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An Arlington policeman pulled a car over on Wilson Boulevard near Seven Corners. When the policeman asked the driver why he was speeding, the driver answered and told him that he was a magician and juggler and was on his way to Clarendon to do a private show that evening and could not be late. The policeman told the man that he was fascinated by jugglers and if the driver did a little juggling for him, he would not give him a ticket. The driver responded that he had sent all of his equipment ahead and did not have anything to juggle. The policeman said that he had some flares in the squad car and the man said okay, he would do it.
While the man was doing the juggling act with the lit flares for the policeman, another car pulled to the side of the road. Out of the car came Mikey and watched the juggler for a few minutes. Mikey then goes over and gets in the back of the squad car. The policeman goes over to the squad and car and asks Mikey, “What are you doing?” To which Mikey replies, “Might as well take me to jail now, there is no way I can pass that test.”
Jamestown, New York is a small city in Chautauqua County in Western New York that is best known for being the birthplace of one of the greatest comedienne’s in our generation. Lucille Ball was born in Jamestown on August 6, 1911 and went on to star on the hit television show, I Love Lucy and countless movies. What many people don’t realize is that Jamestown was at one time known as the “Furniture Capital of the World.”
In the early 1800’s, Western New York was a heavily forested region with many types of wood in abundance. Jamestown and its close proximity to the Chadokoin River made it a great place for sawmills. James Pendergast, for whom the city is named, built one of the first sawmills in 1809. The sawmills made it easy for cabinetmakers to open up and set up shop in Jamestown. By the mid-1800’s Jamestown had more than 20 furniture factories and by the early 1900’s, more than 100 furniture makers including Park Brothers, Moran Manufacturing, Augustus Johnson, A.C. Norquist and the Jamestown Lounge Company, which is famous for Feudal Oak furniture.
Furniture styles made in Jamestown was as varied as the cabinetmakers and manufacturers that blossomed in the area and included everything from Italian and German to Swedish and other European influences. It was made from maple, oak, birch, walnut and cherry as well as from white pine, which was plentiful in the area. In addition to furniture, many inventions to aid in the furniture making process were first introduced in Jamestown. Most of the furniture was handmade until the late with electrical motors to run machinery not introduced until well after World War I.
Today, Jamestown is still home to many furniture makers including Bush Industries, Royal Jamestown Furniture and Crawford Furniture Company, which has been in business for over 125 years.
The 34th Annual Oaks Corner Antique Show sponsored by the Oaks Corners Presbyterian Church in Geneva, New York will be held July 4th 2009. This large annual show features antique and collectibles dealers selling antique furniture, vintage collectibles, art, crafts and much more. The Oaks Corner Antique Show is open rain or shine from 9 am to 3 pm on both days and food as well as parking is plentiful.
The Jamestown Lounge Company was formed in 1888 by Arthur Greenlund, Hurlburt Phillips, Theodore Hanchett and Lynn Cornell. It produced high quality furniture and is best known for its Feudal Oak lounges and sofas; although in the early 1900’s they also produced non-upholstered pieces that included tables, headboards and chairs.
Feudal Oak refers to the line of furniture that was made of ornately carved, heavy oak frames and hand waxed to a lavish shine. The heavy wax was also practical in that it protected the natural oak wood from scratching or easily damaging. In most cases, the wood used for these pieces were twice the thickness of that used in other furniture and it had an almost rustic appearance. The upholstery varied but was very luxurious and plush. For these reasons, Feudal Oak furniture pieces are widely collectible today and can bring in from hundreds of dollars for a single side table to tens of thousands of dollars for prime sitting room furniture.
At Julien’s Auction in Las Vegas, Nevada, Michael Jackson memorabilia sold for fifty times its pre-auction estimates on the day after his death. Twenty one items once belonging to the King of Pop were sold for more than $200,000 on June 26 & 27, 2009. The most sought after item was a Swarovski crystal studded shirt once belonging to Jackson; it brought in $52,500. The buyer, Glenn Johnson, hopes that Michael Jackson memorabilia will soar in the coming years like that of other superstars such as Elvis and Marilyn Monroe. At this same auction, a Marilyn Monroe bathrobe sold for more than $120,000 and an Elvis Presley necklace sold for more than $97,500.
Whether you loved him or hated him, one thing most rational people can agree on is that Michael Jackson was mega talented and his loss to the recording community is huge. Jackson, also known as the King of Pop is already a recording legend and his Thriller album is not only the bestselling album of all time, but his videos associated with this album helped transform MTV and the video industry. It is no wonder then, that after his death last week, many people sought to immortalize the artist by buying a piece of nostalgia in the form of a collectible or memorabilia from the superstar.
It has been widely reported by various news organizations that eBay alone saw listings for Michael Jackson collectibles and memorabilia increase by more than 275%. Before his death, dealers were listing between 200-400 items a day, after his death they were listing nearly 20,000 items per day. For those looking for a piece of nostalgia and those looking to honor the man by buying something to remember him by, there is no shortage of items anywhere, whether it be eBay or any other retail outlet with more yet to come. The Better Business Bureau however has issued a warning, be careful what you buy and be careful about inflated prices.
If you are buying a collectible or a piece of memorabilia because you like it and want it to be part of your collection, that is one thing. If you are buying because you want to cash in at a later date, think again. First of all, the market has been flooded with nostalgic items since last week at inflated prices as the demand went up; and the demand will probably remain up for a little while. However in a couple of years, when demand is lower, you will be lucky to get what you paid for the item, unless you have purchased something unusual that no one else has or maybe a hand autographed item by the late singer. And when buying autographed items, be sure you can confirm its authenticity warns the Better Business Bureau.
Aside from confirming authenticity, the BBB also lays out these guidelines; educate yourself. Make sure you know what you are buying before you pay for it. Ask questions before you purchase, “how did you get it?” is one question that we always ask a seller. Watch out for “limited edition” collectibles, limited edition doesn’t mean that there were not millions of the item made. Make sure you do research on the seller as well and buy only from reputable dealers and sellers. Lastly, buy with a credit card. Buying with a credit card gives you the option of disputing the charge if the item is not what you ordered or you never receive the item.