Dubbed "The Dean of Halloween," Mark B. Lendenbach has collected and studied vintage Halloween memorabilia since the 1980s. His groundbreaking book, Vintage Halloween Collectibles, is considered the definitive guide on the subject.
The focus of his extensive Halloween collecting efforts has been to find superb examples of games, lanterns shades, candy containers, figurals, nodders, table decorations, party ephemera, noisemakers and diecuts. Ledenbach strives to buy only items in superior condition, taking care to ensure that he preserves them for future collectors.
In the spirit of the season, Ledenbach offers his 10 favorites from his collection of thousands of Halloween treasures.
1. German Fence Diecut, 1935, 7-3/4" h x 27" l. Energetic and fun, this rare diecut was among the last designs produced before WWII. It took 30 years to find one good enough to enter the collection. Value: $4,500
2. Spear’s Hallowe’en Ring Toss Game, ca. 1910, 14" h x 1-1/2" w x 9-1/4" l. Produced in England for export, very few complete games exist today. Value: $5,000
3. German Pumpkin Blossom Lantern, ca. 1920, 4-3/4” h x 3-1/2” diameter at bottom. Only three are known to exist, two in mint condition like this one. Value: $6,000
4. German Porcelain Candle Holder, 1908-1932, 3-1/2" h x 3" w. The Germans produced a dizzying array of Halloween porcelain. This is one of the most desirable and charming. Value: $3,500
5. U.S. Tin Litho Clanger, 1920s, 4-1/2" inch diameter. Unknown manufacturer. The graphics are quirky, fun and memorable, especially the running skeleton. Value: $350
6. Spook Pops Mechanical Sucker Holder, mid-1930s, 8-1/2" h x 1-1/2" w x 7" l. Made by Rosen of Rhode Island, when you move the haunted house back and forth, ghosts along the path pop up. Value: $1,800
7. Beistle Grandfather Clock Mechanical Invitation, 1932, 7-3/4" h x 3" w. The back piece moves to show a skeleton on one side and a cat and jack-o’-lantern on the other. Recalled due to a production flaw; very few exist today. Value: $2,500
8. Beistle Complete Party Outfit, 1922, 12" h x 10" l. Consisting of 35 pieces in a sturdy envelope, these are almost never found in this condition. Value: $2,500
9. Dennison Bogie Book, 1909, 8" h x 6-1/4" l. This was the first of many near-annual issues. It is the sole copy known to exist. Are others out there? Value: $4,500
10. Beistle Skeleton in Graveyard Diecut, ca. 1932, 18-1/2" h x 11-3/4" l. This desirable, very large embossed item was advertised for several years but seems to have been produced for one. I love the scary trees! Value: $4,500
For more information on Mark B. Ledenbach and vintage Halloween collectibles, go to his website, HalloweenCollector.com