Friday, September 30, 2011

A Box of Marbles - A Game of The Past

I wonder if kids even play with marbles now-a-days.  We had marbles when we were kids, but I don't think people buy them for kids anymore - probably because they do not talk, sing or teach you how to do math.  Well they can teach you math, but marbles can't talk and tell you if you are right or wrong.  Oh, yeah, and I'm sure they are considered too dangerous for today's kids.

I didn't realize there were so many games associated with marbles.  Mostly, we just thought they were pretty and tried to hit the marbles and see how far we could get them to go.     

We found this box of marbles that our mother had ordered from The Great American Marble Company.  Seems they were trying to get people to rediscover marbles.  They called it a sport and said that marble-like objects have been found in 2,500-year old Egyptian tombs.  Famous Marble players include George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Abraham Lincoln.  From across the pond, there was a gentleman from England called "Hydrogen Thumb."  Isn't that hilarious?

If you are going to play Marbles, you will need to know the language.  Aggies, mibs, bumboozers, hunching and snoogers - what does that mean?  Oh, that information is included with the box of marbles.

There are well over 50 marbles games and the rules and instruction for several of those games are also included with the box of marbles from The Great American Marble Company.  

While The Great American Marble Company offered different size bags of marbles, they also offered this box made of white pine, handcrafted and sanded, with over 100 small marbles and six shooters.  I did count the marbles and there were 117 small marbles including swirlies, cat's eyes, clearies and solid glass.  All made in the U.S.!

You can find this wonderful box of marbles at CAROLINABLUELADY Vintage Collectibles.  Step back in time when toys were simple and provided hours of fun.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Dr. Sayman and his Traveling Medicine Show

I had found a small square milk glass jar in one of my mother's auction boxes.  A tin lid with the impression of a reputable-looking man that screwed onto the jar.  Raised words around the lid say - Sayman's Products Are Supreme Dr. Sayman St. Louis.  There was no label or markings on the jar.  I had never heard of Sayman's Products before but thought that this was probably a jar for ointment or salve.  One of the things I love about selling vintage glass is the research and discovering interesting stories of past entrepreneurs of our great country.  Dr. Thomas M. Sayman is no exception.  In fact, I would have to say, he is one of the most colorful and interesting charactors I have come across.
Dr. Thomas M. Sayman was not really a doctor.  He was born around 1854.  Barefooted and dressed in overalls, he ran away from his Indiana farm home at the age of 9 to make his own way in the world.  At 10, he started traveling with a circus and medicine show.  By the time he was 11, he had organized his own medicine show and traveled through Texas in a horse drawn wagon peddling his soaps, tonics and medicines.  Just fascinating stuff! 
He developed creams, medicine salves and soaps, building a large manufacturing plant in 1912.  He had become very wealthy and employed many people.  It is said that he was very generous with giving to charities and taking care of his employees.   It seems that he was also concerned with the possibility of being robbed and was known to keep a large collection of weapons.  He had no problem brandishing a pistol in public.  Not well accepted, these incidents landed him in trouble with the police and courts over fifty times.  And, then there were the suits against his Sayman's Vegetable Liniment Compound by the US for misbranding.  The list of ailments and diseases that Sayman's Vegetable Liniment Compound was suppose to cure included just about everything known to man.  And, not only did it cure ailments for humans, but also horses and dogs.     
Mr. Sayman had three daughters and one son by his first wife, Rosa.  He divorced sometime between 1900 to 1910.  He married a second wife, Lillian and had a daughter.  Divorce was bit unusual considering the times of the 1900s.   
Thomas M. Sayman died in September of 1937.  What a character!  I just can't get over that at the age of 9, he left home to seek his fame and fortune.  

You can buy this Dr Sayman Square Milk Glass Jar that use to hold some of Doc Sayman's miracle ointment from CAROLINABLUELADY Vintage Collectibles.   

Pottery U.S. Style

Pottery is the theme for the ESN Scavenger Hunt this week.  Besides glassware, pottery is my other favorite thing to collect.  Of course it has to be U.S. made.  I fell in love with Roseville a little more than twenty years ago.  The Florentine pattern is my favorite.  I did find a Mostique vase a couple of years ago.  Mostique is an earlier pattern in the Arts and Crafts design - very pretty.

