Treasure Hunt 24/02/22

Dear Donna,

What do you do with old paperback books? Is there value or are they to be put in recycling?

Thanks, Donna, for any help.

Cindy

Dear Cindy,

Antique books and even more modern books are in a field of their own. I might be able to give you some information. You might also want to try a used bookstore or do some online research on each book, the value of which will depend on the author, the specific title, whether it is signed by the author and other factors. Then remember as always condition matters. I would think this rule follows all books through the ages.

Your Western books look fun and interesting to read. Figure out how many editions there were of each book as well as those other factors to see if some could be worth trying to sell. If not, you could donate them to a library or used bookstore or recycle them. I prefer donation, so someone else could enjoy reading them.

Thanks, Cindy, for sharing, I hope you find a new home for your books — or maybe even a tiny treasure in the pile.

Treasure Hunt 24/02/15

Dear Donna,

No time better than now to ask about these. They are paper heart boxes marked ‘Japan’ on the bottom. I have had them for years now and always wondered their age and what was the purpose.

Can you give me any information?

Thanks, Donna.

Lee

Dear Lee,

Belated happy Valentine’s Day!

The purposes for your sweet paper heart boxes could be many. They are novelty boxes and could be for candy, jewelry, trinkets etc., for the holiday or for other love-related events.

The mark ‘Japan’ on the back bottom shows they are from between the late 1920s to 1940s. This is when that mark was used.

Lee, they are very sweet and made me smile. I would think the value on them would be in the $15 range in good condition. Thanks for sharing your tiny treasures with us.

Treasure Hunt 24/02/08

Hello, Donna.

This quilt was given to my husband and me when we were married. It was a family piece so we kept it safe till today. Now we would like to use it and it’s in need of some repair. Can you provide any information on a value and can it be reinforced for use on our bed?

Mary Anne

Dear Mary Anne,

Your crazy quilt is most likely from the early 1900s, so wear from use is expected. Sometimes you can come across one that was never used, but not often. Crazy quilts were made mostly from scraps of a mixture of different materials with different colors, stitching, etc. Lots of them were made by a group effort of family, friends etc.

Some can be very plain with just stitching and others can have detail added in each fragment of material. To find them signed by the maker or makers and dated is a plus.

Mary Anne, the value is in the detailing, age, fine detailing, signatures and, as always, condition. A value to start with would be, it’s safe to say, in the $100 range in plain but good condition. Then it goes up from there for extra detailing.

As far as use, it’s tough unless you remove it from the top of the bed daily. The treads are old and won’t withstand night use. There are quilt repairers out there. I’m just not sure it would be cost-effective for hand work. You might just want to use it the way it is. Just decoratively and carefully.

I hope this was helpful, Mary Anne. Glad to see a family piece shared. Enjoy!

Donna Welch has spent more than 35 years in the antiques and collectibles field, appraising and instructing. Her new location is an Antique Art Studio located in Dunbarton, NH where she is still buying and selling. If you have questions about an antique or collectible send a clear photo and information to Donna at footwdw@aol.com, or call her at 391-6550.

Treasure Hunt 24/02/01

Hello, Donna.

Found this at a thrift store in Manchester. I actually thought how fun would it be to use this. Do you think it still could be used? Is there any value to it?

Thanks for any information,

Sam

Dear Sam,

I can answer your question. I have had two of these same cards. They were from different cities than yours. One was even from New Hampshire.

I couldn’t get mine from New Hampshire to work. But I had so much fun with the manager of the McDonald’s trying to figure it out.

Your card is from the 1960s. Even though the one on Main Street in Worcester wasn’t the first one to open in Massachusetts, it’s still there today. The first one to open in Massachusetts was in Pittsfield in 1960.

I sold one of mine for $45 several years ago. There is a collectible Mc Donald’s market out there. I think your gift card is a tiny treasure for one of them. If you keep it I think it can only go up in value as time passes.

Thanks so much, Sam, for sharing. Fun piece of Mc Donald’s memorabilia.

Donna Welch has spent more than 35 years in the antiques and collectibles field, appraising and instructing. Her new location is an Antique Art Studio located in Dunbarton, NH where she is still buying and selling. If you have questions about an antique or collectible send a clear photo and information to Donna at footwdw@aol.com, or call her at 391-6550.

Treasure Hunt 24/01/25

Dear Donna,

I have three of these toys, all metal and marked Tootsietoy on the bottom. This one is in the best used condition. It’s about 5 inches long. Can you share a value with me?

Thank you, Donna.

Bob

Dear Bob,

The Tootsietoy company was located in Chicago, Illinois. It’s been around since the 1920s. They produced diecast toys (metal poured into molds, then other parts added).

