Daum, Lalique, Majorelle, Delatte, A. Walter and Schneider were some of the famous glassmakers working in Nancy, France, in the late 19th and 20th centuries.
A few still are creating quality glass vases and sculptures. Many of the makers used their names and the word "Nancy" in their marks.
Louis Majorelle was a famous furniture designer and decorator. He made many types of metal railings, hardware and exterior trim. He made decorative iron frames that were used by Daum.
Daum and Majorelle worked together to make an early 20th-century type of vase that is easy to recognize and known as "caged." Mottled glass was blown into the empty spaces in the frame so that the glass was slightly raised between the metal parts. The finished piece looked like the glass was trapped in a cage.
A purple and pink Art Deco caged vase was auctioned in November 2014 by James Julia for $1,244. It was signed "Majorelle Daum Nancy" with the Cross of Lorraine.
Look for names with the word "Nancy" on Art Nouveau and Art Deco glass, especially on large vases. But beware — there have been many fakes and copies made since the 1960s. Some even say "Galli," hoping you will misread the mark for an Emile Galle vase.
In-home soda fountain
Q: I bought a home with a large complete liquid 1920s soda fountain, dispensers, stools and the rest. I'm looking to remove it and sell it, but I'm having trouble finding what a complete setup with seven seats is worth. It's made by Liquid.
A: Soda fountains were in almost every corner drugstore from the early 1900s to the late 1950s, but it's unusual to find one in a home. Soda fountains are sold at auctions, usually sales of advertising. You can contact an auction house. If it is an original old soda fountain, they will sell it for you and even arrange to get it to their auction site.
Your Liquid fountain was made by Liquid Carbonics Manufacturing Co. in Chicago. The company made liquefied carbon dioxide. It test marketed its first soda fountain in 1903 and sold its first "iceless" soda fountain in 1906. The company name became Liquid Carbonic Corp. in 1926, so your fountain was made between 1906 and 1926. The company merged with General Dynamics in 1958.
Shirley Temple mug
Q: I have a blue glass mug with a picture of Shirley Temple on it. Her signature is underneath her picture. The mug is 4 inches high. How much is this worth?
A: Shirley Temple (1928-2014) was a movie star most famous for her roles as a child star. She made her first movie in 1932. Your mug is part of a breakfast set that included a cobalt blue glass bowl, mug and pitcher. They were made by Hazel Atlas Glass Co. and U.S. Glass Co. from 1934 to 1942 and were given away as Wheaties and Bisquick premiums. Some pieces were decorated with the picture of a very young Shirley, others used a picture of Shirley in her 1936 Captain January costume. Millions of the dishes were made. The mug sells for about $10.
Q: I have inherited a Rishell phonograph that was originally purchased between the late 1920s and early 1930s. It's in great condition and still works. I have a few records that work on the machine, too. Does it have any value?
A: Your phonograph was made by Rishell Phonograph Co. of Williamsport, Pa. Rishell was in business from about 1916 until at least 1924, but it is not a well-known brand even among collectors. We have only seen floor models by Rishell. A Rishell floor model in working order could sell for $200 to $300.
Q: What is a posset pot?
A: Posset is a hot drink that was popular in Britain from the 15th through the 19th centuries. It's also a pudding-like dessert that is made today. The drink typically included curdled milk and wine, ale and spices. That was topped with layers of spicy custard and foam. Posset pots were made of porcelain, silver or other material and have a handle and a short spout.
The top layers of the posset were eaten with a spoon and the bottom layer drunk through the spout of the pot. Posset was thought to be a cure for colds or fevers and was also drunk as a toast at weddings. It's even mentioned in Shakespeare's "Hamlet."
Q: I have a button collection given to me by my husband's grandmother. Some are brass, copper, glass and ceramic. I must have about 800 to 1,000 buttons and no two are the same. These are very old buttons and in excellent condition. Where can I sell them?
A: Button-collecting has been popular since the 19th century. People used to snip the buttons off old clothes and save them for future use, but somewhere along the way button collecting turned into a hobby. The National Button Society was founded in 1938. You can find local button clubs, shows, and contacts on the society's website, www.nationalbuttonsociety.org.
The easiest way to sell a large collection might be to go to a button show and talk to the dealers. Old buttons can be worth 5 cents or $500 each. It takes an expert to determine the price. Mixed bottles of buttons often sell at flea markets for $10 to $25.
Terry and Kim Kovel will answer as many letters from readers as possible through the column only. For return of a photograph, include a self-addressed, stamped (55 cents) envelope. Write to: The Kovels, c/o King Features Syndicate, 300 W. 57th St., New York, NY 10019. The website is www.kovels.com.
Prices are from shows nationwide.
Cowan pottery vase, Arabian Nights glaze, deep blue, aquamarine overspray, marked, 6 1/2 inches, $25.
Irish silver serving spoon, cut-out fish, pierced stars, engraved scrollwork, Dublin, 12 1/4 inches, $375.
Drink Hires sign, two ladies drinking with straws, tin, self-frame, about 1915, 19 by 23 inches, $510.
Tiffany pen, ballpoint, bamboo style, 14K yellow gold, signed, blue box, 4 1/4 inches, $530.
Chinese Export pottery bowl, Famille Rose, arms of Box impaling Smith, bouquets, about 1880, 12 1/4 inches, $600.
Federal style desk, mahogany, two tambour doors, four drawers, about 1950, 48 by 36 inches, $750.
Worcester porcelain urn, lid, Irish landscape reserves, hexagonal, gilt dolphin handles, about 1850, 18 3/4 in., pair, $1,625.
Paddy riding pig toy, tin lithograph, windup, Lehmann, 1920s, 5 1/2 inches, $1,780.
George III knife box, mahogany, slant lid, cross banded, England, about 1790, 15 by 12 inches, pair, $2,125.
Tortoiseshell binoculars, gilt bronze, Carpenter & Westley, England, 1835-1914, 5 by 4 inches, $2,705.