Q: Can you tell me when my Royal Doulton figurine, "The Cobbler," HN-1706, was made and its current value? I am enclosing a picture.
A: This particular version of "The Cobbler" was produced from 1935 to 1961. It is currently selling for $275 to $300.
Q: The enclosed mark is on the bottom of a 5 1/2 -inch vase. It has a dull finish and is decorated with a stylized band of dogwood flowers on a light blue background. I would appreciate any information you can provide.
A: This vase was made by Marblehead Pottery in Marblehead, Mass., around the turn of the century. It would probably sell for at least $500.
Everybody knows that Grandpa's old railroad watch is valuable. is it?
These are the important things to know: Who made it? Hamilton, Elgin, Waltham, etc.? How many jewels does it have -- seven, 15, 17, 21, 23 or even more? What kind of case does it have? Silver, gold-filled, 14- or 18-karat solid gold? What is the serial number on the movement? That will tell you in what year it was made.
For example, two Waltham pocket watches were made in 1880. One is a seven-jewel movement in a silver case; its value is less than $100. The other is a 21-jewel movement in an 18-karat gold case; its value is more than $2,000.
Until a few years ago, wristwatches were considered contemporary collectibles of little interest to serious collectors.
Now we find a 14-karat 15-jewel Waltham listed at $200. If you are on a budget, the same watch in a gold-filled case is listed at $90. However, if you want something to go with your BMW, how about a 26-jewel Rolex in an 18-karat gold case for $8,000?