John Sikorski: Clock is made of slate, doll collecting is fascinating journey

The bronze bust mounted on the top of this clock is not original to the clock; it was added later.
The bronze bust mounted on the top of this clock is not original to the clock; it was added later.

Q: I am trying to find out information about my clock and would like to know what it is worth. I have an appraisal that was done in May of 1988. I am sending a copy of it. — P.M., Internet

A: The photographs are not very helpful. The clock portion of the three-piece garniture clock set is made of slate, not marble, as stated in the appraisal from 1988. The overall condition of the clock case is not good.

The bronze bust mounted on the top of the clock is not original to the clock; it was added later. The bronze depicting a beautiful young woman looking at a butterfly on her shoulder is signed “A. Peiffer.” August Joseph Peiffer, 1832-1886, was a French sculptor who specialized in bronze allegorical and mythological subjects. As a separate piece it would likely sell in the $150 to $300 range.

Three-piece garniture clock sets made of slate are currently hard to sell. Without the original mount on the clock, the two garniture urns would be easier to sell by themselves for $100.

The other American clocks would perhaps sell for one-half of the listed appraisal values on a lucky day.

More from John Sikorski: Rug appears to be a beauty; dolls don’t have much collector interest

And: John Sikorski: Chair is more than 100 years old

This hutch was made in America.
This hutch was made in America.

Q: The enclosed pictures show a drop-leaf hutch we purchased in the 1960s as grad students in New Jersey. I have never seen another like it, and I wonder if it might be interesting. — D.B., Gainesville

A: The hutch you have was made in America. It was likely made post-World War II. It is a combination of earlier period styles taken from the 18th and 19th centuries. Currently there is very little interest. Now is not a good time to sell, if that is what you are considering. Its value lies in its functionality and attractive look.

Q: My husband and I live in Beverly Hills. My husband had three sisters, and they all kept their childhood dolls. Now we have a collection of about three dozen dolls that are quite varied. We both enjoy research and, being retired, have the time. We were wondering if there is a resource where we can discover the world of dolls and get versed in its vocabulary and whatever particulars are important about them. Then, of course, if they have value, how to go about selling the collection. We thank you in advance for any help you can provide. We are looking forward to this little adventure. — H.K., Internet

A: Antique and vintage collectible dolls is a huge category. Separating the two categories and then researching all the possibilities of values and selling is a fascinating journey of discovery. It is definitely worth spending the time and effort to do the research. Here is a good website that will give you the information you will need to discover what you have with regard to antique and vintage collectible dolls:

— John Sikorski, with more than 35 years of experience, is an Ocala-based antiques advisor, consultant and broker. Send your questions to Sikorski's Attic, c/o The Ocala Star-Banner, 2121 SW 19th Ave. Road, Ocala, FL 34471-7752, or email

This article originally appeared on The Gainesville Sun: Antiques with John Sikorski: Clock made of slate, doll collecting