BROWSE MORPHY HEADLINE NEWS
Submitted by admin on Mon, 05/20/2013 - 09:10
Morphy’s June 1 auction a high-quality mix of antique advertising, coin-op machines and occupational shaving mugs from private collections
Rover 1-cent Puss ‘N’ Boots fortune teller could reach $25,000-$30,000
Morphy’s is like a second home to antique advertising collectors, who regard the central Pennsylvania company’s auctions as a premier source of fresh-to-market pieces from long-held collections. On June 1st, Morphy’s will conduct a 537-lot specialty sale comprised exclusively of antique advertising, coin-op and penny arcade machines; and rare occupational shaving mugs. In keeping with their new, across-the-board policy, the auction will begin at 9 a.m. Eastern Time.
The session will open with an exceptional single-owner collection of 150+ shaving mugs that includes several exciting rarities. Lot 29 depicts two men bowling and has an estimate of $1,500-$2,500; while Lot 122 features the image of an early airplane whose pilot wears duster-type goggles, est. $2,500-$3,000. An elusive stock market-related mug entered as Lot 89 is emblazoned with the image of a commodities broker writing numbers on a chalkboard. Although estimated at $2,500-$4,000, it “could go considerably higher,” according to Morphy Auctions CEO Dan Morphy. “Veteran collectors who’ve looked at it say it’s one of the best they’ve ever seen,” Morphy noted.
More than 150 gambling, vending and penny arcade machines lead the lineup of coin-operated amusements. Lot 189, a Buffalo Pepsin Gum vendor is expected to make $5,000-$8,000; while Lot 223, a Caille Centaur upright slot machine in beautiful condition could reach $25,000-$30,000. Lot 240, an original Mills 5-cent Frank Polk figural cowboy slot machine, is entered with a $20,000-$25,000 estimate. Polk produced only 70 original “cowboys,” the one in Morphy’s June 1 auction being one of them.
Other high-end machines include Lot 260, a Bally Reliance 5-cent dice machine, est. $8,000-$12,000; and Lot 295, a Rover 1-cent Puss ‘N’ Boots fortune teller machine, complete with 100 fortune cards, est. $25,000-$30,000. A highly desirable musical novelty of yesteryear, Lot 326 is a Wurlitzer Model 850 “Peacock” jukebox. Extremely rare and widely regarded as one of Wurlitzer’s most exquisite and colorful productions, it is estimated at $15,000-$18,000.
Next up will be 150+ lots of antique advertising. Lot 484, a circa-1910 to 1920 Phoenix Pure Paint curved porcelain sign, features the image of a Native-American boy. It is extremely scarce, as reflected in its presale estimate of $10,000-$15,000. Lot 500, a self-framed tin sign advertising Frazer Axle Grease, features a remarkable image of two horse-drawn wagons involved in a pioneer-era “fender bender.” Estimate $4,000-$6,000.
The ever-popular Mr. Peanut will make an appearance in Lot 512, in the form of a life-size (75-inch-tall) papier-mache statue. The circa-1920s three-dimensional figure came from a Canadian collection and could bring $8,000-$12,000 on auction day.
More than 100 tip trays, most in near-mint-plus condition, have come to Morphy’s from a single-owner collection. Standouts include Lot 346, a tip tray for J. Hupfel Brewing Co., est. $400-$800; and Lot 350, an example that advertises Rienzi Beer in bottles, est. $300-$600.
A fine selection of railroad-themed photos includes Lot 518, a litho print dated 1858 that depicts Boston Railroad Locomotive Works builders. The 29 x 42in print is estimated at $5,000-$8,000. Another highlight is Lot 522, a ruby ambrotype photo of a locomotive, est. $800-$1,200.
“Our advertising sales are always enjoyable,” said Dan Morphy. “Collectors appreciate the fact that we’re very particular about the condition and quality of pieces accepted for consignment, and those who cannot bid in person never have to worry about our descriptions and condition reports. They know they can trust them one hundred percent.”
Submitted by admin on Tue, 05/14/2013 - 08:54
Morphy’s May 25 Fine Art & General Antiques Auction features broad selection of pottery, art glass, antiques, coins
750-lot sale opens with early Amphora and Midwestern American pottery
There’s nothing like a long-held, well-seasoned collection to jump-start a collecting niche that has gone quiet. Dan Morphy, CEO of Morphy Auctions, said he saw the positive effect for himself at two previous Morphy sales that included rare pieces of Amphora pottery from the renowned Les Cohen collection. He expects similar interest and continued strong results at his May 25, 2013 event. The Amphora selection set to open the company’s 750-lot Fine Art & General Antiques sale could very well make it a lucrative trifecta for consignors, Morphy said.
