Wednesday, January 7, 2009

The Mechanical Bank Collector’s of America

Well Howdy Folks,

I thought I’d veer away a bit from glass and pottery, and take a look at another type of collectible web site, so this time I chose mechanical banks and the Mechanical Bank Collector’s of America web site.

From looking at their site, I learned that the MBCA is a non-profit organization that was founded in 1958, and consists of members from around the world. They publish a journal, “The Mechanical Banker” which is available only to registered members, as are several portions of the web site. However, there are portions of the site that offer free public availability, and that is where I spent an enjoyable afternoon.

The most enjoyable for me was the time I spent perusing their “Scrapbook” where I found hundreds of articles and photos, all relating to mechanical banks, from the 1930’s through the 1980’s. I also found several pages of information about the creation of these great banks, including an area titled “The Foundry” which contained information on molding processes, patterns, cleaning, and much more. Although I do not collect mechanical banks, I still find them wonderful to look at, and I do enjoy them, so I even found the “foundry” area of the site very interesting. I was a little disappointed in that the “slide shows” that are in the Scrapbook area did not seem to work, however, there is an “Animated Mechanical Bank” section which is very nice, and shows some of the banks in action.

I also found the “Mechanical Banks at Auction” section to be very informative. The listing of banks sold at auction, and the realized sale prices was quite an eye opener. Although I did know that some of these banks can fetch a premium price at auction, I really had no idea of how high some of those prices could be, nor the wide range of prices. I think this section, along with some of the sites in the “Links” section, could be a good place to spend some time and do some comparative research on mechanical banks.

Although I probably won’t be joining the MBCA, especially since I don’t collect mechanical banks, I would encourage any serious mechanical bank collectors to really consider joining this outfit. From what I can see the member benefits are great (including an annual convention, check list and price guide, special reports, and more), and the club members seem to be very knowledgeable in this specialized field of antiques and collectibles. About the only drawback that I could see was that the club seemed to be a bit on the exclusive side, in that in order to join, you do have to be recommended by an existing member. I would tend to think that this would exclude a large percentage of mechanical bank aficionados. I could be wrong, however, and if I wanted to join the MBCA, I wouldn’t hesitate to contact them.

Well, I hope you’ve enjoyed this review, and perhaps you’ll spend a little time perusing the MBCA website as I did. I am sure you’ll find it an educational and enjoyable experience. While you’re out there on the web, why not take a second and visit my eBay store or my Bonanzle Booth. Links to both are at the top left of this page, or you can simply click on these links. Until next time, have a great day, and I hope you’ll consider leaving your comments and following my antiques and collectibles blog.

Adios for now,

Whiskey Jack

Today’s Word of Wisdom: “Ask no more and give no less than honesty, courage, loyalty, generosity, and fairness.”

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