• 26 Jul
    2009

Watch & Clock Collectors Descend on Grand Rapids for the ‘National’

This year the National Watch & Clock Collectors Association (NAWCC) had its annual event/show at the prestigious Devos Convention Center, adjacent to the Grand Amway Hotel in downtown in Grand Rapids, Mich. The “National” is the premiere event of the NAWCC and this year’s show—held in early June—was a real classy event, held at the […]

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  • 13 Jul
    2009

Any Way You Look At It, the Fiery Opal Is Certainly a Thing of Beauty

If you were born in the month of October, then in all probability you know that your birthstone is Opal. Its brilliant, flashing, fiery colors, giving off intense rainbow effects, make it unique among the gems. Opals have been used in jewelry since the beginning of recorded history, and the collectible market in antique opal […]

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  • 30 Jun
    2009

‘On the Ball’—Webb C. Ball’s Contribution to Railroad Watches and Timekeeping

Webb C. Ball was born in Fredericktown, Ohio on Oct. 6, 1847 and became a jeweler & watchmaker. When Standard Time was first adopted in 1883, he was the first jeweler to use time signals, bringing accurate time to Cleveland, Ohio. After the infamous railroad collision locomotives belonging to the Lake Shore and Michigan Southern […]

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  • 8 Jun
    2009

How Much Does the Previous Owner Impact the Value of an Antique or Collectible?

With appraisal work, no one aspect affects value in the short term more for an antique or collectible than an iron-clad provenance. Even the most mundane items can have huge variances in value depending on prior ownership. Items such as a Tiffany’s ladies’ tape measure—which now retails for about $225—can be worth $48,875, or a […]

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  • 4 May
    2009

Longines’ World War Two Pilot’s Wristwatch

This Longines’ World War Two Pilot’s Wristwatch, with a Wheem’s aircraft navigational calculation bezel, is an early and quite rare Longines Aircraft Navigation watch. This type of watch was pioneered and developed by Longines during the 1930’s, with consultation from Charles Lindbergh, the famous American aviator who was the first pilot to cross the Atlantic […]

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  • 17 Mar
    2009

Valuable Items That Slip Through the Cracks

When it’s time to liquidate a family estate what are the first things we think of as having value. The dinning room is our first thought for its silverware, crystal and that special dinner ware that you only saw on holidays. Then we hurry into the bedroom and locate the jewelry boxes. After that it’s […]

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  • 11 Mar
    2009

A Short History of the Wristwatch

The first fully portable timepieces began to appear in the early 1500s, but they were so inaccurate, they only needed one hand: for the hours. Watches made in subsequent years were carried in a specially made box, worn as a pin, or suspended around the neck by a chain or cord. Watches specifically adapted to […]

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  • 24 Jan
    2009

Authenticating Ancient Chinese Jades Using Scientific Methods

By Janet G. Douglas Many collectors and museums have questions relating to the authentication of ancient Chinese jades in light of the current market where forgeries are commonplace. Today’s forgers are producing convincing fakes, and it is becoming increasingly difficult to rely on one’s eye and knowledge. It is only natural that people are looking […]

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  • 20 Jan
    2009

Party On with Inaugural Collectibles

In the mood to party, but it’s too late for New Year’s Eve? Too early for the Super Bowl? How about an inauguration shindig complete with Obama collectibles destined to become family heirlooms? (Remember, there is nothing in the Constitution that says you have to party on Jan. 20. That’s only the swearing-in.) To set […]

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  • 12 Jan
    2009

Turnipseed Reaps Diverse Collecting Crop

It started with a cardboard box at a garage sale purchased for $1. In the box was a plastic jewelry set—a bracelet, ring and earrings—all in polka dots. That was the beginning of Maggie Turnipseed’s collecting Bakelite plastics. “There is something about the quality of the pieces. They are very smooth, and they come in […]

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