World War I Snakebite Kit

Value (2013) | $100
Watch  

GUEST:
My uncle was going to throw it away in the garbage can. He threw it away.

APPRAISER:
Wow.

GUEST:
But my aunt reached in and got it, and so we were really lucky that we got it back.

APPRAISER:
You really think this is pretty cool, right?

GUEST:
Yeah.

APPRAISER:
What is it for?

GUEST:
It's for in case you get, like, a snakebite.

APPRAISER:
And who did it belong to?

GUEST:
My great-grandfather.

APPRAISER:
Why do you think he had something like this?

GUEST:
Because he was training for the Army and he just got it when he was training. And then he took a ship to New York and then he went to, um... then he got on a ship to go to Europe but he never made it to Europe because the war ended right when he got on the ship.

APPRAISER:
So it must have been World War I, right?

GUEST:
Yeah.

APPRAISER:
Well, what you have is this kit made in San Francisco-- nice lithograph tin box, has a little rust damage. And then in here, it says "Snake Bite." And what things do we have?

GUEST:
We have, um, this that you wrap around really tight so the blood stops.

APPRAISER:
And then you have all these vials.

GUEST:
This is to, like, dig into people's skin to get out stuff. They like to get out the germs. And this is iodine that you put on your wound.

APPRAISER:
That's right. You know, what's good about this kit is that it's really complete. It's even got the original directions on how to use it. Well, these are medical collectibles, and they've become very, very popular, especially with doctors. And this is the kind of thing that will start your collection. Well, will you be surprised if I tell you it's worth about $100?

GUEST:
I don't know that.

APPRAISER:
No? Isn't that great?

GUEST:
Yeah, that's cool.

Appraisal Details

Appraiser
Heritage Auctions
New York, NY
Value Update (2013)
$100
Appraised value (1999)
$100
Event
Salt Lake City, UT (July 10, 1999)
Material
Cloth, Glass, Paper, Tin

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