Cast Iron Figures and Banks

We’ve posted about our cast iron figures many times. To see other posts, VISIT HERE.

Cast Iron Banks

Several of our cast-iron figures are actually banks. Great way to encourage a little saver to collect those coins found on the sidewalk!

The lion is a cast iron bank. The others are outstanding cast iron paperweights or perfect for a shelf!
Cast iron dog figures. The one on the right is also a bank.
cast iron cow
Closer detail of the fox and the lion cast iron figures
Are these just the cutest cast iron dog figurines!

Here, at Bahoukas Antiques, we have a wonderfully diverse collection of cast iron figures that also include mechanical banks and huge door knockers. Some are vintage and very collectible, while others are reproductions. All of them are beautiful! Stop in soon. Yeppir, we’ll be watchin’ for ya!

Cast Iron Pots

assortment of cast iron pans at Bahoukas in Havre de Grace
A selection of cast iron skillets and more at Bahoukas

The History of Cast Iron Cookware

The first known use of cast iron cookware was during the Han Dynasty in China, around 220 A.D. Casting techniques became widespread in Europe by the 16th century, and since then, this versatile equipment has been a staple in households all over the world. In 1707, Abraham Darby patented the sand casting method, which is similar to the way we make cast iron today. Because of Darby’s contribution, the 18th and 19th centuries saw a boom in cast iron cookware. Cast iron pots and pans were so important to daily life that in his book, The Wealth of Nations, Adam Smith says they were worth more than gold. Cast iron cookware saw a decline in the 20th century as other cooking materials like aluminum grew in popularity.

from WebRestaurantStore.com

Many pieces that seem too difficult to clean-up may be handled with several soakings in vinegar. That and other suggestions are in the following video.

A very informative video re cast iron pans

We have several cast iron cooking/baking pieces that will be great in your home, at the hunting lodge, or to use on your campfire!

Cast iron cookware has been around forever, and it isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. If you want to get in on this trend, follow these tips and you’ll be whipping up pan-seared steaks and skillet cornbread in no time.

from WebRestaurantStore.com
Cast Iron Muffin/Biscuits and more

Stop into Bahoukas Antique Mall today and see if we have a cast iron piece that just might be what you’ve been looking for.

And yes, you know we’ll be watchin’ for ya!

Cast Iron Banks & Figures

… always an intriguing collectible

Cast Iron Banks and Figures

Rise of the middle class…

Mechanical banks were first manufactured in the late 1800s, as the middle class emerged and grew in prosperity during the Industrial Revolution. Hence, the concept of earning and saving money became more and more important, particularly as a value to impart to children. At the same time, Victorian Era tinkerers were experimenting with mechanical technology, including spring-driven and windup devices.

The era also saw a shift in how toys were made. Originally crafted out of wood and cloth, more and more toys were fabricated out of cast-iron and mass-produced in factories, giving their adult creators a chance to express their commentaries on daily life.

fromCollectorsWeekly

At Bahoukas, we have a variety of antique and reproduction cast iron figures and banks. Stop in to see us and add one to your collection. Absolutely, we’ll be watchin’ for ya!

Cast Iron Door Knockers

and their interesting history

… the history of door knockers begins several thousand years ago in Ancient Greece.

Greeks were a bit picky about unannounced visits to their dwellings, and it was considered a breach of etiquette to enter without warning.


Where Spartans would simply shout their arrival, the more sophisticated Athenians preferred to use a door knocker.

from Five Minute History

Doors had replaced hangings to provide better safety and privacy, and upper-class Greeks had slaves whose sole purpose was to answer the door.


It’s a bit like having a butler, but one that was chained to the door to prevent them wandering off. If they didn’t die of boredom, they’d fall asleep, and so to wake them up, visitors rapped the door with a short bar of iron attached to a chain.


from Five Minute History

It wasn’t long before some Greeks realized the short bar made a good weapon with which to attack the householder. So property owners fought back with new technology.


The knocker evolved into a heavy ring fastened to the door by a plate—dual purpose knocker and handle!


from Five Minute History


One of the most enduring themes for knockers has been the lion’s head.
Traditionally regarded as the king of beasts, the lion’s head symbolizes bravery, nobility, strength, and valor.


