Bertoia Auctions' April 17-19 Open House sale features blue-ribbon array of private collections Auction headliners include the Delaware Toy & Miniature Museum collection, the late Bob Smith's automotive toys and part II of the fabulous Fred Cannon collection of Christmas antiques.
News-Antique.com - Feb 27,2008 - VINELAND, N.J. - Bertoia's 2,000-lot auction on April 17-19 will feature exquisite American and European toys, dollhouses, trains, mechanical and still banks, and automotive toys from long-held collections. Headliners include the dollhouse and miniatures collection of the recently closed Delaware Toy & Miniature Museum, early European tin cars from the late Bob Smith's collection, and part II of the remarkable Fred Cannon collection of Christmas antiques.
“This is going to be a beautiful event with a warm and friendly atmosphere,” said Jeanne Bertoia, co-founder of Bertoia Auctions. “Collectors love to socialize with others who share their own particular interests, and nothing brings them together quite like a famous collection. This sale includes several outstanding collections as its cornerstones, so we're looking forward to welcoming a large gathering of bidders with many diverse collecting interests.”
The April 17 session opens with 300 mechanical and still banks from a private collection, followed by automotive, horse-drawn and firefighting toys, many of them superior cast-iron examples. Early American toys include an amazing 16-inch-long Ives clockwork locomotive known as “The Giant,” the largest-size dog Fallows ever made, and a very nice hand-painted Goodwin Walker automatic doll pushing a carriage.
Within the cast-iron automotive toys is a series of variously colored taxicabs: a Red Top Cab, Yellow Cab with advertising, and a Green Cab. “That's literally what they're called, based on their colors” said Bertoia Auctions associate Rich Bertoia, “and we have both a regular toy version and a bank version of each.” Similarly, bidders will be able to choose from regular or bank versions of an Arcade touring car.
Day one will conclude with a colorful assortment of approximately 80 doorstops from a small but select collection. A very rare King Tut, a near-mint Anne Hathaway Cottage, a rare and pristine black Accordion Player and a fabulous Hubley Popeye in near-mint condition are among the top-estimated entries. Another desirable doorstop is the New York Times Crossword Puzzle Clown with “Crossed Out” written on it.
The April 18 session will open with pressed-steel vehicles from the Bob Smith collection, including trucks by Buddy 'L' and early pressed-steel friction toys, such as Dayton Hill-climbers. Next up will be pedals cars and more than 100 lots of European and American trains, including some very good German trains from a private collection. There are several boxed Marklin sets from the early 1900s and a few boxed Bing sets.
One of the second session's star lots, a very rare near-mint Marklin gazebo estimated at $12,000-$15,000, dates to 1905-1910. In superb condition, it features a striped canopy, flowerboxes and a little girl doll in a swing.
A Rock & Graner horse-drawn sleigh leads the European tin section, which includes some 75 German toys, many of them clockwork. Makers include Gunthermann, Stock, and Martin, with a special selection of outstanding boxed Lehmann windups.
Other German tin highlights include a rare 15-inch scull with three rowers and a coxswain, attributed to Issmayer; German-made boats by Marklin, Fleishmann, Bing and Radiguet; and more than