A variety of antique dolls and toys were available at a recent auction held by US-based firm James D. Julia, including a toy of the much-loved children’s cartoon character Popeye the sailor man. A couple of Popeye toys featured as highlights of the auction, with a windup “Air-o-Plane” complete with box selling for $11,257 (£7,120) to a museum in Asia. Another Popeye toy, a remote control row boat, sold for $3,495 (£2,210). The auction proved that the market is still as strong as ever, when the final sales total was over $1.2 million (£759,000) against a pre-sale estimate of $816,000 (£516,000).
One collection of over 20 toys featured American items made of pressed steel. One piece was an American Railway Express truck – featuring an open cab and presented in excellent condition – that sold for $7,702 (£4,870). Another collection featured automotive and horse-drawn toys made of cast iron. All of the latter found buyers, with a Hubley Elgin street sweeper being sold for $4,740 (£2,997). Character toys made of tin were also popular and with most still being in their original box and in pristine condition, the selling prices were high.
James D. Julia focuses on valuable items that have retained their quality. The toy and doll auction was certainly a success, especially for those who were selling.
Buyers at auctions will typically find better deals at an antiques dealer – especially those looking for larger items like antique desks – as a buyer’s premium is charged on purchases at auction.
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