Ask Antique Trader: Cheers! Robj liquor decanters worth $900

Q Can you tell me anything about this small oil painting showing a woman in a farm yard scene? It has a signature that looks like “Halle.”
— B.C., Tequesta, Fla.

A Your oil painting is of the German school and was painted in the mid-19th century. Close examination shows the signature to be “Hadl.” Though there were several German painters with this name none fitted into the proper time slot. Similar genre paintings sell at auction for $800 to $1,200.

Q I have been browsing the Internet looking for some information on my Robj Decanters. Is there a market and where do I sell? I have two Scotsmen and one Professor.
— E.T. – Fruitland, Fla.

A There are serious collectors of Robj ceramic decanters. Robj decanters are among the most expensive liquor decanters and were also made as flasks and liquor bottles. They were introduced in the 1920s in France. Your “Scotsman with bagpipes” could sell for over $900. To learn more contact Donald Brian-Johnson (Donald who has written about Robj decanters in one of his several books. Robj items have sold on eBay.

Q Can you give me an approximate value of this porcelain figurine of a map seller? It is 8 inches high.
— C.G., McKeesport, Pa.

A Unfortunately you didn’t give me any clues, such as signature. However, I found one of my own. The map is of an area in Germany. The figurine is probably 19th century, and by one of the many German porcelain makers. If you could find a mark it would raise the value. I can only give a price for similar objects. It could sell at auction for $1,500 or more.

Anne Gilbert is a nationally syndicated columnist, author of eight antiques and collectibles books, and is well known for her lectures to business and professional groups. She is a member of the Newspaper Features Council and Society of Illustrators. She can be reached via e-mail at

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