New Hamburg, ON, Canada, June 28, 2023 — A Wurlitzer Model 71 tabletop jukebox on a stand, made in America circa 1940-1941, sold for $14,750 on Day 2 of two days of online-only auctions held June 9th and June 10th by Miller & Miller Auctions, Ltd. The June 9th sale was dedicated entirely to toys; June 10th featured petroliana, advertising and coin-ops.
All prices quoted include an 18 percent buyerâ€™s premium and are in Canadian dollars.
Headlining the two-day event was a pair of important collections, both offered on Day 2. One was the Linden Johnson collection, featuring a treasure trove of petroliana and general store advertising. The other was the Dr. Don Gutoski collection, which included a fine assortment of Kuntz Brewery advertising, rare Wurlitzer jukeboxes and speakers and assorted coin-ops.
â€œThis sale was proof that the rule of investment collecting persists â€“ condition is the foremost predictor of price,â€ said Ethan Miller of Miller & Miller Auctions, Ltd. â€œWhile mature market segments such as pre-1950 breweriana and toys fell somewhat beneath expectations, mid-century soda signs, particularly vertical signs and push bars, were on fire. Attendees hoping to build their advertising collections at yesterdayâ€™s prices took a walk down the boulevard of broken dreams.â€
The Wurlitzer Model 71 tabletop jukebox on a stand was the overall top lot of both days. It was a mechanically functioning and nicely restored example with original toned catalin inserts and a refinished case and trim. It sat on a rare, restored original Wurlitzer model 810 stand. The wood base was painted with designs that simulated mixed wood inlays.
The top two lots of the June 9th toys auction were a Marx Indian motorcycle with sidecar, made in America in 1940, 6 Â¼ inches long, boasting original lithographed tin ($2,950); and a Canadian 1950s Lincoln Trans-Canada Air Lines pressed tin model airplane with four propellers, rubber landing gear and nice T.C.A. decals, 9 Â¼ inches long ($2,950).
Following are additional highlights. The June 9th toys auction, 272 lots, grossed $141,541 and attracted 230 registered users who combined for 4,439 bids. The June 10th petroliana, advertising and coin-ops auction, 377 lots, grossed $531,531; 429 bidders placed 8,852 bids. Online bidding was via LiveAuctioneers.com and MillerandMillerAuctions.com.
A Kuntz Park Brewery Waterloo factory scene beer tray (Canadian. 1900), lithographed tin, with vibrant colors and a rare factory scene (L. Kuntz Park Brewery, Waterloo, Ontario). 11 inches by 15 inches, very clean, brought $12,980; while an 1890s Kuntz Park Brewery lithographed tin Lager sign with factory scene, embossed lettering and design, also from Waterloo, Ontario, in a 28 Â½ inch by 22 inch frame, realized $12,980.
A Globe Amusement Lighthouse grip strength tester (American, 1924), featuring lights and a horn that sounded when the player reached the top level of the game, 84 inches tall, knocked down for $12,980. Also, a Caille Brothers 5-cent Olympia Puncher strength tester (American, 1910s), cast iron with nickel plated trim and a painted top sign, designed as either a â€œpuncherâ€ or a â€œhuggerâ€ after inserting a coin, went for $8,850.
A monumental, single-sided porcelain building sign (â€œDrink Coca-Cola, Delicious and Refreshingâ€), made in Canada in 1935, 4 feet by 8 feet, the scarcer, earlier version of the iconic sign of the same size, reached $9,440. Also, a Frontenac Brewery â€œBuccaneerâ€ porcelain corner sign (Quebec, 1900s), made to be mounted to a corner of a building, 48 inches tall by 10 Â½ inches long, showing excellent gloss, found a new home for $10,030.
A Seven-Up â€œBubble Girlâ€ single-sided tin vertical sign (American, 1948), embossed and impressive at 55 inches tall by 17 Â¼ inches wide, made by Stout Sign Company (St Louis, Mo.), finished at $8,850; while an Orange Crush single-sided tin sign (American, 1940s), rare and embossed, 48 inches tall by 17 Â½ inches long, also made by Stout, made $8,260.
The toys auction features unlocked treasures from old collections, to include toys from the 1920s to the 1950s; early tin windups from Germany and France; tin windup character toys from America; hard-to-find Canadian tin, pressed steel and cast-iron toys; and Japanese friction and battery-op toys. Toy makers included Lehmann, Hess, Bing, Doll, Fernand Martin, Carette, Meccano, Bandai, Yonezawa, Schuco, Lincoln, and Marx.
The sessionâ€™s expected top lot was a 1920 American pre-WWI style Samuel Orkin USS New Mexico toy battleship, the largest one made, a survivor made from pressed steel and wood, 25 Â¼ inches long, in a glass display case ($2,124). But besting that lot was a German World War I Marklin U-Boat Submarine with pressed tin plate, 15 Â½ inches long and featuring adjustable diving planes ($2,242). Both toys were tested and were working.
A uniquely designed early Church architectural cast iron still bank, possibly English, circa 1880-1900, 13 inches tall, maker unknown, the church half octagon shaped with a tile roof, went to a determined bidder for $2,655. Also, a German pre-World War I-era Fleischmann pressed tinplate toy battleship, reading â€œGERMANYâ€ on the stern, 16 Â½ inches long, with replaced key, lifeboat and flags, but otherwise excellent, hit $2,124.
A Canadian 1950 pressed steel Lincoln Auto Transporter, 25 inches long, with a nice set of cars (two of them original) with knobby tires, plus a Lincoln Auto Transporter decal, graded 8 out of 10 for condition, achieved $2,006. Also, a Roullet and Decamps pouncing white tiger, (French, circa 1880-1890), with a material-covered tin body, with a key-wind mechanism that causes him to turn his head, slowly crouch and pounce, brought $2,006.
To learn more about Miller & Miller Auctions, Ltd. and the firmâ€™s calendar of auction events, visit www.millerandmillerauctions.com.
About Miller & Miller Auctions, Ltd.:
Miller & Miller Auctions, Ltd. is Canadaâ€™s trusted seller of high-value collections and is always accepting quality consignments. The firm specializes in luxury watches, art, antiques and high-value collectibles. Its mission is to always provide collectors with a trusted place to buy and sell. To consign a single piece, an estate or a collection, you may call them at (519) 573-3710; or, you can e-mail them at firstname.lastname@example.org. To learn more about Miller & Miller Auctions, Ltd. and the firmâ€™s calendar of auction events, visit www.millerandmillerauctions.com.