Lion’s head knockers were popular in the American colonies up until the revolution when the Eagle took precedence.


from Five Minute History

So we encourage you to visit Bahoukas and take a peek at these wonderful cast iron door knockers.

They’re really fun and will most certainly have your guests stop and enjoy! Yep, we’ll be watchin’ for ya!

Tools for the Season

These cast iron kettles are a size 4 and 8. The larger is a Jos Bell & Co.

Heat On? Fireplaces Working?

It’s the season where we begin to crank up the heat. Along with the warm and cozy fireplaces and pellet stoves or even just the welcome heat from your furnace, dry air starts to affect our comfort. Many folks love to put a kettle of water on the stove and let it add a bit of humidity to create a more comfortable – and healthy – home!

These two kettles are definitely up to the task. Come see them for yourself. We also have a number of other cast iron items waiting for you to consider.

Might You Be A Hunter?

Electric Wellsaw model 400 for cutting meat – from the 1950s

Along with cooler temps, it’s also hunting season. This 1950 Wellsaw model 400 electric saw is for cutting meat. It does work.

You know, here at Bahoukas Antique Mall and Beer MuZeum, you just never know what our ‘collector of collections’ might have in the shop. So hurry in and enjoy a look back while considering how you might use these very collections to make your life forward a bit easier or more fun.

Yep, we’re here – ready to help you find the most unique of holiday gifts. And we’re watchin’ for ya!

What do cigars, shoes, and sausage have in common?

Great Vintage Tools

Cobbler’s Cast Iron Shoe Repair Stands

This set of cobbler’s shoe repair stands would make a very interesting display in the right setting.

Sausage Press/Juice Press

This press has been painted, but it’s really beautiful!

This press isn’t exactly the one we have, but you get the idea.
It’s also been powder-coated for durability and looks amazing!

A unique cigar press

A small cast iron cigar press.

How’s it Done?
Creating cigars, as you may know, is a process that takes months and even years. After our sweet tobacco leaves are primed from the fields, they are sorted, cured, fermented, sorted again, and bunched. It is here that we differ from the regular cigar and get into box-press. Once ‘bunched’, the filler is rolled in its binder; a standard cigar will be pressed into shape in a mold and this will be its final shape. The molds are stacked sometimes 25 high for an allotted time. The stacking allows for pressure to be distributed evenly. From here the cigar is trimmed and paired with its wrapper. Where box-pressing differs is the compression methods used to make the iconic square shape. Box-pressing is only ever done on a stronger leaf; a broadleaf wrapper is far too delicate to withstand the pressing process.

Standard Box-Pressing
This method is very similar to pressing your regular cigar. Once the screaming newborn stogie has its wrapper, it’s snugly placed in its box, while multiple boxes are stacked and placed on a manually controlled press with just enough pressure to form a tight seal and avoid breakage.

from Famous-Smoke.com
How and why to box press a cigar

So as you see, here at Bahoukas Antique Mall, you just never know what you’ll find. Stop by soon and see these unique vintage tools for yourself. Great collectibles, unique items, and definitely conversation starters! Yep, we’ll be watchin’ for ya!

Yes, we have ‘critters’

Well, we’re not the Farm Fair but …

This little piggy … is CAST IRON

We have some wonderful critters to decorate your home or even your office! This piggy bank is cast iron and probably at least a foot long. What a great way to keep that door open and let the cool breeze in while having a great place to put all that loose change!

Mary had a little lamb… and so did Bahoukas!
Lifesize kitty cat … don’t you just love it!

The lamb, geese, and cat are ceramic. But oh, so cute! Surely there’s a special little space that one or two would work perfectly!

The dog is cast iron. We have a wide variety of cast iron pieces for shelf or floor, as well as some doorstoppers.

The cast iron heron is perfecting for our area. But, then again, anyone who loves herons will find the perfect spot for it. Have a water view from your home? This would be a wonderful addition to your decor. Wish you had a water view? This wonderful statue could help remind you of the joy you feel when you’re near the water.

