Published: December 23, 2016
Review by R. Scudder Smith, Catalog Photos Courtesy Morphy Auctions
DENVER, PENN. – With 1,203 lots already sold during the first two days of Morphy Auctions’ three-day sale of toys, dolls, banks and advertising, another 607 lots crossed the block on Sunday, completing the December 9-11 marathon of selling.
An outstanding painted lion sulfide marble, 2¼ inches in diameter, got the ball rolling at 9 am, selling for $2,460. The figure is painted with a green base, brown mane and black eyes, nose and mouth. Several lots later, a selection of 20 peewee handmade marbles, including multicolor onionskins, one cobalt swirl with white bands and two multicolor black Indians, sold for $523, over estimate.
The first lot of dolls was two small bisque head dolls in a wicker basket with extra clothes, the largest 9½ inches tall, went for $800, at the top of the estimate, and following was a lovely French fashion doll, 7½ inches tall, with closed mouth, blue inset glass eyes and nicely painted lashes and brows. It went for $1,500, in the middle of the estimate.
Selling for $4,200, over the $3,500 high estimate, was lot 1528, a rare Kestner all-bisque doll with jointed knees, pouty face, cobalt blue sleeping eyes, closed mouth, round cheeks and prominent chin. Lot 1530, a mechanical crank musical toy, a boy with bisque head and glass eyes on wire armature body, sits on top of a barrel teasing a girl doll with bisque head holding her little doll. As the crank is turned, the boy peeks down into the barrel and the girl rocks her dolly back and forth. It is in working order and good condition, selling for $2,000, over estimate.
A lovely French fashion doll, 16½ inches tall, in all original silk clothing with bisque swivel socket head with closed mouth, blue glass eyes, pierced earlobes and in very good condition, went for $1,560, within estimate.
Selling for $6,150, close to twice the high estimate, was a Lenci “Prosperity” toddler “Kiki” doll, 13½ inches tall, made from layers of fabric molded in a steam press. The catalog notes, “This is an opportunity to own one of the rarest Lenci dolls known, in marvelous, all original excellent condition.”
Lot 1758, a Milwaukee WPA project doll, rare black storybook character Little Black Sambo, with curly black hair, original outfit of blue pants, red jacket and red hat, sold for $1,230, above the $1,000 high estimate. This doll was in excellent overall condition. Toward the end of the auction a Steiff automaton display featuring a bake shop crossed the block, featuring 18 Steiff animals busy working on the two-floor shop. The structure includes an oven area, balcony, several work stations and furniture. It brought $1,998 against a $1,200 high estimate.
Halloween lots dominated the very end of the sale, with a lot of two vintage Germany candy containers, the largest 4 inches tall, selling for just over twice the estimate for $1,230. One of the containers was a man sitting in a chair, while the other was a vegetable boy sitting on a cucumber. Another candy container was a rare vintage cucumber with three pumpkin head figures sitting on it, circa 1930s, and measuring 4¾ inches long. It brought close to three times the high estimate, selling for $1,722.
For additional information, www.morphyauctions.com or 877-968-8880.
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