Massive Panama City (Fla.) Estate Sale to Feature All Kinds of Americana

A pair of carriage-style, electrified Johnny Walker revolving bar lights will be among the hundreds of items up for auction at the sale of the John and Jean Robertson estate, to be sold on July 30, 2011.

PANAMA CITY, Fla. – The estate of John and Jean Robertson, collectors who amassed a staggering number of items in a wide array of categories over the course of their rich lifetime together, will be sold in an on-site auction scheduled for Saturday, July 30, at the Robertson’s residence, located at 6104 Harvey Street in Panama City. The sale will begin at 9 a.m. (CDT).

Offered will be soda collectibles, advertising signs and clocks, radio tubes, vintage table radios, a gumball machine, vintage fans and hats, Shirley Temple memorabilia, Matchbox cars, Tonka toys, cigar boxes, American Fostoria, composite roosters, elegant etched glassware and china, children’s books, Rhine wine (Hock) glasses, Hummel figures, Haviland china and Christmas decorations.

“To say that the Robertsons had some collections would be a gross understatement,” said Logan Adams of The Specialists of the South, the Panama City-based firm that will conduct the auction. “I think it’s more accurate to say they lived and breathed their collections, which are now being offered to the public by their son and executor, Eddie. It is a rare opportunity indeed.”

An example of one item expected to generate strong bidder interest is a pair of electrified advertising bar lights, similar to carriage lamps, for Johnny Walker Red, the well-known Scotch brand. The two pieces show the familiar Johnny Walker character standing on a compass that revolves and changes from red to green while in motion, alluding to the motto, “Turning Green to Red.” The set comes with mounting hardware.

Also expected to do well will be a gorgeous Lester grand piano, a silver-plated tea service, a 1 ¾-carat diamond solitaire with an appraised value of $9,400, a stunning opal ring with a replacement value of $12,000, many sterling silver rings, artwork, photographs, and an American Fostoria three-toed tri-corner centerpiece bowl with undulating form, 11 ¼ inches in diameter.

This gorgeous lady’s 14kt-gold ring with cabochon-cut black opal and six diamonds on either side has a replacement value of $12,000. It will be on the block on July 30.

There is also an in-depth collection of ladies’ vintage hats with boxes, Hock glasses with bowls in vivid colors cut to clear (royal blue, plum, green and ruby), Haviland Rosalinde china, etched crystal glassware and serving pieces in the orchid and rose patterns, Hostess china, Lenox, Avon, Ironstone and cast-iron.

Beer signs will include both neon and lighted signs advertising Budweiser, Miller, Stroh’s, Old Milwaukee, Busch, Amstel, Pabst Blue Ribbon and Hamm’s. Clocks will feature an example advertising “Trico Windshield Wipers, Washers and Solvent, Since 1917” (16 inches by 19 inches), and a Canada Dry Ginger Ale clock manufactured by Duralite. Other advertising clocks will include Coca-Cola, Dr. Pepper, Welch, Texaco, Quaker State, Winston and Virginia Slims.

There will also be advertising thermometers, cigarette tins and memorabilia, retro radios, a GE salesman’s case with a large collection of radio tubes, vintage magazines, older locks and keys, vintage lunch boxes, stamps, buttons, marbles, vintage cameras and vintage banks.

The Shirley Temple memorabilia will include a small blue glass pitcher (4 ½ inches tall), a small graduated mug (3 ¾ inches tall), and a scalloped edge dish (6 ¼ inches in diameter), and a volume of Shirley Temple’s favorite poems. Fans of Hummel will not be disappointed, and there will be nice Hummelscapes, one with a clock. Also sold will be several quilts, including a nice hand-sewn sunflower quilt with triangular pointed border (71 inches by 85 inches).

A Jumbo the Bubble Blowing Elephant tin litho toy, made by Yonezawa of Japan, will be among dozens of lots of toys up for auction.

A nice selection of vintage table fans (both stationary and oscillating) will be offered, many in lots. The fans will include examples by Hunter, Temp Master, Dominion, Polar Club, Coronado and Cold Wave.

The children’s books will include older Little Golden Books, a collection of Their Way stories from 1949, plus six books by Maxton Publishers (“Cinderella,” “The Princess and the Pea,” “Jack and the Beanstalk,” etc.).

Toys will feature lots packed with toy cars by makers such as Hot Wheels, Ertl, Tonka, Nylint, Johnny Lightning, Matchbox, Lesney, Tootsie, Gorgi, Lindberg and others, offered in multiple lots. There are Petty diecast cars, mint in the package, and many Tonka and Hess trucks. Other toys include a Jumbo the Bubble-Blowing Elephant and G.I. Joe collectibles, to include a combat equipment case with marine and accessories, a deep-sea frogman with sled and cave, and a forward observer set. Also sold will be a vintage Toy ‘n Joy 1-cent fruit bubble gum dispenser, red, No. 935, 14 inches tall by 6 ½ inches square.

A preview will be held from 8-9 a.m. on auction day and by appointment during the week leading up to the sale. Online bidding will be facilitated by LiveAuctioneers. Phone and absentee bids will also be accepted.

For more information about this auction, call 850.785.2577, e-mail to specialists@knology.net, or visit the The Specialists of the South web site.

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