Antiquing Adventures: McCoy Pottery Teaches the Value of Showing Up
Vintage McCoy Pottery Vase with Leaves recently sold on eBay for $43.99. There were 7 bids.
It does my heart good when I see something I have taught come true with my own eyes. In this case, finding treasure where other people dare not to trod makes a great subject for today’s blog.
Two days ago, Marsha, a 31 Club Member, called and asked if I would go with her to see some pottery that someone had placed a classified ad about. The vision of Teco, Grueby and Newcomb began dancing through my head. I could see that one special piece just waiting for us. Instead, Marsha told me the ad in the paper said 100 pieces of McCoy pottery, a lower end pottery, and the asking price was $500. Needless to say, my balloon was deflated rather quickly, but I agreed to go with her if she would pick me up.
She arrived within the hour, and we began our journey together. When we arrived at the location, I perked up when I saw it was familiar to me. I had attended many calls from this particular neighborhood, and most of them had been very profitable.
We were greeted warmly and invited in. McCoy Pottery was everywhere and the better pieces McCoy produced dominated every room of this gentleman’s home. In the basement there were over a hundred pieces of McCoy, perhaps ten pieces of Shawnee Pottery, and one oyster plate. These were the items he was interested in selling.
He told us what some of the better pieces would bring on eBay, and he was correct. This man knew his pottery. When I calculated the total, I could see the overall value could easily bring about $2,000. He knew this, too, but said he simply didn’t want to bother with them. He was so right on the money that I felt strange in asking if he would take less than the $500 he was asking — but you know my rule. Thankfully, he supplied the courage for me when he mentioned that he hadn’t had any other visitors. I offered him $400. What a fantastic gentleman. He said if we agreed to take them all, he’d let them go for $400. Marsha had herself a deal.
Marsha and I headed back to the car to get some packing materials, and I asked her what she thought the profit on the pieces would be after she had sold them all.
“Maybe a thousand dollars,” she said. I asked her how she arrived at that figure. “I think I should get a least $10 a piece for them, don’t you think?” I didn’t want her to get too excited, so I told her that with the Shawnee pieces, it will probably be closer to $20 a piece. She was thrilled. Then I asked her, “What about the oyster plate?” She asked me what I meant. “The oyster plate will bring you more than you paid for all the other pieces,” I told her. She looked like a deer in the head lights. I can’t wait to see her final total after selling them all.
The ad for this pottery was in a public paper, but no one answered it. Why? I’ll take an educated guess and say that people saw the word “McCoy” and figured it wasn’t worth much. That was my initial response. Boy, were they wrong. This is an example of what I meant when I’ve told you never miss an opportunity to visit someone’s house. Many times when I’ve gone on a call, I didn’t end up purchasing the items I went to see, but walked out with some of the greatest treasures I have ever purchased. When you go on a call where there is no competition, you can take your time looking, and this is where your skills and knowledge come into play. You see, I immediately spotted the oyster plate and knew that we were going to make the deal.
It took Marsha a couple of trips to pack up all the items, but she got them all. I wish her well in selling them and advancing up the 31 Steps.
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