BROWSE MORPHY HEADLINE NEWS
1,200+ toys, trains and figural cast-iron novelties entered in Morphy’s July 26-27 Premier Toy AuctionSubmitted by admin on Tue, 07/22/2014 - 10:04
1,200+ toys, trains and figural cast-iron novelties entered in Morphy’s July 26-27 Premier Toy Auction
DENVER, Pa. – The trains will be rolling at Morphy’s over the weekend of July 26-27. More than 700 railroad-related lots are entered in the big 1,294-lot Premier Toy Auction featuring all types of toys, trains, wind-ups and vehicles, as well as figural cast-iron doorstops and more.
Topping the train group is Lot 226, a 5-piece Elektoy passenger set consisting of a complete and original brass steam locomotive with tender marked “PENN. R.R.” Likewise, the combo car is complete and original. The set’s passenger cars are lettered for “PRR” and New York, New Haven and New Hartford.” In overall very good condition, this desirable set is estimated at $2,500-$3,500. Other eye-catching lots in this section include two rare, early trolleys – one by Howard and one by Lionel – and a Delker train store display.
Leading the early American toys, a beautiful Jerome Secor clockwork Banjo Player, Lot 998, is in working order and came straight from the house of the original owner’s family. The African-American musician figure is seated on its original wood base decorated with unusual stenciling. A paper label on the back of the iron chair shows how to wind up and handle the toy. The wonderfully sculpted musician’s head is in fine condition, and its clothing and banjo are original. In very good to excellent condition, this classic American automaton is expected to strum up a winning bid of $12,000-$18,000.
Exhibiting pristine condition, a 7-inch Arcade cast-iron Andy Gump toy auto retains its original crank and back license plate. Being the “Deluxe” version, the toy also includes a blue-painted figure and white-painted wheels. Possibly the nicest known example of a comic character classic, this near-mint beauty offered as Lot 961 could reach $8,000-$12,000 on auction day.
Speaking of classics, the Bradley & Hubbard cast-iron doorstop known as “Whistling Jim” qualifies for that category. Standing 16¼ inches tall, this solid-cast figure of a barefooted boy in casual rolled-up pants, a striped shirt and cap, has a wonderful patina. Described in Morphy’s catalog as “the best example [they] have seen,” it is estimated at $10,000-$15,000.
Those who appreciate the quality and ingenuity of early German toys – and that would be nearly every antique toy collector – won’t want to overlook Lot 1312, a Fisher 20-inch tin-litho airplane with wings that flap. The toy aircraft is also equipped with a pilot figure and original celluloid propellers that turn when the toy is activated. A most unusual prewar toy with European charm to spare, it could sell in the vicinity of $4,000-$6,000.
In the postwar category, Lot 1094, a Yonezawa tin-litho and painted-tin crank-wind Astro-Scout is the sale’s top robot. In working order and accompanied by its original box with inserts, the excellent to near-mint spaceman has expectations of achieving $4,000-$8,000.
All forms of bidding will be available for the July 26-27 auction, including in person at the gallery, by phone, absentee or live via the Internet through Morphy Live, LiveAuctioneers, Proxibid and Invaluable.
Preview the entire auction inventory daily from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. On both auction days, there will be a one-hour preview from 8 a.m. till the auction’s commencement at 9 a.m.
Morphy Auctions is located at 2000 N. Reading Road in Denver, PA 17517. For additional information on any item in the sale or to reserve a phone line for bidding on auction day, call 717-335-3435 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Submitted by admin on Tue, 07/15/2014 - 14:24
Meet Dave Bushing, new Firearms division expert at Morphy Auctions
Submitted by admin on Tue, 07/01/2014 - 16:30
Tom Hathazy named president of Morphy Auctions’ Classic Car division
DENVER, Pa. – Dan Morphy, founder and president of Morphy Auctions, has confirmed the appointment of Tom Hathazy to the position of president of the company’s newly launched Classic Car division.
In his capacity as head of the department, Hathazy will oversee all aspects pertaining to the consignment and sale of antique and classic cars, motorcycles and other vintage vehicles auctioned by Morphy’s. The company will host its automotive-auction debut on October 11, 2014, during the midpoint weekend between the popular October Carlisle and Hershey car shows.
A native of Pittsburgh, Hathazy holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in history from California University in western Pennsylvania. Earlier in his career – before the lure of special-interest cars took hold – he taught 11th grade history. Later, he operated his own retail automotive business as a sideline to his 30-year career in the circulation department of the Pittsburgh Press and Post-Gazette newspapers.
Over the years, Hathazy developed a particular expertise and interest in Chevrolet Corvettes.
“I’ve probably handled 250 Corvettes over the years. Part of my car business was a body shop that did restorations. That experience gave me the ability to look at a car and know immediately if the paint was right, the upholstery was original or a part had been replaced,” Hathazy said.
