An aluminum trade token a man in Parkersburg dug up years ago that read good for $1 on a tire at Louis M. Pickens Tire Shop at 240 Court Square in Parkersburg brought him $55 at auction recently.
Another old trade token made of brass, reading "Old Homestead," Third Street and Court Square Parkersburg, sold for six bids totaling $78.
A trade token good for 5 cents in trade, advertising Fred Tunajek Maplewood Texaco Service Station that was located what is now the main entrance of the Grand Central Mall, approximately where Long John Silver's Restaurant now stands. After being the Maplewood Texaco, it was the Maplewood Drive Inn, where Fred was well known for his hot dogs. I remember my mom talking about Fred's hot dogs and how good they were. The trade token sold at auction for $48 with four buyers bidding on it.
A 1910 brass trade token advertising St. James Hotel at 800 Seventh St. in Parkersburg received nine bids totaling $79 for a Vienna, W.Va. man.
Another one good for 5 cents in trade, advertising the Jackson Hotel in Parkersburg in 1910 brought $89.
Another trade token made of aluminum good for 5 cents in trade at the Commercial Hotel & Bar sold for $57 with 10 buyers bidding on it.
One item in the auction that really caught my eye was a Lion Contour matchcover made by the Lion Match Co. advertising Jimbos Drive Inn Restaurant in Parkersburg owned by Jim Lilly, the first place I ever worked at. I was only about 16 when I worked there, as a short order cook. I remember working there the night when the Bailey children all died in a fire, just a couple doors from the restaurant. The oldest of the Bailey children about 14 years old had been dating her older cousin. Her parents did not like that the least bit, so that night, the girl waited up until about 12 o'clock for her parents to go to sleep upstairs and the girl set fire to the house and the whole family died in the fire. I will never forget that night as long as I live. It took several ambulances to carry out the victims.
Next week, tell you what a 1905 A.P. Donagha Parkersburg sales receipt sold for at auction, including other items that were produced in Marietta.
Larry Koon is the author of several price guide books on antiques and collectibles. His column appears every Monday on Life. Send letters to Treasure in the Attic, c/o The Marietta Times, 700 Channel Lane, Marietta 45750; or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org. When writing, send a complete description of the item, along with size, color, any markings on the item along with condition the item is in, and how the item was obtained, and any other information. If possible, send a photograph. Letters will be answered through this column.