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Collectibles Worldwide

$125,871 paid for Kate Middleton's see-through dress

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Written by AARON EDWARDS, Associated Press   
Friday, 18 March 2011 14:59

LONDON (AP) - A revealing piece of royal history was sold Thursday for 78,000 pounds ($125,871) when an unidentified buyer bought the infamous see-through dress Kate Middleton wore back in 2002 when she and Prince William were university friends.

Some reports maintain that the sight of Middleton in the transparent dress as she walked down the catwalk at a charity fashion show helped convince William that she was someone he wanted to get to know better.

Whether or not the see-through black dress was a major factor, they soon became boyfriend and girlfriend, starting a long-term romance that will bring them to the altar of Westminster Abbey on April 29.

The dress was supposed to be a skirt, but Middleton wore it as a dress showing her black underwear beneath.

It was bought by an unidentified male British buyer at a London auction Thursday for 65,000 pounds ($104,948) and an additional 13,000 pounds ($20,989) of buyer's premium.

"He thinks it's an iconic piece,'' said an unnamed man who represented the buyer at the auction. "He's very happy.''

About three to four bidders competed for the dress in the packed room, while some also bid by phone. Gasps rang around the room when the bidding drove the price up to 65,000 pounds ($104,948).

No one would mistake the dress for high fashion. It was put up for sale by designer Charlotte Todd, who did not go into fashion but works in an aquarium.

"I'm completely shocked, I need to sit down and get my head round it,'' Todd, 31, said. "I didn't like to get my hopes up, I was thinking it might not sell. I wasn't thinking of a sum of money in my head.''

Bidder Carole Lieberman said the garment shows that Middleton was willing to use hardball tactics in pursuit of the University of St. Andrew's' most eligible bachelor.

Lieberman, a U.S. talk show host and psychiatrist, said before the auction that she had planned to bid aggressively on the dress after buying other items, including nightdresses that belonged to Wallis Simpson, the American divorcee who lured King Edward VIII from the throne. Lieberman was outbid by the mystery buyer.

She said she wanted to purchase Middleton's dress because Middleton was ``the quintessential good girl who used bad girl secrets to catch her prince."

Earlier Thursday, an item of lingerie from Simpson's wardrobe - a scarlet chiffon nightdress with a cape - sold for more than 6,500 pounds ($10,500) at auction. Also under the hammer were garments worn by Princess Diana, including a Catherine Walker white lace evening gown worn during a visit to France in 1988 that sold for 36,000 pounds.

Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

AP-CS-03-17-11 1706EDT

 

 

Alum selling T206 baseball card to raise money for his old school

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Written by Associated Press   
Tuesday, 15 March 2011 07:47
Vive Lindaman’s photograph is on this 1909 Ramly baseball card, which is not the card being sold. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons. CHARLES CITY, Iowa (AP) – An Iowa school district is raising money by auctioning a 105-year-old baseball card featuring alumnus Vive Lindaman.

Charles City school superintendent Andy Pattee told the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier that the 1906 card was put up for sale on eBay. The 10-day auction closes Thursday. As of Tuesday, the T206 card had 40 bids and was going for at least $305.

Lindaman graduated from the Charles City school system in 1895. He played major league baseball for the Boston Beaneaters and the Boston Doves, teams that evolved into the Atlanta Braves. Lindaman was a left-handed pitcher, who posted a 36-59 record in four season in the majors. He reportedly kept in shape by walking 17 miles a day working as a mail carriers. Lindaman died in 1927 at the age of 49.

The card is currently owned by another Charles City alum, Bill Burge of St. Louis. He says a similar card auction last year raised $230.

___

Information from: Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier,

http://www.wcfcourier.com

Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

AP-CS-03-13-11 1850EDT

 

Last Updated on Tuesday, 15 March 2011 13:13
 

Spider-Man's debut comic book sells for $1.1 million

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Written by MATT MOORE, Associated Press   
Thursday, 10 March 2011 09:36
Marvel introduced Spider-Man on the cover of ‘Amazing Fantasy' No. 15 dated August 1962. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons. Spider-Man All Marvel characters and the distinctive likeness(es) thereof are Trademarks & Copyright © 1962 Marvel Characters, Inc. All rights reserved. PHILADELPHIA (AP) – A comic collector has been caught in Spider-Man's web, paying $1.1 million for a near-mint copy of Amazing Fantasy No. 15 that features the wall-crawler's debut.

