One of the first things that I ever sold on eBay was a vintage radio that had been sitting around the house for a long time. I had picked it up at an auction in Buffalo and although I was not a newbie to buying and selling antique and vintage items, it was the first time that I had sold anything to anyone outside of the old neighborhood. For a few years after that, I went into a frenzy; scouring flea markets, estate sales, yard and garage sales in search of more vintage radios and then rotary phones that I could sell on eBay
The Christmas tree has its origins in Germany in the mid-16th Century when Christians first brought them into their homes. Some historians credit Martin Luther, the Protestant reformer with being the first to put lit candles on the tree. As time went on most trees were decorated with cookies, fruits and silver tinsel. It would take almost 200 years before the Christmas tree was adopted in America.
It wasn’t until later in the Victorian Era that the people of America started placing decorated Christmas trees into their home. They decorated their floor to ceiling trees with homemade ornaments, fruits and candles until the beginning of the 20th Century when they started using imported, mostly from Germany, hand-blown glass ornaments. These ornaments are highly sought after by collectors today. The first hand-blown ornaments came from Lauscha, Germany. These ornaments were silvered and hand painted by small family owned businesses.
As demand grew, more ornaments had to be mass produced. By 1935 more than 250 million ornaments were being shipped to the U.S. A few things you should check to determine whether an ornament is authentic; first check the stem for a country of origin. Newer, cheaper or fakes may not have a marking. Also, remove the stem and look at the base; if the base is smooth, the ornament is probably mass produced. Hand-blown ornaments usually have an uneven base. And of course, the earliest ones were hand painted, so look for paint that is distressed or faded.
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