One Woman’s Trash is Another Woman’s Treasure
My favourite antique possessions are from Ireland and include my dad’s match striker from a tram, my mother’s rustic Adexolin capsule tin, which was used for her earnings, and her trunk, which carried all her possessions on her journey to Canada in the 1940s. Both my parents have passed on now, so I cherish these items and their sentimental value.
I have two items that have special meaning to me, as I purchased them for a song. I treasure a black match safe that I purchased from a neighbour’s yard sale for $5. The safe has a picture of King Edward VII engraved on its front. The reverse side has a quote on it, which translated means: “Evil to him who evil thinks.” King Edward VII was Queen Victoria’s son and was king from 1901 to 1910. This item was made in 1911 to commemorate his death. I also love a purchase I made for 50 cents at a Boy Scouts sale. It is a Peter Rabbit Easter Greetings Tindeco tin that was filled with sports collectors’ cards. I was more interested in the tin that held the cards—I could tell by the graphics on it that it was an antique. I have taken these two purchases to antique evaluations at the Grimsby Museum and also to CBC’s Antiques Roadshow in 2006 at Dundurn Castle in Hamilton. I stood in line for several hours to wait for the appraisers to evaluate my items. At that time, they were valued at just under $200 each. I must say that meeting the crew from the show was quite the highlight of my antiquing experiences.
The best thing about antiques is that they are great conversation pieces. Many a story has been told while company has visited and inquired about my antiques. I also used to play a “what is it?” game, where I would place several antiques on a tray and the guests had to guess what they were for a prize. The funniest answer was “a horse’s toothpick” for a large antique ice pick. When I am asked how do I keep all my antiques clean, I respond, “Antiques are meant to have a little character with a bit of dust on them!”
I always say I am like an antique: precious and valuable. One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.