The issue, first published in 1962, was sold Monday by a private seller to a private buyer, ComicConnect.com chief executive Stephen Fishler told The Associated Press on Tuesday.

It's not the highest price ever paid for a comic book, an honor that goes to Action Comics No. 1 with Superman on the cover, which went for $1.5 million.

But Fishler says the price paid is the most for a book from the Silver Age, the mid-1950s to about 1970.

“The fact that a 1962 comic has sold for $1.1 million is a bit of a record-shattering event,” he said. “That something that recent can sell for that much and be that valuable is awe-inspiring.”

Usually, it has been comics from the Golden Age – typically from the late 1930s to the early 1950s – that draw seven-figure sums.

In March 2010, a copy of the 1938 edition of Action Comics No. 1 sold for $1.5 million on ComicConnect's website. That issue features the debut of Superman and originally sold for 10 cents.

In February 2010, Heritage Auctions in Dallas sold a rare copy of Detective Comics No. 27, which featured the debut of Batman, for $1,075,500. Fishler said the same issue had initially sold for just $2,500 in 1985 and for $140,000 in 2000.

“Over the last decade it has become a rather legendary copy because it was in the hands of a collector and no one thought he would sell,” Fishler said. “The owner came up with a figure that he didn't think anyone would pay, and it was paid.”

Amazing Fantasy No. 15 has long been prized by collectors because of Spider-Man's debut. It has been reprinted and made available as a hardcover, too.

The cover, drawn by Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko, shows Spider-Man clutching a villain in one arm and swinging from his web with the other. It originally sold for 12 cents.

Writer Stan Lee and Ditko co-created the web-slinger and his alter ego, the awkward but educationally gifted Peter Parker, who was bitten by a radioactive spider.

“Spider-Man is one of Marvel's flagship characters so, yeah, I'd say Amazing Fantasy is very important,” said Marvel Comics editor-in-chief Axel Alonso. “Funny thing is, the series – which was formerly titled Amazing Adult Fantasy – was scheduled for cancellation before issue Amazing Fantasy No. 15 hit stands. It ended up being one of Marvel's highest sellers at the time, and paving the road for the Amazing Spider-Man series that's run monthly ever since.''

It also helped pave the way for Spider-Man adventures on the radio, television and the movie screen.

Lee worked for Marvel for decades, eventually becoming its editor-in-chief, and then starting other businesses, including most recently POW! Entertainment.

He said, given the price paid for the issue, “I wish had saved my old Spider-Man books.”

Back in the early 1960s, there was never any thought of saving extra issues or the original artwork that made up comics because there was no space to store the artwork or books sent back by the printer.

“So if someone came to deliver our lunch or sandwiches or something, before he'd left we'd say ‘Hey, fella! You want to take these books with you or this artwork with you?’” Lee said. “We were giving all that stuff away. Nobody thought to save these books.”

Lee said there is more to the price tag than just money.

“I think it's just wonderful that these old books are now considered, in some way, ancient treasures and are thought of so highly that people would give so much money for them,” he said. “I would never have believed it, but I am very impressed.”

___

Online:

http://www.comicconnect.com/

Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

 

AP-ES-03-08-11 1651EST

 

 

Last Updated on Thursday, 10 March 2011 09:51
 

Kate vs. Catherine; rating the royal name dilemma

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Written by SHAWN POGATCHNIK and GREGORY KATZ, Associated Press   
Wednesday, 09 March 2011 12:39
Royal Worcester avoided the name dilemma on its Royal Wedding tray. Image courtesy of UK Gift Co. BELFAST, Northern Ireland (AP) – Call her Kate, at least for now.

It may be years before Kate Middleton becomes queen, but questions are already being raised about the princess-to-be's preferred moniker: Queen Kate or Queen Catherine?

Ever since her engagement became official in November, palace officials – and her fiance, Prince William – have taken to calling her Catherine, the name used on the official, gold-embossed invitations to their nuptials at Westminster Abbey on April 29.

“Catherine” sounds more formal, regal and fitting for a future queen, experts say.