Just a sampling of the fun items you’ll find at Bahoukas Antique Mall & Beer MuZeum in Havre de Grace, MD. Stop in and discover a perfect collectible from the ‘Collector of Collections.’ Yep, we’ll be watchin’ for ya!

When Pigs Fly?

You’ve heard that, right? It’s called an adynation!

The phrase “when pigs fly” (alternatively, “pigs might fly”) is an adynaton—a figure of speech so hyperbolic that it describes an impossibility. The implication of such a phrase is that the circumstances in question (the adynaton, and the circumstances to which the adynaton is being applied) will never occur.  from Wikipedia

cast iron flying pig at Bahoukas in Havre de Grace

We have a fairly large variety of vintage and reproduction cast iron pieces, including our “FLYING PIG!”

Use these hefty fellows as a doorstop, by your fireplace, or just a fun decoration and conversation piece. Here are a couple more pics:

reproduction cast iron figures at Bahoukas Antique Mall

Along with these great reproduction cast iron pieces, you’ll find a number of vintage and collectible cast iron items.

Reproduction cast iron pig at Havre de Grace Bahoukas

It couldn’t be any more fun than this! So drop by Bahoukas Antique Mall and choose your favorite from our vintage and reproduction collections of cast iron figures. Yessiree, we’ll be watchin’ for ya!

Day 17 – 44 Gift Giving Ideas from Bahoukas

CAST IRON FARM ANIMALS

sampling of collectible cast iron farm animals

Cast iron farm animals may be truly vintage and collectible – or reproductions. Above is a ‘flying pig’, a boy milking a cow, a pig, rooster, buffalo and a horse. We have many other collectible/vintage/and reproduction cast iron pieces from beautiful mermaids to Black Americana pieces, huge lighthouse doorstop to mechanical banks.

So for the collector on your gift list, or a unique gift for the farm-loving child, we have some very intriguing cast iron figures. Stop by Bahoukas Antique Mall to browse our 9,000 sq ft overflowing with unique ideas for gift giving! We’ll be watchin’ for ya!

Lunch Boxes and School Desks

A bit of Lunch Box History

Dads carried metal tins with lunch to their jobs in the coal mines and factories. Of course, it wasn’t long before their children wanted to copy their dads.

… the first commercial lunch boxes, which resembled metal picnic baskets decorated with scenes of playing children, came out in 1902.

from Smithsonian Magazine

The first lunch box decorated with a famous licensed character was introduced in 1935. Produced by Geuder, Paeschke & Frey, it featured Mickey Mouse, and was a four-color lithographed oval tin, with a pull-out tray inside. It had no vacuum bottle, but did have a handle.

In 1950, Aladdin Industries created the first children’s lunch box based on a television show, Hopalong Cassidy. The Hopalong Cassidy lunch kit, or “Hoppy”, quickly became Aladdin’s cash cow. Debuting in time for back-to-school 1950, it would go on to sell 600,000 units in its first year alone, each at US$2.39. In 1953, Roy Rogers and Dale Evans were featured on models introduced by American Thermos.

from Wikipedia
lunch boxes of metal and plastic at Bahoukas
Huge collection of decorated lunchboxes in plastic and metal

Many of the latest additions are complete with thermoses as well. Do stop in and check it out. They are a great last-minute gift for a child in your life – or your favorite collector. Remember, not just great for lunch, but fun for picnics, playing, keeping treasures, and more.

School Desks

Wooden school desk, cast iron base, lid lifts to a cubby for storing paper and books
Beautiful wooden and cast iron school desk.

The above desk is in beautiful condition. We also have another as pictured below:

wood school desk with cast iron base, lid lifts up for a cubby that can hold books and papers
Another beautiful wood school desk.

