1882 Surprise Box Cap Shooter
Appraised Value: $3,000
IMAGE: 1 of 1
Appraisal Video: (1:55)
Toys & Games
Noel Barrett Antiques & Auctions Ltd.
APPRAISER: Tell me about this little cast-iron surprise box.
GUEST: Well, I don't know a lot about it, but we bought it about 11 years ago in Pennsylvania, and it's part of a monkey collection that we have.
APPRAISER: So you bought it as a monkey collectible.
APPRAISER: What did you pay for it?
APPRAISER: That's a lot for one monkey.
GUEST: Well, we love our monkeys. (giggling) And we thought it was an unusual item-- you know, surprise box and all of that. Because it's mechanical. We don't collect a lot of toys, but that one we thought was very unusual.
APPRAISER: I was really excited when you brought it in. And there's a very rare lead mechanical bank of an elephant, and I've always thought, "Hmm, maybe an elephant collector would bring in this bank." It had never occurred to me that a monkey collector would bring in probably one of rarest cap shooters ever made, and just really knocked my socks off. (chuckles) But it wasn't $500 for one monkey, because actually, as you know, what you do is you put a cap in here and when you pull this, the surprise is... So you get two monkeys, and that's the surprise. And as I say, it is a cap shooting device, and it dates from 1882. Made by a company called Lockwood. And in that era, cap guns were a really big thing, and they made all these different kind of animated cap guns, and as I say, this is probably one of the rarest. It's cast iron, and it's in remarkable condition. And as far as value... recently at auction, the last one of these that I know of, just within the last year, sold for over $3,000.
GUEST: Really? So... Wow.
APPRAISER: I hope that was a surprise.
GUEST: It is a surprise.
This website is produced for PBS Online by WGBH Boston. ©1997-2015 WGBH Educational Foundation.
ANTIQUES ROADSHOW is a trademark of the BBC and is produced for PBS by WGBH under license from BBC Worldwide.
WGBH and PBS are not responsible for the content of websites linked to or from ANTIQUES ROADSHOW Online.
PBS is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.