From Ceramic Dog Figures to Coca Cola Trays

By Anne Gilbert
   Q. I collect old ceramic dog figurines. This unusual dog figure caught my eye at a church rummage sale. It appears to be a bank but there is no opening to get the money out. It is around 4” wide x 4” high and the paint is in good shape. There is “crazing cracking” on the bottom and no maker marks. A friend told me it was made in Staffordshire England and old.
   Any information and value appreciated. I paid $50 for it.
   L.D. – Pittsburg, PA
   A. You have an exciting and rare discovery. It is a Stafforedshire bank. As you noticed there is no way to retrieve the coins except to break the bank. Hence the rarity.
   Historically, Staffordshire ceramic animal figures were first made in the 1830s and decorated by hand. They were popular and have never stopped being made.
   Your “King Charles Spaniel” bank was probably made in the late 19th to early 20th century. In a retail setting it could sell for $200 or more.
   Q. I inherited this piece of furniture from my late mothers’ estate. It had originally belonged to my grandmother. I remember that it held magazines and news papers. It has no maker’s marks and appears to be some kind of dark wood. It is around 42” x 15” x 19 ¾.” It is too plain for my taste and I would like to sell it. Is it worth anything?
   T.T. – Lantana, FL
   A. What a great inheritance! Even without a label, your family owner history identifies it as an authentic piece of “Stickley” furniture. Over the years the Stickley brothers used a variety of labels: burned in brands, metal tags, decals and paper labels. Yourmagazine stand, made around 1912 had a paper label. Stickley furniture used quarter-sawn white oak, darkened with ammonia fumes. It is known as “mission-style” and evolved from the arts and crafts movement. Your magazine rack could sell for $1,500 or more at auction.
   Q. My late uncle loved playing golf and drinking Cokes. On his 70th birthday many years ago, my aunt gave him this metal Coca Cola tray with a picture of a golfer and a girl. It measures roughly 10” x 13.” Since I used to golf, it was left to me. I am going into a retirement home and would like to sell it. What is the value, age and history?
   M. Z. – Lancaster, PA
   A. Collectors of Coca Cola trays would love to buy your vintage serving tray. Coca Cola began making serving and tip trays in 1887. Collectors consider the years 1897-1968 as the “original era.” After that collecting them became trendy and reproductions and fakes began appearing. Yours is a rarity made in 1926. It could sell to a collector for $400 or more. Check the internet for collectors clubs or dealers.
   Do you have an antique item and need more information? For a personnel reply send a photo, along with history,size and any signatures with a self-addressed and stamped envelope and $25 to Anne Gilbert, 1811 Renaissance Cmns. Blvd., #2319, Boynton Beach, FL, 33426

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