1950, 28 x 22 inches, $375.
  • Demijohn bottle, blown, amber, applied lip, 1900s, 20 inches, $380.
  • Tiffany Favrile glass bowl, gold, green, scalloped rim, ribbed, 7 inches, $390.
  • Pewter porringer, pierced handle, Samuel Danforth, c. 1805, 4 1/4 inches, $415.
  • Trencher, wooden, green painted exterior, mid 1800s, 4 x 20 inches, $470.
  • Candlestand, tiger maple, circa 1850, 27 x 21 inches, $625.
  • Silver ewer, leaves, mythological figures, Walker & Hall, England, c. 1945, 14 inches, $2,815.

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
Esmeralda, the vintage fortune-0teller, will nod, turn her head, move her jaws and hands and even blink. An Esmeralda machine was offered at two different 2013 auctions, but she did not attract a high enough bid to sell. Photo courtesy of DuMouchelles, Detroit.
Last Updated on Monday, 27 January 2014 13:27
 

Kovels Antiques & Collecting: Week of Jan. 13, 2014

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Written by TERRY AND KIM KOVEL   
Monday, 13 January 2014 15:32

This porcelain cane handle must have been used carefully to remain unbroken for over 100 years. The woman figure was made by the Meissen porcelain factory of Germany. It sold for $800 at an October 2013 Cowan's auction in Cincinnati.

BEACHWOOD, Ohio – Canes were used not only to aid in walking, but also as part of European and American fashionable dress in the 18th and 19th centuries. Many canes had an extra function, too.

Some held swords, guns, flasks, telescopes, cameras, fans, seats, perfume, poison, drugs or hidden papers. Many had silver, gold or jeweled handles or even handles that were modeled heads of presidential candidates. Elegant but fragile handles were made of porcelain. In the late 19th century, the famous Meissen porcelain factory in Germany made elaborate cane handles that look like small figurines. They were shaped to be easy to hold and carried, but would break if dropped or hit. Few of these cane handles have survived, and they often are sold without the cane shaft.

A three-quarter figure of a woman extending into a curved cane handle was auctioned by Cowan's Auctions of Cincinnati in October 2013. The handle, with Meissen's blue crossed-swords mark inside, sold for $800.

Q: I own an old wooden desk with a flip-down top hiding several pigeonholes. A paper sticker on the back reads "Maddox Tables." Please tell me something about the maker and the desk's value.

A: Maddox Table Co. was founded in Jamestown, N.Y., in 1898 by English immigrant William Maddox. He had invented several furniture-making and finishing machines before he started his own company. The company made tables, desks, secretaries and other case furniture. The company was sold in 1919 and again in 1978. It closed in the mid-1980s. Your desk, if in good condition, is worth $400 or so.

Q: I have an 8-by-10-inch painting by A.E. Hayes. I have been told that it's an example of "tin foil art." It's in a very old frame and the back is sealed with old tape. If I remove the tape, I'm likely to ruin the painting. Can you tell me how this painting was done?

A: Your painting is a piece of "tinsel art," which is a form of reverse painting on glass. It was popular from about 1850 to 1890. Most tinsel paintings were of flowers. The painting was done in reverse order. Flowers or other foreground details were painted on the glass first and then the background was painted. Pieces of crumpled foil were added to unpainted parts of the picture. Then the picture was framed with the clear glass in front, the foil in the back. The picture was backed with cloth or paper and sealed with a piece of cardboard or thin wood. When the painting was hung, the foil glimmered in the glow of candlelight or gas light. Most tinsel pictures were done by young women for their own homes. Perhaps A.E. Hayes was one of these women. Good early tinsel paintings sell for $100 to $500, depending on size, subject and condition.

Q: I inherited an old cider press from my uncle. Stenciling on it reads, "The Higganum Mfg. Corporation Manufacturers, Higganum, Conn., USA." It still works. We made cider with it the other day. Can you tell me anything about its history and value?

