Terry and Kim Kovel

Reproduction furniture sells for low prices when compared to antiques, but there are still companies making useful, accurate copies of 18th-century pieces. This tavern table cost only $469. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)

Companies still make copies of 18th century American furniture

A reproduction of a Wallace Nutting tavern table recently sold for $469. This a type of table was used for serving in the tap room of Colonial taverns.

 

This is a very early pair of glasses with tinted lenses not used as sunglasses. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)

Windsors glasses a style started in the Victorian times

This early pair of glasses has a leather nosepiece and side flaps. The tinted lenses weren’t used as sunglasses.

 

The marble chair is cold and hard but is not meant to have cushions. It is so deep that a short woman's feet will not touch the floor. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)

Art moderne chairs carved from white marble sold for $6,100

Many modern pieces of marble furniture were made in the mid-1900s. They were mostly special-order pieces.

 

Dinnerware was made with overall spatter or sponged decoration or with a spatter or sponged border and center design. Both are popular vintage collectibles. Price is determined by the condition and the skill of the decorator. Center designs can be a single flower or a scene of rabbits playing baseball. This plate has stylized tulips with a spatter stripe border and sold for $224. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)

Collectible wares decorated with splattered or sponged paint

Both types of folk pottery were made in the early 1800s in Scotland, Italy, Holland, France and the U.S.

Dinnerware was made with overall spatter or sponged decoration or with a spatter or sponged border and center design. Both are popular vintage collectibles. Price is determined by the condition and the skill of the decorator. Center designs can be a single flower or a scene of rabbits playing baseball. This plate has stylized tulips with a spatter stripe border and sold for $224. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)
The lid of this jar has an iron clamp closure, which added to its value because it too was identified in the glass as patented by Gilberd. It sold for $188. This type of jar was used over and over by a housewife making pickles or canned vegetables or fruit. Almost all food was homemade, cooked in season, and stored for the winter. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)

Jar with iron clamp closure for lid valuable with collectors

It probably was made by the Findley Ohio Bottle Co. circa 1888. It sold at a Glass Works auction for $188.

The lid of this jar has an iron clamp closure, which added to its value because it too was identified in the glass as patented by Gilberd. It sold for $188. This type of jar was used over and over by a housewife making pickles or canned vegetables or fruit. Almost all food was homemade, cooked in season, and stored for the winter. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)
St. Patrick's Day memorabilia includes souvenir postcards like this one picturing a leprechaun. They can be found in every price range, starting at 10 cents. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)

Collectible St. Patrick’s Day memorabilia hard to find before 1900

There have been many symbols of the past celebrations to collect. The leprechaun is an important symbol.

St. Patrick's Day memorabilia includes souvenir postcards like this one picturing a leprechaun. They can be found in every price range, starting at 10 cents. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)
This chair is made of a local wood, cypress, and local material for the seat by a Louisiana craftsman who sold inexpensive handmade furniture in the early 1800s. It sold for $427 in a recent sale of Louisiana antiques by Neal Auctions. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)

Cypress furniture still being used outdoors and in the garden

This 19th-century ladderback chair is made of cypress wood, which is rot-resistant, hard and durable.

This chair is made of a local wood, cypress, and local material for the seat by a Louisiana craftsman who sold inexpensive handmade furniture in the early 1800s. It sold for $427 in a recent sale of Louisiana antiques by Neal Auctions. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)
This 1-gallon stoneware crock has the impressed mark of Daniel Shenfelder pottery, proving it was made about 1870 in Pennsylvania. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)

Stoneware crock ‘attributed’ to Daniel Shenfelder pottery

It was not definitely identified, but the auction house is has sold many Shenfelder Pottery works like it.

This 1-gallon stoneware crock has the impressed mark of Daniel Shenfelder pottery, proving it was made about 1870 in Pennsylvania. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)
This folk art whirligig shows President Theodore Roosevelt with his monocle and top hat riding a cycle while holding a red paddle that catches the wind and spins. It sold at auction for hundreds of dollars. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)

Teddy Roosevelt whirligig circa 1901 auctions for nearly $900

The figure of 26th U.S. president is holding a red counterbalance vane that turns the bike with the wind.

This folk art whirligig shows President Theodore Roosevelt with his monocle and top hat riding a cycle while holding a red paddle that catches the wind and spins. It sold at auction for hundreds of dollars. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)
Silly as it may seem, milk glass can be one of many colors. It is an opaque glass first used in the 1800s and now prized in collections of barber bottles of the Victorian era. This 10½-inch-high milk glass barber bottle with a colorful label under glass sold for $200. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)

Glass-covered labels preferred for bottles made in 19th century

Makers liked to give products a permanent label, not just a pasted, handwritten or printed paper label.

Silly as it may seem, milk glass can be one of many colors. It is an opaque glass first used in the 1800s and now prized in collections of barber bottles of the Victorian era. This 10½-inch-high milk glass barber bottle with a colorful label under glass sold for $200. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)
This circa 1876 Simon’s Centennial Bitters bottle represents George Washington when he was commander in chief of the Continental Army, 100 years before. The red amber shaded to yellow amber bottle is 10 inches high and auctioned for $2,640.

