Monday, April 21, 2014

All Aboard - Introducing a Great Railroad Auctioneer

Monday, April 21, 2014
(Partly sunny and warmer)

All Aboard
Introducing a Great Railroad Auctioneer

 If you were to ask me a few years ago what I'd be doing in retirement, the last thing that I would be able to tell you was that I would be writing a blog about toys. Of course, if you had me as a teacher (Pro photography), you would have known that it not be your "average" blog! I started  my blog on January 19, 2011, and I'm still writing, and hopefully getting better.

I had seen the name Stout Auctions many times on the Internet.  First on LiveAuctioneers, and then elsewhere. Stout Auctions is an exceptional auction company specializing in model railroading. 

Their motto is:
Stout Auctions: America's Premier Model Train Auctions

"Stout Auctions is the leading U.S. auction house dealing with Lionel toy trains, American Flyer, Marx, Ives, as well as other scale and toy trains. Since our first auction in 1993 Stout Auctions has become known for offering the highest quality model trains in both Prewar and Postwar Lionel. Stout Auctions offers everything from classic postwar Lionel or the colorful tinplate toys of the '30s, to modern trains from Lionel, MTH, K-Line, 3rd Rail and more. Stout Auctions also continues to lead the auction field in G scale, HO brass, American Flyer S gauge, and Railroadiana. If it's related to toy trains, you'll find it at Stout Auctions. Sales are held in Williamsport, Indiana or West Middlesex, Pennsylvania, easily accessible by interstate or airport. Unless otherwise noted, we accept absentee bids."* Description courtesy of Stout Auctions

  I would have liked to have read that the company is also accessible by rail, buy this is the 21st century! I had previously written to the company on several occasions, but never hear from them. Of course, as I've mentioned many times before, not everyone has the time to answer blogger, and there is  probably spam detection software since large-sized companies get loads of mail every day. 

  Not only does Stout Actions auction great model railroads, but they also will auction other items, and in this case, that's what I wanted! Tomorrow's post will show you the beautiful vintage toy airplanes coming up during their next auction. So, what I decided to do is telephone the company last week. I initially spoke with the receptionist, explained to her my story, and asked for someone with whom I could speak to.  I spoke with Mr. Derek Thomas and he was quite open to my request, but said that he'd get back to me soon. I said thanks, but said that I'm in no rush, and could wait, since the Easter Holiday was upon us, and of course Stout Actions and Derek are quite busy. Earlier in the day, I received an answer and I could write about them - fantastic! Of course, I wanted to write an introductory post, and so that's what this post is all about. 

  I like all toys, but trains are special. Most of us rarely are ever near trains, and of course rarely do we ride on them. As a youngster of about 3 or 4, my grandmother took me from Montreal to Toronto on an overnight train. I remember the high and low beds in the sleeping car, and all of the wood everywhere. It certainly was memorable so many years ago. In recent years, I've sometimes taken the "faster" train to Toronto to visit my sister. The "faster" train is actually fast, and will get you to Toronto in about the same time as driving. It's also more relaxing, and you get to sometimes see things that the highway doesn't show you.

A Screencapture of a Stout Auctions web page

What I like about their auction site is that it is clean and easy to navigate. By clean, I mean that one can see all of the material  on the paste easily and fast. On the above page, you are seeing a listing, while at the bottom of the page are more lots in the auction.

An excellent feature on the page is "Explore Similar Items". I like this because if I want to see a better photographed or better-detailed series of images, I can press that set of words. Of course, for bidders, they would be pressing that to see what historic prices were offered on previous similar merchandise.

All of the images below are from the April 12, 2014 auction. 
The number that appears to the top left of all composite photos is the lot number of the item that was up for auction.

I always appreciate excellent-quality photography, and Stout Actions  does an excellent job. I did some very minor photo-editing on the images, and they "jumped off the page". 

You'll have to see all of these images in Google Blooger's slide view mode. The models and the photography are great, but it's the actual cars and the details that I like. Imagine how strong and bright the actual "real" searchlights wet eon this particular train? 

This particular set of photos is what blogging is all about - the anticipation of finding new material for a next post. For sure, I'll be searching for who Mr. James Cohen is. His modern-era reproductions of very old models is truly artisanal in quality.

The term "pre-war" refers to the time period before WWII (World War II), circa pre 1939-1945.
Because America offered so much hope to so many in her history, millions of people migrate to the USA in the hope of bettering their lives. Many did, and of course, business and industry prospered. What I am always so enthusiastic as a writer, is that there first of all are so many items that are always to be found, and also that they still are in such fine condition. This is always true for toys.  Imagine young immigrant or even second to third generation children being able to receive such fine toys as these trains.

It's always nice to read a description that says that an item had been repaired or repainted or parts have been replaced. It give you a sense that someone really cares about these fine collectibles enough to bring them back to their original lustre and condition of a long time ago!

Thanks for dropping by,
and as always,
have a great part of the day or night
wherever you mast be.

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