A: Higganum Manufacturing Co. was founded by brothers George and Thomas Clark in 1867. The company made cider mills, wine presses, lard presses, wagon jacks and agricultural equipment. It was incorporated by about 1880. In 1892, the company was renamed Clark Cutaway Harrow, after its most successful product. Several of the factory buildings burned down in 1914, but the company continued to operate for several more years. The rest of the property was sold in 1942. Your cider press was probably made in about 1880, before the company name was changed. Value: About $100.

Q: When I was a boy, my grandfather gave me a violin he said was very valuable because it was a genuine "Mittenwald." Stamped inside the instrument it reads, "Joan Carol Kloz, in Mittenwald, An. 1788." I searched the Internet and found that Johann Carol Klotz (1709-1769) was a violin maker in Mittenwald. However, the names are spelled differently on my violin and the date doesn't fit. What do you think? Is this a valuable violin?

A: Millions of violins supposedly made by famous German makers are fakes made in the early 1900s. Authentic old violins are rare. Several members of the Klotz family made violins in Mittenwald, which has been known for its violin makers since the late 17th century. The date on your violin is a problem since Joan (Johann) died in 1769. To find out if your violin is authentic, first show it to a professional violinist and ask if it appears to be a fine old violin. Then have a reputable musical instrument dealer or appraiser look at it. You will have to pay for an appraisal, but authentic old violins made by members of the Klotz family are rare and sell for thousands of dollars.

Tip: From 1954 to 1963, an American radio had a small triangle or circle on the dial between the 6 and 7 and 12 and 16. It was a Civil Defense mark.

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

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.

  • Hampshire Pottery bud vase, brown glaze, asymmetrical handles, circa 1900, 6 x 3 inches, $90.
  • Kalo silver pin, geometric cutout design, aqua stone, marked, 1 1/2 inches, $345.
  • Paper fan, figures and landscape, hand-painted, gilt, silver, ivory, box, France, circa 1700s, 11 inches, $420.
  • Pottery vase, blue, gray drip matte glaze, bulbous, signed "F. Carlton Ball," midcentury, 7 x 8 1/ 2 inches, $440.
  • Independence Hall bank, cast iron, red paint, 9 inches, $475.
  • Mortimer Snerd walker, tin lithograph, clockwork, Marx, box, 8 1/2 inches, $530.
  • Writing table, George III style, mahogany, drawer-fitted backsplash, lower drawer, 36 x 43 inches, $565.
  • Sterling silver fruit basket, openwork flowers, scrolling, swing handle, footed, F.M. Whiting, circa 1915, 4 x 14 inches, $940.
  • Jumeau doll, bisque head, paperweight eyes, mohair wig, jointed, composition, 10 1/2 inches, $3,620.
  • Lollipop penny scale, cast iron, porcelain face, claw feet, Mills Novelty Co., 15 x 69 x 24 inches, $4,500.

"Kovels' A Diary: How to Settle a Collector's Estate" is 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 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.

© 2014 by Cowles Syndicate Inc.



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE

This porcelain cane handle must have been used carefully to remain unbroken for over 100 years. The woman figure was made by the Meissen porcelain factory of Germany. It sold for $800 at an October 2013 Cowan's auction in Cincinnati.

Last Updated on Monday, 27 January 2014 13:26
 

Kovels Antiques & Collecting: Week of Jan. 6, 2014

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Written by TERRY AND KIM KOVEL   
Monday, 06 January 2014 14:00
A painted iron cutout of a sailor holding a telescope makes an unusual weather vane. It may have been meant to be Admiral David Glasgow Farragut. Blue, white, yellow and black paint remains on both sides. Photo courtesy of Cowan's Auctions Inc.

BEACHWOOD, Ohio – If you can't afford a rooster or running deer weather vane, or any other 19th-century weather vane made by an important company, you might be able to find a homemade example. Most folk-art collectors consider all weather vanes, commercially made or homemade, to be folk art.

