Q: We found this Diamond Dyes cabinet in the basement of an old drugstore in 1962. It looks like it’s made of cherry. It’s 28 1/2 inches high, 21 1/2 inches wide, and 10 inches deep. The compartments inside are eight across and seven rows deep. There are a few pamphlets, sample cards, and packages of dye in the compartments. Some of the pamphlets are stamped with the name of the pharmacist who bought the store in 1905 and ran it until he died in the 1940s. What is the value of this cabinet?
A: Diamond Dyes were made by Wells, Richardson & Co. of Burlington, Vermont. The company was founded in 1872 and went out of business about 1943. The company made dyes, patent medicine and baby food. Diamond Dyes cabinets were first made about 1890. They were made in cherry, oak or walnut and in several sizes. The embossed and lithographed tin front panel usually pictures children playing or women. Collectors gave descriptive names to the scenes. This picture is called “Maypole.” The cabinets have been reproduced. Most reproductions are oak and are 24 inches high. The pamphlet with the pharmacist’s name gives provenance to your Diamond Dyes cabinet and helps to authenticate it. Some sold recently for up to $500. We have seen them sell in the past for over $1000.