Hathazy also developed his eye for discerning paint and structural originality from studying antique and vintage automotive toys, which he has collected since 1986.
“My friendship with Dan Morphy and his family goes back 20 years. We share many common interests in addition to toys,” said Hathazy. “I’ve been a Morphy’s customer, so I’ve seen that side of his operation and, on the other hand, I’ve worked with Dan at other business levels over the past 10 years, so I know how he conducts himself. His word is his bond, and he has a strong entrepreneurial spirit. That’s one of the reasons I’ve joined Morphy Auctions. I know Dan will invest that passion – and his well-proven way of dealing with consignors fairly and honestly – into the new classic car division. I’m going to do everything I can to help make Morphy Auctions’ latest venture a great success.”
Hathazy said he intends to takes a hands-on approach to the consignment process.
“I will personally be paying visits to potential consignors who call us, to inspect their cars and see if they meet our standards. In our sales, we’re going to focus on quality, not volume. Our first auction will not contain any car valued at less than $20,000,” Hathazy said.
Potential consignors of antique or classic cars, motorcycles or other collector vehicles can contact Tom Hathazy for a confidential consultation by calling 412-403-4924 or 412-655-2010; or emailing email@example.com.
Submitted by admin on Wed, 06/18/2014 - 16:30
July 21-23: Phoenix, AZ
Submitted by admin on Tue, 06/17/2014 - 11:24
Tom Miano, founder of Serious Toyz™, tapped to head new Pop Culture department for Morphy Auctions
DENVER, Pa. – Morphy Auctions’ Antique & Vintage Toy division is in expansion mode yet again. Dan Morphy, founder and president of Morphy Auctions, announced today that Tom Miano of Serious Toyz™ has joined the Pennsylvania company’s team of specialists. Miano, whose new title is Pop Culture Expert, will be acquiring consignments and managing sales of vintage toys and pop-culture collectibles for Morphy’s, starting with a September 6 auction of character, postwar and space toys.
“Tom’s auction house, Serious Toyz™, is a favorite with collectors. They love it. In the 19 years that Tom has been the hands-on owner and operator of the company, he has built an outstanding reputation,” said Morphy. “He’s well liked by everyone in the industry, and consignors know they can depend on his knowledge and expertise. He will be a tremendous asset to our operation.”
The addition of a dedicated pop culture department completes the timeline of toys and collectibles offered in specialty sales at Morphy’s, which is already a worldwide force in the auction of antique, prewar vintage, and postwar boomer-era toys.
Until now, the only toy classification at Morphy’s that didn’t have its own expert-led department was pop culture and collectibles, said Morphy. “Now, with Tom Miano and Serious Toyz™ merging into Morphy’s, it adds the final link we have been missing. Even better, it eliminates the job of building a new department organically from the ground up. It has already been built and fine-tuned by Tom, who is the best in the business. He has many consignors and customers that we didn’t have on our books, and vice versa. One side complements the other very nicely,” Morphy said.
Miano, who graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the School of Visual Arts in New York City, began his career as an advertising art director at Foote, Cone & Belding. He later held creative director positions at several other leading international advertising agencies, including McCann-Erickson, J. Walter Thompson, and Ogilvy & Mather. In 1995, Miano decided to leave the corporate world in order to pursue his long-held dream of establishing an auction company focused exclusively on toys, collectibles and pop culture memorabilia.
“Starting up and building Serious Toyz™ into what it is today was a learning process from day one,” Miano said. “In the beginning, my wife Patti and I did everything manually, with sheets of paper taped to our kitchen wall. Every time a bid would come in over the phone, we’d add it to the sheet of paper for that particular auction item. Of course, over the years our methods became a lot more sophisticated, but it’s nothing compared to the amazing operation Dan has in place at Morphy’s. The first time I visited his gallery, it was like finding the Promised Land. I feel very privileged to have been asked to join his team.”
Morphy Auctions’ strength in technology and social media is a natural fit for the Serious Toyz™ demographic, Miano said. “To reach a global audience, the company utilizes four Internet live-bidding platforms, including its own, Morphy Live. They’re ideally positioned to interact with pop culture collectors worldwide.”
Tom Miano is currently organizing toy consignments for Morphy’s September 6 auction, which was previously advertised as Serious Toyz™ Auction #56. To contact Tom Miano, call the business number previously used by Serious Toyz™: 866-653-8699, or email Tom@serioustoyz.com
Prehistoric Ross Blade in Morphy’s May 17 auction looked sharp as it commanded a top bid of $276,000Submitted by admin on Tue, 05/27/2014 - 10:19
Prehistoric Ross Blade in Morphy’s May 17 auction looked sharp as it commanded a top bid of $276,000
The top 10 was led by the exceptional Ross Blade, an exotic flint specimen from the Woodland period, Hopewell phase (2000-1500 B.P.). Crafted to a very high standard, the translucent sunset orange blade measuring 8 1/8 inches would have been reserved for only the elite of Hopewellian society, said Morphy’s Prehistoric Americana expert John Mark Clark.