Prices are highest for the most elaborate 3-D vanes by known makers. Homemade vanes often are cut from sheets of iron to look like silhouettes of deer, men, animals, birds, cars, trains, Indians, flags or occupational examples, like a photographer with a camera or a sailor with a telescope. It is difficult to date a homemade weathervane. Collectors pay the highest auction prices for good design, unusual subjects, good paint and old patina. Bullet holes, missing paint and dents don't seem to lower the value if the cutout is unusual, perhaps a 1930s car or a large and artistic whale. Some homemade vanes sell for thousands of dollars, but others might turn up at your local yard sale or flea market. Whirligig weather vanes, often of wood, also are going up in price. Horses, roosters and eagles are the most popular shapes today and, unfortunately, often are the most reproduced.

Always look in the backyard, in the garage and up at the roof when going to an estate or house sale. Buyers often overlook outdoor folk art.

Q: Years ago, I was given a very heavy glass vase. It's 6 inches high by 4 1/2 inches wide and is made of black cased glass within clear glass. The etched mark on the bottom is "Kosta 1556/046." I'm wondering what the vase is worth.

A: The Kosta glassworks factory in Sweden dates back to 1742. Its name is a combination of the last names of the two founders, Koskull and Stael. Kosta manufactured only window glass, glass for light fixtures and drinking glasses until the late 1890s, when it hired its own designers and started making art glass. Glass artist Vicke Lindstrand (1904-1983), who had previously worked at Orrefors, was Kosta's artistic director from 1950 to 1973. During Lindstrand's tenure, model numbers starting with a "1" were "production vases" made in large quantities. The number 1556 on your vase probably is the model number. Kosta merged with Boda and Afors in 1976 and became Kosta Boda, so it's likely your vase was made before 1976. In 1989 Kosta Boda merged with Orrefors and was renamed Orrefors Kosta Boda. Then, in 2005, the company was sold to the New Wave Group, which closed the Orrefors factory and today uses only the Kosta Boda label. While your vase may not be rare or extremely valuable, it still is a good piece of Swedish art glass.

Q: Could you tell me the value of a set of dining-room furniture made by American of Martinsville? The walnut set, which was purchased new in 1942, includes a table, six chairs, sideboard, china cabinet and hutch.

A: American of Martinsville was founded in 1906 in Martinsville, Va. It made only bedroom sets until the 1920s, when it introduced dining-room sets. The most valuable American of Martinsville vintage dining room sets today are in the Danish Modern style, which didn't become popular in the United States until the 1950s. Still, if your set is in good shape, you could sell it locally (so shipping costs aren't involved) for several hundred dollars.

Q: I have two child-size glass root beer mugs from the 1960s. They are each 3 inches high. One is stamped "A&W Root Beer" with a circular design. The other has a red printed design that says "Dog n Suds" and pictures a dog holding a tray. I remember my dad getting me a kid-size root beer in them. Do you think they're worth something?

A: The first A&W drive-in restaurant opened in Sacramento, Calif., in 1923. The company name is based on the initials of the owners, Roy Allen and Frank Wright. The first Dog n Suds opened in Champaign, Ill., in 1953. Most advertising glasses from restaurants and fast-food chains don't sell for much money because they were issued in large quantities and are easy to find. If a mug's design is unusual and the mug was issued in limited quantity, it might be of interest to collectors. Common glasses like yours sell for as low as $1 to $5.

Q: We are looking for information about an item that's hanging on a wall in a restaurant in Doon, Iowa. It's a semicircular piece of wood about 48 inches long. The ends are 24 inches apart. It's marked "Louden's Patent, Oct. 30, 1895." It looks old. What is it and what was it used for?

A: It's a singletree, which also is often called a "whiffletree" or "whippletree." It was used to hitch the traces of a horse's harness to a plow or other implement. William Louden (1841-1931) held several patents for improvements to farm equipment. He invented a hay carrier in 1867 and founded Louden Manufacturing Works in Fairfield, Iowa, a year later to manufacture hay carriers and other farm equipment. From 1906 to 1939, the company, by then named Louden Machinery Co., also designed barns. Louden Machinery Co. was sold in 1956 and its farm equipment was not made after 1965. Singletrees don't show up for sale very often. When they do, they usually sell for under $50.

Tip: Look carefully at a piece of cut glass before you buy it. Edges should not be ground down into the pattern, and pieces should have no chips or other damage.

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 photos that help you determine the value of your collectible. Study the prices; it's free at Kovels.com/priceguide. Kovels.com also has lists of 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.

