Royal Ruby Glass
By Larry Cox
Q: I have four saucers, four teacups and a sugar and creamer in Royal Ruby glass. It has such a beautiful color, I am curious about how it was made. — Raynette, Springdale, Ark.
A: Although the ancient Egyptians were known to make red glass, most of the pieces seen in American shops and antiques malls are of fairly recent vintage. The 1920s and ‘30s saw pieces being manufactured, and after a lull, production picked up again during the 1940s when Anchor Hocking introduced its pattern of Royal Ruby. The company used copper to achieve its rich color. Some of this type of glass used gold, but its use was, of course, much more expensive to produce. This glass was made in a variety of hues, from the deep-red colors of ruby to the lighter shades of cranberry.
The Royal Ruby glass produced by Anchor Hocking is plentiful and fairly inexpensive. Most collectors are especially interested in the pre-World War II pieces. Prices vary, but I would think your teacups and saucers are worth about $35 for the set, the sugar and creamer about half that amount.
Q: My daughter’s husband came from a family that included early tobacco plantation owners in the Carolinas. As a result, he inherited a beautiful bedspread made from the fibers of the tobacco plant. Would you have any idea of its value? — Donald, Sun City West, Ariz.
A: The short answer is no. This is a unique item, and if you truly want to determine its value, it is necessary to hire the services of a professional appraiser. Since you live near Phoenix, you also might contact The Phoenix Art Museum, which has an outstanding textile collection, and one of its experts.
Q: I have a John Deere toy tractor. It is the Overtime model, 1:16 scale and green in color. I think I got it for a birthday present in about 1995. Any value? — Ken, Madison, Wisc.
A: I found your tractor referenced in “The Standard Catalogue of Farm Toys: Identification and Price Guide,” edited by Karen O’Brien and published by Krause Books. According to O’Brien, your toy was manufactured in 1994 and is valued in the $13 to $27 range, depending on its condition.
Write to Larry Cox in care of KFWS, P.O. Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475, or send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Due to the large volume of mail received, he cannot personally answer all reader questions, nor do appraisals. Do not send any materials requiring return mail.
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