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Collecting what??? Pickelhaube are mainly collected by military memorabilia collectors and are nothing more than the ceremonial spiked helmets that soldiers from other countries wear. The spike normally resembles a spear. Many of you have seen them before, and the German Army always comes to mind when we do see them.
Mikey decided to get a job after all these years and had to go to an office for a job interview. The interviewer decides to start with the basics and asks Mikey, “What is your age?” Mikey starts counting on his fingers and finally says, “Ahh, I’m 43.” The interviewer decides to try another straight up question just to break the ice, so he asks Mikey, “How tall are you?” Mikey doesn’t miss a beat, he pulls out a tape measure from his pocket, traps one end with his foot, measures himself and announces, “five foot six.”
The Wall Street Journal recently stated that the “new rich” are driving up the prices of modern art. Looking for ways to invest their money, it seems that the rich are buying to improve their already fat portfolios. This was evident at a recent sale by Sotheby’s in New York that brought in more than $254 million. The most prized work was done by Mark Rothko, whose White Center brought in a record price of close to $3 million by itself. It also seems that rich people also like to own what other rich people owned; this painting was once owned by members of the Rockefeller family.
I was stationed with the U.S. Army in Germany in the 90’s when the “wall” came down. Many of us had traveled to other places in Europe, but this opened some very unique opportunities for us to travel into areas that were once forbidden to us. One of the first places I went was to Prague and although it was not the beautiful city that it is now, it still had the old world charm that I was looking for.
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Meanwhile at Christie’s International in New York, a painting by Andrew Wyeth titled The Ericsons, sold for $10.3 million. Painted in 1973, the painting was projected to bring in $6 million before the auction. However, spirited bidding ensued before a privateNew York dealer won it and set a new record. Previous works sold by this artist generated in the $4 million to $5 million range.
The people were very happy to see us and to finally be able to communicate with Americans and our spending was welcomed as it would help their economy. On that first trip I exchanged $200 and came back with a crystal chandelier and a lot of other Bohemian crystal. I went back on a second trip to Karlsbad (Karlovy Vary) and right before I left Germany, I went to Krakow, Poland. I have a lot of good memories of my travels and they were recently awakened by an email I received.
Although many existing examples can be dated to mid nineteenth century Prussia, the spiked helmet has its origin in Russia who invented them at around the same time period. In the ceremonial versions of the pickelhaube, the front plate is also highly decorated with the unit’s regimental province or state. The pickelhaube is still worn today by many military units, most notably the Swedish Royal Guard. www.kaisersbunker.com
People collect many things from stamps and coins to some other very interesting and sometimes very usual things. Here are a couple more collections of unusual collectors and their collections.
R. S. "Dick" Kemp from Hillsboro, New Hampshire collects old trucks, mostly Mack Trucks. His collection of about 90 trucks includes some from as far back as 1916.
Frank C. Horwath of Joliet, Illinois started collecting nails when he was 14 years old. Today he has over 15,000 types of nails from over 40 countries. His collection includes a nail from the home of William Ellery, one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence.
The interviewer is now starting to wonder if he made a mistake in asking Mikey to come in for an interview. He decides to ask Mikey an easy question, “What is your name?” Mikey starts bobbing his head back and forth and mouthing silently before blurting out, “Mikey!” The interviewer is baffled by all of this and says to Mikey, “I can understand you counting on your fingers for your age and the tape measure for your height, but what were you doing when I asked you your name. Mikey says to him, “Oh that? That’s just me running through happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you . . .”
Police in Philadelphia this week arrested a man trying to sell a stolen 1823 U.S. Atlas. The atlas, which is worth approximately $65,000 to $75,000, was taken last month from the Rockland County Historical Society in New York. It is titled, “A New American Atlas” and was originally published by Henry Tanner. This rare American made atlas contains many stunning and beautiful handmade maps, including some of the separate states. Police believe the theft to be an inside job, but have not released the name of the thief or thieves.
In Hampshire England however, the story does not turn out as nicely as the one above. It seems a thief entered St Mary’s Church in Twyford last month and took a prized 18th century bible, originally printed by John Baskett. It appears this theft was carried out by a professional that replaced the bible with a forgery, and although the theft was caught on camera the thief wore a hat to obscure his face. It is feared by officials that the bible is being sold on the black market in the U.S. or elsewhere.
Tom Conrad from Heart of Europe Tours contacted me to let me know that they are planning a 10 day Summer Antique Extravaganza Tour into Central Europe that will include visits to Leipzig, Prague, Saxony, the Bohemian Highlands and Northern Bavaria. According to Tom, who will be leading the tour, “the antiques trade is still relatively underdeveloped so you can still find interesting things at good prices, even with the strong Euro.”
Tom has been buying antiques overseas for several years and has developed a network of retail dealers, markets and trade sources. This tour group will shop in castles, old factories, shops, farmsteads and warehouses. He also said, “Many American antique buffs we run into are starting to feel that France, Italy, Belgium and the U.K. are ‘shopped out’ and too expensive. That’s why we focus on Central Europe. Prices there tend to be more affordable and the selection is immense.”