Discovery Auction Features Dolls, Toys, and Decorative Objects

MARLBOROUGH, Mass. – May 10, 2013 – Skinner, Inc. will host a two-day Discovery auction on May 22nd and 23rd in its Marlborough gallery. The first day of the sale will feature rare and antique dolls, vintage toys, collectibles and ephemera. Day two presents a fine selection of assorted early photography and scientific instruments, as well as furniture and decorative objects. The two-day auction offers more than 1300 lots of one-of-a-kind objects that will enhance your collection or make your home and life a little more “you.”

Antique Dolls

Small Figure C Bisque Head Jules Steiner Bebe, France, c. 1870s (Lot 152, Estimate $3,000-$5,000)

The May auction features an excellent assortment of vintage and collectible dolls, including French and German fashion dolls, as well as American cloth dolls. Examples of early dolls include a small figure bisque head Jules Steiner Bebe circa 1870 outfitted in a pink dress decorated with off-white lace (lot 152, estimated between $3,000 and $5,000); a bisque head lady doll by Bru, France, circa 1870 decked out in a regal pink-pleated gown (lot 150, $2,000 to $2,500); and a small early bisque head French lady doll circa 1870 (lot 183, $1,000 to $1,500).

Notable cloth dolls include a Columbian painted cloth doll (lot 58, $2,500 to $3,500), a pair of Georgene Raggedy Ann and Andy awake/asleep dolls (lot 126, $600 to $800), an exposition Raggedy Ann cloth doll circa 1934-35 (lot 64, $3,000 to $4,000), an Alabama molded and painted cloth doll (lot 11, $2,000 to $2,400), and a large Martha Chase cloth sockinet doll (lot 51, $700 to $900). A Door of Hope Mission bride doll from the early 20th century (lot 7, $300 to $500) will also be auctioned.

Vintage Toys & Collectibles

An outstanding selection of vintage toys and collectibles will be offered at auction, led by a collection of over 60 lots of Dinky toys, including eight Meccano die-cast metal automobiles from England and France (lot 350, $200 to $300), as well as toys by Corgi, Matchbox, Hubley, and others. Additional highlights from this collecting category include a Schuco bellhop monkey (lot 50, $200 to $300), Lionel trains, collections of toy soldiers, and a group of Steiff bears.

For sports lovers and collectors, the May Discovery sale offers fourteen 1911 T201 Mecca cigarettes double folder baseball cards (lot 410, $300 to $400). Additional collectibles offered in this sale include exciting pieces of militaria, James Bond movie posters, and several examples of early film stills and head shots.

Early Photography

Quarter-plate Ambrotype Portrait of a Bearded Gentleman (Lot 529, Estimate $150- $200)

The May 2013 Discovery auction features early photography from the collection of Rod MacKenzie, including a quarter-plate ambrotype portrait of a bearded gentleman (lot 529, $150 to $200).

MacKenzie had a sophisticated taste for images that speak to the viewer emotionally, historically, and artistically. This collection is an extraordinary visual archive of American life at the advent of the photographic era. The group includes formal family portraits, wedding snapshots, and stirring singular images of young men and women at the dawn of the modern American age. These rare artifacts survive in remarkable condition in this selection of expertly collected daguerreotypes, ambrotypes, and tintypes. Skinner saw excellent results in October of 2011 when part of MacKenzie’s collection brought $220,000 in the American Furniture & Decorative Arts auction.

Furniture & Decorative Objects

Two Door Oak and Leaded Glass Four Stack Bookcase, Early 20th Century (Lot 772, Estimate $250-$350)

The auction includes a nice assortment of antique and contemporary furnishings and decorative objects. A pair of Victorian black-painted, gilt-decorated, and mother of pearl-inlaid chairs (lot 870, $150 to $250) and an oak and leaded glass bookcase from the early 20th century (lot 772, $250 to $350) are just two examples of furniture presented at the sale.

A variety of scientific instruments, three Van Briggle Art pottery vases and an unmarked pottery vase (lot 1116, $100 to $150), and a Kazak rug from Southwest Caucasus (lot 847, $400 to $600) round out an eclectic selection of décor.

Previews, Catalog, and Bidding

Previews for the auction will be held on Tuesday, May 21, 2013, 12 p.m.-7 p.m., Wednesday, May 22, 2013, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., and Thursday, May 23, 2013, 9 a.m.-10 a.m.

A text catalog for sale #2654M is available by mail from the subscription department at 508-970-3240. It is also available at the gallery.

The Skinner website allows users to view all lots in the auctions, leave bids, order catalogs, and bid live in real-time through SkinnerLive!. Visit and “like” Skinner on Facebook at

About Skinner

Skinner auctions draw international interest from buyers and consignors alike, with material regularly achieving record prices. The company’s auction and appraisal services focus on fine art, jewelry, furniture, and decorative arts from around the globe, as well as wine, fine musical instruments, rare books, clocks, Judaica, and more. Monthly Skinner Discovery auctions feature a breadth of estate material. Widely regarded as one of the most trusted names in the business, Skinner appraisers have appeared on the PBS-TV series, Antiques Roadshow, since the show’s inception. Skinner has galleries in Boston and Marlborough, Massachusetts with an international audience of bidders participating in person, by phone, and online through the SkinnerLive! online bidding platform. For more information and to read our blog, visit the website at, find us on Facebook at, or follow us on Twitter @Skinnerinc.



Anne Fallon
Director of Discovery Auctions

Kate de Bethune
Director of Marketing

One thought on “Discovery Auction Features Dolls, Toys, and Decorative Objects

  1. I never knew that collectible and vintage dolls from French and German dolls are present. My mother mentioned to me last night that she is hoping to buy a vintage doll as a gift for her friend that collects vintage dolls, and she asked if I had any idea what would be the best option to do. Thanks to this informative article, I’ll be sure to tell her that it will be much better if we consult a trusted antique and vintage dolls shop as they can provide more information about their items.

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