Tuesday, November 9, 2010

AMERICAN BOTTLE AUCTIONS - My 2cents worth......

There's some nice Western bottles being offered this time around at "American Bottle Auctions" a few of you are likely interested in. I had a chance to view many of the bottles first hand on a recent trip to the auction house. For those interested I have a page on my website at http://www.oldwestbottles.com/ highlighting a few of the Western items in this round.
Auction closes on November 14th, check it out at www.rtam.com/americanbottle/cgi-bin/catalog.cgi Oppertunity knocks for some rarely offered Western bottles.


  1. Thanks Lou, I appreciate you taking the time to look everything over, and provide your input on some of these Western items.
    I would like to add my 2 cents...

    While there are some nice and seldom offered items in this sale, the majority of the "key" Western pieces have one thing going against them...damage. While having a bottle with damage is perfectly fine, I believe minimizing the damage by implying that " you need a 30x loop to see it, and it has been viewed by many, and the damage is so minor it should not be relavent", is a concern.(by the way, these comments were not by yourself). I noticed the flash in the Keller's lip with my head 2 feet from my computer monitor, so the extreme magnification, or x-ray specks were not needed for that one. As for the Bear Grass, it's a rare bottle. A rare bottle with a flash in the face that was noticed by me within 5 seconds of opening the box 10 years ago when I originally purchased it as "mint". The person I bought it from is the most OCD collector on condition, that I have ever known.Interesting the flash was not mentioned... The Wonser's in this auction is KILLER, but with a significant flaw which I would consider a major crack. The Rosenbaums is described as extremely rare in the large size...well according to a well known researcher, there are around 30 of the large Rosenbaums out there, and maybe 14 of the small ones...thus a possible reason for no bid as of today on this square. The Wistars looks amazing, the green fish, and Dyott medicine are all super items which in my opinion outshine the Western items in this offering. I just have a concern with damage being so minimized that anyone who notices it is somehow nuts, or too concerned about such a minor thing. Not pointing any fingers here, but while we each choose our own path in how, and what we collect, a damaged bottle is a damaged bottle. Trying to "sell" or convince me to be overly interested and jump in with both feet, and pay full boat retail is kind of funny. Just my thoughts. Dale M.

  2. I wonder why Jeff did not put the true "colorless" Indian Queen in the auction? That one is an ultimate rarity so perhaps he elected to sell it outside of the auction.
    I have ogled and handled the key bottles in the auction and can offer nothing regarding condition that is not already known. A flaw, regardless of it's "size", is a deal breaker for most collectors.

  3. Wow! What an auction result! I will take ownership of my previous comments, and admit that while damaged items have much less appeal to me, there is strong demand from many for good glass even with a small "issue". That is a good thing, and indicates that until a gem mint piece shows up ( and it may never), collectors are willing to step up and fork over the big bucks.I am very impressed with the final numbers in this auction. The one name bear, the clear Indian Queen, the puce Sloop Monument!!!!! these were all problem free, and the prices were absolutely WILD. The Keller, and Wonser's did extremely well, and even the Rosie was strong. There is obviously a pent up demand for glass, and this auction proves it. Nice job!

  4. Interesting mini-thread over at bottle forum. The gist of it being is an "in making flaw" considered damage? flash, potstone without crack(s) or with crack(s), annealing flash/cracks, bubble burst in making, obviously everyone gets the idea. I'm happy to have an in-making "damaged" bottle that I can afford and will never likely "upgrade" -- rather than not to have an example at all. The only thing that bugs me are "digger autographed" bottles than should have never been damaged in the first place. Whether we're "high end" or "low end" we're all still paying cash for another man's garbage.

  5. Well said Lordbud. One thing that holds true for many collectors is that not everyone has the luxury to afford flawless high-end bottles or be able to find or even have them offered to them.
    I couldn't agree with you more about digger tracks on bottles, that's definitely a turn off. It's sickening how many good bottles I see with damage caused by careless diggers.

    It's my opinion that minor production flaws should have little to no effect on the value of an item but post damage does. On the other hand I just watched a amber pint Mason on Ebay sell for $1225.00 with a 1-1/2" base crack and a 3/8" lip chip. I sold a mint one of these 25 years ago for $600 which was top dollar at the time. Two weeks ago I watched a historical flask sell on eBay that had a 1" rough sliver chip on the side bring almost 10k more than what a previous one at auction sold for. Were talking significant post production damage here, to each his own though.


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