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What's Selling on eBay: May 2018

What's Selling on eBay: May 2018

by Deborah Abernethy and Mike McLeod
$4,402 (30 bids, 10 bidders): 1913 T200 Fatima Team Premium, New York Nationals, Rare Antique Original.
The 1913 New York team is considered one of the most star-studded teams to ever play the game. Featuring images of each member from the 1913 National League pennant winners, Hall of Famers such as Jim Thorpe (front row, left), Christy Mathewson (back row, middle), Rube Marquard and manager John McGraw are pictured on this significant piece from the rare tobacco issue. The 21 men in pinstripes are crisp and clear in this sharp piece from one of the most sought-after sets in the hobby. Now is your chance to own a piece of hobby greatness. It shows some wear, but I would say it is in good condition for its age. The photo part measures 19 inches by 11.25 inches. Overall, it measures 20.5 inches by 13.75 inches, including the cardboard backing.
(Photo: eBay seller bluecollarantiques)
DBA: These were issued by Fatima Cigarettes as glossy photographs on paper stock. There were two sizes made: 2 5/8 x 4 3/4 inch cards and the larger ones measuring 13 x 21 inches. The smaller cards were included in the tins of the Fatima Cigarettes. The larger ones were mailed to the smokers who sent in 40 coupons in exchange for the team of their choice. The larger ones are incredibly scarce. All of these team photographs sell for good sums of money, not just the New York Nationals. Condition of the cards is the real key; if these are not in good condition, this would not be a bargain.
Reproductions of these cards can be found in many places so be careful with your purchase of these. I have seen auction prices for the same size New York Nationals photograph be $6,500 with retail prices from dealers of sports memorabilia to be even higher for the same.

$5,723 (54 bids, 11 bidders): Antique 1830+/- Mouth-Blown Onion Chestnut Ink Bottle/Well Green/Amber with Pontil.
We are offering a wonderful and quite unusual mouth-blown antique ink bottle or ink well in an unusual and pleasing organic form. Handmade of amber/olive greenish glass, this piece has a flattened round shape with a polished, lipped opening at the top. Lots of great signs of age in this piece, including naturally occurring bubbles in the glass and shelf wear on the base. The base features a polished pontil, and the top is slightly tilted, perhaps to accommodate the pen and to serve as a reservoir for dripped ink. The bottom shows lots of expected shelf wear from being slid and moved around, just what you want to see on an early piece of utilitarian glass. A really great rare addition to a bottle collection with no damage or restorations. Surely of New England origin. Fresh to the market!
(Photo, eBay seller ri2u, aka Rhode Island Antiques Mall)
DBA: There are many bottle collectors. While I could not find this type of bottle selling, one only has to go to bottle auctions online to see the prices realized for the rare bottles. This price is well within those paid for other rare bottles. There are several things that make this bottle more valuable: the pontil mark indicating that it was blown, the onion shape, the impurities in the glass indicating it is older, and the color is more unusual.
$4,781 (54 bids, 11 bidders): Antique/Vintage, Circular Knitting Machine, Tuttle Patent? Lamb? Sock Tool.
This auction is for the old knitting machine and accessories as seen in the photo. Around the cylinder barrel rim, it is stamped, “No. 1, 4 1/2, 7507.” I do not see a maker’s name, but I believe this highly resembles a Tuttle patent/Lamb machine.
The machine suffers from some paint loss and corrosion. I do not see anything cracked or broken. I am not an expert with these, but it appears to function as it should. When the hand crank is turned and the cylinder is engaged, it rotates, and needles move up and down following the ramp/cam system inside the cylinder barrel. It also turns the counter. The ribber also turns when lowered into cylinder. The cylinder has 66 slots. There were only 55 needles in the machine when I found it.
(Photo, eBay seller grma1)
DBA: I did find one in Europe offered for sale at $5,255, so this one must be a good deal. This machine, although it still works, is probably headed to a museum. It is surprising how fast these machines can knit a pair of socks, but it is not fully automatic and does involve skill. By today’s standards, this would not turn a good profit as a business, but there are people who do this as a hobby. I have been told that it takes about 45 minutes to make a pair of socks on this type of machine.

$4,615 (17 bids, 11 bidders): H.C. Jones Patent Newark NJ Trick Padlock Puzzle Lock & Key, 1800s.

Large, heavy old steel trick padlock marked, “H.C. Jones Patent Newark NJ,” with original key. It has several hidden features that complicate opening and closing it. It measures about 3.5 by 5.5 inches. Henry C. Jones was granted patent #4011 in 1845 and assigned patent #6252 in 1849.
Here are the steps to open the lock:
1 – Determine the face side of the lock by finding the markings on the hasp.
2 – Release the keyhole cover by pushing the prong on the handle top into the depression at bottom left of the cover.
3 – Allow key insertion by pulling out the bottom center of the false cover.
4 – Insert key.
5 – Turn counter-clockwise one turn.
6 – On the back of the lock, at the top right of the body, pull up the left half of the tip.
7 – On the back of the lock, pull the top of the false cover to the left while simultaneously turning the key counter-clockwise. This step is quite awkward and strenuous as the spring is strong. The lock springs open.
(Photo, eBay seller gbit)
DBA: I could find twelve other trick padlocks that have sold recently in the $6,500 range. There were six others in the $4,500 to $6,500 range, so clearly this is not unusual. This is the going price for similar objects. At $4,615, I would say the buyer got a good deal.
Deborah Abernethy is a certified appraiser with the International Association of Appraisers. She can be contacted at 404-262-2131 or Her website is