The Father of His Country inspired a $2,640 booze bottle

George Washington was honored with an amber bottle of “Simon’s Centennial Bitters, Trade Mark.”

This circa 1876 Simon’s Centennial Bitters bottle represents George Washington when he was commander in chief of the Continental Army, 100 years before. The red amber shaded to yellow amber bottle is 10 inches high and auctioned for $2,640.
There are matching dining and coffee tables, several types of chairs, and more in the Gazelle group. The various styles of chairs sell for about $5,000 each. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)

Dan Johnson chair made in the 1950s worth upwards of $4,000

The artist used thin, patinated metal, iron or aluminum for arms, legs and seats, and added caning or fabric upholstery.

There are matching dining and coffee tables, several types of chairs, and more in the Gazelle group. The various styles of chairs sell for about $5,000 each. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)
This Yellow Coach bus made by Arcade is 13 inches long and in great condition. It sold for $600 at Bertoia Auctions in 2020. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)

This Arcade yellow double decker bus was made about 1926

In 1921, Arcade Manufacturing Co. decided to make toys that were copies of real vehicles and everyday items.

This Yellow Coach bus made by Arcade is 13 inches long and in great condition. It sold for $600 at Bertoia Auctions in 2020. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)
Scherenschnitte is a special type of German paper cutting art, and old and new examples are both seen at auctions. This modern example sold for just $40. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)

G.B. French made this scherenschnitte in the 20th century

The Kovels were surprised French’s paper cutting art was at auction, when artwork from the 1800s is more popular.

Scherenschnitte is a special type of German paper cutting art, and old and new examples are both seen at auctions. This modern example sold for just $40. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)
This wooden cabinet with decorations and the name Sherwin-Williams is easy to date. A salamander is carved on the door suggesting a date before 1905 when the logo was changed. We wonder why a paint company used a salamander and not a chameleon that changed colors. Did the artist draw the wrong creature? (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)

Sherwin-Williams cabinet features salamander logo circa 1870

The paint company’s famous world globe covered with dripping paint replaced the amphibian in 1905.

This wooden cabinet with decorations and the name Sherwin-Williams is easy to date. A salamander is carved on the door suggesting a date before 1905 when the logo was changed. We wonder why a paint company used a salamander and not a chameleon that changed colors. Did the artist draw the wrong creature? (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)
The Paris porcelain vase pictured is 13 inches high and 7 inches in diameter, large enough to hold a bouquet of flowers or a potted plant. The decoration is very formal and realistic. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)

Vintage Paris porcelain can be a mystery to some collectors

It’s mysterious because most pieces aren’t marked and sometimes they’re sold as Vieux Paris or Old Paris.

The Paris porcelain vase pictured is 13 inches high and 7 inches in diameter, large enough to hold a bouquet of flowers or a potted plant. The decoration is very formal and realistic. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)
The 44-inch-tall antique wicker carriage has an adjustable hood. It auctioned for just $61.50 at a Conestoga Auction Co. sale. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)

19th-century baby buggy a nice gift for this year’s first born

The 44-inch-tall antique wicker carriage has an adjustable hood. It auctioned for just $61.50.

The 44-inch-tall antique wicker carriage has an adjustable hood. It auctioned for just $61.50 at a Conestoga Auction Co. sale. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)
This hardworking Santa in an orange and blue outfit is carrying toys with a donkey not a reindeer. The 8-inch toy was made in Germany. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)

Most expensive Christmas collectibles? The older ones, of course

A tree from 1832 started the U.S. Christmas decorating custom that has grown into a billion-dollar industry.

This hardworking Santa in an orange and blue outfit is carrying toys with a donkey not a reindeer. The 8-inch toy was made in Germany. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)
This 11-inch-high antique rainbow spatterware water picture with bands in five different colors sold for more than $5,000 at a Conestoga auction this year. Notice the double G-scroll handle, an added value feature. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)

Just how old is an antique rainbow spatterware water pitcher?

The collectable was first made in the late 1700s, but most found today dates from about 1800 to 1850.

This 11-inch-high antique rainbow spatterware water picture with bands in five different colors sold for more than $5,000 at a Conestoga auction this year. Notice the double G-scroll handle, an added value feature. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)
To deposit a coin in the Bonzo bank, you had to push his tummy. His tongue would come out of his mouth to deposit the coin inside. Many similar banks were made picturing other comic characters. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)

Mechanical bank of the first famous Bonzo sells for $1,800

The dog decorating the front of the tin bank was a comic cartoon star from the 1920s to the 1940s.

To deposit a coin in the Bonzo bank, you had to push his tummy. His tongue would come out of his mouth to deposit the coin inside. Many similar banks were made picturing other comic characters. (Cowles Syndicate Inc.)