Q: I inherited a silver marcasite brooch from my grandmother. Although I wouldn't part with it, I would appreciate knowing its value. On the back it is marked "Tcheco Slovaouie." The six turquoise-colored beads are set with individual wires. The dimensions are 1 1/2 by 1 1/2 inches.
A: Marcasite jewelry of this type was made in the early 1900s. Yours was manufactured in Czechoslovakia sometime after 1918. The value of your brooch would probably be about $120.
Q: We have a washbowl and pitcher that have been in our family for many years. I thought it was a second because the pattern was smudged until I learned that it is flow-blue china.
Each piece is marked "Colonial Pottery -- Stoke -- England -- Rd. 285773." The pattern is "Nancy." It is in excellent condition.
Is it a collectible, when was it made, and does it have any value?
A: Your washbowl and pitcher were made by F. Winkle & Co., located in Stoke, Staffordshire, England. This mark was used from 1890 to 1925. "Rd. 285773" is the British registry mark and shows that it was registered sometime in 1896.
Washbowls and pitchers similar to yours fetch $700 to $800 in antiques shops.
Book review: "The Collector's Encyclopedia of Homer Laughlin China" is an excellent reference and value guide.
It records the history of the company, and discusses problems in identifying Homer Laughlin china. Patterns are expertly described and dated, along with corresponding photos in beautiful color.
A handy glossary and collector's directory are also included. For both the casual and the serious collector, this interesting book is a "must-have."
"The Collector's Encyclopedia of Homer Laughlin China, Reference & Value Guide" by Joanne Jasper is published by Collector Books, P.O. Box 3009, Paducah, Ky. 42002-3009.
Letters with picture(s) are welcome and may be answered in the column. We cannot reply personally or return pictures. Address your letters to Anne McCollam, P.O. Box 490, Notre Dame, Ind. 46556.