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Rummage Sale surprise

My name is Jim Albee and I gave up farming when I started to compete with my brother for our parent’s land. PI don’t normally go to any rummage sales because I figure I already have enough stuff. A particular Saturday, May third of 2008, comes to mind, as we were coming home from breakfast, there was a large community sale in a parking lot. My wife chose this one, as it seemed large and diverse. We were with our daughter and son in law, so we needed diverse. We jumped out of the truck and wandered to our separate parts of the sale. My enthusiasm was not into this, but I would give it a shot. In a couple of minutes, I located one of those snow plow-like shovels, for pushing the snow off the drive. I saw it was marked at nearly new price as one of the big shovel stores, but it was May, so when the person at the till wouldn’t drop the price a dollar or two, I said I would put it back, but the other cashier said they could drop the price if I made a good enough offer. So, of course, I made my best price guess at what they might take, and got the scoop, and might I say, it works great! PMy wife brought over a child’s lawn chair and insisted I pay the full price, so of course, I said, “yes dear”. My son in law found a set of roller blades and I offered to buy them, but he said he probably wouldn’t use them that much. Then he found a set of glasses with old John Deere tractors on them in a black box with gray letters. We opened them up and the price seemed ok, so I offered a couple dollars less, as is the custom where we live. I thought they would make good Christmas gifts for our sons who also like the old John Deeres and anything with the logo. They had mom and me paint their room John Deere green on the walls when we moved into our house 17 years ago. It still is that color, along with the shelves full of replica machinery. PMy younger son’s, January birthday had passed and I needed something from that closet, which caused me to re-find the box. I took it to the kitchen table and opened it up to find a paper in the back of the glasses. I took out just two of the eight glasses to check them out and they each have four John Deere two cylinder tractors on them, from the GP model to the 730 series, which ended that era. The glasses also have a gold inlaid Blacksmith with the banner “Since 1837”, and under that part, is the John Deere, running deer logo. I read the paper saying the glasses are custom styled, fire polished crystal, and where gold is used, it is 24 karat. The company that made them is Osborne-Kemper-Thomas Inc. “Designers of Ideas in Glass”, Cincinnati 6, Ohio. It would turn out that these glasses are much more treasure than trash as the rummage sale was to be my jackpot. PI have a person where I work, who knows how to find things on the internet and I had no idea where to start, so I asked her for ideas and she came up with the Osborne-Kemper-Thomas Inc., calendar makers, but nothing about glass. We found out that OKT got sold to Hallmark Cards. I checked with several local two cylinder clubs and they sent me on to larger ones. I checked the Waterloo, Iowa one and their historian, Jack Cherry was very helpful. He thought they were made in 1958 and their club had some at the time, also. He gave me an estimate of their value and said that with the box and a complete set, they were worth more, and maybe I could sell them on E-bay, one at a time. I just figure, there is no way I will break up the set, as they have been together this long. PPeople who have heard about the glasses, have guessed as to their origin, all the way from gifts for division managers, to top sales staff, to top customers, and on and on the speculation goes. One of my neighbors asked me if I knew a guy around Marshall, Minnesota, where we live, if I had heard of these glasses, as he had heard about them from a friend from Texas, and to his surprise, I said I knew the guy personally, and showed him the glasses. PWhat I am looking for is a museum or at least a way for this whole set to stay together and if possible, to be in a public display of some sort. It would be a shame for them to get lost, or sit in a closet for another fifty years and not be able to see the light of day, or give someone the joy I get from just looking at them. I first wanted to sell them to get a swather to mow ditches with, and I wanted enough to buy one or two glasses back, to give to a friend, who could sure use a great uplift, after fighting a long medical battle of his own. PIn an effort to thank all who have helped me try to find information, worth, value, of these crystal glasses, I will never be able to recall all of the names of those folks, so let us just say thank you, to all of the John Deere dealership workers, sales staff, secretaries, and enthusiasts who have given me their most valued time and help!P

James Oliver Albee, MN, entered 2010-08-28
My Email Address: Not Displayed

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