Antique Cast Iron Still Bank Billiken Good Luck Golden Color & Red Hat AC Williams USA
Description: Antique cast iron still penny bank. It is cast in the form of an elf-like person with pointed ears. The character has mischievous smile and a tuft of hair on his pointed head. His arms are short and he is sitting with his legs stretched out in front of him. This is the Billiken charm invented and patented by Florence Pretz of St. Louis, Missouri. Owning a Billiken doll was considered to bring good luck to the owner. The bank is colored in faded gold coloring and has remnants of red coloring on the head. It has the word Billiken engraved on the base in the front of the piece and the words Good Luck on the base in the back. It is also marked with the patent number 39583 (or something like that, but we are unable to fully make it out) on the Billiken's back. See page 67, bank No. 74, of Andy and Susan Moore's book "The Penny Bank Book; Collecting Still Banks" Published by Schiffer Books, of Exton, PA in 1984 for a similar example made by AC Williams. We have opened the bank and found no markings on the inside, instead we found running gold coloring on the interior of the bank as well as the screw indicating the entire piece is authentic and all original including the screw (see the last two photos). The bank has the coin slot on the back of the creature right below the neck. Please carefully review the pictures presented as they are part and parcel of our description.
Origin: Purchased in Berks County, Pennsylvania, USA. The bank was made in the USA.
Size: Measures approximately 4 1/8" in height, and measures approximately 2 3/8" by 2 3/8" at the base, while the piece weighs ~15 ounces.
Maker: AC Williams.
Marks: Unmarked as to the maker but has the words "PATENT No 39583?" (we are not certain of the number) in raised lettering on the back.
Distinguishing Characteristics - Most Interesting About The Piece: Very nice and uncommon bank in good condition. For a similar example see page 67, bank number 74, in Andy and Susan Moore's Book "The Penny Bank Book; Collecting Still Banks, Published by the Schiffer Publishing Company in 1984. Definitely a nice piece, it is rather heavy and weighs almost 1 pounds and is all original. It is a well made piece and would make an excellent addition to your still penny banks collection.
Condition: Bank is in good condition with no repairs or breaks. It retains some of its original paint and has considerable wear and loss of coloring, however, it is all original. Please see photos for additional condition information.