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    French Automaton Doll, ca. 1900

    Appraised Value:

    $12,000 - $15,000 (2012)

    Appraised on: June 13, 1998

    Appraised in: Houston, Texas

    Appraised by: Richard Wright

    Category: Dolls

    Episode Info: Houston (#1624)

    Originally Aired: July 2, 2012

    slideshow IMAGE: 1 of 4 Next 

    More Like This:

    Form: Automaton, Doll
    Material: Papier-mâché
    Period / Style: 20th Century, 19th Century
    Value Range: $12,000 - $15,000 (2012)

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    Appraisal Video: (1:55)


    Appraised By:

    Richard Wright
    Dolls, Toys & Games

    Appraisal Transcript:

    GUEST: As a small boy, my father ran a boat for some people in northwestern Montana, and his employer's wife gave this to my mother and dad when I was probably two or three years old.

    APPRAISER: Okay.

    GUEST: I was very fascinated with it when I got an opportunity to see it.

    APPRAISER: Well, what you have here is an automaton, which is a French clockwork doll or music box. Not really made for children-- it's made by a man, Leopold Lambert, in Paris between 1889 and 1900. We'll start him up... (plays music) And this particular automaton has, let's see, one, two, three, four, five movements. The more movements an automaton has, the more value they have. The nice part about this piece is it's completely, totally original-- there's no redressing, no repainting, there's no cracking to the papier-mâchè. Lambert's mark is marked on his key. On the back of this box-- we turn it around even while it's playing-- you'll see the key which says "LB," which is revolving while we're talking. Close that up again, turn him around... Any idea to the value of the piece?

    GUEST: I have no idea whatsoever, Richard.

    APPRAISER: I've seen these things bring, in fair condition, between $6,000 and $8,000.

    GUEST: Wow.

    APPRAISER: Now, this one is absolutely perfect-- original silk clothing, original wig, hat, shoes, music plays. I would place him in the range between $12,000 to $15,000.

    GUEST: Wow.

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