  • Baseball pennant, St. Louis Browns, Brownie, yellow and brown felt, 1940s, 11 x 28 inches, $60.
  • Arranbee Nanette doll, plastic, blond wig, walker, purple dress, box, 15 inches, $70.
  • Cut glass ice-cream tray, Wallace pattern, Quaker City Cut Glass Co., Philadelphia, American Brilliant Period, 14 x 7 inches, $100.
  • Hires Root Beer mug, "Health and Cheer," man raising hand in toast, Mettlach, circa 1900, 5 inches, $120.
  • Cinnabar snuff bottle, inlaid stone, Chinese, 20th century, 2 3/4 inches, $175.
  • Sterling silver bowl, wide repousse flower border, Kirk & Sons, circa 1930, 9 inches, $180.
  • Potter & Mellen pin, 14K yellow gold, gemstone cluster, peridot, topaz, tourmaline, citrine, 1 x 1 inches, $265.
  • Fraktur, watercolor and ink, heart, birds, tulips, scalloped border, Lydia Miller, 1810, frame, 17 x 12 inches, $34.
  • Cane, wooden, bird handle, carved, painted, Schtockschnitzler Simmons, circa 1900, 32 inches, $650.
  • Sheraton chest, cherry, four drawers, Sandwich glass knobs, carved apron, backsplash, 46 inches, $1,320.

New! The best book to own if you want to buy or sell or collect – and if you order now, you'll receive a copy with the author's autograph. The new Kovels' Antiques & Collectibles Price Guide, 2014, 46th edition, is your most accurate source for current prices. This large-size paperback has more than 2,500 color photographs and more than 35,000 up-to-date prices for more than 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, plus helpful sidebars and tips about buying, selling, collecting and preserving your treasures. Available for $27.95 plus $4.95 postage. Purchase online atKovelsonlinestore.com ; by phone at 800-303-1996; at your local bookstore; or mail to Price Book, Box 22900, Beachwood, OH 44122.

© 2014 by Cowles Syndicate Inc.



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE
A painted iron cutout of a sailor holding a telescope makes an unusual weather vane. It may have been meant to be Admiral David Glasgow Farragut. Blue, white, yellow and black paint remains on both sides. Photo courtesy of Cowan's Auctions Inc.
Last Updated on Monday, 06 January 2014 14:28
 

Kovels Antiques & Collecting: Week of Dec. 30, 2013

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Written by TERRY AND KIM KOVEL   
Tuesday, 31 December 2013 12:32

‘A Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, Hotel Emrich, 485 to 489 Pennsylvania Ave., Washington, D.C.’ is the wording on the label under glass on this antique holiday gift flask. It once held a half pint of whiskey. The bottle sold for $468 at an online Norman C. Heckler bottle auction.

BEACHWOOD, Ohio – New Year's Eve celebrations have long included alcoholic drinks. A toast to the New Year is part of the party, along with music, noisemakers and a New Year's wish and kiss. In the early 1900s, bars were the hub of much social activity. Neighborhood folks would eat, drink and talk as they do today, but of course without a sportscast on a nearby TV set.

Gifts from the saloon management to regular customers were expected. In the 1880s, a popular gift was a special small glass flask filled with whiskey. Its label read "Season's Greetings," and included the name of the giver – a hotel, bar or bartender. These holiday bottles are very collectible today. Price is determined by the shape and color of the bottle and the historic interest in the giver.

Norman C. Heckler & Co., which operates online bottle auctions, recently sold a circa 1900 gift bottle from the Hotel Emrich in Washington, D.C., for $468. It had a label under glass, which added to the value.

Q: My grandmother, who was born in the late 1800s, had some pieces of silverware that I now own. I would like to preserve them and display them in a shadow box for my children. Is there something I can put on the silver to keep it from tarnishing?

