A toy 7520 John Deere tractor brought the top price at a recent auction of JD toys and memorabilia at Peoria, Ill. The toy tractor, complete with a 220 disk (new in the box) sold for $875.
The auction represented a collection of more than 600 Deere-related items collected by Richard and Mary Streitmatter between 1970 and 1997, when they operated Streitmatter Implement near Brimfield, Ill. When the couple ordered toys to sell at their business, they routinely set aside two of each. Most of those pieces were still in the original box; some were still bound with the original strapping tape.
The Streitmatters also saved company awards, promotional materials, and other items. As a result, the auction featured few "old" items, but an almost complete line of post-1970 toys.
Auction highlights: An 8960 Denver tractor, new in the box, $625; 7520 tractor with air cleaner, new in the box, $625; industrial JD 445C pedal tractor, new in the box, $550; a German Roily 3650 pedal tractor with loader, boxed, $475 (identical item, partially assembled, $400); 3020 tractor in a box featuring a boy's face (box in fair condition), $300.
The rarest item to sell was a gold anvil bank, new in the box. Dealers qualified to receive this gold item by selling a large quantity of non-gold anvil banks. Said to be one of less than five known to exist, it sold for $375.
Two gold sulky plows, commemorating the 1995 Expo in St. Louis, sold for $90 each. A gold Bain tractor sold for $200, and a gold Type C motor car (dated 1993) sold for $70. All gold items were replicas of non-gold shelf models. A collector's edition Waterloo Boy, new in the box, sold for $17.50; Hawkeye truck hauling a Waterloo Boy tractor, new in the box, $12.50.
Among the older items, a JD A tractor with a man on the seat (good condition) sold for $90.
Ertl Precision toys, known for their detail, drew considerable interest. An A tractor with 200 series cultivator (new in the box) sold for $375; A tractor, alone (new in the box), $200.
Items distributed exclusively to dealers included a counter display for the Customer Protection Plan (with poster, handouts and a pair of bears), $100; 140 tractor desk set, used as a dealer award (new in the box), $170; Louisville Slugger bat with JD logo, $110; and a cardboard stand-up of a boy, dog and JD toy, $125.
Approximately 190 bidders from several midwestern states attended the sale, and telephone bids came from throughout the U.S. and England.
The auction was conducted by Aumann Auctions, Nokomis, Ill. FC