Including carousels. Not including Doll
Jonah by Stevens
2007 SOLD for $ 414K by Morphy
On this idea, toy manufacturers have invented two product lines. The still bank, fixed, is close to the piggy bank but uses many other themes to attract the attention of the child.
The mechanical bank is more interesting. The introduction of a coin releases a lever, which introduces a more or less complex movement. They are most often in cast iron. The subjects are often friendly.
A company of Connecticut, J. & E. Stevens, produced dozens of models of mechanical banks between 1869 and 1928.
Sold by Morphy on October 27, 2007, the Steckbeck collection realized $ 7.7M in 492 lots. The top result, $ 414K, rewarded Jonah emerging out of the whale, made by Stevens. This model is extremely rare in its original configuration.
1879-1884 Mikado by Kyser and Rex
2021 SOLD for $ 290K by Bertoia
Their Mikado is an illusionist playing with two hats on a table top. The action of the rear crank transfers to the right hat a coin placed under the left hat.
A red table version in near mint condition was sold for $ 290K from a lower estimate of $ 80K by Bertoia on September 11, 2021, lot 624.
2007 SOLD for $ 290K by Morphy
In the same sale from the same maker and provenance, the Roller Skating was sold for $ 195K.
1893 Sleigh by Ives
2014 SOLD for $ 234K by Bertoia
Among the toys to pull along, a piece in cast iron 50 cm long made by the Ives company in Bridgeport CT around 1893 is noteworthy for the quality of its realization. It takes the form of a snow cutter sleigh pulled by a harnessed horse.
The details are exquisite. The horse is articulated. The sled has two almost invisible small wheels that reduce friction when the toy is moved. The seated woman is holding a rein in each hand.
Time passed and it remains only a single specimen that has retained its original passenger. Fortunately, it is in very good condition. The collector Max Berry called it his Rosebud.
With that provenance, it was sold for $ 234K from a lower estimate of $ 100K by Bertoia on November 15, 2014, lot 230 here linked in the LiveAuctioneers bidding platform. It was sold for $ 144K by the same auction house on September 22, 2018, lot 296.
Please watch the video shared by LiveAuctioneers before the 2014 sale, also featuring a Monkey Wagon made by Hubley around 1920, lot 275, that sold for $ 95K.
Ives horse-drawn cutter sleigh, circa 1893, sold for $144,000 at @bertoiaauctions. It is the only known example with an original seated passenge. The clockwork toy measures 19½" long https://t.co/lxbQGg9UBL #toy #toys #sleigh #antiques #antique #Ives #auction #horse #horses #art pic.twitter.com/tqFN5tt1Tg— Maine Antique Digest (@AntiqueDigest) December 10, 2018
2012 SOLD for $ 265K by Bertoia
The Chicago was the favorite piece from the collection of Dick Claus and illustrated the cover jacket of his book "The allure of toy ships", published in 2005. It was sold for $ 265K by Bertoia on November 10, 2012, lot 387 here linked on the bidding platform LiveAuctioneers.
Executed by Märklin at the same time as the Providence, circa 1900-1902, the Chicago is also a paddle wheeler, but it is distinguished by some unique characteristics.
With this model populated by passengers, Märklin has managed to recreate the atmosphere of luxury boats. Details are extremely careful and this example is in very good condition. This large toy 79 cm long was offered with a box.
2012 SOLD for $ 247K by Bertoia
Made in 1900-1902 by Märklin, the Providence is a steamboat equipped with paddle wheels. 66 cm long, it is replicating a 1866 boat. It was sold for $ 247K from a lower estimate of $ 110K, lot 79.
Launched in 1906, the Kaiserin Augusta Victoria was then the largest steam liner in the world. The toy, probably contemporary of the launching, is also the largest of the Märklin fleet, 1.17 m long. It was sold for $ 138K, lot 108.
The Maryland, a battleship made by Märklin around 1915, was sold for $ 144K, lot 48.
Around 1912 Märklin realizes the model toy of the Lusitania. This very big piece nearly 1 m long is meticulously reproducing the details of the ship. The Lusitania from the Forbes collection was sold for $ 195M by Sotheby's on December 17, 2010.
2023 SOLD for $ 250K by Pook and Pook
An example 70 cm long in working condition was sold for $ 250K from a lower estimate of $ 30K by Pook and Pook on May 4, 2023, lot 1.
It displays a faux wood decking, an interior cabin with curtained windows and seated figures, two masts, a smoke stack, a grotesque figurehead under a US flag, lifeboats hanging on cranes and a chained anchor.
Around 1912, Märklin realizes the model toy of the Lusitania. This big piece nearly 1 m long is meticulously reproducing the details of the ship. The example from the Forbes collection was sold for $ 195K by Sotheby's on December 17, 2010.
1932 TippCo Mickey and Minnie
2022 SOLD for $ 220K by Bertoia
Mickey is riding a motorcycle with Minnie is his passenger in the back seat. It is a wind up toy in working condition, in lithographed tin, about 25 cm in length. The manufacturer, TippCo, contributed to the excellent reputation of German toys. The image of Mickey Mouse, created in 1928, could be used only under license, direct or indirect, from Disney.
An example in excellent condition was sold for $ 220K by Bertoia on March 11, 2022, lot 75.
1979 Star Wars Boba Fett
2022 SOLD for $ 236K by Hake's
The appearance of a new major character must be taken into account to satisfy the customers. In 1979, before the second movie, the production company announced Boba Fett the bounty hunter. Two variants are designed with a different shape of the rest positioning of the rocket in the back of the character, J-Slot and L-Slot. A prototype is unveiled at the New York Toy Fair.
About 100 qualifying prototypes are subcontracted to Hong Kong and shipped to Kenner. The throwing system of the rocket does not meet the safety rules because the spring can be triggered unexpectedly. These prototypes with mechanism are among the rarest toys of the Star Wars. In the commercial version, the rocket will be fixed.
Some surviving prototypes sometimes appear at auction. They are often more or less damaged by the severe conditions of the tests.
An unpainted L-Slot prototype graded AFA 80+ NM was sold for $ 236K by Hake's in June 2, 2022, lot 1 here linked on the LiveAuctioneers bidding platform.
A prototype Boba Fett J-Slot in near mint condition with its separately displayed rocket was sold for $ 186K by Hake's on November 7, 2019, lot 1815 here linked on LiveAuctioneers. This toy is in its end-of-development configuration including full painting and copyright stamps. It is graded AFA 85+ NM+.
A J-Slot prototype from a Version 2 with a longer firing stem was sold for $ 204K by the same auction house on March 16, 2022, lot 1604 here linked on LiveAuctioneers. It is graded AFA 50 VG taking in consideration the breaking of the stem during a testing.
Four different AFA 85 NM+ examples of the L-Slot have been sold by Hake's, for $ 86K in 2018, for $ 113K in 2019, for $ 165K in 2021, and for $ 136K on July 27, 2022, lot 1746 here linked on LiveAuctioneers..
1998 The Carousel of Milhous Brothers
2012 SOLD for $ 1.2M by RM Auctions
One of the top pieces is the most personal : a carousel made for them according to their specifications, installed in 1998. Please watch the video shared by the auction house.
This spectacular machine, sold for $ 1.2M, is 16 m in diameter. It includes 42 wooden animals and two chariots in three rows, and the sound is provided by an original Wurlitzer 153 band organ. This organ of the early twentieth century was one of the most popular. Not being the biggest, it could be transported from one ballroom to another. The wooden horses are replicas of old models.