But Middleton herself may not embrace the change just yet. During a joint visit Tuesday with Prince William to Northern Ireland, Middleton mentioned casually that she thinks of herself primarily as Kate.

“I'm still very much Kate,” said Middleton, when a woman outside Belfast City Hall asked what name she preferred.

The “Kate” versus “Catherine” debate has emerged in recent weeks because of William's switch in using it and because “Catherine” or the initial “C” is being imprinted on official wedding memorabilia and commemorative china.

“I think that Catherine does have a more historic feel to it; there have been several queen consorts called Catherine in British history,” said Charles Kidd, editor of the blue-blood bible Debrett's Peerage. “So Queen Catherine does sound quite familiar. It has a historic ring to it.”

He said Kate also sounds pleasant but reminds him of the feisty character in Kiss Me Kate, a Cole Porter musical that features William Shakespeare's play The Taming of the Shrew.

“I imagine she'll be known as Catherine but the tabloids and majority of the press will continue to call her Kate, so in the general sense she'll be known as Kate,” he said.

According to the official royal wedding website, which has already received more than 2 million visits since it started up last week, Middleton does not prefer one name over the other. It says Middleton used the name “Catherine” when she was growing up with her family but tends to use the more casual “Kate” in her professional life.

“Miss Middleton uses both names equally, and she has never expressed a preference for either Catherine or Kate since her engagement,” the website states.

Most of the British media still calls her “Kate,” and headline writers are not expected to change.

A spokeswoman for Prince Charles, who declined to be named according to palace protocol, would not comment Tuesday on Middleton's statement in Belfast. But she noted that Middleton's family and friends call her “Catherine” and that is her real name.

The late Princess Diana, William's mother, also had an informal nickname –“Lady Di” – that was too casual for formal court affairs, where she was called Her Royal Highness, The Princess of Wales. After her death, she became known as “The People's Princess,” a phrase coined by then-Prime Minister Tony Blair.

No matter what she is called, Middleton and her beau showed true star power in Belfast, delighting an enthusiastic crowd on their first official visit to Northern Ireland. Police kept watch from the rooftops as the center of Belfast was brought to a standstill.

William and Middleton were cheered outside Belfast City Hall as they took turns flipping a pancake, the traditional treat eaten on Shrove Tuesday, the day before the Catholic season of Lent begins on Ash Wednesday.

“My little heart is beating 90 to the dozen after meeting Kate,” said Gloria Lowry, from Carrickfergus. “She is absolutely beautiful and William so handsome. They make a perfect couple.”

It was their third public outing in recent weeks, completing a circuit that has taken them to all parts of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Last month, the couple traveled to Wales and to Scotland.

On Monday night, Middleton, William and Charles made a private visit to Westminster Abbey to hear a full orchestra and a choir perform music that is being considered for the wedding ceremony.

In Belfast, Middleton wore a double-breasted cream-colored belted coat with a ruffle hem, black tights and black high-heeled shoes. The prince wore a navy suit.

Rebecca Fletcher, 11, who took the day off school, called “Katie!” and offered a bouquet of daffodils.

“You're a very lucky lady. I'm so jealous,” the girl said.

“I am lucky,” Middleton said. “He's a very nice man and I'm looking forward to spending the rest of my life with him.”

Heather Lindsay, whose daughter Laura Ann is also getting married this year, brought “bride” and “groom” caps in the hope of getting William to wear one.

“He politely declined. He said his mother would not appreciate him wearing the hat,” said Lindsay, from Killyleagh.

“I told Kate I am also planning for a big wedding as well. I told her not to lose any more weight. She laughed and said it was all part of the wedding planning,” Lindsay added.

William and Middleton also toured Greenmount Agricultural College in Antrim outside of Belfast, where they were shown a herd of 30 prize Holstein dairy cows and taught how to rate cows.

William drew laughs by comparing the qualities judges look for in cows to a dating website.

Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

AP-ES-03-08-11 1309EST

 

Last Updated on Wednesday, 09 March 2011 14:24
 

Vinyl record fans still picking up good vibrations

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Written by JOSH STOCKINGER, The (Arlington Heights) Daily Herald   
Wednesday, 09 March 2011 09:04
John Lennon-signed ‘The Beatles Again’ album, which was released in 1970. Image courtesy of LiveAuctioneers Archive and Philip Weiss Auctions. WESTMONT, Ill. (AP) – Not long after Hank Shurba went into business selling records in 1983, the Elmhurst man started to hear buzz of a new media form destined to change music forever.