A: Silver that is going to be displayed, not used for eating, can be lacquered to prevent tarnish. It should be cleaned before treating. You can have it lacquered by someone who repairs and restores silver, or you can buy a product meant specifically for silver and do it yourself. This can be a difficult process if the piece has an intricate design. Every bit of the silver must be covered and the lacquer must be applied evenly. Lacquer will yellow over time and may crack. You can use Renaissance Wax, a microcrystalline wax, instead of lacquer, but it will not prevent tarnish for as long. Silver can't be polished once it is lacquered. The lacquer has to be completely removed first. The type of box the silver will be displayed in also is important. It should have an airtight lid, if possible. Don't display the silver on felt, velvet or wool.

Q: I have a dining-room set that includes a French Provincial table with three leaves, a china cabinet with glass doors, six chairs and one armchair. All the chairs have been re-covered. A tag on the bottom of one of the chairs says "B.F. Huntley Co." The entire set was purchased at an estate sale in the 1970s. When were these pieces made and what might their value be? I'm going to sell them before we remodel.

A: B.F. Huntley, an employee of the Oakland Furniture Co., established his own furniture company in Winston-Salem, N.C., 1906. Later he acquired the Oakland Furniture Co. and two other furniture companies. In 1961 B.F. Huntley Furniture Co. merged with the Thomasville Chair Co. and became Thomasville Furniture Industries. Your vintage furniture is worth what comparable new sets sell for today.

Q: I have a very old glass plate that my great-grandmother gave me when I was 10 years old. That was 73 years ago. It's decorated with cigar bands on the back with a man's picture in the center. The back of the dish is covered with a felt-like material glued over the bands and center picture. Can you tell me how old it is and if it has any value?

A: Cigar bands, the decorative strips of paper wrapped around cigars, were first made in the 1830s to identify brand names. Cigar bands made from the late 1800s until about 1920 are the most colorful and decorative. "Cigar band art," which is sometimes referred to as a form of folk art, was a popular homemade craft in the early 1900s. The bands were used to decorate dishes, coasters, bracelets and other items. Your dish was decorated by gluing the large picture, face down, to the bottom of the dish, then gluing cigar bands face down so they completely covered the rest of the dish's exterior. The bands were then covered with felt so that when the dish is turned upright, the bands can be seen but the back is protected by the felt. Old cigar band dishes are not hard to find. They sell for $10 to hundreds of dollars, depending on age, condition and the talent of the maker.

Q: I own a 1950s coin-operated bowling alley game. It's 14 feet long and was made by United Manufacturing Co. of Chicago. It has scoring displays for six bowlers and was made in two sections so it can be transported easily. The game is 11 feet 2 inches long, 28 inches wide and in good condition. Please tell me what it's worth and how marketable it is.

A: When bowling was at its peak of popularity in the 1950s, United Manufacturing made several coin-operated versions of the game for use in bars and restaurants. Some are now in the homes of collectors. United was purchased by Seeburg in 1964, but the United brand name continued to be used for years. Your game, depending on condition, could sell for $1,500 or more. We have seen the game for sale on eBay and on websites devoted to collectors of coin-operated machines.

Q: I have a cut glass vase that is 20 inches tall and very heavy. It was my mother's, and I'm wondering what the value would be. There are no markings to show who made it. It has a cracked handle.

A: You might be able to repair the handle, but the value is lower with the crack even if it's repaired. If in perfect condition, the vase could sell for $300 to $400, but with the crack it is worth much less.

Tip: Cranberry juice will stain stone, so be careful if you have marble-top tables. Other liquids will stain, but cranberry juice stains are especially bad.

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.

  • Postcard, Happy New Year, black cat, felt hat, 1907, $10.
  • Butter chip, white, Haviland, 1890, $10.
  • Ratchet noisemaker, jesters, tin lithograph, multicolor, U.S. Metal, 1950s, 4 inches, $10.
  • Lighter, Camel Cigarettes, Turkish Blend, silver, circa 1960, $75.
  • Match safe, woman seated next to barrel, porcelain, circa 1875, 7 1/2 inches, $90.
  • Coin Spot finger lamp, oil, opalescent glass, circa 1900, 13 inches, $195.
  • Bronze figure, black boy, seated, arm on knee, striped pants, painted, 2 1/2 x 3 x 3 inches, $360.
  • Mission bookcase, oak, brass knob, lock, 1900s, 58 x 41 inches, $595.
  • Scarf, 1876 Philadelphia World's Fair, cotton, 25 x 18 inches, $700.
  • Volkstedt ceramic group, children playing chess, seated at table, 19th century, 5 1/2 inches, $795.

