I recently made some observations
on SOTW as a
responded with some views of his own. I have been mulling over
his remarks for several days, and I would like to use this space to
make some additional comments.
I think that I have figured it out. I think that I now know why
there is such a feeding frenzy for the "desirable" eBay glass.
Fields of Dreams: Shot Glass Collecting Specialization
|In other, possibly more
established hobbies, collectors routinely specialize, and this
specialization gives the collector the option of concentrating on
lower-priced items. For example, bottle collectors can collect
Hutchinson sodas; they all donít have to fight over the Western
whiskies and flasks.
Insulator collectors can collect by shape or manufacturer; they
all donít have to have large collections of the rare threadless
|Even stamp collectors can amass
comprehensive collections of used later twentieth century stamps
without spending a fortune; they donít need to pine over the rare
mint-never-hinged 19th century stuff. To them, "Inverted Jenny"
might as well be a girl doing a cartwheel and not a 1918 24 cent
stamp featuring an upside down airplane.
But for whatever reason, possibly because of the
hobbyís relative infancy, glass collectors donít seem to have many
established fields of specialization. As a result, we have more and more
collectors fighting over the rarer glasses, which of course helps to
drive the prices up.
But perhaps, with time, this will change. Clearly there are several
areas just ripe for specialization. Collecting states or cities is an
obvious choice. Collecting just certain shapes is another. For example,
I have always been fascinated by the barrel-shaped glasses (below,
In an earlier column (Volume
2, Number 2) I wrote about collecting the "Ladies/Gents/[Hog]"
glasses (above, middle). And what about collecting only "phone
numbers," that is, glasses that include the telephone numbers of the
featured store or company? (above, right)
Perhaps, over time, the ignoble "text only" glass will be recognized as
the rare glass that it often is. Those collectors who have access to
pre-proís auction database know that
examples of many "text only" glasses have been sold only once on eBay in
the last several years.
||I know that I am not alone in
my appreciation of the "text only" glass. I recently bought this
East Dubuque, Illinois, glass off
the pre-pro website. With shipping, it cost me the princely
sum of $14.11.
After I ordered it, Robin wrote me and
commented that he bought it from Bob Snyder. Yeah, Robert Snyder,
the same guy who put together the
Whiskey Brand Database.
As they say on the television program,
Antiques Roadshow, howís that for "provenance?"
| But just because I have a
fondness for "text only" glasses does not mean that I donít
appreciate the more elaborate shots. And interestingly enough, even
as I decry the high price of eBay glass, I see that one can still
find bargains on the worldís largest Internet flea market. There
four bids on this nifty unlisted
Whiskey glass. The winner, xxxtruk, took it home for only
This column is not
SOTW, but if it were, this
glass would be my choice! Even the most discerning collector would,
I think, like to have this gem in the display cabinet.