NewslettersRuby Lane's newsletters are designed to celebrate the antiques and art, vintage collectibles and jewelry communities around the world. Our Past Times newsletter focuses on antiques and collectibles. Our Creative Hands newsletter celebrates fine art and handcrafted jewelry on Ruby Lane. Our shop owners are frequent article contributors, sharing their expertise and their passions for the items they collect and create. Enjoy!
Subscribe Now to our Newsletters
Past Times Newsletter - October 2000
Past Times The monthly newsletter from Ruby Lane Antiques, Collectibles, and Fine Art
Welcome to Past Times!
IN THIS ISSUE:
o Make Way For the Holidaze!
o Hot Shop of the Month: Ethnic Treasures
o Collecting Figural Tobacco Jars by Joseph Horowitz, M.D. of
the Journal of Antiques and Collectibles
o OCTOBER TIP: Using Search Engines Effectively
MAKE WAY FOR THE HOLIDAZE!
With the holidays just around the corner, many Ruby Lane shops are
shuffling their inventory to make way for this season's gift items.
If you have had your eye on a special piece at Ruby Lane, be sure to
If you have thought about having your own online antique shop, Ruby
Lane is a simple, inexpensive way to get started even for beginners.
Click here for more details on opening your own shop on Ruby Lane.
Ethnic Treasures features high quality ethnic and tribal Jewelry from
around the Globe. Owner Janet Chang's collection includes Turkoman
items as well as Bedouin, African, Asian jewelry, books and gift
Janet has recently added over 120 new jewelry items to the shop.
You'll find many pieces under Jewelry African Section which includes
silver Berber rings, silver Tuareg crosses, large silver Tuareg
pendent necklaces, and a few pairs of Tuareg silver earrings. Janet
would also like to bring your attention a small rare Southern India
Madras enameled necklace collection, semi-precious stone pendants,
and antique Indian, Swat Valley and Tibetan pieces in Jewelry Asia
Section. Many of these items are becoming hard to find! More items
will be added throughout the month of October.
The site only lists a small portion of her entire collection, so feel
free to e-mail her if you do not see what you are looking for.
PayPal.com (Visa, MasterCard), Bank Wire, Cash, Personal Checks,
Money Orders gladly accepted. We invite you to visit Ethnic
THE JOURNAL OF ANTIQUES AND COLLECTIBLES
The tobacco jar or humidor during the Victorian era was frequently in
the form of a human or animal head or figure. These figural tobacco
jars are prized by a growing number of collectors. Most are
ceramic, primarily terra-cotta plus a fair number of porcelains.
Less common are figurals carved from wood, molded from papier mache
or cast in bronze. There are men, women and children, occupational,
historic, humorous, ethnic and mythological figures. They range in
size from four inches to more than a foot. Peak production occurred
during the middle and late Victorian era when pipe smoking had
replaced snuff as the primary form of tobacco utilization.
Bohemia was the primary source. The principal producers were Johann
Maresch of Aussig, Bernhard Bloch of Eichwald, Wilhelm Schiller & Son
of Bodenbach and Josef Strnact of Turn-Teplitz. Their work was marked
and usually without a glaze. The occasional majolica glazed jar was
rarely factory marked. There was one major German source, Conta and
Bohme of Possneck, whose specialty was heavy porcelain figures. They
are usually not marked or the marks are hidden inside. Their weight,
color range and unglazed surfaces make them easy to recognize. In the
early 1900s they produced a large number of unmarked small bisque
heads, including many ethnic groups.
Schafer and Vater produced a series of small bisque tobacco jars in
pink or green tones and Schierholz and Son created the beautifully
modeled porcelain so-called "Musterschutz" character steins and
figural tobacco jars.
Except for some Staffordshire style pieces there are few English
figural jars although an extensive variety of Doulton non-figurals.
There are a few French and even fewer Dutch or Portugese figurals.
American figural humidors are pretty much limited to a series of five
good size painted heads from Dickens-Weller running $700 to $800
except for a very rare skull which runs $1000+.
Heads outnumber all other forms. Older male heads with strong
features predominate. Feminine heads are usually idealized children
and young women. There is an abundance of ethnic heads. Extensive
variety permits collectors to specialize in miniatures, monochromes,
matte polychromes or high glaze finishes, bisques or porcelains.