There is also a special place in my heart for McCoy planters as my grandmother had quite a few that she used to to display her plants on her kitchen windowsill.  She had african violets, mother-in-law tongue and her favorite, finger cacti.  I don't have any finger cacti, but I do have african violets and mother-in-law tongue on my windowsill.
Living in North Carolina, there are quite a few potteries throughout our beautiful state.  I sell new pottery from four potteries in the Seagrove Area.  I love going to visit with them and looking at all their beautiful pieces.  I would love to try my hand at making the pottery someday.

Going through the stores of ESN bloggers, I found a couple of cool pieces that I would like to share with you, but first I have to show you this wall art quote - Art is Born from Walls That Talk.
There may not be the word "pottery" in this quote, but doesn't this just about say it all for pottery making?

Two of the pieces I found include a McCoy planter and an unmarked vase with a very unique design. 
The McCoy Planter H1178 is a brown rectangle planter with a wood grain- type of design.  You can find this and several other McCoy planters at Eccentric Thrifter.  My grandmother could have planted several finger cacti in this planter.
At ComycGyrl Collectibles, I found this beautiful vase.  A powder blue with gold plume ceramic pottery vase.  Not sure who made this, but I think it is very unique with the detailed scalloped edging.  Beautiful!
Fat Beagle Pottery is my favorite Seagrove Area pottery.  Charles (Doc) Tostoe owns and operates Fat Beagle Pottery which was named after his fat beagle, Sally.  Sally has been gone for some time now, but sometimes when I visit, there is a sweet contented dog lying on the floor close to Doc as he sits at his potter's wheel.  Here is a beautiful vase from Fat Beagle Pottery that I have for sale at CAROLINBLUELADY Vintage Collectibles.

Raku is a traditional Japanese form of pottery using special firing processes.  Doc makes a few pieces now and then "when the wind is right and the creek's not rising" in his words. 
Please visit CAROLINABLUELADY Vintage Collectibles for other great pieces of North Carolina pottery.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Grandparents Day Scavenger Hunt at ESN

This week's scavenger hunt at ESN is to find items for or about Grandparents.  Because Grandparent's Day was on 9/11 this year, I'm sure most people were recalling the tragedy that struck our country 10 years ago and honoring the victims of that horrific day.

My grandmother was one of the two most important people in my life growing up.  She taught me how to sew and cook.  She always had time for me and I loved her very much.  But, she was usually the one that would give me a "talking to" if I did anything wrong.  Oh, I dreaded those "talking to".   Although she has been gone for many years, I still miss her and try to be as good a grandmother to my grandchildren as she was to me.  Here are a few things from the ESN Scavenger Hunters that remind me of my grandmother with a few of my items at CAROLINABLUELADY Vintage Collectibles mixed in. 
My grandmother always wore a broach. Most of her broaches had rhinestones and I loved the sparkle and glitter. While this broach is not made of rhinestones, this Avon Spring Bouquet Pin reminds me of my grandmother. Other beautiful Avon jewelry can be found at CAROLINABLUELADY Vintage Collectibles.

She also collected coins - usually on the weekends she would put new found coins into her coin books after recording her sewing payments in her books. This Rare1901 Indian Head Penny from Bargain Express reminds me of my grandmother because she was born in 1901.

My grandmother was a dressmaker and I loved watching her sew.  We had many conversations in her sewing room as she taught me how to sew.  This Vogue Very Easy Dress pattern of a classic dress reminds me of my grandmother.  You can find this and other patterns at CAROLINABLUELADY Vintage Collectibles.
My grandmother always wore an apron when she cooked. Most of her aprons were the kind that went over the head and tied in back. She had them hanging on a nail in the sink room. This Happy Thanksgiving Embroidered apron from Embroidery Fashions Boutique reminds me of my grandmother.

My grandmother loved going to the Indiana Glass factory in Dunkirk, Indiana and purchase their carnival glass with her sister.  This Fruits Relish Tray in the amber carnival from Indiana Glass reminds me of my grandmother.  This and other vintage glassware can be found at CAROLINABLUELADY Vintage Collectibles.
My grandmother loved flowers and plants and had small planters of plants on her window sill in front of the kitchen sink.  Most of the planters were made by McCoy.  This McCoy Green Stripe Planter from Eccentric Thrifter reminds me of my grandmother.

These are just a few of the things that remind me of my grandmother.  You can check out other ESN sellers for treasures that bring back special memories of your grandparents.   

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

A Sister's Easter Gift

I was so hoping to post each day of this week, but I'm running a little behind.  Yesterday my brother, sister and I split up the carnival glass, both old and new.  Old carnival glass is my favorite glass.  Everything went smoothly and we were all very happy with our picks - more on that later.  Today, we divided the Greentown glass and St. Clair/Joe Rice paperweights.  Again, another fun day!  But, there is another story that I wanted to share about the toothpicks that we divided on Monday. 

