Fire-fighting antiques relates to items used by fire-fighters.
History & Description
Fire-related antiques come in a variety of shapes and sizes, from functional items such as helmets, badges, extinguishers, grenades, lanterns and fire-trucks to presentation items, such as awards and trophies.
Today, there is a growing community of collectors interested in fire-related antiques. For over two hundred years, fire-fighters have used a huge number of unique and special objects to help save lives, and these objects have become highly collectible.
Guide for collectors
Due to the diversity of fire-related antiques, prices can range significantly. For example, helmets, badges and shields are typically sold at auction for between $200 and $800; however, examples can be purchased for under $50.
Other highly collectible items include the presentation badges which were awarded to a fireman as a mark of distinction, retirement or promotion. The most distinguished examples are made from silver and gold and collections of these can sell for nearly $2,0004.
The most expensive items of fire-fighting memorabilia are undoubtedly the vintage fire-trucks, which can fetch prices as high as $40,000.
One useful source of information for fire-fighting related antiques and memorabilia is Fire Awards.
Notable auction sales
On August 4th 2007 at RM Auctions in Auburn, Indianapolis, a 1919 Ford Model T Fire-truck Type C realised a price of $40,000. The vehicle had been transformed into a fire-truck by the American-LaFrance Firefighting Equipment Co.
On October 12th 2007, a 1922 American-LaFrance Firefighting Equipment Co. Type 48 Triple Combination was sold through RM Auctions, Auburn, for a realised price of $37,500.
On March 7th 2010, a pair of polychrome painted leather fire buckets, made in 1810, was sold for $8,000 through Skinner Auctioneers & Appraisers, Massachusetts.
On September 11th 2004, at Skinner Auctioneers & Appraisers, Massachusetts, four antique fire-fighter’s Black Eagle helmets was sold for $823.
On September 11th 2004, at Skinner Auctioneers & Appraisers, Massachusetts, two antique fire-fighter’s leather helmet shields realised a price of $646.
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