I have a friend named Leslie and she is an antique dealer. She works on a small scale locally visiting estate sales and auctions looking for gems (as in good finds). She does quite well because she has a great eye for what she can “flip” easily for a profit on e-bay. I have a standing order with her to purchase any Lane box she finds on her travels if its cheap.
She found a box at an estate sale recently and bought it for $4.00! At first look, it was another Tall box to add to my collection – in pretty nice shape. But then, wait for it….I turned it over and….BANG! something NEW! (well to me anyway).
Most of our boxes started their life with a paper label affixed to their bottoms. The labels usually look like this…
This label I am using as an example (above) is extra special because it has a date written on it! I think I have talked about the labels before…but I’m not sure. Anyway, they aren’t all the same (but similar) and there isn’t a date or number on them to help with aging, etc.
However, the box I got from Leslie actually had the label burned-in (branded) into the bottom – it looked like this….
With the poor visibility of the message due to the inconsistency of the wood due to knots, cracks and grain I think I know why Lane stayed with the paper labels and why this branded label is so rare. “Rare” because I have never seen it before having looked at thousands of these boxes over the past few years.
So, note to self and other collectors out there. NEVER assume anything. I do my best to look at each box I come across VERY carefully for clues that may help me fill in the gaps of my project and reach the goal of chronicling these little treasures.
Until next time…
Oh, I will have a special announcement for you all very shortly…teaser alert.