Date: Fri 05-Feb-1999
Golliwog Cakewalks To $6,170 In Cyberspace Auction
By Rita Easton
HTTP://PAGES.EBAY.COM - Along with soaring Internet stocks, eBay, a virtual
auction house in cyberspace, has brought new highs to the virtual auction
crowd. Just ask Charles Templeton.
On December 29, Templeton consigned a 13-inch-high golliwog to be sold at
eBay. The listing, which had a January 5 closing date and featured 12 photos
of the doll, generated approximately 150 email inquiries about various
detailing, provenance, etc., with the greatest interest coming from Australia.
According to Templeton, bidders' questions included "`Does it have the
original buttons?' `Can you describe the Steiff button?' `Can you send more
pictures?' `Can you measure where the thread's gone?' and so on.
"The Americans were out of it at about $2,700, so it was between the Aussies,
and then the English came in at the end. I found out that when you deal in an
item like that, if you do your best, the collectors will let you know. They'll
know more than you will."
The Steiff toy was made between 1916 and 1920, was purchased from a South
Jersey estate several years ago, and was then sent to a public auction, where
Templeton bought it.
Fifty six bids were placed on the lot, which Templeton had estimated at
$3,500. At closing, the winner was a British collector, Fiona Miller, who
purchased the item at $6,170 "for her own collection," she stated.
Miller deals with and collects Steiff toys, and has been connected with the
English firm The Toy Store.
"I've sold well over 2,000 items at eBay this past year," Templeton said,
"that's what I do. I've been an antique dealer for over 28 years, but I've
never had a store front. I now have my own online web store because I deal
with eBay across the board with the more expensive items - over $500 and
especially over $1,000 - because the people bidding feel more comfortable when
they see that you're established and that you know what you're doing. We have
so many people that don't have a lot of experience."
eBay auction terms, fees and registration can be accessed online.