Mantiques 2015-Present
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After a divorce in March 2015 that ended a 35-year marriage I suddenly had freedom to buy items for home - anything I wanted. I started out at estate sales, then cruised through local antique stores, Craigslist and finally found the best place to get interesting items for a bachelor pad - antique shows and markets. Allegan and Centerville are two very good ones. Here are the best of the mantiques I've bought for my apartment.

Below - this 4-foot tall knight is solid plaster, which accounts for his weight of 92 pounds! He was made in Chicago by the Universal Statuary Corporation and sold in 1966 to a man in Kalamazoo, who gave it to his wife as a wedding present (huh?). His grand-daughter sold it to me in 2016. It may be the only one left as being plaster it would be very easy to damage or destroy. This may be my favorite antique. On the wall to the left is a masonic (Scottish Rite) sword made by the Henderson-Ames company a hundred years ago in Kalamazoo, purchased on eBay.

Below - on the left, in 2016 I bought a rusty 1940s Farmall tractor grill in Paw Paw, sand blasted it and painted it. I used to own a 1947 Farmall with a grill just like it. On the right is a Buffalo Foam Fire Extinguisher in beautiful condition. I bought it from Tim Brake at the Centerville show in 2016.


Below - these 3 birds hanging from the ceiling were hand carved in Indonesia. I bought them at a Centerville show in 2016.

Below - also on the ceiling, this brass light fixture hung in an old Downtown Detroit building for many decades before a man in Allegan rescued it, rewired it and used it in his house for many years. Eventually it was surplus to his needs and I picked it up for $125 in 2017.

Below - this is a 42" unused Banks-Maxwell airboat propellor, bought at an Allegan show in 2017. I just wanted a propellor in my collection!

Below - on the left, this is a porcelain Illinois Bell sign, probably 1930s, bought from Tim Brake at Centerville. On the right is a Canadian road sign from 1960, bought at the Allegan show. Route 6 runs north from Port Dover on Lake Ontario through Hamilton and Guelph to Owen Sound on Lake Huron.


Below - this huge 55" by 31" painting by Gallagher was a princely $7.50 at the Portage Road Garage Sale in 2015.

Below - this cross was bought at a Centerville Show in 2017. It was hanging in the rear room of a machine shop in Parma, Michigan. The seller had no idea whether it has any religious significance.

Below - the Kalamazoo Ave sign was bought at a Vintage show at the Kalamazoo County Fairground. The steering wheel is from a vintage M.G. car, bought at Burgess Antiques in Galesburg. 

Below - this is a Currier and Ives print titled "Skating Scene - Moonlight" that just fascinated me. This is what the Victorians did at night before radio and TV kept us all inside (and don't get me started on Netflix!).

Below - on the left, this is a pre-1920's Theodore A. Kochs barber pole. It has a windup mechanism and is very heavy. On the right is a wooden 14" long pulley in excellent shape. It has NEY burned into the wood in small letters (?). Both came from an Allegan Antique Show in 2017.


Below - this Peanut Munch styrofoam life ring is for display only. It's never going to save anyone! I bought it from Tim Brake at an Allegan Antique Show.

Below - this wooden drum lid stenciled for tartaric acid was used by Pfizer. The drum was shipped from Pfizer in New York to Upjohn in Kalamazoo, probably in the 1920s or 30s. I retrieved it from the basement of a retired Upjohn employee.

Below - this is a porcelain realtor sign. It must be old because when could you buy a 2048 sq foot house for $13,900? I'm thinking late 1940s. I bought it from Tim Brake at a Centerville Show.

Below - this is an early automobile horn that originally came from the Netherlands. Jan VanSheik gave it to me. I'm thinking it must be over a hundred years old.

Below - this Coca-Cola sign was used in the Kalamazoo State Theater ticket office from 1969 to 1991. June 1991 was the last time it was used, as shown. I bought it from Denny Olsen in his Vicksburg store during January 2018.

Below - this key is 30" long and weighs 6 pounds. It is made of chrome plated metal. It would have been hanging outside of a key shop for advertising. I bought it at an Allegan Show.


Below - this 15" cast metal key is a Rotary Club piece. It's unusual - I can't find another example of one. I bought it at a Centerville Show.

Below - this Irish Mist pottery figure was so visually appealing I had to buy him for $20 at an antique store on South Burdick St, Kalamazoo.

