DENVER, Pa. – Morphy Auctions will launch into the fall auction season with a Premier Antique Advertising Sale, Sept. 2-3, with absentee and Internet live bidding through LiveAuctioneers.com. Nearly 1,100 curated lots will be offered, including advertising signs, displays, figures and ephemera.
This sale’s fine range of rare antique porcelain shaving mugs is sharp as a razor. Lot #619, a Harley-Davidson motorcycle occupational shaving mug, may “hog” bidder’s attention with its $1,500-$3,000 estimate. This fine piece shows an early Harley-Davidson motorcycle, is marked Germany and J.E. Neville Quincy, Ill., and is personalized with the name John J. Malls in gold gilt. And lot #612, an airplane occupational shaving mug with a pilot flying a Curtiss airplane, is estimated at $1,500-$4,000. This high flyer is personalized with the name Harvey Dan Wagner in gold and is stamped Austria under its base.
With almost 250 lots on offer, the collection of bar tap knobs is nothing short of top shelf. Two highlights are lot #111, a red swirled Old Shay Ale Newman glass tap knob estimated at $400-$600; and lot #162, a red and black swirled Old Dobbin Ale Newman glass tap knob, estimated at $500-$800.
This sale’s selection of more than 260 lots of vintage and antique Coca-Cola branded merchandise is certainly the real thing. Lot #971, an exceptionally rare Coca-Cola double Glasscock Brother’s salesman’s sample cooler, is estimated at $15,000-$25,000. This circa-1929 example features twin-hinged top lids with zinc interior compartments, original advertising panels on all four sides, a side bottle opener, and caster feet. Morphy’s sold a similar one for $17,835 at their 2017 Spring Antique Advertising Sale.
Lot #637, a rare and beautiful 1901 Coca-Cola calendar, is estimated at $8,000-$15,000. This item originated from City Drug Store in Myersdale, Pa., and still bears its original drugstore sticker. Its colors are quite strong and the piece really pops with richly detailed embossing.
Lot #937, a 1930s-era Coca-Cola lighted action sign estimated at $6,000-12,000, is truly electrifying. This sign was manufactured by George Mesker and Co. from Evansville, Ind. This is believed to be the only known example and was likely a prototype. When plugged in, the bottom illuminates the sign and a motor drives a set of panels to change the sign from Drink Coca-Cola to The Pause that Refreshes. This is the actual sign that appears in Petretti’s Coca-Cola Price Guide.
Collectors will be singing the praises of Lot #835, a 1905 Coca-Cola self-framed tin sign featuring opera star Lillian Nordica. It is estimated at $7,500-$15,000.
This auction’s selection of fine beverage syrup dispensers is quite refreshing. Lot #1018, an extremely rare Drink Fan-Taz dispenser with its original pump, is simply fan-tastic and estimated at $10,000-$25,000. This design is painted to look like a baseball with picture of a baseball bat across the front; its advertising copy reads: Drink Fan-Taz – Drink of the Fans – A Pennant Winner. Lot #1016, a Jim Dandy root beer syrup dispenser with an old ball pump is estimated at $15,000-$25,000. Its bold lettering decoration is as strong as the day it was made.
Lot #1017, an early two-piece Hires “Ugly Boy” urn syrup dispenser is estimated at $20,000-$30,000. This fine example, featuring four images of the Hires mascot, retains its original spigot and is in fantastic condition with very light wear and vibrant colors.
All signs suggest this event’s selections of trade and advertising signage will delight collectors from start to finish. Lot #539, a Robert Burns cigar chipped glass advertising sign is estimated at $10,000-$30,000. The sign has a lithograph insert in the center of Robert Burns; the rest of the sign is made of chipped glass. According to Morphy’s experts, it is likely the only one in existence.
Lot #540, a Davy Crockett Cigar embossed tin sign is estimated at $20,000-$40,000. It is framed without glass and was made by The Standard Advertising Company of Coshocton, Ohio. This fabulous example is heavily embossed and features a great image of Davy Crockett smoking a cigar and holding a rifle. This is the first time that Morphy’s has handled an example of this sign.
Lot #292, an Iroquois Brewery Beer porcelain corner sign with great graphics, strong colors, and gloss, is estimated at $10,000-$20,000. This extremely hard-to-find example retains its original cast iron bracket and is marked Ingram Richardson Beaver Falls, PA. And lot #418, a single-sided Auburn Wagons wooden advertising trade sign from Martinsburg, W.Va., is estimated at $8,000-$15,000. This fine piece has very strong colors and an appealing look and retains its original wooden frame.
This sale rounds out with an impressive selection of rare and unusual advertising materials, jugs, clocks, displays, and ephemera.