I own a complete copy of the Saturday, May 4, 1912 “EXTRA” edition of the “Police Gazette” newspaper. The banner across the top page reads: “TITANIC CATASTROPHE / SINKS ON MAIDEN VOYAGE.” A full-page picture of the “Titanic” and a page devoted to the sinking is inside. The bulk of the information in the newspaper is about baseball, basketball, bareknuckle and glove boxing, and football. My father’s parents bought the paper. My father, born on September 11, 1927, gave the paper to me. It has only been out in the daylight twice in over 85 years. I contacted the “New York Police Gazette” for information. A representative informed me they did not have a hard copy or microfiche copy of the paper. First, how do I get the paper certified? Second, I want to sell it. What is its value? – AW, Email Question
Thank you so much for including a full set of page images as part of your email. Although I do not make a practice of authenticating anything from photographs, I am 100 percent certain the newspaper is period.
The “Titanic” sank the night of April 14-15, 1912. The “Police Gazette” did not cover the story until two weeks later. This has a slightly negative impact on value.
Timothy Hughes (Timothy Hughes Rare Newspapers, PO Box 3636, Williamsport, PA 17701 / (570) 326-1045 / email@example.com) is my go to source for questions about historic newspapers. I talked with him on the phone and then forwarded your email to him so he could examine the pictures and confirm my authentication.
During our conversation, Tim shared a number of key points relative to determining the value of your newspaper. First, the fact that the “Titanic” does not appear on the front page is a negative. Graphic appeal is critical when dealing with 20th century headline newspapers. Second, many buyers of headline newspapers want to frame them. When the information is inside, framing becomes a problem. Third and on the plus side, Tim had never seen a “Titanic” headline newspaper that used catastrophe in the banner. Finally, we agreed “It’s nice,” which is a positive value statement.
After reviewing the images in your email, Tim replied: “Similar to my comments over the telephone,…a notable…downside is the lack of a great front page graphic relating to the ‘Titanic.’ The ‘Titanic Catastrophe’ heading is very nice, but the frontpage photo does not relate to it. Collectors desire issues that have great frontpage headlines and some sort of graphic on the event.
“The centerfold photo of the ship helps as do the article and cross-section graphics on the other pages. The condition is quite good. A fair retail price range is $750 to $1,250.
“Before seeing the photos, I was thinking more in the $1,000 to $1,500 range with the hope that the centerfold graphic was an illustration of the ship in the process of sinking. There were several newspapers which had very dramatic and sensationalized illustrations of the ship sinking in half with people jumping from it. Such an illustration would have pushed the value closer to $1,500 as a centerfold and in the $2,000 range if on the front cover.”
I recommend you contact Tim Hughes to see if he is interested in purchasing the newspaper. Please remember that the values he offered are retail (what a person would pay if he/she were buying the paper on the open market). When selling, think wholesale. A dealer has to buy at a price that allows him to make a profit. Auction houses charge a commission of 20% or more to sell an object.
Good luck and thanks for sharing this “nice” item with my readers and me.
At a barn sale out in the middle of nowhere (I am not joking), I paid $50 for a table and chair set with “HOTEL SAINT TROPEZ” painted on the bottom of the table and back of the chairs. The set is heavily weathered. The seller told me she purchased it from a dealer in Winters, Texas, who told her that he had bought it at an auction. She bought it because it was from a famous hotel in Italy. I searched the internet for information about the set but found nothing. What is the origin and date of my table and chairs? – FJS, Ballinger, Texas, Email Question.
If there was only one Hotel Saint Tropez or only one hotel in Saint Tropez, France, answering your question would be easy. Instead, there are almost a dozen Hotel Saint Tropez scattered throughout Europe (Paris), the Caribbean (Curacao) and South America (Brazil). There are over a dozen hotels in Saint-Tropez, France. This is an antiques and collectibles “abandon all hope ye who enter here” conundrum. Give up. The chances of locating the exact “HOTEL SAINT TOPEZ” from which the set originated are slim to none. Even if you devoted the rest of your life to looking at photograph images of outdoor cafes and patios at the various Hotels Saint Tropez, the odds still are against you.
Although badly weathered, the table is not as old as you might think. When I first saw the images, I thought 1950s or 1960s. The more I thought about the set, I kept moving the date forward to the 1970s or 1980s. Don’t be fooled by the wood construction. Outdoor metal furniture does not weather well. Wood furniture can be continually repainted.
As to origin, my suspicion is that the set arrived in the United States in a container load shipped from Europe to an American auctioneer to be sold at a weekly or biweekly auction. Container material is largely selected for decorative rather than antique purposes.
The $50 you paid is fair, albeit a bit high. Imagine what it cost initially if it already passed through two hands on its way to you.
I am looking for someone to provide an appraisal for a teak, hand carved oriental room divider. My husband purchased this from his step grandmother many years ago. He received no documentation for it. We are downsizing soon and no longer have a use for it. I would appreciate any help you can provide. – KL, Casselberry, FL, Email Question
A quick study of the images of your four vertical panel screen with each panel featuring a large tree in a rural village setting suggests it is relatively new, that is to say, dating after 1950.
If my assumption is correct, the screen only has decorator and/or reuse value and no antique/collectible value. In terms of deciding what you should ask when you attempt to sell it, search the internet for the retail cost of new Asian (Indonesian) room dividers that are similar in style and size. Cut this price by two-thirds or three-quarters and list your divider for sale on Craigslist.
I conducted a WorthPoint.com search in hopes of finding a similar or comparable divider. The findings did not surprise me. First, there were relatively few examples sold at auction, not because they are scarce but because there is little to no secondary market for them outside large metropolitan areas. Second, many were contemporary dividers from Indonesia and other countries producing inexpensive knock-offs of older examples.
I called my good friend Barb Jersey, owner of Wonder Women Estate Sales in East Lansing, Michigan, to ask her opinion. She said she would start the piece at $225 to $245 and hope to sell it for half that on the second day of a sale.
My advice is simple. Take any offer above $100.
I have a robin’s egg blue, Northwood Chrysanthemum Sprig spooner with gilding on the floral and leaf relief. It is in fine condition. What is its value? – JH, Diamondale, MI, Email Question
Who remembers pattern glass spooners? I do. My grandfather Prosser had one on his kitchen table when he lived at 50 East Depot Street in Hellertown, Pennsylvania. A spooner is taller than a tumbler but smaller than a celery.
The spooner was part of a larger set of serving accessories that included a covered butter dish, celery, creamer, pitcher, salt and pepper shakers, sugar (covered), sugar shaker and tumblers. WorthPoint.com has an eBay listing for a Northwood Chrysanthemum spooner (mistakenly sold as a glass) that realized $42 on March 13, 2017. A realistic over the counter price is between $30 and $35.
Harry L. Rinker welcomes questions from readers about collectibles, those mass-produced items from the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Selected letters will be answered in this column. Harry cannot provide personal answers. Photos and other material submitted cannot be returned. Send your questions to: Rinker on Collectibles, 5955 Mill Point Court SE, Kentwood, MI 49512. You also can e-mail your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org. Only e-mails containing a full name and mailing address will be considered.