May 21, 2024

Antiques & Collecting: Advertising icons

This advertising lamp includes figures of a team of horses pulling a beer cart, followed by a crowd of Dalmatians. The lamp with a moving wagon sold for $625.

Some advertising icons have obvious connections to their brands, like Planters’ Mr. Peanut or the RCA Victor dog with his head tilted as he listens to a phonograph.

Others, less so, like the Clydesdale horses and dalmatians featured in Budweiser advertising items such as this hanging lamp with “The World Champion Clydesdale Team.” The lamp sold for $625 at a Potter & Potter auction.

What do horses and dogs have to do with beer? The Anheuser-Busch brewing company, owner of the Budweiser brand, turned to making non-alcoholic products during Prohibition. Its repeal in 1933 was still a cause for celebration.

August A. Busch Jr. gave his father, the CEO of Anheuser-Busch, a gift of a hitch of Clydesdales pulling a beer cart. The hitch delivered the first post-Prohibition Budweiser beer.

A horse-drawn beer wagon proved to be an effective marketing tool, and the company got another hitch to make promotional tours.

Dalmatians joined the tours in the 1950s, referencing the old practice of breweries having dogs to protect their horses and wagons during deliveries.

In 1986, the Budweiser Clydesdales made their first appearance in a Super Bowl commercial. The company still has Clydesdale teams going on tours to this day.

During a recent thrifting excursion, I saw something I’d never seen before: A Blue Willow CorningWare warming tray with cord. The tray, working and with its cord, was only $5.99. I passed it up and I’ve been kicking myself about it. What do you think?

That CorningWare tray is worth at least $25 elsewhere. It isn’t rare, but CorningWare is undergoing a resurgence of popularity. Prices for vintage pieces are going up. Blue Willow is one of the most recognizable patterns.

Corning Glass Works developed the glass for Thomas Edison’s light bulb. In July 1913, at the encouragement of a scientist’s wife, Pyrex was born.

More than 750 million pieces of CorningWare have been made. In 1998, due to slumping sales and retooling of manufacturing plants, Corning sold CorningWare and Pyrex lines to World Kitchen LLC.

Tip: If you have valuable old glass, keep it in a safe environment. It should be stored or displayed where there is some air movement to dry off the surface. Glass bottles and containers should be stored with the lids and stoppers open.

Current Prices

Marble, ribbon swirl, Christmas Tree, six-ribbon, three colors, white with green and red ribbons, National Line Rainbow, Peltier Glass Co., Ottawa, Ill., c. 1930, 3/4 inches, $285.

Bank, Santa Claus, standing, cast iron, painted, red suit, black boots, coin slot in green toy sack on back, round black base, 11 x 4 inches, $360.

Christmas tree stand, metal frame, inset curved white panel, painted Santa, sleigh and reindeer, lights up, revolves, electric, Bakelite switch, needs rewiring, 1930s, 7 x 17 inches, $435.

Terry and Kim Kovel

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