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CLEVELAND – November 30, 2001 – Ralph and Terry Kovel, America’s favorite antiques and collectibles experts, provide a fresh look inside 18th- and 19th-century American homes in their new book KOVELS’ AMERICAN ANTIQUES, 17501900.

Whether you’re browsing through a flea market or exploring someone’s attic, you’re bound to come across everyday items reminiscent of times gone by – things like a Hitchcock chair, a needlepoint foot stool, a wicker table, a vase with a Roseville Pottery mark, a Toby jug, hand-painted teapots, blue willow china, tin Coca-Cola signs, wooden cuckoo clocks, silver spoons, tobacco cans and even old newspapers, to name a few. These items, along with countless other “American treasures,” can be found in KOVELS’ AMERICAN ANTIQUES, 17501900. Chock full of “must know” facts for everyone from the novice to the curious collector and the discerning antiques dealer, KOVELS’ AMERICAN ANTIQUES is a full-color guide with fresh information that focuses on items made or used in America before 1900, many now considered valuable antiques.

With over 50 years experience as America’s antiques and collectibles experts, the Kovels understand what the average American collector wants to know and buy. Some of the highlights featured in KOVELS’ AMERICAN ANTIQUES, 1750 TO 1900 include:

  • Chapters on furniture, pottery and porcelain, jewelry, silver, glass, and other items that are of interest to the 21st century collector
  • Over 700 illustrations of decorative arts and marks (400+ are full-color photographs!)
  • Extensive lists of designers and manufacturers
  • Stories of discoveries, tips on care, bits of interesting history and warnings of fakes
  • A chart of hundreds of nineteenth-century jewelry and metalwork designers and manufacturers with locations and dates
  • A key to deciphering English Registry marks
  •  A bibliography that suggests sources for further information about material in each chapter

In order to unearth new and exciting facts that would aid in the creation of KOVELS’ AMERICAN ANTIQUES, 17501900, the Kovels researched their own 18,000-volume library, articles from their newsletter, Kovels on Antiques and Collectibles, auction catalogs, and the Internet. They also conducted numerous interviews with experts and even consulted the thousands of letters they receive from antiques aficionados each month. Using the latest information based on excavations and new technologies that have made it possible to identify and date antiques more precisely, the Kovels have corrected earlier misconceptions about Bennington pottery, Famille Rose porcelain, Mary Gregory glass and much more.


Among the noteworthy facts and findings from the Kovels:

  • Teapots used to be very small, because tea was so expensive to buy.
  • The construction of furniture changed because of the Industrial Revolution.
  • Shawls went out of style when the bustle became popular in the 1870s.
  •  A Japanese home built for the 1876 Centennial Fair influenced design in America.
  • Some early alarm clocks set off gunpowder charges.
  • The word Sterling indicates an Irish piece made after 1720 or an American piece made after about 1860.
  • Dolls with faces that resemble those of real babies are a result of German psychologists urging society to look at children as “real people.”
  • Although many people believed that Massachusetts glass decorator Mary Gregory painted a special type of dark glass with white figures of children, she did not. She did decorate glass in other ways.

So grab a copy of KOVELS’ AMERICAN ANTIQUES, 17501900 to find out which cigar box labels are considered popular collectibles, what purpose ABC plates served, how to wash your lusterware, and where Sumida Gawa pottery got its name. These facts, along with an abundance of others, will fill in the gaps for every kind of collector.


Ralph and Terry Kovel are the authors of more than ninety books about collecting, including the best-selling Kovels’ Antiques & Collectibles Price List. In addition, they write a nationally syndicated newspaper column and a subscription-based newsletter. “Flea Market Finds with the Kovels” is their weekly television show on HGTV. They also maintain their own antiques and collectibles website, The Kovels live near Cleveland, Ohio.


By Ralph and Terry Kovel

Random House Reference

September 2004

Trade Paperback

ISBN: 0-609-80892-3

$24.95, $34.95 CAN



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