The P stands for Prudent Antiques: In Louisiana, between 1832 and 1874, Prudent Mallard made, imported and sold rococo and Renaissance Revival-style Victorian furniture with elaborate carvings.

February 02, 1997|By Ralph Kovel and Terry Kovel | Ralph Kovel and Terry Kovel,KING FEATURES SYNDICATE

As research gives new insights into the past, information about antiques is always being updated.

For many years, collectors prized the furniture made by P. Mallard. Records show he was in New York in 1829 but by 1832 was working in Louisiana. His store moved up and down Royal Street in New Orleans until 1874.

Mallard made rococo and Renaissance Revival-style Victorian furniture with elaborate carvings. He was known in some directories as Pierre Mallard, but many collectors believed his name was Prudence. Some even believed that Prudence was a woman because of the name. It is now known that his name was Prudent Mallard.

Some furniture sold in his shop might have been made there, but many pieces were imported from London or Paris. Collectors cannot always be sure if his furniture was American-made.

Most books and auction catalogs usually attribute the furniture to New Orleans, not to the maker. But today the expert knows that the famous furniture store in New Orleans was owned by Mr. Prudent Mallard.

I have a bottle with a neck at each end. The necks are angled upward. It is marked "Maw of Cherub Barnet." It has ounces on one side and tablespoons on the other. Could this be a baby bottle?

Double-ended nursing bottles were used in the 1890s and early 1900s. They were controlled by adjusting a rubber valve on one end. A rubber nipple could fit over the other end.

Most double-ended nursers were made in England. Maw & Son were working in London as early as 1877. The company made nursing bottles for export to the United States.

"Cherub" is the name of that particular style of nurser. Your bottle is worth $35 to $45.

I loved the TV show "Twin Peaks," and I have a couple of the books that went with the show and a Twin Peaks sheriff's department T-shirt. Are they valuable yet?

"Twin Peaks" aired from April 8, 1990, to April 18, 1991. By the end of the show, the episodes were so bizarre, many fans weren't sure what was going on.

Items connected with the show don't sell well as collectibles. Your T-shirt is worth about $5, and the books about $3 each.

My husband collects crocks. He has several with the name Rickey S. Hamilton on them. I can't find anything about who made them.

You might be misreading the name. Rickey & Hamilton made stoneware crocks in West Virginia, around 1875.

I have a sewing machine that looks like a chest of drawers. It is labeled "New Cottage." Do you know how old it might be?

Sewing machines with elaborate cabinets were popular in the early 1900s. The National Sewing Machine Co. of Belvidere, Ill., made New Cottage sewing machines. The company merged with the Free Sewing Machine Co. in 1953.

Depending on condition, your machine would sell for $330 to $450.

Tip: Old pantyhose are good to use to apply an oil finish on furniture. The material does not leave lint. Remove all elastic first.

The Kovels welcome letters and answer as many as possible through the column. Write to Kovels, The Sun, King Features Syndicate Inc., 235 E. 45th St., New York, N.Y. 10017.

Pub Date: 2/02/97

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