Below - this former hotel metal sign came from Pick in Downtown Kalamazoo. Of course, I had to buy an old bell to go with it!

Below - this working padlock is 11 inches long and weighs 8 pounds. There are no markings on it to indicate who made it. Maybe it's Amish? It sure is one big padlock.

Below - Thedford's Black Draft was a mild laxative sold in the nineteenth century. It was an effective and popular product in the era of quack medications, most of which did not work. I bought this at Burgess Antiques in Galesburg


Below - this Certificate is a real document from 1912. The Sheffield Car Company was located in Three Rivers and was bought by Fairbanks-Morse in the early 1900's.

Below - this 44" by 31" oil painting by W.Hodges has no real value but is most enjoyable to look at. The price was enjoyable too - 20 bucks.

Below - this plastic sign came from Tim Brake at a Centerville Show in 2017. Sharlette, where are you now?

Below - this is a rotating Strohl's sign (remember when we used to drink Stroh's beer?). It works and was purchased from Tim Brake at an Allegan show. He swore it was one of the ultimate Strohl's collectibles!

Below - these items are decorating the top of my refrigerator.  The Hershey's bottle is 18" high and the soup can is 10" high. Both are banks, as is the samll Mr. Peanut.

Below - who remembers Stewart Sandwiches that you bought and heated up in a small convection oven before you left the store? I hear they didn't taste that good. The invention of the microwave doomed Stewart Sandwiches......

Below - here's my collection of tins above the kitchen cupboards.

Below left - this oil painting of a Parisian street scene has no real value but is soothing to look at. Heck, the frame is gorgeous. Below right - this 28-inch high ceramic tiger was well-done but there is no identification of who created him and when. He weighs 32 pounds! I got him from Kalamazoo Kitty in 2017.


Below - this is the coat of arms of the British Royal Family. I bought it from Tim Brake at an Allegan Antique Market. Supposedly it hung on the wall of a pub in England. I'm thinking said pub would have had to be named "The Kings Arms", "The Queens Inn" or had some other royal name.

Below - this oil painting of the medieval Clock Tower in St. Albans, England was done by John Maynard, a well-known local artist in that area. My parents brought it over from the U.K. in the 1980s

Below - this oil painting of my family home in Harpenden, England was also done by John Maynard, as commissioned by my father and brought it over from the U.K. in the 1980s.

Below - this is a Chinese guardian lion, made of solid plaster, bought from Pick in Downtown Kalamazoo. It should be one of a matching pair. Alas, who knows what happened to the other one!

Below - this 49 inch high figure, carved from a single piece of wood, is said to have come from Jamaica. I bought it at an Allegan Antique Market in 2017.

Below - this Island Joe's sign was bought from Denny Olsen's store in Vicksburg. It looks like Island Joe's was a great place.

Below - this painting came from a local estate sale. The seller told me it's considered mid-century modern and was painted by hand on a sort of art production line in California.

Below - this is a painting of Allied Paper Mill C on Alcott St, Kalamazoo by Cornellius Van Fulpen, a well-known local artist. In 1980 I worked in the building to the right of the water tank. It's not very valuable at this time, maybe $300, but hopefully will be in the future. More details about this painting are at this link.


Below left and center - two industrial mantiques. The 30-inch length of chain weighs 17 pounds. This other one is used to tighten the space between objects attached to each end. Below right - the shell came from a local estate sale. It has no markings but I'm thinking it's WWII vintage or older. I can't find an image of one online.


Below - I don't know how old this 14 1/2R size wooden shoe form is but stamped on it is ALCO U.S. MILI. That means it was used for military shoes. I bought it at a vintage show at the Kalamazoo County Expo Center.

Below left - this Elkhart brand fire extinguisher is in beautiful shape. I bought it from Tim Brake at a Centerville show. Below right -  it's hard to see but this lamp has a very artsy base. It came from a local estate sale.


Below left - when I bought this lamp the buyer swore it could be very valuable but it has no markings on to indicate who made it. It may not really be worth much but it's a pretty piece anyway. Below right - this 48 inch Mr. Peanut plush doll livens up the decor!


Below - it's not an antique but it's a fun end table!

Below - two dogs, one made of concrete and the other of wicker.


Below - this is a 1924 Victrola, brought back from Tennesse to Michigan 30 years ago. I bought it from a Craigslist posting in Holland. On top is a folk art truck bought at the Bank St Flea Market in Kalamazoo.

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Last Edited by JMW 02/06/18