Prized Lenox vase has dual collector interest
Published: Saturday, December 22, 2012 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, December 20, 2012 at 12:48 p.m.
Q: Attached are some of photographs of a Lenox vase. It is about 11 inches tall with a painting of a bird dog on the front, and beautifully inscripted on the back is "The Hunter Arms Co., First Prize-Class A." My grandfather, who resided in Parkersburg W. V., won this in a skeet-shooting competition. My understanding of the event is that it was in Cleveland or Detroit, about 1914. My grandfather won by breaking 300 out of 300 targets. The story goes that he was urged to keep shooting to see how long he could go before missing. He proceeded to miss the 306th target. I suspect he was tired at this point.
I was wondering how one might find history about the Hunter Arms Company. I also am interested in any comments you may have about the vase, though it is nothing that I would ever consider selling.
I also have the Remington shotgun that he used in the competition. It is a 12-gauge pump action with a full choke barrel. The gun has a patent date of 1903, and a build date of 1908. I suspect that these guns were manufactured in large quantities, but likely state of the art for its time.
A: You have a beautiful hand-painted vase. Lenox porcelain has been a category of collecting for a long time. The company is widely recognized in the antiques marketplace. The Ceramic Art Company was established in Trenton, N.J., in 1889. The name was changed to Lenox in 1906, and the business continues into current times.
The Hunter Arms Company was the firearms company that produced the famous L.C. Smith double-barreled shotguns, which are sought after by collectors. So your vase has dual collector interest. I think it would sell in the $1,000 range, perhaps more on a lucky day.
What a wonderful family heirloom. Be sure to write the entire story on good archival paper with lead pencil and insert it in the vase for posterity.
Q: Could you give me any idea of the value of the pictured quilt? A couple of spinster aunts did this one all by hand in the winter months. The background material was from old coats and overcoats. They lived on a farm in southern Illinois.
A: You have an attractive patchwork quilt and a nice family heirloom. I think it would sell in the $100 to $200 range.
Q: My mother-in-law has some things she wants to sell and she would like to get your opinion. One is a Stuyvesant piano. On the inside it says "Aeolian Company.' The other is a grandfather clock with a fancy dial that chimes.
A: The three-weight grandfather clock was made in the 20th century in a 19th century style. Potential dollar value is less than $1,000.
The piano sold by the Stuyvesant Company in New York with works made by the Aeolian company would likely sell in the $300 to $500 range.
Q: My grandma gave me an autographed Roy Rogers 1945 book called "A Christmas Story," and I cannot find any information on it. Can you tell me what it is worth?
A: Roy Rogers is a cowboy hero high on the totem pole of collector interest in the Cowboy Hero memorabilia category. Collectors look specifically for Roy Rogers guns, rifles, figural pieces, lunchboxes and hollowware. Autographed photos, paper goods, books, etc., are low on the totem pole of memorabilia. I think your autographed book would sell for less than $50.
John Sikorski is an Ocala antiques dealer. He hosts a call-in radio show, "Sikorski's Attic,'' on WUFT-FM (89.1 FM). It can be heard each Saturday from noon to 1 p.m. Send your questions to Sikorski's Attic, c/o The Gainesville Sun, 2700 SW 13th St., Gainesville, FL 32608-2015; or email email@example.com.