Category Archives: Columns

Gavels ‘n’ Paddles: Louis Marx toy motorcycle, $22,800, Milestone Auctions

Louis Marx toy motorcycle, $22,800, Milestone Auctions

Recent Auction Results from Near & Far By Ken Hall All prices include the buyer’s premium   A Louis Marx & Co. (USA) prototype tin windup Speedboy 4 military toy motorcycle with spring-loaded military cannon and ammo box sold for $22,800 at an Antique Toy auction held October 2nd by Milestone Auctions in Willoughby, OH. […]

Gavels ‘n’ Paddles: American Flyer boxcar, $18,975, Weiss Auctions

A rare American Flyer G. Fox & Co. S gauge toy boxcar train, from a limited production set made in 1946, sold for $18,975 in a two-day, online-only Toy & Train auction held Aug. 11-12 by Weiss Auctions in Lynbrook, NY

Recent Auction Results from Near & Far By Ken Hall   A rare American Flyer G. Fox & Co. S gauge toy boxcar train, from a limited production set made in 1946, sold for $18,975 in a two-day, online-only Toy & Train auction held Aug. 11-12 by Weiss Auctions in Lynbrook, NY. Also, a boxed […]

December 2021: Stylin’ in the 19th Century

We often hear the word “dandy” applied to wealthy, fastidiously dressed, 19th-century gentlemen unduly devoted to themselves, their image, and style, yet it seems an antique, ill-fitting designator to apply to today’s fashion trendsetters in a world where runway looks and streetwear run the gamut and individuality is stressed. Yet, interestingly, being a “Beau Brummell,” […]

Gavels ‘n’ Paddles: Munnings equestrian works, $662,500, Andrew Jones

Munnings equestrian works, $662,500, Andrew Jones

Recent Auction Results from Near & Far By Ken Hall All prices include the buyer’s premium A pair of paintings by the acclaimed British equestrian artist Sir Alfred James Munnings (1878-1959) sold for a combined $662,500 in the online-only auction of the collection of Lady Victoria White held October 10th by Andrew Jones Auctions in […]

Gavels ‘n’ Paddles: Johnny Ramone guitar, $937,500, RR Auction

Johnny Ramone guitar, $937,500, RR Auction

Recent Auction Results from Near & Far By Ken Hall All prices include the buyer’s premium The Mosrite Ventures II guitar played onstage by Johnny Ramone (real name: John Cummings), guitarist for the punk rock band the Ramones, sold for $937,500 in an online auction held by RR Auction, based in Boston, MA. Ramone played […]

Great Collections: The Parker Pen Archive at Heritage House

1910 Saturday Evening Post advertisement for the Lucky Curve pen, Parker’s second patented pen.

Back in 1888, George Safford Parker (1863-1937) was working part-time as a seller and repairman of fountain pens. As he worked, he found that he could not find a pen that wrote easily and did not leak. His search for such a pen resulted in the establishment of the Parker Pen Company in Janesville, Wisconsin. […]

A Lesson on the History of Desks

If you are one of those people who feel ‘any surface will do,’ then it might be hard to understand the writing desk culture, and the personal connection many people have about the space and surface on which they work, although I dare say that working from home this past year during COVID may have […]

Antiques Peek: Decorate Your Desk

1848 Paperweight made by Baccarat

by Jessica Kosinski   When talking about collectibles related to writing, it is impossible to ignore the topic of paperweights. Before computers existed, writing everything out by hand was the norm. As a result, writing desks were often littered with various papers. The best way to keep them organized and in place was to use […]

Gavels ‘n’ Paddles: Evinrude porcelain sign, $30,750, Route 32 Auctions

An Evinrude porcelain flange sign with excellent gloss and color, rated 8.9, 21 inches by 18 1/2 inches, sold for $30,750 at the Iowa Gas Auction held Aug. 5-6 by Route 32 Auctions in Des Moines, Iowa

Recent Auction Results from Near & Far By Ken Hall   An Evinrude porcelain flange sign with excellent gloss and color, rated 8.9, 21 inches by 18 1/2 inches, sold for $30,750 at the Iowa Gas Auction held Aug. 5-6 by Route 32 Auctions in Des Moines, Iowa. Also, a Red Hat Wey-Co Gasoline milk […]

Exploring Antique Technologies: Acing the Autopen – Helping Collectors Feel More Confident with Mechanical Writing

This 2011 photo depicts Bob Olding of Damilic Corp, a leading present-day manufacturer of signature machines, demonstrating the vintage Autopen Model 80. The machine uses levers and your favorite pen to duplicate programmed signatures, and while this can be a lifesaver for public officials, many in the government still use it sparingly. Though President Bush received a Justice Department Ruling in 2005 to sign a bill via autopen, he opted not to, and went out of his way to sign in person. Photo: via USA Today and Damilic Corp, Associated Press, 2011

by Kary Pardy   Footage from a 1950s 9-second video shows a grey, boxy machine using mechanical levers to exactly mimic the slopes and angles of a person’s handwriting. Since the invention and popularized use of the power autopen in the mid-1900s, it’s been making the lives of celebrities and politicians easier while at the […]