They were called CDs.

“I opened up and that very first week I heard about them,” Shurba, 66, recalls. “I thought, ‘Oh, my God. What do I do now?’”

Twenty-eight years later, Shurba says Remember When Records in Westmont probably would be out of business if it relied on compact disc sales.

Instead, he says, vinyl records are once again where it's at among younger audiences and serious music collectors.

“I don't know how it started,” Shurba confesses. “I was shocked. I never thought it would come back to records at all.”

For Shurba, the experience of buying a freshly pressed vinyl record and putting it on a turntable is all too familiar.

Growing up on Chicago's West Side, he used to ride his bike to Sears every weekend in the late 1950s to pick up the latest singles and LPs.

His love of music was further encouraged by his father, who played guitar, and eight siblings, who stayed current with music trends.

“I listened to everything,” Shurba says. “I searched all over my Zenith portable radio and would always find the black stations. You heard stuff there you couldn't hear anywhere else.”

After high school, Shurba was drafted into the Army and later became a union sheet metal worker. It wasn't until a flood destroyed his entire record collection in 1972 that he began to tinker with the idea of opening his own store.

In the years following the flood, Shurba says he turned to estate sales, garage sales and record shows to rebuild his collection.

He saw others buying and selling records for a living and realized, “I can do this.”

“One thing led to another,” he says with a chuckle. “It was like an old horror picture. Don't put water on it – it grows.”

Shurba and his wife, Julie, opened Remember When Records in 1983 and would go on to occupy three different locations in Downers Grove before eventually finding a permanent home at 309 W. Ogden Ave. in Westmont. Today, it remains one of the few independently owned record stores in the suburbs to offer both new and used vinyl.

Shurba estimates the store carries more than 50,000 CDs and records, which fill up two floors' worth of space. He also has had in-store performances by Chicago-area acts such as the Ides of March and Jamestown Massacre, and carries movies and rock ’n’ roll collectibles.

In addition, Remember When Records is one of about 1,200 annual participants in Record Store Day, an international event that aims to support independent music stores through outreach, marketing and special promotions.

Record Store Day co-founder Eric Levin said the store is not alone in thriving on vinyl once again.

“The vinyl revolution has just saved us all on a certain level,” says Levin, who also owns Criminal Records in Atlanta, Ga. “We're outselling vinyl-to-CDs three-to-one. We are definitely seeing CDs plateau.”

At the same time, Shurba says, Remember When Records has not been immune to the dwindling value of CDs, or the popularity of digital downloads among consumers.

But a few things never change, he says – the Beatles are still his top seller, and vinyl is still fun.

“It's a little tougher nowadays. There have been times I thought, ‘Why do I do this?’” Shurba says. “But whether you have good weeks or bad weeks, you have to stick to it.”

Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

AP-CS-03-08-11 0503EST

 



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE
John Lennon-signed ‘The Beatles Again’ album, which was released in 1970. Image courtesy of LiveAuctioneers Archive and Philip Weiss Auctions.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 09 March 2011 14:26
 

Eric Clapton guitars slated for New York City charity auction

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Written by Associated Press   
Monday, 07 March 2011 12:13
Eric Clapton performing in Munich in June. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license. NEW YORK (AP) -- Eric Clapton is parting with dozens of guitars and amps at a New York City auction to benefit an alcohol and drug treatment center he founded in Antigua.

Bonhams New York will offer the 70 guitars and 70 amps next Wednesday.

Among the highlights is a custom-made black Fender "Eric Clapton" signature Stratocaster, estimated at $20,000 to $30,000. It was used during the “Cream Reunion Shows” in New York and London in 2005.

A pair of 1970 Marshall vintage basket weave speaker cabinets are expected to fetch $8,000-$10,000.

The 65-year-old rock Hall of Famer is a recovered addict who established the nonprofit Crossroads Centre in West Indies in 1998.

The British artist's famous love song Layla was released in 1970 when he appeared with blues-rock band Derek and the Dominos.

Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

AP-ES-03-04-11 1111EST

 


ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE
Eric Clapton performing in Munich in June. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.
Last Updated on Monday, 07 March 2011 14:08
 

It's long gone: Philadelphia A's franchise now a fading memory

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Written by FRANK FITZPATRICK, The Philadelphia Inquirer   
Friday, 04 March 2011 09:26
Gus Zernial of the Philadelphia A’s on a 1950s Exhibit Card. Image courtesy of LiveAuctioneers Archive and Hassinger & Courtney Auctioneering. PHILADELPHIA (AP) – Not long ago, the Philadelphia Athletics Historical Society had to cancel its annual fund-raising breakfasts, because most of the players who used to attend had died.

More recently, the passing of 1953 all-star Gus Zernial left the number of surviving ex-A's at either 36 or 37. No one was certain, because Max Silberman, the member tasked with keeping the count, died two years ago.

Like the last vestiges of a deep and memorable snow, those who played and rooted for Connie Mack's A's are gradually melting away. Soon, members of the historical society fear, the franchise which departed for Kansas City in 1954 after 53 years in Philadelphia and five world championships will be an increasingly obscure local memory, like Horn & Hardart's, Woodside Park, or Frank's Black Cherry Wishniak.

“And that would be a shame,” Ernie Montella, the society's executive director, said Monday, “because the A's were the most successful sports franchise ever in Philadelphia.”

Now, the grim demographic realities have financially stressed the society, which is down to about 700 mostly aging members. As a result, its 14,000-square-foot museum, library and gift shop on North York Road in Hatboro may soon close its doors.

Unless society officials can devise a way to raise $70,000 annually, it's possible the 13-year-old, artifacts-rich facility will either disappear or be condensed and incorporated into an existing institution, most likely at a refurbished Atwater Kent Museum in Center City.

“Obviously, we'd love to stay right here in Hatboro,” Montella, 79, said Monday. “I'd hate to think about dismantling all of this.”

Montella admitted some type of agreement with Atwater Kent, the South Seventh Street museum devoted to Philadelphia's history, was being considered.

That facility, closed now during a $5.3 million renovation, has hosted exhibitions of A's memorabilia in the past. And in October, Atwater Kent officials, who said Monday there had been no decision on any possible move, visited the Hatboro site.

“It would be a great fit,” said Montella. “Center City would be a great location. They were a Philadelphia team, after all. But nothing's been finalized, and we'd still prefer to stay in this building.”

Still, the museum – laden with books, research papers, arcane memorabilia and historical treasures related to one of baseball's earliest dynasties – won't vanish without a fight.

Recently, one of its younger members, 32-year-old Andrew Dixon, created a Facebook page, “Save the Philadelphia Athletics Historical Society,” for that purpose.

“I think there's been an explosion of baseball interest in this area,” said Dixon, a doctoral candidate at Temple University. “And I think there's a thriving desire for all things baseball. You'd like to think there's enough interest in a team as historically significant as the A's to sustain a stand-alone museum.”

He's also hoping to tap into the interest generated by another related Facebook page. “Bring Your A's Game,” which has about 1,000 followers, espouses the far-fetched goal of bringing the Oakland A's back to Philadelphia.

“Even though it's not something that's likely to ever happen, they've got a lot of followers, which is just another indication that there are more people aware of the A's out there than you might think,” Dixon said.

For decades after the team's 1954 move, fans of the original member of the American League lamented the A's departure. Finally, in 1996, a small group of Athletics' devotees founded the society. A sizable number of area residents who remembered growing up in a two-baseball-team city quickly coalesced around it.

At its height, there were nearly 1,000 members. Interest was so great that in 1998, the society leased a storefront at 6 N. York Road and opened the museum.

While the museum rarely publicized itself and has never been swamped with visitors, there were occasions – immediately after its opening, when the Oakland A's visited Philadelphia in 2003, or whenever Mack's descendants or former stars would participate in events – when interest and attendance sparked.

“We've had visitors from 44 states and a few foreign countries,” Montella said. “Just recently, a man from Cambridge, England, got off the train mistakenly in Hatboro, walked into our museum and was so impressed he became a member.”

But as more A's and A's fans pass on, the buzz has waned. The once-vibrant sale – online and in-store – of Philadelphia sports books and merchandise ranging from bobbleheads to autographed bats, balls and photos began to decline.

