WHAT: With an estimated pre-sale at $10,000 to $12,000, a circa 1929 cast iron delivery panel van soared to $21,240 in a recent sale of antique toys at Bertoia Auctions. Embossed “White” on the front grill and marked “Peerless Cleaning,” the vehicle is a rare all-original toy.
MORE: To begin, the truck is rare. On top of that, it is in super excellent condition. Rubber tires are intact, as are spares on each running board. As a bonus, the seated driver is intact and the rear doors open.
SMART COLLECTORS KNOW: The problem with early toys is that once played with, value usually plummets. Depending on the toy, top dollar goes to un-played with and pristine toys.
HOT TIP: A dream scenario for today’s committed collector would be a new toy gifted at Christmas or a birthday sometime around 1900, deemed too good to be played with and put away for safekeeping, then forgotten.
BOTTOM LINE: Toy collectors are big kids at heart. As adults, they have the money to buy back toys of their youth or buy toys their parents could not afford or would not let them have. Top-line antique toys are big business: Total for this auction hit close to $1.9 million.
BOOK IT! “Scootermania: A Celebration of Style and Speed” by Josh Sims (Bloomsbury, $20) is all about transport scooters, a favorite big boy toy of the 20th century. Through text, photos and period ads, the book highlights and explains Mitsubishi, Honda, Vespa, Lambretta, Fuji and Ducati scooters, plus others.