Another choice is this wood desk:

The front of the desk had the bench for the desk that sat in front of it

1881: The Fashion School Desk

The First Model

The first school desk was made in 1880 by John D. Loughlin in Sidney, Ohio. The desk, known as “The Fashion Desk,” proved to be extremely popular across the country. The practicality of the desks allowed for many to be put together in a one room schoolhouse, and the fashion aspect of it was aesthetically pleasing to those in the education industry. Loughlin’s marketing campaign also helped to sell these desks, which would eventually sweep the nation. The “Fashion Desks” were desks attached to one another and were big enough to seat two or three children. Usually, there was an inkwell so that the student could replenish his pen’s supply.

from TheClassroom.com

The Sidney School Furniture Company, located in Sidney, Ohio, began manufacturing the popular “Fashion” school desk in 1881. Advertising for the desk claimed, “No desk in the market is made with more care, nor of better materials than the ‘Fashion,’ and none has met with a more popular reception, or gives better satisfaction.” The desk featured a Patent T-head, which eliminated screws and bolts by joining the wood of the top, back, and seat to the legs, which were made of cast iron.

from EdTechMagazine.com
old wooden school chair with writing pad

Old School Chair

… with writing pad. These are solid and have a shelf on the bottom to place books and bags.

So whether it’s a lunchbox or a school desk, we can add a last-minute ‘surprise’ to your holiday gift-giving. Hurry in. We’re watchin’ for ya so that we can help you with your last-minute searches. Don’t forget, we DO CLOSE for Christmas Day and New Years Day. (Give us a call to be sure we didn’t leave early on the eve of both!) Happy Holidays!

Do You Collect Toby Jugs?

Just What IS A Toby Jug?

A Toby Jug is a figural ceramic jug. Each jug is molded in the shape of a notable character. Historically, Toby Jugs feature a hearty man holding a mug in one hand and sporting a tricorn hat. His hat doubles as a pouring spout. Each character is outfitted in typical period fashions.

from TrueLegacyHomes.com
Royal Doulton Toby Mugs and Jugs
Royal Doulton Toby Mugs and Jugs

From the same source as above, we learn that there are Toby Jugs, Toby Mugs, and Toby Character Jugs.

Toby Jugs: A Toby Jug is a figural jug that depicts a character’s entire body. Original Toby Jugs showed a seated man, sporting a tricorn hat, puffing on a pipe, and holding a mug of ale. Toby Jugs also must have a spout, designating that it’s used to pour a liquid.

Toby Mugs: A Toby Mug is a Toby Jug that doesn’t have a spout. Without a spout, it’s used for drinking, so it’s a mug.

Character Jug: A Character Jug is a jug that only displays a character’s bust (head, face, and sometimes shoulders).

from TrueLegacyHomes.com

Toby Jug or Philpot (Fillpot)

What’s in a name?

There are competing theories for the origin of the name “Toby Jug”. One is that it was named after the intoxicated, jovial character of Sir Toby Belch in Shakespeare’s play Twelfth Night.  Another is that it was named after a notorious 18th-century Yorkshire drinker, Henry Elwes, who was known as “Toby Fillpot” (or Philpot), who was mentioned in an old English drinking song The Brown Jug, the popular verses of which were first published in 1761.

from Wikipedia
Selection of Royal Doulton Mugs and Jugs
Royal Doulton Mugs and Jugs

This fine collection just recently arrived at Bahoukas Antiques and Beer MuZeum. Now that you know ‘more of the story,’ you may want to add a couple to your own collections or gift as a gift.

The history of the Royal Doulton Company is intriguing in its own right. They manufactured ceramic sewage pipes, toilets, taps, and cast iron baths. But they later manufactured architectural stoneware. It’s a most interesting company. Read more about Royal Doulton by clicking here.

Of course, with this knowledge, we encourage you to stop in and take a peek at this collection. And yes, we’ll be watchin’ for ya.

Recycle-Repurpose-Kitchen Utensils

Are you serious about reusing items to keep them out of landfills? Many items in antique stores, besides adding to a collection or being a wonderful decorating item, are also quite useful.

Kitchen Utensils to Repurpose!

Look at this photo of one wall of kitchen items that could easily enjoy another few years of purpose.

Just one wall of great kitchen utensils that could be used today!
Rolling pins from days of yore available at Bahoukas

We also have

… rolling pins, cake dishes, pie tins, and cast iron pans to name just a few easily repurposed.