More than 150 pieces of Amphora – including several prized examples from the Cohen collection – lead the May 25 proceedings. Animal forms include a vase with opalescent frits and four cats’ heads in relief, est. $5,000-$8,000, and a dragon vase with realistic reptilian scaling on its convoluted tale, $7,000-$9,000.
A monumental Amphora Gres-Bijou vase in mint condition, its underside impressed with an Imperial crown and Amphora Austria mark, is very similar to an example illustrated on Page 251 of Monsters and Maidens, Collectors Edition by Byron Vreeland. It could reach $8,000-$10,000 in the May 25 sale.
Markings are especially important to Amphora collectors, Dan Morphy said. Amphora pottery was produced by the Amphora Porcelain Works from 1910 to 1945 in the Turn-Teplitz region of Bohemia, now Trnovany in the Czech Republic. Because Bohemia was part of Austro-Hungary prior to World War I, examples produced there were marked “Austria.” Pieces made after the war are identified with a “Czechoslovakia” mark.
The Amphora selection will be followed by Zeck, Rookwood and Roseville pottery. Highlights include a Rookwood umbrella stand, Roseville Futura jardinière and pedestal, and Roseville 10in Sunflower vase. All three items carry individual estimates of $1,000-$1,500. Among the 85 lots of Breininger Pennsylvania pottery are a dog with basket, $400-$800; handled pitcher, $800-$1,200; and a Santa in sleigh pulled by reindeer, $400-$800.
Art glass lighting to be auctioned includes a Tiffany Studios 16in Daffodil lamp, $18,000-$25,000; a Handel with floral-design shade, $3,000-$4,000; and a Pairpoint lamp with reverse-on-glass shade and butterfly motif, $1,200-$1,500.
Many beautiful designs are seen in the 50-piece selection of art glass. A circa-1902 Loetz metallic red Phanomen Gre glass vase, signed “Loetz Austria” in the polished pontil, is the same form that appears on Page 1267 of the “Neue Gallerie” book. It is entered with an estimate of $3,500-$4,500. Other Loetz highlights include a 14in vase, $2,000-$3,000; and a 12in green glass vase, $2,000-$2,500. A art glass vase overlaid with silver is cataloged with a $3,000-$4,000 estimate, while a Daum Nancy “pillow” vase is expected to make $1,800-$2,500.
The auction will then move into a more general offering of fine art, clocks, Americana and even several desirable violins. The top-estimated painting, at $5,000-$10,000, is Guy Wiggins’ signed oil on board titled Midtown Winter; while the upper end of the clock section is dominated by a Black Forest Eagle clock, $5,000-$10,000 and an American tall-case clock with moon dial, $5,000-$10,000.
The sale will conclude with 125 lots of coins representing the second consignment to come to Morphy’s from the Pennsylvania Treasury’s Bureau of Unclaimed property. A lot comprised of 23 gold coins is estimated at $7,000-$10,000. Other coins expected to find favor with collectors are a Lincoln cent 1909-1940 set that includes key dates, $1,500-$2,000; a Lincoln cent 1941-1976 set with a 1955 double die, $1,500-$2,000; and a Walking Liberty half dollar set, $1,500-$2,500. Also part of the Treasury consignment are many rolls of silver dimes, half dollars and dollars.
The Saturday, May 25 auction will commence at 9 a.m. Eastern Time. Morphy Auctions’ gallery is located at 2000 N. Reading Rd., Denver, PA 17517. All forms of bidding will be available, including live via the Internet through Morphy Live or Artfact. View the fully illustrated catalog online at www.morphyauctions.com or www.artfact.com.
Submitted by admin on Tue, 05/07/2013 - 07:44
Morphy’s appoints Mark Clark to head new Prehistoric American Artifacts division
Pennsylvania auction house sets goal of two specialty sales per year, beginning this fall
Dan Morphy, CEO and owner of Morphy Auctions, has announced the appointment of Tennessee-based antiques collector and dealer John Mark Clark as head of the company’s newly established Prehistoric American Artifacts division.
“North American arrowheads and other prehistoric artifacts have a large and dedicated following of collectors. For some time, now, we’ve wanted to add a department catering to this specialty, but we needed to make sure the right person was running the operation,” Morphy said. “When Mark Clark expressed an interest, we knew we could move forward with confidence. His impeccable reputation as a dealer and his tremendous knowledge of the subject from many years as a collector make him the perfect choice to launch our new department.”
