Orion’s Attic surprises seller with $2,000 bonus!

Oct 20, 2015

Won-ok Kim and I knocked on the door of a very sweet woman from whom we had purchased countless pieces of costume jewelry and a few knickknacks a few weeks earlier. She was surprised to see Orion’s Attic back at her front door. But not nearly as surprised as she would be moments later. What she didn’t know was that an unexpected treasure had turned up in our bulk buy. We didn’t think anything of the piece at the time as we only saw it for a few seconds while filling up a box with all the stuff we were buying. It was just a vintage cigarette box and a matching lighter that we figured we’d sell for maybe $40 – a needle in a haystack of items we bought that day. There’s simply...

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This Just In: Figural Whiskey Decanters and Whimsy

Apr 7, 2015

Our newly acquired 100-plus piece figural whiskey decanter collection is so enticing that it could drive teetotalers to hit the bottles – or at least begin collecting them. The first batch of 25 whiskey decanters and counting is now in our Orion’s Attic eBay store. (We’ve also placed a few in our booth at Emporium Antiques in downtown Frederick, Maryland.) The collection we obtained from an Alexandria, Virginia home during one of our estate liquidations is focused largely on the 1960s and 1970s and covers four of the most prominent makers – Jim Beam, Ezra Brooks, McCormick and the Foss Company. If you’re partial to bourbon, you may already know the story of how these kinds of bottles came to life. If not, sip the basics here. The preeminent maker is, of course, the...

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This just in: Sparky’s Volksmarch medal collection from Germany and U.S....

Mar 12, 2015

Dr. John “Sparky” Breeskin, make that Lieutenant Colonel Breeskin, was a U.S. Air Force psychologist stationed in Wiesbaden, Germany in the mid-1970s when he was introduced to the German hiking tradition of the Volksmarch — “the people’s walk.” The idea, he learned, was to join folks from small villages and go for organized, non-competitive walks that included food and friendship. Many walks also commemorated important people and events in local, national or even global history. “I joined a walk that weekend and I never looked back,” says Breeskin, a Takoma Park, Maryland, resident whose sentences flow as gently and lyrically as his long white beard. He bears an uncanny resemblance to poet Walt Whitman, a portrait of whom hangs in his dining room. “I started going every weekend. Volksmarching took me all over Germany.”...

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This Just In: World War II love letter from Army private in Heilbronn Germany...

Feb 22, 2015

U.S. Army Private First Class Bill McMullen wrote this passionate love letter to his wife on April 12, 1946 from Heilbronn, Germany as he was preparing to return home after World War II — a letter that is now in our Orion’s Attic eBay store. Heilbronn, of course, was home to the salt mines where the Nazis stored art and artifacts. In 1944, Allied bombing raids targeted the city — destroying much of it and killing some 6,500 residents. The U.S. Army occupied the city on April 12, 1945, a year to the day before McMullen wrote this letter. Presumably, he took part in the victorious effort. Either that or he arrived just afterward. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to find any other letters, memorabilia or information when we found this letter. One of the...

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This Just In: Extraordinary book of poetry by Vermont poet Ella Warner Fisher in 1933...

Feb 22, 2015

“The New Sketch Book: An Anthology of Voices” by Vermont poet Ella Warner Fisher published by The Excelsior Press in Shelburne, Vermont is the next of a number of extraordinary books by Vermont authors in the first half of the 20th century that we discovered recently. See this book and others in our OrionsAttic eBay store and stay tuned for more. We were astonished not only to find the books here in Maryland but that the books are written with exceptional skill and are in equally excellent condition. We found the books in the bottom of a box we bought at an auction in Morganza, Maryland. We haven’t yet been able to learn much about Fisher, who also authored “Idylls of Champlain,” “Green Mountain Echoes,” and “Castles of Memory.” She identifies herself as a “Writer...

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