Q: Enclosed is a picture of a porcelain Madonna and Child. It is 9 inches tall and is marked with a letter B in a V and "HM 128." I would like to know its origin and value.
A: This was made by the W. Goebel Co. in Rodental, Germany, during the mid-20th century. It is the same company that makes Hummel figurines, which are all marked "M.I. Hummel."
Your Madonna and Child would sell for $125 to $135.
Q: The attached mark is on the bottom of a teapot decorated with a blue floral design on both sides. It holds about 3 pints. Can you tell me anything about its origin and value?
A: The Greenock Pottery operated in Renfrewshire, Scotland, during the late 1800s. It produced transfer-printed earthenware such as yours for several years. Your teapot would probably sell for $125 to $135.
Q: What can you tell me about a slot machine that pays off in gum balls? At the top it says -- "1 cent -- BALL GUM -- 1 cent." As a bonus it tells your fortune. It may have been legal, but it wasn't much fun.
A: You have a Caille Fortune Ball Gum Vendor. It was produced about 1925. For a non-gambling machine the value is quite high -- at least $1,000.
Q: I have an autographed 8-by-10-inch photo of Elvis Presley that I obtained in the early 1970s. Could you give me some ideas as to its current value? It is in excellent condition. The signature is genuine; he signed it in my presence.
A: This is a popular item; a picture like this would probably sell for $800 to $900.
Q: How much is my Mickey Mouse train set worth? It was made by Lionel and consists of engine, tender and circus car with track.
A: These were made in the 1930s and supposedly saved Lionel from bankruptcy. Sets like this in good condition are selling for $1,500 to $1,600.
Q: When was my Royal Doulton pitcher and bowl set made an what is its value? The pitcher is 10 inches high and the bowl is 16 inches in diameter. They are decorated with lavender lilacs with green leaves.
A: Your pitcher and bowl set was made in England during the early 1900s and would probably sell for $250 to $275.
Q: What can you tell me about a sterling silver Zippo cigarette lighter marked "Tiffany & Co."? It is in mint condition.
A: The famous Fifth Avenue jewelry store had a quantity of Zippo lighters made in sterling silver and inscribed with their name during the mid-20th century. This would probably sell for $100 to $110.
Send your questions about antiques with picture(s), a detailed description, a stamped, self-addressed envelope and $1 per item to James G. McCollam, P.O. Box 1087, Notre Dame, Ind. 46556. All questions will be answered; published pictures cannot be returned. Mr. McCollam is a member of the Antique Appraisers Association of America.