So many great ideas…

Cast iron pans

It’s well worth a visit to Bahoukas Antique Mall to see if we might have ‘just the item you need.’ If you need a link for other ideas, CLICK HERE. You’ll find dozens of items you probably never would think to look for at Bahoukas. Of course, we’re always watchin’ for ya!

Mothers Day Idea #1

This Sunday is Mother’s Day. We have plenty of collectibles to show Mom how great she is. But this week, we’ll give some different ideas.

cast iron dogs - vintage - Bahoukas in Havre de Grace

Today we’re presenting these vintage Cast Iron dogs. Originals. Fun and very collectible.

Do you think Mom might like one of these? Stop in soon… Mother’s day is approaching quickly. Remember, we have 9,000 sq ft of the greatest Collection of Collections to choose from.

And yes, we WILL be watchin’ for ya!

Kisses, Cherry Pits, and Video Games

Just what might these have in common?

Kissing figurines, cherry pitter, and video games - make for some fun treasures at Bahoukas Antiques

Well, they may not have much in common. But they are a great example of the variety of treasures you might find at Bahoukas Antique Mall. According to holidayinsights.com, International Kissing Day is today, July 6th. Kisses can be anything from a peck on the check to those long, toe-tingling lovers’ smooches. If you just want to celebrate with a little gift, check out these cute little oriental figurines ‘smooching.’ Don’t they just make you smile? Oh, come on, just a little bit!

Tomorrow, July 7, is Cherry Pit Spitting Day. Who knew! Here’s the history from: Holiday Insights

Date When Celebrated : First Saturday of July

In 1974, Herb Teichman of Eau Claire, MI.held a cherry pit spitting tournament as a joke, at a picnic. It was a real hit, and has been held annually since that very first tournament in 1974. Little did Teichman know at the time, that this would become an annual event, and spark the creation of International Cherry Pit Spitting Day .

The timing for this holiday on the first Saturday in July is perfect, as the cherries are ripe. As we hold Fourth of July and summer picnics, fresh cherries are available in abundance.

Are you looking to break the record? Well, you’d better start practicing. The world record  for cherry pit spitting is 100′ 4″ !!

Celebrate this special day by holding or participating in a cherry pit spitting contest.

About the date: Herb Teichman, the originator to the Cherry Pit Spitting contest, set the first Saturday in July for this annual event. There are some references to this day always being on July 7th. This is erroneous. It is not a fixed date.

This amazing cast iron cherry ‘pitter’ is waiting for the champion ‘spitter’ to use to create his/her arsenal. (Now isn’t that a tongue-twister!) Have fun!

Then on Sunday, July 8, we have Video Games Day! 

Video Games Day – always on July 8th

National Video Games Day – always on September 12th

Video Games Day celebrates popular video games that stormed onto the market, and changed the way your kids play games. From Atari to Nintendo to Xbox, video games provide all too many hours of playing time on your television set.

In grandma and grandpa’s day, they had stick horses for toys and playtime. Todays kids (big kids and little kids) have an enormous array of video games to play. Before you get tired of one game, another one hits the market.

Our extensive research into this special day discovered two separately distinct dates. Also, both dates for this special day refer to it as Video Games Day and National Video Games Day. Based upon our research results, we give the edge to September 12th as National Video Games Day. Lucky gamer that you are, you get to celebrate two video games days.

Celebrate  National Video Games Day by playing video games. If you are off from school (or if you are a big kid off from work), make this a marathon day for video games. Better still, invite a few friends and hold a competition. Just make certain that you have enough controllers.    … Holiday Insights

And yes, for today’s celebration, Bahoukas has a variety of those pre-historic…. errr… historic video games you know and loved in decades past. Stop by and browse.

Don’t forget it’s also our “CHRISTMAS in JULY” sale with 20% off EVERYthing in the store. So stop in soon… browse for your treasures. Yep, we’ll be watchin’ for ya!

The Details Matter

Figural Bottle Openers Actually Have Rules!

Bahoukas has a fine collection of figural bottle openers.

