Uncle Sam wants YOU to save your pennies. But it took lots of pennies and lots and LOTS of dollars to win this "Uncle Sam" bank at a recent Morphy auction. This cast iron mechanical bank was made by Shepard Hardware Co. of Buffalo, N.Y. in 1886, when it sold for $8.50 per dozen. The winning price in April was $26,910.
Put a coin in Uncle Sam's extended hand. When the lever behind the umbrella is pushed, the bag opens, his arm lowers, and the coin drops into the bag (actually into a receptacle below). The bag snaps shut and then his beard bobs up and down.
For more prices on mechanical banks, see Kovels' Antiques and Collectibles 2008 Price List.