Duffner & Kimberly Lamp, ca. 1909
Appraised Value: $6,000 (2012)
IMAGE: 1 of 4
Appraisal Video: (3:12)
Lillian Nassau, LLC
GUEST: I brought a stained-glass lamp that my mom bought in the '60s at an antique shop in Minnesota.
APPRAISER: Do you know what she paid?
GUEST: She paid $75.
APPRAISER: And what did she think she was buying?
GUEST: She always hoped it was an unsigned Tiffany, but I, um...had my doubts about that.
APPRAISER: When you brought the lamp in, I started looking at certain components of it that definitely did not remind me of Tiffany. What I thought was that the lamp had been made by a company called Duffner and Kimberly, based in New York. Kimberly actually worked for Tiffany Studios in the 1890s, and he formed the company with Frank Duffner in December 1905. They were in full-scale production in 1906, 1907. Now, when I looked at the lamp, one of the first things I looked at is the cap. And this is one of two types of caps made by Duffner and Kimberly and it was used on a lot of their lamps. Basically, it's a stamped metal. And it's a fleur-de-lis design. Then I turned over the bottom. What you have is a flat-iron plate, held together. There's a nut here, and then that's holding a pipe that goes down the middle of the base. This is common to almost all of the Duffner and Kimberly lamps. What I'm just going to do is put the shade on the lamp. Now, the thing about Duffner and Kimberly is by probably 1908, they were already having financial difficulties and they weren't doing very well in New York. But they started to do well in the Midwest. So Duffner and Kimberly was represented by a company called the Chicago Electric Shop. They had up to a hundred lamps in the store. So they were very much the main distributor for them. Now, what I found, this is a reproduction from a magazine called Electric City. And this is from June 1909, and this is a display in the Chicago Electric Shop. And here on the table is your lamp.
GUEST: My word!
APPRAISER: I can't say that this is the exact lamp, because I do know of at least two other examples of this. But it could very well be the lamp.
APPRAISER: This is an acorn and oak leaf lamp. And what's very nice is the design is completely consistent, because we have this lovely border along the edge, showing acorns and oak leaves. And then all of that motif is repeated in the base. The finish is also a Duffner and Kimberly finish. They didn't spend as much money on their finishes the way Tiffany did, and so they're a little more recognizable. This is a real statuary bronze finish. If this were in a retail shop, it would sell for around $6,000.
GUEST: Okay, great. Super.
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