19th-Century Spanish American War Collection
It belonged to a great-uncle of our family, John F. Dekiere. He passed away numerous years ago, and his wife presented them to our family approximately 35 years ago.
And you've just kept them packed away?
They've been in a box in a closet.
Okay, well, let me tell you a little bit about what you have here. The piece that excited me the most was his hat. This is called a model 1889 U.S. campaign hat. They were worn by American troops in the Philippine Islands, the Spanish-American War, Cuba and so on. The thing about this hat that's so wonderful, though, is your uncle decorated it. He's put where he was. He's got Manila, the Philippine Islands, Camp Dewey, Fort Bliss, Texas. And I will turn around the other side here. He's got the Hawaiian Islands. One thing that really stood out to me, though, is he's got a little Spanish crest on here, so it's apparently a little souvenir he picked up in the Philippine Islands. The hat is really nice. It's been kept flat, obviously in a trunk over the years. It's very complete. It's basically a log of where he served during the occupation of the Philippine Islands and the Philippine Insurrection, and it's really unusual to see that. Then of course we've got a roster here that shows his name on here and that he did serve in the 18th U.S. Infantry during the Spanish-American War and then the occupation of the Philippine Islands. We've got his Spanish-American War campaign medal, given for army personnel, and the Philippine Insurrection medal that was also part of the occupation of the Philippine Islands. Most of these other things here are just souvenirs it looks like he picked up. He's got a Spanish engineer's belt buckle, 18th U.S. Infantry hat badge. But the other thing that's really unique about this group is this pistol that he carried in the war, and his initials are carved into the grips of the pistol. It's a model 1873 U.S. Army Colt. It's martially marked. It's got "U.S." on it next to the Colt Factory name. It started out life as a 71/2 -inch barrel pistol. Towards the time of the Spanish-American War, they cut the pistol down and re-designated it as an artillery, is what they called it. Very unusual to find these in that kind of condition, that has not been polished, it hasn't rusted, it's not pitted up and it's got great history. It all ties in with the gentleman here with his initials on it. Other thing that's interesting is the original holster. It's got the U.S. marking on it, but it's got an arsenal marking that says "Arsenal D. Manila." Most of these you'll find are marked to an American arsenal. Apparently that's from an army arsenal that was set up in the Philippine Islands during the occupation, and that is somewhat unusual. The hat alone should bring somewhere in the neighborhood of $800 to $1,000, maybe even a little bit more. Because of all the decoration on it, that really makes it special. The medals, they're a few hundred dollars each, but the pistol is the real prize. That pistol, with the holster, would bring probably upwards of $6,000. So a group, all tied in to one man, with the great family history, at auction should probably bring $8,000 to $10,000.
That's tremendous, tremendous.
Executive producer Marsha Bemko shares her tips for getting the most out of ANTIQUES ROADSHOW.
Value can change: The value of an item is dependent upon many things, including the condition of the object itself, trends in the market for that kind of object, and the location where the item will be sold. These are just some of the reasons why the answer to the question "What's it worth?" is so often "It depends."
Note the date: Take note of the date the appraisal was recorded. This information appears in the upper left corner of the page, with the label "Appraised On." Values change over time according to market forces, so the current value of the item could be higher, lower, or the same as when our expert first appraised it.
Context is key: Listen carefully. Most of our experts will give appraisal values in context. For example, you'll often hear them say what an item is worth "at auction," or "retail," or "for insurance purposes" (replacement value). Retail prices are different from wholesale prices. Often an auctioneer will talk about what she knows best: the auction market. A shop owner will usually talk about what he knows best: the retail price he'd place on the object in his shop. And though there are no hard and fast rules, an object's auction price can often be half its retail value; yet for other objects, an auction price could be higher than retail. As a rule, however, retail and insurance/replacement values are about the same.
Verbal approximations: The values given by the experts on ANTIQUES ROADSHOW are considered "verbal approximations of value." Technically, an "appraisal" is a legal document, generally for insurance purposes, written by a qualified expert and paid for by the owner of the item. An appraisal usually involves an extensive amount of research to establish authenticity, provenance, composition, method of construction, and other important attributes of a particular object.
Opinion of value: As with all appraisals, the verbal approximations of value given at ROADSHOW events are our experts' opinions formed from their knowledge of antiques and collectibles, market trends, and other factors. Although our valuations are based on research and experience, opinions can, and sometimes do, vary among experts.
Appraiser affiliations: Finally, the affiliation of the appraiser may have changed since the appraisal was recorded. To see current contact information for an appraiser in the ROADSHOW Archive, click on the link below the appraiser's picture. Our Appraiser Index also contains a complete list of active ROADSHOW appraisers and their contact details and biographies.