Not that there were any doubts. The second installment of the auction of the Schmidt Museum of Coca-Cola, held yesterday by Richard Opfer Auctioneering, once again featured the merchandise Coke collectors lust after and the prices sellers dream of.
Bringing the highest bid of either day was a stained glass hanging globe that realized $161,000 (with 15% buyer’s premium). The 13-inch orb featured a mosaic-like design of glass in green, red, white, and ivory. The catalog noted, “The small intricate pieces and exquisite detail that went into this piece is just incredible.” In near-mint condition, the globe had been estimated at $28,000 to $30,000.
The other six-figure price of the day was $109,250 for an 1897 Victorian Girl tray. The 9.25-inch tray has earned special honors among Coke items. It is believed to be the first lithographed-tin tray used by the Coca-Cola Company.
When Bill and Jan Schmidt assembled their collection, this example was among the key finds that allowed them to amass what might have been the only complete set of Coke trays. As the catalog put it, “This is the ultimate, the one iconic piece that defines that one collection that will go down in history….”
Estimated at $25,000 to $30,000, the tray was listed as being in very good condition, with strong colors but some rubs, chips and tarnishing.
Another prime item from the collection was a circa-1913 festoon, Girl On Hammock, that brought $92,000. Described as possibly the ultimate festoon of all time, this piece has been praised for its artwork and early lithography. In untouched, as-found condition, it was near-mint, with a bend, creases and edge chips.