The Kovels have navigated flea markets for decades. Learn from the best. Kovels Flea Market Strategies: How to Shop, Buy and Bargain the 21st Century Way by Terry Kovel and Kim Kovel, tells you about the latest smartphone apps and websites to help you shop, share, and ship as well as what to wear, what to bring, and, most important, how to negotiate your way to a bargain. Also, tips on spotting fakes, advice about paying for your purchases and shipping suggestions. Full color booklet, 17 pages, 8 1/2 by 5 1/2 in. Available only from Kovels for $7.95 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.

© 2013 by Cowles Syndicate Inc.



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE

‘A Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, Hotel Emrich, 485 to 489 Pennsylvania Ave., Washington, D.C.’ is the wording on the label under glass on this antique holiday gift flask. It once held a half pint of whiskey. The bottle sold for $468 at an online Norman C. Heckler bottle auction.

Last Updated on Monday, 27 January 2014 13:26
 

Kovels Antiques & Collecting: Week of Dec. 23, 2013

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Written by TERRY AND KIM KOVEL   
Monday, 23 December 2013 12:21
This Noma Christmas-tree stand was made in the late 1920s or 1930s. The base is 14 1/2 inches in diameter. The stand is made of lithographed tin and pictures Santa's sleigh and reindeer. It sold for $270 at a November 2013 Rich Penn auction in Iowa.

BEACHWOOD, Ohio – Holiday-related collectibles are especially popular if they relate to Christmas, Halloween, Fourth of July, Easter, Thanksgiving, Valentine's Day and even St. Patrick's Day. But the most popular holiday for collectors is Christmas.

Families save tree ornaments, toppers, trim and lights, but it is harder to find a Christmas tree stand or fence. Early commercial tree stands were made of cast iron. Three or more legs held a tube large enough for the trunk of a tree and had large screws that dug into the tree trunk. The designs for the iron legs were much like the patterns found on iron stove feet or garden benches. The stands kept changing in style to match dominant furniture styles. By the 1920s, cone-shaped metal stands with lithographed tin pictures of Santa were popular. They resembled lithographed tin toys. Some of these stands were electrified for lights or hid a mechanism that made the tree revolve. Noma, the American company that made strings of Christmas tree lights and developed the bubble light in 1945, had started making stands in about 1926. By the 1960s, the Art Deco aluminum tree was popular, and stands with colored lights were made of shining metal to match. The most expensive antique stands are the early 1900 figural iron stands that look like a small Santa, a group of people or even reindeer. They sell for $200 to $750 each. Noma stands sell for about $200 to $300, and old aluminum stands with lights are $250 to $350. But beware. These have all been copied.

Q: I have a six-pack of 1955 Blatz Holiday flat-top beer cans. The pack has never been opened and it includes cans in all six colors. I think the cans, especially the pink and light blue, are valuable. What is the whole set worth?

A: There are many dedicated collectors of old and rare beer cans. Some would be eager to buy your rare set of 1955 Blatz holiday steel cans. In addition to light blue and pink, the set included green, chartreuse, dark blue and orange cans. Beer, previously sold in bottles, was first sold in cans in 1934. The cans were made of steel until 1958, when aluminum cans were introduced. Blatz Brewery opened in Milwaukee in 1846 and continued to operate under various owners until 1958, when it was sold to Pabst. The brand name is owned by Pabst today, too, but the original Blatz brewery has been converted to condos. We have seen a single green 1955 Blatz holiday sell for more than $250, so your complete set could top $1,000. To sell your cans, do some research and find the right market. Contact experts at the Brewery Collectibles Club of America (BCCA.com) and at Breweriana.com.

Q: I have a 6-foot-tall silver metallic Christmas tree that's at least 50 years old. Does it have any value? Should I sell it?

