Antique Trader Inbox: Letters to the Editor 3

A happy and peaceful New Year to you all. I hope it’s a good one for the whole business.

Every area of collecting, and every collector, has their Holy Grail. Whether it’s Depression glass, baseball cards or lunchboxes, there’s something that we would all give up everything we’ve collected to posess.

The Honus Wagner T206 has been written about ad nauseum, but it’s the most easily recognizable “Holy Grail.” It was featured in an October Antique Trader article by Brian Earnest about a wide variety of “Holy Grail” sports items.

This got the staff at Trader thinking about what we would give everything for. Antiques and collectibles-wise, I probably give it all up for a Flash Comics #1, or a particular Charlotte Perriand bookcase – you’d know the one I’m talking about if you saw it.

If you want to particpate in the online discussion, and see what else we have going on in the virtual world, go online to

Hello Noah,

My name is Bill Banks, author of the Victorian Opalescent Glass Price Guide. For 20 years now I’ve been collecting Victorian opalescent glass, and over the years it’s become a true passion.

Letters -Woodpecker.jpgWhen I first became interested in old things, I remembered this metal woodpecker toothpick holder. It sat on my grandparent’s dining room table. I was mesmerized by this thing when I was 7 years old. After we all ate dinner, my Grandfather would say, “Who wants a toothpick?” My brother and sister and I would holler, “I do! I do!” He would push the woodpecker’s head down into the log and it would come up every time with a toothpick in its mouth.

Many years later when I became interested in collecting old things, I would remember that woodpecker, and I set about trying to find one. It became an obsession. Finally after two years of searching antique shops, flea markets, extravaganzas, antique shows and junk shops, I finally found one. It was the best $22 I ever spent. However, I wouldn’t give up everything for it.



I collect Olympic posters. I have several thousand posters, including two from the 1896 Athens Olympic Games, which were the first to herald the re-establishment of the games, but they merely concerned an issue of a U.S. magazine that had an article about the games.

To me, the “Holy Grail” is a broadsheet that was posted on walls throughout Athens that called the attention of the locals to the actual schedule of events.

Robert J. Christianson
Palm Harbor, FL


Ask any vintage radio collector, and they’ll probably say: “The 1938 Zenith Model 1000z Stratosphere.”

Mike Koste
Ambler, PA

Editor’s Note: Antique Trader received the following correspondence from one of our Texas readers following the publication of an AP story in our Dec. 26 issue about the suspected theft of several items, including Santa Anna’s spurs, from the Dallas Historical Society. We thank them for the update!


Regarding the story that Santa Anna’s brass spurs were among some missing historical artifacts.

I live in Dallas and this story was recently covered by the Dallas Morning News. It seems the Dallas Historical Society, itself, left the items in a hotel parking lot while packing up from an exhibit. They sat for three weeks in the hotel’s lost and found department before the society discovered the items were missing.

Pretty irresponsible behavior and, we’re told, they’re looking into their procedures for transporting and returning items.

Thanks very much,
Janice Thomas