Useful books for coffee can collectors

May 05, 1991|By Chicago Tribune

It's amazing how many brands of coffee were sold in the pas with bright labels covering a multitude of subjects ranging from animals (such as Red Wolf brand) to Indians (such as Mohican brand).

The value of such containers depends on their uniqueness, condition, completeness (being intact with covers, handles, if any, and unmarred labels), subject matter pictured on the label and rarity, as well as size and shape.

"Food and Drink Containers and Their Prices," by Al Bergevin, pictures, describes and prices numerous coffee containers. It's available for $19.45 postpaid from Wallace-Homestead Book Co., Chilton Way, Radnor, Pa. 19089-0230; phone (800) 695-1214. The book says that Wak-Em-Up coffee brand containers, which picture an Indian in a feather headdress, are worth $350 for a 13-by-9-inch pail-type example, $150 for a 9-by-7 1/2 -inch pail example and $65 for a can-shaped one measuring 3 1/2 by 5 1/2 inches.

Also collectible are the 1-pound cans that came with a key attached on the top with which one used to open the lid.

A new book is devoted to tin key-wind coffee cans and is the only book of its kind and contains a wealth of information, along with color and black-and-white photos. "Collectors' Guide to Key-Wind Coffee Tins with Price Guide," by James H. Stahl, is available in a large-size edition for $21.95 postpaid from L-W Book Sales, P.O. Box 69, Gas City, Ind. 46933; phone (800) 777-6450.

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