Last year, said Montella, gift-shop revenue was at an all-time low.

Until recently, the $30 annual dues paid by members, various fund-raisers and gift-shop proceeds were enough to support the facility, publish a newsletter and provide some financial help for needy ex-A's.

In recent years, in an effort to broaden its appeal, the museum has added considerable Phillies flavor and even hosted events for former Eagles such as Steve Van Buren and Chuck Bednarik.

Because a 2000 society exhibit at the Chester County Historical Society was successful, said Montella, there was talk of a move to a minor-league stadium that West Chester businessmen and baseball enthusiasts hoped would be built there.

But those dreams faded when the borough council recently rejected a stadium proposal.

“We're trying to hold our own,” Montella said. “But let's face it – there are a lot of younger people out there who never even heard of the Philadelphia A's.”

___

Online:

http://tinyurl.com/64byta7

___

Information from: The Philadelphia Inquirer,

http://www.philly.com

Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

AP-ES-02-26-11 0009EST

 

 


ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE
Gus Zernial of the Philadelphia A’s on a 1950s Exhibit Card. Image courtesy of LiveAuctioneers Archive and Hassinger & Courtney Auctioneering.
Last Updated on Friday, 04 March 2011 10:00
 

Build a better mousetrap and a collector will beat a path to your door

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Written by SHELLY BIRKELO, The Janesville Gazette   
Monday, 28 February 2011 08:31
Automatic Trap Co. advertised this device as ‘The Best Trap in the World.’ Made of wood, tin and wire, the trap stands 11 inches high. Image courtesy of LiveAuctioneers and Richard Opfer Auctioneering Inc.

JANESVILLE, Wis. (AP) – Mary Putsch's hobby is a trap. Lots of them, actually.

“I am basically a collector,” said the 73-year-old woman, standing among the wall-to-wall collectibles that decorate the front living room of her Janesville home.

Along with extensive collections of frogs, kaleidoscopes, spinning wheels and Winnebago Indian baskets, Putsch particularly enjoys collecting children's books.

Surprisingly, that drew her into one of her strangest collectibles – mousetraps.

“I love the story of 'Cinderella' and how the fairy godmother transforms a pumpkin into a beautiful carriage and the mice and rats into horses to pull it,” Putsch said. “I really like the illustrations, and that's what brought me to mousetraps.

“In my picture book, when Cinderella went to get these mice for her fairy godmother, they were in something that looked to me like a bird cage,” she said.

It was, in fact, a live trap for mice.

“Having never seen anything except one of those flat, snap mousetraps, I couldn't imagine how even a fairy godmother could make anything out of what was left in one of those.”

While browsing an antique shop one day, Putsch noticed a bird cage-like device hanging from the ceiling. The tag on the item read “rat trap,” and Putsch instantly understood what the story and illustration in her Cinderella book was about.

“So I had to buy that trap,” she said.

Later, Putsch found the same trap – only smaller and designed to catch mice.

“So I was off and running,” she said.

A 20-year obsession was born.

Putsch is so fascinated with mousetraps she weaves historical facts and stories about them into her conversations.

“I believe man created cats to get rid of mice.”

“The house mouse came to this country with man's ancestors in 1775.”

“There are 4,400-some patents on mousetraps. That's more than any other single item.”

Although Putsch has never counted her traps, she estimates she has at least 100 dating back to the 1800s. She's found her treasures in antique shops and flea markets, had them given as gifts, bought them on trips abroad and even had a few made by her husband.

She's also bought more modern mousetraps, amused by advertisements promoting them as everything from disposable to reusable, depending on economic conditions.

Made mostly of metal, plastic or wood, the traps cost Putsch anywhere from $1 to $35. Her favorite and most unusual item is “the world's best trap,” which was made in Germany and given to her by her husband, Joseph, as an anniversary gift.

Collecting mousetraps might not seem mainstream, but Putsch is quick to explain their appeal.

“It's man's challenge to solve this problem. The mousetrap is the icon of man's creativity and ingenuity, yet he's still working on how to get rid of the mouse,” she said.