“The Ross Blade is likely the most beautiful, and largest, known example of its type in private hands,” said Clark. “Legend has it that this blade traveled from the Midwest – probably southern Illinois – all the way to Utah, where it was found during the restoration of an antique truck. The blade had been wrapped in a shirt and stashed inside a door panel. It made its way back to the Midwest, where it ended up being one of few things that survived a massive house fire. That’s why the blade is known to collectors as ‘The Survivor.’” At Morphy’s auction, the Ross Blade reached the upper end of its estimate range, selling for $276,000.
Two other blades achieved top-10 status. A translucent sugar quartz Clovis point from the Early Paleolithic Period (11500-10000 B.P.) was discovered near Buckhart Township in Fulton County, Illinois. Its distinctive white tip was part of the craftsman’s design plan, Clark said, and because it is so unusual, it was chosen for inclusion on the Paleo poster created by Pete Bostrum, Lithic Casting Lab, Troy, Illinois. “The ‘Bostrum blessing’ is given to only the finest of specimens,” Clark noted. Against a $45,000-$60,000 estimate, the point realized $69,000. Not far behind was a corner notch blade of Missouri origin, from the Archaic Period (7500-4000 B.P.). With provenance from several well-known early collections, the 7-inch blade described in Morphy’s catalog as “museum grade” sold for an above-estimate price of $64,800.
Having a gemstone-like color, a ferruginous quartz hourglass bannerstone of the Late Archaic Period (4000-3000 B.P.) was bid to $39,000 against an estimate of $20,000-$30,000; while two discoidal game stones – believed to have been playing pieces for “chunkey” hoop-and-stick games enjoyed by North America’s indigenous population – were in great demand with bidders. A flint discoidal specimen from the Mississippian Period (1000-5000 B.P.), found in Dickson County, Tennessee, surpassed its high estimate to settle at $33,000. Another discoidal highlight from Tennessee – dating to the same general timeframe – was crafted of finely grained quartzite. It changed hands at Morphy’s for $39,000.
One of the most compelling objects in the sale was a grayware headpot discovered at the Golden Lake Site in Mississippi County, Arkansas. Featured in Dr. James F. Cherry’s epic 1990 book dedicated to headpots, the vessel is described by the author as having “an unusual occipital bun…multiple ear piercings, a pierced forelock tab, and a highly burnished finish…with no restoration, [which is] almost unheard of…” The pot was offered together with two X-rays confirming its solid, untouched condition; a copy of Dr. Cherry’s book, and two collector journals depicting the vessel that is known as the Ray Pohler Headpot. It garnered a winning bid of $78,000, just shy its high estimate.
“This was our second auction of North American artifacts and arrowheads, and it proved without a doubt that there is a large and dedicated following for prehistoric specimens. We will continue to develop the Prehistoric Americana division at Morphy’s and offer our ironclad policy of backing the authenticity of each item sold,” said Dan Morphy, president and founder of Morphy Auctions.
Quality consignments are currently being accepted for Morphy’s next American Artifact and Arrowhead Auction. To discuss a consignment, contact John Mark Clark by calling 931-237-3646 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit Morphy Auctions online at www.morphyauctions.com.
Submitted by admin on Thu, 05/15/2014 - 13:34
Super selection of advertising, trains and toys on tap at Morphy’s, May 18th
When Morphy’s offers antique and vintage advertising, it always includes signage from America’s favorite beverages, whether soft drinks or adult brews.
In this sale, a 1950s Coca-Cola illuminating countertop sign asks restaurant patrons to “Please Pay When Served.” Bright and impressive – and in working order – the 19-inch-long sign in vibrant “Coke colors” of red, green and white is expected to bring $800-$1,200.
With crossover appeal to sports collectors, a 1954 Ballantine Ale & Beer sign features the Ralph Houk-era New York Yankees in a full-color team-posed picture. Each Yankee team member is identified – even the batboys. Some of the luminaries include Mickey Mantle, Hank Bauer, Phil Rizzuto and Yogi Berra. The sign identifies the Yankees as being the “first team to win 5 consecutive World Series Championships 1949, ’50, ’51, ’52, ’53.” The 17in x 15in Masonite sign is affordably estimated at $200-$300.
