Funny Money

The Militaria & Ethnographic Sale at Tennants Auctioneers on Wednesday 7th September 2016 comprises 530 lots and includes one particularly interesting collection of curious / primitive money from the late S.G.M Adams, Medallist.

Twenty one lots of foreign currency or barter items will go under the hammer as part of the Tribal Weapons and Ehnographica section of this large sale.  Among this unusual collection are African Manilla’s, Solomon Island shell rings, armbands and combs and a rare ancient Indian piece of Lac currency, made of sealing wax. Lot 415 is a 19th century Fijian Chief’s Whale Tooth Tabua, which is the highest token of respect one can receive in Fiji, is estimated at £250-350. Another interesting lot to watch from Fiji is lot 395 a 19th century War Club, which in a dense hard wood of reddish colour, with large toadstool shape head, is estimated at £500-700. Also of note, is lot 378, a carved Walrus Tooth Seal/Fish Killing Club, which is possibly Inuit and of apparent great age.  It comes with a pre-sale estimate of £300-500.

From Ethnographic to Military and one of the earliest types of folding bike: Lot 124 is a BSA Airborne Paratrooper’s folding bicycle.  Also known as the “parabike”, Oonagh Drage specialist cataloguer tells us that “it was used during the Second World War by soldiers, who after jumping out of a plane would assemble the bike when on the ground as an instant form of transport”. Its pre-sale estimate is £1,200-1,500 and we hope that biking enthusiasts will be interested in the machine as well as military specialist.  

Also going under the hammer are 196 lots of medals, cap badges and militaria; look out for trench art, photographic prints, cartridge displays, a side drum to the Fifth Fusiliers, propaganda posters and a selection of RAF Sweetheart brooches. With helmets & uniforms, weaponry, accessories and Antique guns also being offered, this is a hugely varied sale with estimates from £50 up to thousands of pounds, accessible to novice collectors and specialist dealers.

The sale catalogue can be found online,-Armour,-Militaria-Ethnographica.aspx with viewing on Tuesday 6th September from 9am -5pm and morning of the sale from 8am.