Dear John: My husband and I have been reading your column on antiques and collectibles in the Chronicle for several years. A few years ago, we bought this pheasant vase at an estate sale for $25. It caught my husband’s eye because he and his father were game bird hunters back in Ohio when he was just a teenager. The pheasant looks like it is hand-painted, but I am not sure. It really looks realistic. There are no chips or cracks. The vase measures 6 inches high. I have also included a photo of the information that appears on the base. What can you tell us about it and what it might be worth beyond the price we paid? Thank you for your help. — W.U., internet
Dear W.U.: You have a nice quality hand-painted bud vase. The pheasant perched on the old tree trunk is very well done. The Rosenthal Company in Germany has been in business since 1879 and continues producing quality tableware, hollowware, and figurines into current time. I think your bud vase was made between World War I and II. The company used a variety of marks over the years. I was not able to find an example of the mark on your vase. I think it would sell in the $75 to $150 range. Replacements Limited in Greensboro, North Carolina handles Rosenthal china and might be able to identify the mark relative to production date. The phone number is 1-800-REPLACE (1-800-737-5223).
Dear John: I enjoy your article in the newspaper every week. Enclosed is a photo of a hand-crafted silver spoon. The pictures are not as clear as I would like, but I know this has been in the family since at least the early 19th century. I do not know if it came with them from England when they came or if they got it in Massachusetts. There is nothing on the back of the spoon. I am interested in a ballpark value you might give my little spoon. — D.J., internet
Dear D.J.: Your spoon was not made in England. The English have been using a hallmarking system on silver for over 300 years. I suspect your spoon is made of coin silver. The time of production was likely 1820 to 1840 in the United States. The poor condition of your spoon is a negative factor with regard to dollar value. Coin silver spoons of the early 19th century without maker’s marks, as yours, sell for less than $50 each in good condition; yours will be less.
John Sikorski has been a professional in the antiques business for 30 years. Send questions to Sikorski’s Attic, P.O. Box 2513, Ocala, FL 34478 or email@example.com.