The most special toothpick we found was a beautiful blue St. Clair Indian Head toothpick.  Oh, there were prettier toothpicks, but what made it special was the note we found inside it.  My grandmother and Aunt Goldie were sisters and about two years apart.  This toothpick was an Easter present from Aunt Goldie to my grandmother.  Not sure what year it was, but I'm guessing early 1970s.  Here is the note......

Aunt Goldie was the most beautiful lady.  She reminded me of a movie star with the spunk of a Katharine Hepburn and the beauty of a Rita Hayworth.  She was the favorite of our family.  She had a beautiful smile and infectious laugh.  We loved it when she would come and visit.  She passed away at the age of 104, about a month before our mother passed away.

And which one of us obtained this prized toothpick?  Our brother was the lucky one! 

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Toothpick Heaven!

Our grandmother collected two different items - first being St. Clair toothpick holders.  She had Indian Head toothpicks in every color that St. Clair produced and a lot of the Holly pattern toothpicks.  When we were at her house, at some point we would be standing in front of her china cupboard and looking in awe at all her toothpick holders.  Even the older grandkids loved looking at all the toothpick holders.  The second item she collected was the carnival glass in the Harvest pattern from the Indiana Glass Company in Dunkirk, In.  Yes, this is considered the "new" carnival glass and I have to admit, growing up, this was not my favorite glass.  But what did make it special was seeing the sparkle in her eyes and how happy she was when she looked at the glass or was able to buy a new piece.  With St. Clair located in Elwood, In and Indiana Glass in Dunkirk, In, it was always a special treat for her to go to the factories with her sister, Aunt Goldie. 

Our mother also collected toothpick holders.  Her finds came from auctions, antique stores visited while traveling with my sister and me, and St. Clair in Elwood, In.  Other than St. Clair, she only looked for toothpicks that she thought were pretty.  The value really had nothing to do with her collections.  In her eyes, all glass was of value.  While I have been selling the toothpicks that were still wrapped in the auction boxes, the ones she did have displayed were included in the toothpick holders for us to choose from.       

The main thing that we did yesterday was to divide the toothpicks between the three of us.  We put all the toothpicks on a long table - there were 150+ toothpicks - St. Clair, Imperial, Fenton, Boyd, Summit, Deganhart and a few others.  Nothing high dollar, but all very special.  We decided to each pick 20 and then we would sell the rest online at CAROLINABLUELADY Vintage Collectibles at eCrater or my store, CAROLINABLUELADY Vintage Collectibles at Auctiva Commerce.  We took turns picking out our toothpicks one at a time and with so many to choose from, it took quite sometime to reach our 20 each.  As we looked over the remaining toothpicks, another one caught my sister's eye.  My brother said, "so we each want to pick another one?"  We ended with 22 each.  It was a very good day with plenty left to sell.  And, with 22 each, the grandkids are well taken care of, too.       

Monday, September 5, 2011

The Beginning Of The End Of Our Journey

My brother, sister and I have been on a journey for the past three years since our mother past away in September, 2008.  I'm sure most people can not understand why it has taken this long for us to go through the things in her house.  For most, taking a bulldozer to the house would have been the logical answer.  But for us, hidden in the stacks of newspapers, magazines and boxes, were our memories and treasures that we seem to cling onto so tightly.  Among our mother's stuff was our grandmother's stuff - nothing was ever thrown away.  To be honest, it isn't that the stuff is so valuable, it is the memories that are triggered bringing smiles, laughter and tears that have guided us for the past three years.  The stuff represents the carefree years of our childhood, the shaping of who we are, our mother's love and the love we have for each other.  

Thought you just might want to see the big house -

Oh, yes, there are a few additions to the original house. 

It is our goal to be done by the end of October.  This will be my last week at my mother's house and will be the week that we decide who gets what.  I'm sure there will be some things that more than one of us will want - our mother's scissors, our grandmother's big white-frame mirror, our "stagecoach" rocking chair, family-collected glassware and family mementos.  This could be the hardest part of our three year journey. 

Yesterday, we walked through the house and discussed our plan and time frame for ending this journey.  For the next five days, we will again be talking and sharing while dividing our memories.  I'm sure there will be plenty of laughter and a few tears. 

Our final plan begins today.