Q: I own a miniature metal building that has the words “State Bank” on the front. It’s about 8 inches tall. There are no other marks on it. I’d like to know what it’s worth.
A: Your bank may have been made by Kenton Hardware Manufacturing Co., which was founded in Kenton, Ohio, by F.M. Perkins in 1890. At first, Kenton made locks. It became Kenton Hardware Co. in 1894 and began making cast-iron banks and toys. At one time, it was one of the largest cast-iron toy factories in the world. Kenton Toys was a trade name used by the company. Kenton closed in 1952. Most Kenton toys and banks were not marked, and many have been reproduced. The company made several versions of the State Bank in different sizes. Some were made with the name of the bank in letters arched over the door, and some with the letters in a straight line. Some versions were japanned or painted. An original Kenton State Bank sells for about $400 to $600, depending on size and condition.