Auctions, Tin Toys, Trains — July 1, 2011 at 12:08 am

A Remarkable Secret Collection

BY ROLAND DIGILIO

As a collector you may have been told of some secret collection, one that very few people have seen, but is supposed to be a huge collection full of rarities. I would like to tell you of my experience with just such a collection and how this collection came into existence over a period of fifty years.

I first met Jerry Greene at the semi annual York Pennsylvania toy train show in the mid 1990s. At first I noticed that whenever I was watching someone unpacking and setting up with the types of things that I collect, Jerry was also there. I asked a friend who Jerry was and he told me his name and that he had an immense collection that only a very few people had ever seen. As years went by I would talk to Jerry at the shows, first going through the “what do you collect?” questions, and finally getting to the point where we would ask each other “what did you find this time?” It was obvious that Jerry had a great deal of knowledge on all manufacturers of toy train accessories, and if I found something I was not sure of, I could ask Jerry and he could give me details about it. At one point we stopped by my car so that I could show him an accessory that I had bought, and while there I gave him a photo album of my collection to look through.

When he was done he asked if I would like to see some photos of his collection. I replied that I would and we went over to his car and I proceeded to look through four or five photo albums of what was obviously a remarkably large collection, probably the largest I had ever seen, full of amazingly rare items of the “only one known” and “one of three known” type.

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