Not only did they make toy cars, tractors, etc.; they made a great line of doll house furniture in metal as well. It has an interesting history to read up on.

The value of your 1930s trailer truck should be in the $50 range to collectors in that condition. Don’t disregard the other two either, Bob. Parts of one can be used on another, so collectors will buy used, broken toys as well.

I hope this helps, Bob, and thanks for sharing.

Donna Welch has spent more than 35 years in the antiques and collectibles field, appraising and instructing. Her new location is an Antique Art Studio located in Dunbarton, NH where she is still buying and selling. If you have questions about an antique or collectible send a clear photo and information to Donna at footwdw@aol.com, or call her at 391-6550.

Treasure Hunt 24/01/18

Dear Donna,

Can you help figure out what this register is from? It says W.C.F.I. on the side. Inside it’s all empty pages, lined. It’s 17” x 12” and extremely heavy. Any information would be appreciated.

Alex

Dear Alex,

Your heavy register book is from the early 1900’s. WCFI stands for the Williamsburg City Fire Insurance Co. in New York City.

Antique leather-bound registers aren’t hard to find, as so many were used. To find them empty and with paper still intact is harder. Yours, Alex, is a larger one but many are light and thin as well. So many of them out there. Interesting to read some of the contents. Also great coffee table books! The value on one the size of yours would be in the $100 range in good condition. Fun piece, Alex, and thanks for sharing it with us.

Treasure Hunt 24/01/11

Hi, Donna,

I have two old school desks I acquired several years ago from a small New Hampshire elementary school that was undergoing renovations. They’re both for young children and two different sizes. Do you know if there is any value, demand or interest in these old desks?

Thank you for your help, Donna, I really appreciate it!

Susan in Nashua

Dear Susan,

Your two school desks are from the 1930s. Imagine how many fun stories they could tell. They were made to last and take lots of use. Today you can find many of them still around in the secondary market.

I think the value of desks like yours would be in having a new purpose for them. They look structurally good but would probably be refinished, painted etc. to fit in a new home.

Because school desks were made in mass amounts their values run around $20 each. Older ones bring more, but mostly if they have a new purpose within a home.

I hope this answers your question, Susan. I think all cleaned up they could be a great desk for a toddler at home.

Thanks for sharing.

Treasure Hunt 24/01/04

Dear Donna,

We have this very heavy block island. I am wondering what its value would be. We’re downsizing and won’t have space. Any help would be appreciated.

Thank you.

Amy

Dear Amy,

Your butcher block appears to be in great condition for approximately 100 years old.

The value of older butcher blocks is in their condition, style and size. Prices can vary from a couple hundred dollars to in the thousands.

The market for them is a bit tough. Weight is an issue, as is space. I think when you find a market for yours, the price range should be around $350. I hope you find it a new home, Amy. Thanks for sharing with us.

Treasure Hunt 23/12/28

Dear Donna,

Found these 45 records and about 100 more. I think some were my parents’ and mine too. Can you tell me if there is any value to them? They are in pretty good condition for being in a basement. Thanks, Donna, for any help.

Carla

Dear Carla,

Yikes, you got your hands full of records.

45’s have been around since the late 1940’s. It’s tough to put a value on a pile of them. Certain ones can be worth so much more. It depends on the artist, condition and sleeves. So you need to consider each one individually.

You want them in a scratch-free condition and with the original sleeve to bring a higher value. If they are scratched, it makes it easier unless they’re rare. Lots of 45’s from the 1950s through the 1960s in original condition are in the range of $10 to a few hundred dollars.

Carla, I’m sorry to be so vague. I think you should bring them to a used record store to have them looked at. This is the best way to get a better value. I hope you have a hidden treasure in your records.

Thanks for another memory of myself listening to my favorite 45’s in the 1970s.

Treasure Hunt 23/12/21

Dear Donna,

Do you have any knowledge of this kind of bracelet? It’s the characters from the movie The Wizard of Oz. I found it a couple years ago at a yard sale.

Annette

Dear Annette,

Can I start off by saying how sweet it looks? I personally love The Wizard of Oz!

Your character bracelet was produced by Warner Bros. back in the 1960s. It is a gold wash color over a base metal. The characters have a comic look to them. But you can’t help but love them all.

I have seen several versions of collectible jewelry for The Wizard of Oz, from gold to silver to costume jewelry like yours.

It appears to be in good shape and all there. The value for one like yours would be in the $40 range. Tiny treasure that I’m sure was made in mass at the time, but a piece of the wonderful Wizard of Oz.

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