My husband bought a lion and tiger at an auction a few years ago. They are each about 2 feet long and in perfect condition. He paid a total of $25 for the pair, and we enjoy them on our living room sofa. Can you tell me more about them and their value? —Pat Bonham, Bay Village, Ohio
Pat, your husband bought a Steiff lion and lioness, both dating from around 1950. In great condition, they could bring up to $500 each from Steiff collectors. You should go to auctions more often with that kind of luck!
I really enjoy TBR magazine and especially looking at your column. Three of my “favorite things” are sitting in this photo: a bunny, a baby duck and a 20-inch Schuco bear that I think dates back to the 1920s. Would you tell me the maker and value of each of them? —Carol Lindeman, Louisville, Ohio
Carol, the duck and bunny are Steiff and date from around 1950 to 1960. The duck is valued at around $75 and the bunny is closer to $150. Your Schuco yes/no teddy bear is from around 1950, not 1920. As shown, his paws are turned downward, which were done after 1948. The value on your 20-inch Schuco is in the $1,500 range since he is in such great condition. What great friends you have!
Here is a picture of me in 1940 with my 20-inch teddy bear [and a photo of the bear alone]. Can you tell me what he might be worth today and who made him? —Arlene Schlatter, Fort Wayne, Ind.
Arlene, you have a beautiful brown mohair Knickerbocker made in the 1930s. This was one of Shirley Temple’s favorite bears, but she preferred white mohair. With your photo (provenance) and the great condition of the bear today, $500 would be my insurance value. What an invaluable photo!
My 13-inch Steiff, named “Smitty,” has won a blue ribbon at a couple of local shows when I displayed him. With all that personality, can you give me his actual age and value? He is a great teddy bear for me! —Margaret Fighter, Freeport, Mich.
Margaret, what a magnificent-looking teddy! He has that fourth dimension we call universal appeal. Probably made in 1906 or 1907, his long blond mohair and great presence make him a special bear. In good condition, collectors pay $3,000 or more for a Steiff like yours.
Sitting on the file cabinet is my mother’s childhood teddy. In perfect condition, the bear is also shown in a family photo from 1923 with Mom, as a child, holding her teddy. What value would you assign this bear today? —Evelyn Krause, North Royalton, Ohio
Evelyn, what a treasure you have today. With provenance, the teddy and the photo would be valued at more than $1,000. The bear looks like those that came from Sonnenberg, Germany, in the 1920s.