DENVER, PA – On April 3 Morphy’s will offer up at auction signs, gas globes and early pumps in a 746-lot Automobilia & Petroliana sale. The selection includes many entries from collections that were established back when petroleum-related items in pristine condition were much easier to find.
“There are many signs in this sale that would be hard to improve upon. They would be considered upgrades for even the finest of known private collections,” said John Mihovetz, Head of Morphy’s Automobilia & Petroliana division.
A case in point is the outstanding double-sided Shell Motor Oil die-cut Motor Oil sign dated 1931. With strong crimson and orange coloration and only minor edge wear, the 23 by 23½-inch clamshell-shape sign is rated a solid 9.5 out of 10.
Hailing from Great Britain, a double-sided die-cut porcelain sign for Morris Trucks is designed as a head-on view of a radiator emblazoned with the slogan “Buy British and be proud of it.” Displaying excellent color and gloss, it is one of the best examples of its type that Morphy’s team of experts has ever seen. Its sides are rated condition 8.9+ and 8.75+, respectively.
Big, bold and all-American would be the way to describe one of the auction’s top highlights: a sensational Ford V8 porcelain dealership sign. It’s so large at 75½ inches by 40½ inches that it had to be designed as two parts that fit together perfectly and seamlessly. The result is an iconic piece of advertising in beautiful 8.75+ condition.
Advertising signs featuring stylish ladies have always commanded a premium price, and there are two such signs worthy of special mention in the April 3 sale. The first is a highly sought-after Boyce Moto Meter Authorized Service Station tin flange sign. It carries the image of a young woman in Art Deco attire, pointing gracefully at one of the company’s meters. With colorfully lithographed sides in condition 8.75+ and 8.5, respectively, it comes to auction with a $15,000-$25,000 estimate.
The second, a double-sided die-cut tin flange sign advertising Pennsylvania Oilproof Vacuum Cup Tires, harkens to around 1907 and bears the image of a well-dressed woman of that period. “Very few examples of this sign are known to exist,” said Mihovetz. “They hardly ever come up for sale.”
Petroliana collectors never tire of pretty Polly, the vibrantly hued parrot mascot for Polly Premium Motor Oil. Posed on her perch and boasting excellent color and gloss, she graces Morphy’s sale roster from the front of a scarce one-quart Polly can graded 8.9.
In all, there are 85 stunning gas globes from which to choose, each a work of art on glass. An excellent example of an etched one-piece Independent brand Royal Gasoline globe is graded 9.0; while a perennial collector favorite, a 15-inch Jones Bros. Red Hat Gasoline & Air globe on its original metal body will cross the auction block as well.
Now a quaint reminder of the early days of “filling stations,” an all-original Correct Measure 5-gallon visible gas pump has never been cleaned or opened. Remarkably, all of its mechanisms are in working order, and the cylinder is in nice condition with original Tydol coloration and a desirable patina that can only be achieved naturally over time.
Morphy’s Wednesday, April 3 Automobilia & Petroliana Auction will start at 9 a.m. Eastern Time at the Morphy Auctions headquarters in Denver, PA. All forms of bidding will be available, including live via the Internet through Morphy Live. On April 2, the day prior to the auction, preview hours will be extended till 6 p.m. For additional information on any item in the sale, call 877-968-8880 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. View the fully illustrated catalog and sign up to bid live online at www.morphyauctions.com.
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Denver, PA 17517
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