Marks, especially on majolica heads, are rare. Smaller and more
common heads run $65 - $100. A Black jar will bring 30-50 percent
more than a comparable non-Black jar.
Full figures range from simple country women and highly decorated
ladies to XIXth Century recognizable historic figures. These pieces
generate the most interest. Animals, especially of majolica, are
cross-collectibles, sought after by tobacco jar people, animal
figural collectors and majolica fans.
Composites are figurals of separate components such as a head or bust
atop a barrel or sack. Johann Maresch was the predominant producer.
Miscellaneous jars are shaped like such things as a hat box,
champagne cork or football. Most carved wood tobacco figurals,
called Black Forest or Swiss carved, are in the form of animal heads
with lids which may be separate or hinged. Prices start at $700.
Papier mache is usually in the form of good size heads with
oriental-like features. Bronze figurals are rarely marked and
prices begin at $1500.
There's an increase in fakes and reproductions, including Blacks and
a very well made bulldog wearing a bowler.
The Society of Tobacco Jar Collectors, founded in 1992, has more than
100 members in the U.S., Canada, England, France and Australia. It
publishes a quarterly newsletter. Contact the Society at 1705
Chanticleer Drive, Cherry Hill, New Jersey 08003, (856)489-8363.
To read the entire article, with over a dozen color illustrations,
please visit The Journal of Antiques and Collectibles: Your source
for information on collecting.
Using a search engine is easy. You simply type in related keywords
and - hopefully - the exact site or information you're looking for
will pop right up. Right? Wrong! Search engines are a powerful
tool - but there are tricks to using them that most people aren't
aware of. So here is a list of quick and easy search engine tips
that you can apply anytime to receive better, more accurate search
- Use keywords rather than phrases or questions. Most search engines
will not handle a question like: silver or gold tea set with fancy
handles and lids. Instead use a series of simpler searches like:
"silver tea set" or "gold tea set".
- If a search engine supports wildcards (also called stemming - check
the Search Tips or Help section), USE THEM. Most search engines
support the use of the asterisk (*) as a wildcard. So bird* will
match bird, birds, birdie, birdcage, bird-in-the-hand, Birdan. This
is especially useful for plural matching, for example: golf club*
would match a listing like "These golf clubs..." or "This golf
- Use wildcards if a word is difficult to spell or has multiple
spellings. For example, Jadeite is often spelled Jadite. To search
for both spellings use: jad*ite. Another way to find out if a search
engine supports wildcards: Try using jad*ite on google.com for
example, which does not support them. The * instead serves as a word
separator and you get the same results as if you searched for jad ite
- which is not what you wanted. If you get few or no accurate
matches using the *, but thousands when you donxt use it, the search
engine does not support them.
- When inputting a list of keywords, some search engines will take
this to mean "find items containing ANY of these words", also called
an "or" search. This will usually return many more irrelevant
results. Other search engines interpret this as "find only items
containing ALL of these words", also called an "and" search. This
will return fewer results, but they will usually be more relevant to
- Most search engines support the use of + before a word to mean "the
results must include this word". Use this if the search engine
supports it and you are getting too many inappropriate results,
especially if the search engine normally uses an "or" search for your
keywords. The pluses will change your search to an "and" search.
- Some search engines allow you to "refine" a search. You can start
simple and then weed out matches that you don't want, for example,
one search might be: "tea set". Yet another search might be: "silver
or gold (must include these words too)". This is easier to understand
conceptually than trying to do the same search all at once.
So why not give some of these tips a try at Ruby Lane's Global Search
engine and see what treasures you can find.
We are one of the largest and hottest Internet-only web sites for
collectors. We have a community of over 500 shops from all over the
world offering antiques, fine art, arts & crafts, and collectibles.
Our site indexes only quality inventory in over 2,000 categories. We
feature a Global Search Engine, which searches all inventories in a
particular category from Ruby Lane shops and various online auctions
and malls. Visit us at www.rubylane.com
If you have a suggestion on how Ruby Lane can better serve you, or if
you have an article you would like to submit or a subject you would
like us to cover in an upcoming issue, contact us at
Past Times is an opt-in email newsletter with over 48,000 subscribers
and growing. Advertising inquiries are welcome!
For previous newsletters, view the Past Times Archives.
Subscribe Now to our Newsletters
© 1998-2013 Ruby Lane Inc. ® All Rights Reserved.
Press the Back button on your browser to return to the previous screen.