Empire Gasoline porcelain sign tops off at $10,450 at Matthews Auctions, Aug. 3 An Empire Gasoline double-sided porcelain sign with great color and gloss, 30 inches in diameter, sold for $10,450 at an auction held Aug. 3 by Matthews Auctions, LLC, in Des Moines, Iowa.
News-Antique.com - Aug 07,2012 - (DES MOINES, Iowa) – An Empire Gasoline double-sided porcelain sign with great color and gloss, 30 inches in diameter, sold for $10,450 at an auction held Aug. 3 by Matthews Auctions, LLC, based in Nokomis, Ill., on the day after the end of the popular Iowa Gas Show. The auction was held at the Airport Holiday Inn in Des Moines. Both events were held there.
The Empire sign, featuring a sunburst logo, was in overall excellent condition, rated 9 out of 10 for condition on the front and 8.5 on the back. Some heavy wear on the reverse side on the bottom didn’t deter bidders, who were drawn to the sign’s rarity and great looks. It was the top achiever in a sale that saw around 475 lots, mostly petroliana and automobilia, come up for bid.
“It was a very strong sale, loaded with quality merchandise,” said Dan Matthews of Matthews Auctions, LLC. “And I couldn’t have asked for better bidding, both in person and online.” Internet bidding was hosted by Proxibid. Phone and absentee bidding was described by Matthews as “healthy” on both counts. He estimated the crowd at approximately 150-160 people.
Following are additional highlights from the auction. All prices quoted include a 10 percent buyer’s premium.
A rare Texaco Marine Lubricants single-sided porcelain sign with ships graphics, scarce because of the black “T” and rated highly at 9, soared to $9,900. The 15 inch by 30 inch sign, dated 1934, boasted great color and gloss. Also, an extremely rare, original Ford Service canopy-mounted globe with Ford’s “The Universal Car” logo, rated 9, 16 inches in diameter, hit $8,250.
A pair of Sunray Gasoline lenses in an original orange ripple globe body, with the lenses in nice shape and rated 9, breezed to $6,875. The globe was also good looking, but the body had a crack in the base. Also, a Guide Lighthouse Service Station tin three-dimensional display with light (“Be Safe!”), 49 inches tall and 25 inches in diameter, in excellent condition, made $6,050.
A Santa Fe Trail single-sided oval sign, 16 by 24 inches, with gorgeous gloss and color and showing a horse team pulling a Conestoga wagon, rated 9.5, rose to $4,675. The sign, signed Irving Shope and dated 1948, had a clean field, with just a few minor chips. Also, an AC Spark Plugs tin thermometer, new in the box, with “Sparky the Donkey” graphics, commanded $3,960.
A Guide Light “Check Your Lights” tin flange sign with great lighthouse graphics, rated 9+ on both sides, 13 inches by 18 inches, garnered $6,050. The sign, dated 1940, was extremely clean, with excellent color and shine. Also, a Red Crown Gasoline double-sided porcelain sign with crown logo and great color and gloss, rated 9 and 8.5, 30 inches in diameter, made $7,150.
A Sunray D-X Petroleum Products porcelain pump plate with excellent gloss and color, rated near-mint at 9+ and measuring 9 inches by 9 inches, earned $3,080. The only flaw was a tiny chip on