Putsch is a member of The Questers, a group for people who enjoy history and antiques, and has been invited to give programs about her mousetraps to three local chapters. She's also spoken to the Janesville Area Retired Educators Association, Luther Valley Historical Society and Wisconsin Historical Society.

People who know Putsch collects mousetraps often buy her stuffed or plastic mice and rats to display with them. And on the off chance someone has a question about the contraptions, she's always ready.

“When people want to hear about ’em,'' she said, “I drag them out and talk about them.”

___

Information from: The Janesville Gazette,

http://www.gazetteextra.com

Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

AP-CS-02-25-11 2015EST

 



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE
Automatic Trap Co. advertised this device as ‘The Best Trap in the World.’ Made of wood, tin and wire, the trap stands 11 inches high. Image courtesy of LiveAuctioneers and Richard Opfer Auctioneering Inc.
Last Updated on Monday, 28 February 2011 08:52
 

Traveling: Original basketball rules to be displayed in Kansas City

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Written by Associated Press   
Friday, 25 February 2011 10:05
Basketball inventor James A. Naismith, circa 1900. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) – James A. Naismith's original rules of basketball are going on display in Kansas City just in time for the NCAA tournament.

The rules were first thumbtacked to a gymnasium bulletin board in December 1891 at a Springfield, Mass., YMCA where Naismith had been instructed to come up with a new indoors activity for gym class. The Canadian-born Naismith utilized wooden peach baskets as goals.

Naismith moved to Lawrence, Kan., in 1898 and became the first basketball coach at the University of Kansas.

Kansas alum David Booth and his wife, Suzanne, bought the rules in December at a Sotheby's auction for $4.3 million.

The rules will be on display at the Nelson-Atkins Museum in Kansas City from March 5 through May 29. There is no admission charge for the museum or the exhibit.

Copyright 2011. Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP-CS-02-24-11 0502EST

Last Updated on Friday, 25 February 2011 10:21
 

Glenn Miller Archive at University of Colorado acquires big band tapes

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Written by Associated Press   
Friday, 25 February 2011 08:12
Maj. Glenn Miller served in the U.S. Army Air Corps during World War II. While he was traveling to entertain U.S. troops his plane disappeared over the English Channel on Dec. 14, 1944. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons. BOULDER, Colo. (AP) – The University of Colorado's Glenn Miller Archive has acquired hundreds of hours of recordings of big band radio broadcasts along with photos, magazines, documents and other memorabilia from a private collection.

The CU American Music Research Center, which contains the archive, said Tuesday the collection has about 1,400 reel-to-reel tapes of jazz and big band musicians including Glenn Miller, Louis Armstrong, Tommy Dorsey, Count Basie, Duke Ellington and Benny Goodman.

The recordings, photos and documents were purchased from the collection of Florida resident Ed Burke, who founded and operated the independent recording companies Fanfare, Jazz Hour and Soundcraft.

The cost wasn't disclosed. CU officials say all the money came from private donations.

Miller attended high school in Fort Morgan, Colo., and attended CU in 1923-24.

Copyright 2011. Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP-WS-02-22-11 1603EST

Last Updated on Friday, 25 February 2011 08:34
 

'Lost' book by children's author Enid Blyton discovered in UK

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Written by Associated Press   
Thursday, 24 February 2011 09:52
 Blue plaque affixed to the London home where British author Enid Blyton lived. May 15, 2010 photo taken by Ash, licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

LONDON (AP) - Experts say a previously unknown novel by prolific children's writer Enid Blyton has been discovered, more than 40 years after her death.

The fantasy tale Mr. Tumpy's Caravan was among a collection of Blyton manuscripts bought at auction in September by the Seven Stories children's book center in Newcastle, northern England.

Its title is similar to that a published book, Mr. Tumpy and His Caravan, but the Enid Blyton Center confirmed Tuesday it was a previously unpublished work.

Blyton, who died in 1968, wrote almost 800 books, including the Famous Five and Secret Seven adventure series, which have entertained generations of British children.

Seven Stories hopes to put the manuscript on display but does not hold publishing rights to Blyton's work.

Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

AP-ES-02-23-11 0551EST



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE
 Blue plaque affixed to the London home where British author Enid Blyton lived. May 15, 2010 photo taken by Ash, licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.
Last Updated on Thursday, 24 February 2011 10:06
 
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