COLUMN JOHN EGGERS: The ABCs of buying antiques
M: Old movie posters and theater tickets are good when you can find them. Their value is determined not only by the title of the film and who was on it, but also by the type of artwork on the poster. Surprisingly, there is a market for those old pulp magazines with colorful covers.
The marbles are a puzzle to me. I find it hard to tell the old from the new, unless it’s a sulfide which is a transparent bead with an object like a cow or a teddy bear inside. The term “mid-century modern” itself is a difficult term to define. It extensively describes the architecture, furniture, and graphic design of the mid-20th century (circa 1933 to 1965, although some would argue that the period is specifically limited to 1947 to 1957.) In any event, it is becoming very popular. .
NOT : North Dakota School of Mines pottery was made for about 50 years starting in 1898. Prices range from $ 75 and up. Most are branded, everything has value including damaged items. Many of our grandmothers or mothers had a piece of Nippon or two. Nippon means “Japan” and was made at the beginning of the 20th century. Old Norwegian items like salt and porridge boxes or trunks and old money are highly collectable and can get expensive. Try a product called Nevr-Dull to make brass and silver shine. You can find it at Ace Hardware.
O: Those old greasy oil cans can be very good if they are in good condition and rare. The rarer it is, the better. Items from occupied Japan no longer have much value unless they are rare items. The items were made after the end of WWII until 1952. We have a whole tree filled with old Christmas decorations. Be careful where you buy them as they are reproduced.
P: I have a passion for the first postcards and pocket watches. Postcards tell the story of the United States from the late 1800s to the present day. Postcards are usually either a real photo card, lithograph, chrome, or linen. Real photo cards of depots and street scenes are in demand. Halloween and Santa cards are also collectable. Sent or not, it doesn’t make too much of a difference.
Working pocket watches with gold cases and a high number of jewels are nice to say the least. Figures like Peanuts, Pluto, Peter Pan, Popeye, and Princess Diana are collected by many people. Anything that is political is desirable. Roseville, Sleepy Eye, Hull and Weller pottery among many other names are still sought after. All unique photographic items are also in demand like interesting photos and cameras.
Question: Don’t stop collecting something. The collections give meaning to our lives. Old hand-sewn quilts in good condition are sought after. Badly torn or stained quilts are of little value. Quimper is a type of ancient pottery produced in Quimper, France. The factory still makes pottery. Do you remember the Dionne Quints? I believe that only two of the original five remain: Anette and Cécile. Quint items are not as popular as they used to be.
A: Common Red Wing pots like 2, 4, 6 and 10 gallons are easy to find with small or large wings. Pots with a birch leaf, target, or the eight lazy marks are more valuable. Like other items, the jars must also be in good condition. Buying good Red Wing pottery and stoneware is a good investment, as are items belonging to rare Roy Rogers, rock and roll memorabilia, Roseville pottery, and royalty.
S: Sewing antiques like signs, buttons, shuttles and novelty work attract buyers. Soda items are at the top of the list of collectors. Old shaving cups with an embossed name and an illustration of the owner’s craft are expensive and hard to find.
Shirley Temple cups and bowls, Shawnee pottery, and sheet music are easier to find and cheaper. Old Stanley tools, all kinds of old billboards, and country store memorabilia like cookie tins, cash registers, display cases, coffee bins and candy containers are treasured items because they evoke memories of yesteryear.
T: Old toys are desired by more people than most other antiques. That’s why old toys, in good condition, can fetch the best price. Arcade, Hubley and Marx are a few names to look for and don’t forget John Deere tractors and other tractors. One of my first collections was tintype (photographs on tin). Photos of people are easy to find and cost less than $ 5. Civil War soldiers and outdoor stages are more expensive.
Tobacco related items like billboards, unusual lighters and good old pipes are in demand. Traps, trivets and old trunks are also cool. Old typewriters are starting to be very popular. I almost forgot about the exchange tokens. They come in different sizes and shapes and were good for free merchandise in a store based on the value of the token.
U: Look for the unusual in any antique. People love unique and unique items like first edition books, rare fishing lures, custard glass memorabilia, “what is this?” »Kind of kitchen tools and utensils. All unusual items are rare and usually have a buyer willing to pay an unusual price.
V: I don’t know much about video games, but those old portable Pac-Man type games are hot items now. I’d rather look for the old Victor Duck Lures, Vending Machines, and Van Briggle Pottery. This pottery was first produced in Colorado Springs in the early 1900s and is well marked. Beware of old lace and Valentine’s Day papers. They are so delicate and beautiful but not as collectable as you might think.
W: Watch out for old watch pockets that advertise farm machinery, old weathervanes with a cow, horse or pig, war memorabilia, children’s books from the Whitman Publishing Company, Weller Pottery, and collector’s items from the World’s Fair. American westerns related to cowboys and ranching are also great items. Winchester items are still good even in poor condition.
X Y Z : Christmas collectibles, meter pictures, and old Zenith radios can be good investments. Christmas items like ornaments, Santas and even plastic items from the 50s are very popular. The one-meter images are exactly what the name suggests. They are from a court of flowers or certain animals like cats or horses. They typically sell for over $ 100. Directories are also desirable, especially if they contain a well-known person. Old Zenith radios are good but not great and they’re the only thing I can think of that starts with Z. One thing’s for sure, collecting antiques is anything but a wacky idea.
Collecting antiques is “A” for a great idea and “Z” for anything but a wacky idea. I especially encourage elementary school teachers and social studies and history teachers to use antiques to supplement their teaching. Students enjoy seeing and feeling tangible things, and a 48-star flag or a photo of Kennedy on a cover of “Life” magazine can be used in a variety of ways to bring the story to life.
You won’t waste money buying quality antiques. You never know about stocks. Antiques are a safer bet, and you can see and enjoy them too. Just remember your ABCs.
Screen: How do you keep ugly monsters going? (Answer: I’ll tell you next week. There’s no suspense in collecting old Halloween items. They’re gold.)
Thanks to the Ecuadorian Boutique at Paul Bunyan Mall for supporting the 100% graduation rate project.
John R. Eggers of Bemidji is a former university professor and regional director. He is also a writer and lecturer.