Chein toys to headline Clarity Sells auction August 15th Rare toys made by J. Chein & Co., Coca-Cola collectibles, framed art and lithograph prints, Indian art and artifacts, toy trains and airplanes, Americana and more will be sold at auction August 15.
News-Antique.com - Jul 29,2009 - (CLEVELAND, Tenn.) – A large single-owner collection comprising around 400 lots in an array of categories – to include Chein toys, Coca-Cola collectibles, framed art and lithograph prints, Indian art and artifacts, vintage dolls, toy trains and airplanes, Americana and more – will be sold in an online, phone and absentee bid auction slated for Saturday, Aug. 15, by Clarity Sells Auction Gallery, at 11 a.m.
The collector is a gentleman from north Georgia who, out of modesty, has requested anonymity until after the sale is over. With help from his wife, he has accumulated hundreds of items over a period of forty years. “Once you step inside the home, where items are kept on shelf after shelf and room after room, time flies by as stories reveal the origins of his favorite pieces,” said Steve Poteet of Clarity Sells.
Mr. Poteet spent four days in the home, cataloging the auction. He said bidder interest will be keen for the several toys made by J. Chein & Co. Included are a 17-inch Hercules Ferris Wheel (circa 1950s), a Playland Merry-Go-Round carousel with children seated atop horses and swan coaches, and a very rare Aeroplane Whirler Space Ride (circa 1960s), depicting what was, for the time, futuristic space travel. Production of this toy was very short-lived, and only a few examples are known to exist today.
Chein toys are generally rare and coveted by collectors. The consignor bought five of the toys at a garage sale in 1972, for just $5 each. Not long ago, someone from the PBS series Antiques Roadshow who’d heard about the toys paid the man a visit. “He offered me $500 for all five and I showed him the door,” the collector said. “One of the toys alone was appraised at $1,200, and that was many years ago.”
For more than 75 years, J. Chein & Co. produced some of the finest lithographed tin toys ever made in America. Founded in 1903 by Julius Chein, the New Jersey-based firm almost immediately started making wonderfully colored but inexpensive toys – from model amusement rides and wind-up characters to spirited banks and sand pails. Its dime-store offerings delighted both kids and collectors.
Indian art and artifacts, currently filling one corner of a basement room in the consignor’s home, include arrowheads (or points), found by the collector himself, on digs in north Georgia and throughout the Southeast. “I found lots of points and pieces of broken pottery in a campsite at Carter’s Dam, in Adairsville (Georgia),” he said. “One time I found a skeleton, but I didn’t keep it. I called the warden.”
The Coca-Cola collectibles include a pair of horse-drawn Coke wagons, one old and one new. The older one – purchased by a friend’s father in the 1930s, when the boy was just 11 years old – will attract more bidder interest, but the newer one (circa 2005), is a nice example, too. Also offered will be a 6-pack of Coke in a rare aluminum case.