Clark, who is known to all his friends and fellow collectors by the middle name “Mark,” is the son of antique dealers who started taking him to auctions at a very young age. “I’ve been around antiquities my whole life. My older brother collected arrowheads, so I was familiar with them from early on. I started my first collection – Goofus glass – when I was only six,” Clark said.
“My father was also a land speculator who bought and sold property in the area where we lived,” Clark said. “I would go out into the plowed fields with him to search for arrowheads and artifacts left behind from 15,000 years of Middle Tennessee’s cultural past. There’s something almost spiritual about such types of items. I’m sure it affected me subconsciously.”
Later, as Clark’s fascination with prehistoric objects deepened, he began to educate himself on the subject while at the same time building the base of a world-class collection of rare arrowheads and relics.
In the early 1970s, after deciding a fourth year of college was not for him, Clark joined his entrepreneurial family’s retail furniture business, all the while buying antiquities on the side. Clark left the family business in the early 1990s to pursue a full-time career in the antiques business and hasn't looked back since. “I have known the antiques trade was my destiny since grade school,” he said.
“I decided to deal in antique toys and advertising, which I had always loved. I used to buy kids’ old metal lunchboxes as cheap storage containers for arrowheads. One day I walked into an arrowhead show with a ‘Rat Patrol’ lunchbox full of arrowheads and a collector tried to buy the lunchbox instead of the arrowheads!” Clark recalled. “At that moment the proverbial light bulb clicked in my head, and a 25-year career in pop culture collectibles was born."
Now an acknowledged expert in prehistoric American artifacts, Clark hopes to bring order and credibility to a collecting niche that he says has become compromised by a few dishonest people.
“The market has been flooded with repros and fraudulent material. It’s something I’ve had to deal with on a daily basis, so I know other collectors are having to deal with it, too,” Clark said. “Only a few auction houses guarantee the authenticity of what they sell, and Morphy’s is one of them. The prehistoric market has been begging for a reputable auction house to step in and warranty what they’re selling, and now that’s going to happen.”
Under Clark’s supervision, Morphy’s plans to conduct two Prehistoric American Artifacts specialty auctions per year, beginning this fall. The events will be produced under the “Premier” banner, meaning they will be major events with hardbound full-color catalogs and extensive marketing campaigns. Each sale will include 300-600 lots of arrowheads, Mississippian effigy pottery and other prehistoric art from the Paleo, Archaic, Woodland and Mississippian time periods. Clark said he is already in talks to secure a rare and very desirable Cumberland projectile point from the Paleo Era and an exceptional cache of Copena points from the Woodland era.
“Collectors already know they can trust Morphy’s from their decade-long association with them in other categories. Finally there will be a place where prehistoric collectors can feel secure about what they purchase, which will be a breath of fresh air for the hobby,” Clark said.
To discuss consigning to the debut Prehistoric American Artifacts auction at Morphy’s, call Mark Clark at 931-237-3646 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit Morphy Auctions online at www.morphyauctions.com
Submitted by admin on Tue, 02/26/2013 - 12:43
Morphy Auctions will host James Spence Authentication for a day of on-site autograph authentication. The date is set for Saturday, May 18th, 2013 beginning at 10:00 a.m. and concluding at 4:00 p.m.
James Spence Authentication will offer several services including letters of authenticity, basic certificates, and stamps of approval. Contingent on the signature, submission fees will generally range from $25.00 up to $250.00. A more detailed listing of authentication fees and services can be found on their website, www.spenceloa.com, and will also be readily available the day of the event.
After your item is authenticated, a Morphy Auctions representative will be available to discuss the possibility of consignment to an upcoming auction or an immediate outright purchase of your authenticated piece.
Examples of potential items to be authenticated include autographed baseballs, bats, gloves, basketballs, footballs, jerseys, sports cards, photographs, etc. In addition to all sports related signatures James Spence’s authenticators will also verify historical, political, and celebrity signatures.
If you’re interested in having an item authenticated but have a conflict with the scheduled date, you can arrange to drop off your item at an earlier time. After James Spence and his team authenticate your item, it can be conveniently picked up at Morphy Auctions the following day or week.
If any additional information is needed please contact Tommy Sage, the Morphy Auctions representative for this event, at email@example.com or 717-335-4571