The above openers are from left to right: a reproduction cast iron goat and a 4-eyed, a 1940s Syroco horsehead, old cast iron drunk-on-a-pole, parrot and the seagull (on the right). A brass “donkey” and a Coca Cola wall mounted opener are included.

According to the site of the Figural Bottle Opener: they established the characteristics of these collectibles as follows:

At the first collector convention, members established the criteria for a figural bottle opener.

It must be a figure designed for the sole purpose of opening a bottle.

It must be three dimensional on both sides.

It must be free standing or wall mounted.

The part that actually lifts the bottle cap should be an integral part of the figure.

Some openers do not meet the last criterion, but have gained club acceptance because they were included in the original catalogues of well-known opener manufacturers. Most figural openers are made of painted cast iron or aluminum. The hook may be hidden in a piece of shrubbery or be part of a beak, tail or mouth.

Stop by and see this unique assortment of figural bottle openers. Of course, you’ll have to browse a few of our hundred other collections. And you know we’ll be watchin’ for ya!

Pygg Pots to Piggy Banks

Ever Wonder How the Piggy Bank Got Its Name?

The piggy bank’s history goes back to the Middle Ages. Check out this interesting trivia!

Believe it or not, the basic piggy bank used to be far more than just a childhood relic. The concept of stashing cash in hollowed objects has been around for nearly six centuries – before banks themselves were even dreamt up.
from Business Insider

Pygg pots to piggy banks - fun at Bahoukas Antiques

Bahoukas Antique Mall in Havre de Grace has a delightful collection of banks – yes, including ‘piggy banks!’ Left to right they include: a mechanical cowboy souvenir bank from Havre de Grace First National Bank & Trust (not for sale), a J. Chein tin bank that says “Happy Days Bank,” a glass piggy bank (I remember these!), a large chalk ceramic Piggy Bank, an advertising piece – Sinclair Dinosaur Bank, a glass ‘fox’ bank that originally had drink flavoring in it, U.S. Mail box cast iron bank from the 1920s, and a 1930s cast iron piggy bank!

Mahapahit piggy bank from National Museum of Indonesia, JakartaAlong with the amazing history of the Pygg Pot, we share the desciption below:

Pygg is an orange colored clay commonly used during the Middle Ages as a cheap material for pots to store money, called pygg pots or pygg jars.[3] There is dispute as to whether “pygg” was simply a dialectal variant of “pig.”[4] By the 18th century, the term “pig jar” had evolved to “pig bank”.[5] As earthenware was supplanted by other materials, such as glassplaster, and plastic, the name gradually began to refer specifically to the shape of the bank, instead of what was used to make it.  fromWikipedia

So, tell the truth, did YOU know how piggy banks got their name? As we keep sharing, you just never know what you’ll see and learn when you stop by Bahoukas Antique Mall and Beer MuZeum in Havre de Grace. As you know, we’ll be watchin’ for ya!

Think Warm!

COLD? brrrrr…

Beautiful Hoosier cupboard and Fire King Stove - both available at Bahoukas in Havre de Grace

This is the time of year we peruse our garden catalogs and consider how we might want to update our homes. As we huddle in our living rooms to stay warm, our thoughts go to projects for Spring.

We thought this might be a perfect time to highlight the gorgeous Fire King Stove and Hoosier Cabinet and the other kitchen accessories in our front window. The Hoosiers is a 1920s oak cabinet with an enamel top. Made by Sellers of Elwood, IN. It has a flour bin and bread box. Beautiful condition.

The 1920s Fire King Stove/oven combo was made in Baltimore and yes, it works! On the shelf above the oven, you’ll notice an electric, table-top washing machine.

On the Hoosier sitting on top is a sausage or fruit press (the black item). On the wall is a coffee grinder and a drying rack. On the enamel top of the Hoosier are cast iron items that include a matches holder, pancake maker, ice scraper and lemon squeezer. There’s a cast iron toast holder, various utensils, dishes, wonderful pottery bowls and old tins, plus  a yellow egg basket.

Just looking at the photo seems to make us feel warmer. Stop in and take a peek for yourself. We’ll be watchin’ for ya!