Rare Caille Double-Upright Floor Model Slot Machine at Morphy's Advertising & Coin Auction | Morphy AuctionsSubmitted by admin on Tue, 05/06/2014 - 16:24
Rare slot machine pays $90K jackpot at Morphy’s April 26-27 Advertising & Coin Op Auction
Multiple bidders chase collection of antique syrup dispensers entered in $1.64M sale
DENVER, PA. – A superb Caille double-upright floor model slot machine combining a 5-cent Centaur and 25-cent Big Six paid off handsomely at Morphy’s April 26-27 Antique Advertising & Coin Op Auction. Its richly gold-plated façade, paw feet and other embellishments made the early gambling machine the center of attention at Morphy’s $1,640,000 sale, where it garnered a winning bid of $90,000. All prices quoted are inclusive of 20% buyer’s premium.
The auction also featured many smaller gambling, arcade and vending machines. A Mills 1-cent “Electric Treatment” machine emblazoned “For One Night Jags” and “Take a shock and look pleasant,” surpassed its high estimate at $11,400. Not quite as jolting was a quaint Chuck-O-Luck glass-dome-topped nickel dice machine. Made in 1926 by the Southern Novelty Company of Atlanta, it attracted multiple bidders who pushed it to $6,600 against a presale estimate of $600-$1,000.
A 40-year single-owner collection of more than 100 early syrup dispensers featured many scarce entries, including a circa 1910 Cherri Bon dispenser and one of very few known examples of a circa-1900 Fan-Taz 5-cent “DRINK of the FANS” dispenser in the form of a realistically “stitched” baseball. Each was bid to $31,200. Other popular syrup dispensers included Beats All and Grape Smash, which realized $20,400 each; and Chero Crush, $19,200. A vibrant, barrel-shape “Drink Orange-Julep” dispenser commanded a sweet bid of $17,400 – nearly triple its high estimate.
America’s classic soft drink, Coca-Cola, was not to be denied a place in the top 10. A framed 1911 Coke calendar in near-mint condition with a beautiful image of a “Gibson Girl” wearing a stylish flower-trimmed hat swept past its $6,000-$7,000 to settle at $17,400. An extremely rare “Hutchinson-style” Coke bottle, with a straight-sided as opposed to cabriole shape, nearly doubled its high estimate at $8,400.
An extensive collection of Orange Crush advertising included a very rare 1936 embossed-tin triangle sign. In near-mint condition, it bubbled up a winning bid of $4,500. Among the other beverage highlights was a brewery sign with regional appeal: a tin pictorial sign for York Brewing Co. Lager Beer, York, Pa. It sold for $5,400 against an estimate of $1,500-$2,500.
A fine array of more than 150 advertising tins was led by a Buster Brown cigar tin with an amusing image of comic strip character Buster Brown and his trusty bull terrier Tighe. Estimated at $2,000-$3,000, the perennially popular container rose to $14,400. One of only a few known examples of a Sweet Violet Tobacco vertical pocket tin was estimated at $1,000-$2,000 but realized a hefty $6,600.
The Sunday session opened with Morphy’s second offering of pinball machines from the 35-year David Silverman collection, previously displayed at the National Pinball Museum. Film-related machines found favor with bidders, including a 1993 Williams “Indiana Jones” pinball that sold within estimate for $6,600. And there was crossover interest from sports fans for a 1953 D. Gottlieb & Co. “Grand Slam” pinball machine. Described as being in 9.75 (out of 10) condition and a “really great game to play,” it surpassed expectations at $3,000.
“Once again, antique advertising showed its strength in the marketplace,” Morphy Auctions’ president and founder Dan Morphy said after the busy two-day event. “Collectors keep coming back to our sales because they know we understand what they want – rarity and condition. Every one of our advertising auctions is different because we specialize in collections, in particular those that have been held privately for decades. You never know when a collector will decide it’s time to sell. But that’s what makes our advertising sales so exciting. They contain things that may only be available to purchase once in a buyer’s lifetime, so collectors pay close attention.”
Submitted by admin on Tue, 04/29/2014 - 13:41
Morphy’s May 17 Prehistoric American Artifacts Auction presents a world-class rarity: the celebrated Parks Birdstone
Morphy’s April 26-27 auction presents iconic American advertising, from soft drinks and cars to tobacco and other vicesSubmitted by admin on Fri, 04/04/2014 - 16:25
Also featured: coin-ops, figural cast iron and Part II of Silverman pinball collection
Collected over several decades, with a focus on cast iron doorstops, the Greenberg collection is one of the top figural cast iron collections in quality, rarity, and variety to hit the market in many years. The total disbursement of the collection will unfold over four to five auctions.
Morphy’s April 26-27 Antique Advertising, Coin-op & Figural Cast Iron Auction will begin at 9 a.m. Eastern Time. All forms of bidding will be available, including live online through Morphy Live (www.morphyauctions.com), LiveAuctioneers or Invaluable. For additional information on any item in the sale, call 717-335-3435 or email email@example.com. Visit Morphy Auctions online at www.morphyauctions.com.