A: Aluminum Christmas trees were popular in the 1960s. The first ones were made by the Aluminum Specialty Co. of Manitowoc, Wis., in 1959. The trees have wire branches wrapped with aluminum strips to represent "needles." Early trees had collapsible tripod bases. Later, revolving bases were made, some with music. The trees came in various sizes and colors, but silver was the most popular. Since lights couldn't be put on aluminum trees, most people used a lighted revolving color wheel at the base of the tree. Millions of aluminum trees were made in the 1960s by several manufacturers. They went out of fashion by the end of the decade and could be picked up at garage sales for just a few dollars. Reproduction and new aluminum trees are being made. Collectors have recently become interested in the old aluminum trees, and prices have risen. Some sell for over $100. If you like the tree, you may just want to keep it and display it during the holidays.

Q: About 25 years ago, I bought an "M.I. Hummel" signed print of the Madonna for $12. It's 12 by 18 inches. My children had it framed for me. My daughter tried to search online for information about Hummel prints, but all she could find were figurines. Can you help?

A: Sister Maria Innocentia (Berta) Hummel (1909-1946) is most famous for the Goebel figurines based on her artwork. But before and after she became a nun in 1933, she drew and painted pictures that were also published as prints. The signature she used on yours is her convent name and means the original painting was done in 1933 or later. Your print would not sell today for much more than you paid for it, even with the frame.

Q: My husband's grandfather's uncle, named Otto Stark, was of German descent. He lived much of his life in the Indianapolis area and belonged to the "Hoosier Group." We have a few pieces of his artwork and wondered if they would be of any value.

A: The Hoosier Group was made up of five Indiana artists whose paintings, murals and portraits of Indiana people and places were featured in many exhibitions and public buildings in the "Hoosier State." The name "Hoosier Group" was first used to refer to them in 1894. Otto Stark (1859-1926) was born in Indianapolis and is known for his impressionist landscapes dating from the late 1800s and early 1900s. He started out as a woodcarver's apprentice and later worked as a lithographer. Stark studied art in France. He opened a studio in Indianapolis in 1894 and later taught art. His oil paintings are offered for $2,000 to $4,000, and his watercolors for $400 to $1,000.

Tip: Store fragile Christmas tree ornaments in plastic zip-lock bags. Be sure there is some air in each bag when you zip it. The air bubble protects like bubble wrap.

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.

  • Lefton Christmas girl figurine, muff & holly, 1950s, 3 3/4 inches, $20.
  • Hull Magnolia vase, footed, handles, matte glaze, c. 1946, 8 1/2 inches, $80.
  • Sevres inkwell, birds, branches, double well, black trim, 19th century, 3 x 8 1/2 inches, $120.
  • Mickey Mouse bowl, alphabet, Mickey on train, Bavaria, c. 1932, 7 inches, $170.
  • Flying Nun lunchbox, Sister Bertrille flying, children, metal, Thermos, Aladdin, 1968, $330.
  • Steuben glass owl, big eyes, 5 x 4 inches, $360.
  • Tea table, tilt top, Chippendale style, mahogany, Kittinger Furniture Co., 28-inch diameter, $450.
  • Porcelain group, four children collecting flowers, Meissen, 6 1/2 x 6 inches, $600.
  • Cane, wooden, ivory skull handle, 36 inches, $960.
  • Effanbee Patsy Mae doll, composition, muslin, sleep eyes, human hair, box, 1935, 27 inches, $1,570.

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. Watch the Kovels' HGTV shows to become an expert on almost anything you see at a flea market. DVD sets of Seasons 1 and 2 (12 episodes each, plus a DVD of the final episodes of Seasons 1-4.) Available online at Kovelsonlinestore.com for $59.90 plus $4.95 postage, by phone at 800-303-1996; or mail to Kovels, P.O. Box 22900, Beachwood, OH 44122.

© 2013 by Cowles Syndicate Inc.



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE
This Noma Christmas-tree stand was made in the late 1920s or 1930s. The base is 14 1/2 inches in diameter. The stand is made of lithographed tin and pictures Santa's sleigh and reindeer. It sold for $270 at a November 2013 Rich Penn auction in Iowa.
Last Updated on Monday, 06 January 2014 14:18
 
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