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    1877 Cast Paddle Steamer Bell from the Steamer "Rosebud"

    Appraised Value:

    $5,000 - $7,000

    Appraised on: June 26, 2010

    Appraised in: Billings, Montana

    Appraised by: Stuart Whitehurst

    Category: Metalwork & Sculpture

    Episode Info: Junk in the Trunk (#1519)

    Originally Aired: November 7, 2011

    slideshow IMAGE: 1 of 1  

    More Like This:

    Material: Metal
    Period / Style: 19th Century
    Value Range: $5,000 - $7,000

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    Appraisal Video: (1:31)


    Appraised By:

    Stuart Whitehurst
    Books & Manuscripts, Decorative Arts, Furniture, Pottery & Porcelain, Silver

    Appraisal Transcript:
    GUEST: Well, this is a bell of the Rose Bud Steamer, and it ran from St. Louis to Fort Benton, Montana.

    APPRAISER: Now, you said that it sank?

    GUEST: It sank in Bismarck.

    APPRAISER: Oftentimes, you make guesses as to what things are. Well, it's almost spelled out for us right on the front of the bell. It says "A. Fulton's Son & Co., Pittsburgh, PA, 1877," and it has "Steamer Rose Bud" that's put right on it, so we know exactly what it is.

    GUEST: Right.

    APPRAISER: And it is part of what we would consider to be the great lore of the West.

    GUEST: West.

    APPRAISER: The era of the paddle steamer. How important it was to navigate up and down the river. It was so important to American history and the settling of the West. It's actually made of cast bell metal, which is like bronze, and it's incredibly durable and incredibly well-made. Now, why did you buy this?

    GUEST: I bought it for investment.

    APPRAISER: Buying something for investment, first off, you should probably spend a little bit of good money on it. You can't buy something for $50 and expect to get $5,000 out of it.

    GUEST: I understand that.

    APPRAISER: Now, you spent how much on this?

    GUEST: I bought it for $1,500.

    APPRAISER: About $1,500. Well, I would say at auction, you're probably looking at around $5,000 to $7,000. Now, that's actually a pretty good investment, because how long ago did you get it?

    GUEST: Oh, six or seven years. I wish somebody would purchase it, maybe it'd go to a museum, someplace where it should be.

    APPRAISER: Good, good, I think that's a good thing. So here's hoping your ship comes in, okay?

    GUEST: Okay, well, thank you.

    APPRAISER: Let's give it a shot. (bell rings) Not bad. Sounds good, got a good ring to it.

    GUEST: It does have a good ring.

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