Q: This is a photo of a cookie jar that was given away with a purchase of coffee in the early 1950s. I don't remember the coffee company, but they came door-to-door selling coffee and other kitchen staples. Marked on the bottom are the words “Patent Smiley 60 — Shawnee USA.” He stands about 11 inches tall, is wearing light tan pants, a green scarf and is in perfect condition. Can you tell me anything about my cookie jar and what it is worth?
A: Shawnee Pottery made your cookie jar. They were located in Zanesville, Ohio, from 1937 to 1961. Smiley was the creation of designer, Rudy Ganz, around 1942. There were a variety of matching pieces that included banks, salt-and-pepper shakers, pitchers and his female companion, “Winnie.” They were decorated with several different outfits and designs. According to Shawnee Pottery, your Smiley is wearing butterscotch brown pants. Shawnee Pottery was sold by Sears, Woolworth and Kresge and used by several companies as premiums. Your circa 1950 Smiley would probably be worth $350 to $450.
Q: I have a set of porcelain dinnerware that is about 70 years old. Enclosed is the mark that is seen on each piece. The set is a service for 12 and decorated with gold scrolled bands of multicolored flowers. What can you tell me about my set of dinnerware?
A: Your dinnerware was made sometime between 1945 and 1952 during the Allied occupation of Japan after World War II. The Japanese firm, Meito, made your dinnerware and it was distributed by the Celebrate Company. “Marseilles” is the name of the pattern. Meito produced china for several companies that were sold in the United States. Insurance value for your service for 12 would probably be $900 to $1,500.
Q: I have an original 1929 edition of the book, “Bambi.” It has a green hard cover with an image of Bambi in gold. It was written by Felix Salten, illustrated by Kurt Wiese with a foreword by John Galworthy. The publisher was Grosset and Dunlop and copyright by Simon and Schuster. It is in very good condition. Can you tell me how much it is worth?
A: Your 1929 copy of Bambi can be seen selling on the Internet from $50 to $200.
Address your questions to Anne McCollam, P.O. Box 247, Notre Dame, IN 46556. Items of a general interest will be answered in this column. Because of the volume of inquiries, she cannot answer individual letters.