Friday, November 22, 2013


Since the world is focusing on all things JFK today, I thought I might as well post about a Kennedy artifact that my grandmother owns.

My grandmother has always been a student of history. Even at 100, she still enjoys reading and learning about history. She especially enjoys Presidential history. Because of this interest, she's proud to own an item that belonged to the Kennedy family.

As long as I can remember she's owned this magazine rack. For years, it has been a holder of newspapers, books and pamphlets put there by my grandmother. At one time, it probably held similar items put there by the hands of the Kennedy family. (I like to think John-John kept his comic books in it!)     

If only this unassuming spindle magazine rack could talk. What stories might it share? This magazine rack once resided in the Kennedy compound in Palm Beach, Florida. My grandmother's cousin worked in a beauty shop in Palm Beach and became acquainted with one of the shop's famous customers, Rose Kennedy. One day, Rose came in the shop and gave the rack to my grandmother's cousin. Rose told her, "This damn thing broke and I don't want it!" Eventually, the cousin gave the magazine rack to my grandmother with broken leg and all. The leg has since been fixed.

One of these days, I need to peruse photographs of the Kennedy Palm Beach estate in hopes that I can spot this magazine rack in the background. Wouldn't that be something? 


Today marks the 50th anniversary of one of the darkest days of the 20th century, the assassination of the 35th President of the United States, John F. Kennedy. In my collection of found photos, I have two photo slides of JFK's temporary gravesite at Arlington National Cemetery. The photos were taken in early 1964, a few months after the assassination. I have no clue who snapped these photos, but I'm sure they would say that viewing the grave was a poignant reminder of that fateful day, November, 22, 1963. 

I noticed that the LBJ Library uploaded some silent raw film footage of the temporary gravesite to their YouTube page. Click here to view the video.

In 1967, a permanent gravesite was finished and open for public viewing.     

2005 photo of the eternal flame.

1964 commemorative postage stamp.

Monday, November 04, 2013


The new Hake's Americana & Collectibles auction catalog is out and ready for bidders! Auction #210 is jam packed with goodies galore and there's something for every collector. To celebrate this latest auction, Hake's is handing out a $100 credit to a member of the League of Extraordinary Bloggers. Have a blog? Want in on the Hake's action? Then simply join the League (click here to find out how) and go on a Hake's virtual shopping spree! This is my second time out of the three virtual shopping sprees offered by Hake's for the League. (Click here for my first Hake's auction post.) Now let's go shopping!

My list of neato cool items from Hake's Auction #210 -

Even though this toy pre-dates me, I doubt there was a better toy ever created than Big Loo. Just look at that face! I'm sure the lucky kid who received this robot pal never played with another toy afterwards. Why would he? Big Loo had everything! He could talk, pick up things, had flashing eyes, shoot out balls, rockets and water blasts, included a whistle, a compass and a chart for morse code! The one in Hake's auction, is one of the best examples I've ever seen. Nearly complete with the original box. Be sure to visit the Big Loo auction page to see all the fine photos.

I love viewing original comic book art and this example is a beaut! This original cover art from Action Comics #309 by Curt Swan and Sheldon Moldoff features most of Superman's regular cast of characters. Also, it has some accidental historical significance relating to the JFK assassination. (Visit the auction page to learn more.) I could easily see this framed and displayed in my comic book reading room!  

Wow! Can you imagine owning your very own fleet of Buck Rogers spaceships? I hope whoever ends up with this amazing set, makes their own little black and white Buck Rogers movies with the models. 

Besides the set of ships, this auction has the model sheet framed and ready for display.

4. The Spider Pulp Magazine 1934 Premium Ring for Canadian Distribution, Near Mint

I'm a fan of pulp heroes and premium rings, so this auction grabbed my attention. One of the coolest characters that ever fought crime wearing a Fedora hat was The Spider. Hake's is selling this crime fighter's ring and this rare specimen is in near mint condition.

5. "Chief Robotman Boxed Battery-Operated Robot Toy

Since there's an excellent selection of robots in this auction I could have easily only included bots in my list. After Big Loo, this is probably my favorite of the bunch. From the classic robot style of the toy to the awesome artwork on the box. "Everyone bow down to the all powerful Chief Robotman!" Zzzz....ZAP!

6. "DC - National Comics" 1950s Comic Book Rack

Now here's a piece of furniture that would look great in any comic book nerd's home! Just think of the key comic book issues that were purchased off this rack back in the day. Besides being a nice comic book rack, it comes from the collection of the great Chip Kidd and can be seen in his book Collecting Batman.

I'm not familiar with the magician Milo Brandon, but apparently he had a far out space themed show back in the 1950s with cool looking posters. I really like the artwork to this poster design.

8. "Marx Rock'em Sock'em Robots" Boxed Toy

My parents would probably agree that this was the loudest toy on planet Earth! This is the boxed version that my brother and I ended up with one Christmas morning. We played the heck out of our Rock'em Sock'em Robots until the toy almost fell apart. I think my dad sent the remains to the local auction. So this one is a nostalgic pick for me.

9. "Alien" Boxed Movie Viewer

Another nostalgic pick for me is this Alien Movie Viewer. It was the only way that I got to watch Alien back when I was a kid. There was no way my mom was going to let me go to a rated R movie back when I was nine years old. Winding this Alien Movie Viewer in the toy store was my only ticket to watch the some space-horror forbidden fruit! I'm sure my glee showed on my face just like the kid pictured on the box.

 10. MAXx FX Monster Prototype Action Figures

Prototype action figures are amazing, especially when its of a figure that never made it onto toy shelves. That's the case with all but one of the MAXx FX prototypes offered by Hake's. This line from 1989 was way ahead of its time, but unfortunately suffered from outraged parents and a nervous toy company. Only one lone figure was produced and that was Freddy Krueger. Now someone has the opportunity to add one or more of these prototypes to their collection. Cool & Collected had the scoop with a preview of the prototypes back in September.       

When visiting the Hake's Americana & Collectibles site, be sure to sign up for a free catalog. The catalogs are a great keepsake by themselves!

Shopping sprees from other League members -  

AEIOU...ans Sometime Why is shopping for skeleton calendars, Freaks, Haunted Mansion, Vincent Price and Star Wars!

Achievements in Gaming is shopping for Vampirella, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Creature Features, Spy vs. Spy and King Kong!