Cast Iron Windmill Weight
Appraised Value: $3,000 - $5,000
IMAGE: 1 of 1
Appraisal Video: (2:13)
Decorative Arts, Folk Art, Furniture, Musical Instruments
Ken Farmer Auctions, LLC
GUEST: Well, first you guys sent me over to the metal department and sculpture department, and they looked at me and they looked at the chicken, and they said, "No, no, no, over to folk arts." I'm starting to think I don't know why I brought this chicken out here. Originally I found it on a farm where I grew up, my father was raised, and it was originally my grandfather's farm. I found it about 35 years ago. And it was under an old building and I just kind of got attached to it and kept it around and I did a little research. I believe it's a windmill weight, but I found some bulls and some horses-- that sort of thing-- but I've never found something similar to this one.
APPRAISER: So you've never seen another rooster?
GUEST: Not a cast-iron one.
APPRAISER: Okay, well, you know, that's what it is. It's a mill weight used as a counterbalance in a windmill and that was the technology that was available to farmers out in Nebraska, where you're originally from, in the mid-19th century-- even up to the turn of the century, because there wasn't a whole lot of electricity in the Plains at that point. Uh, there wasn't any at that time.
GUEST (laughing): Okay.
APPRAISER: But the important thing for people that are in the antiques and the folk-art business is that what started out to be just a utilitarian object becomes an object that serious folk-art collectors will put in their houses. Where have you been keeping it in your house?
GUEST: It sits by the... in the kitchen on the floor by our serving bar. So we don't kick the end of the serving bar. It's kind of a... It keeps you from kicking things.
APPRAISER: Well, I've been to a lot of folk-art collectors' houses and seen these sell at auction. I did a little checking on the Internet. The ones that are like this one that are more three-dimensional rather than just a flat rendering and have a nice surface on them like this, uh, I'm being conservative, but I think a lot of my colleagues agree with me on this. We feel like market value on this would be $3,000 to $5,000.
GUEST: I'm definitely impressed. Maybe I can get you to carry it out for me.
APPRAISER: It's a deal.
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