Q:

How do you identify antique lamps?

A:

Quick Answer

When identifying an antique lamp, consumers may need to determine the history, age and period of the lamp to assess its historical relevance. This can be done by examining the lighting fixture for casting or foundry marks, which are believed to have been used by the installer to identify the parts and avoid duplication. Casting marks are often numbers and symbols and help distinguish originals from reproductions.

Know More

Full Answer

Examine the base of the lamp. Tiffany Studios, a renowned maker of lamps during the early 1900s, always made lamps with a bronze base. An antique bronze base would reveal a golden brass color if scraped using a fingernail or a metal screwdriver. If it shows a reddish gleam, it is most likely copper. Most manufacturers also place nameplates, stamps or a sticker at the bottom of the lamp.

The condition of the cord and plug also reveals if the lamp was manufactured during the first half of the 1900s. Check if the cord is covered in cloth or cotton and if the plug is open at the end with the screws showing. This should indicate that the wires and the plug are old. If the wiring looks new, the previous owner could have replaced it.

Check the head and the glass of the lamp. Knock it lightly; age and the drying of the wax used to hold the glass together should falter a bit and the shade should rattle a little. It is important to check both the base and shade of the lamp and not to assume that they came as a pair.

Learn more about Antiques

Related Questions

  • Q:

    Where can I find antique eagle oil lamps?

    A:

    An antique Eagle oil lamp can often be found at auctions sites such as Ebay. Another online shop that offers a collection of vintage Eagle oil lamps is Etsy. Some antique dealers, such as The Other Side Antiques, sell Eagle lamps when they are available.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How do you identify an antique Sadler teapot?

    A:

    The early Sadler teapots were "Brown Betty" style, tall and shaped more like a coffee pot with possibly a marking found on the bottom. For a Sadler teapot made between 1899 and 1937, there will be an impressed mark that reads "ENGLAND JSSB." For a Sadler teapot made after 1937, there could be an impressed or printed mark that reads "SADLER BURSLEM ENGLAND."

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How do you identify an antique stoneware crock?

    A:

    Antique stoneware crocks have marks and symbols that collectors can use to trace the origins. From geometric shapes to symbols from nature, these marks are as varied as the pieces they identify. Words or initials are also common forms of stoneware identification.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How do I identify an antique sword?

    A:

    The sword must be regarded as a functional piece of weaponry instead of an antique, according to the My Armoury site. Recognizing the style of a sword places it at a certain point in history. The design of the blade is of primary importance, opposed to the hilt: This is because a blade can be fitted with a hilt from another period in history.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore