Auctions, Banks — October 1, 2015 at 12:00 am

Bertoia’s Oct. 3 Clive Devenish antique bank collection

Kyser & Rex Roller Skating cast-iron mechanical bank, circa 1880, one of the finest examples known, near-mint condition, est. $150,000-$175,000.
Kyser & Rex Roller Skating cast-iron mechanical bank, circa 1880, one of the finest examples known, near-mint condition, est. $150,000-$175,000.

Few knew of the respected dealer’s ‘private reserve’ containing immaculate banks with provenance from the earliest, most revered collections, some dating back to the 1930s

VINELAND, N.J. – In California, the term “private reserve” usually refers to wine of particularly high quality – often a type that has aged over a long period of time. It also describes to a ‘T’ the Clive Devenish bank collection, whose contents have “aged” serenely for decades in their owner’s various California homes. Undoubtedly one of the all-time great bank collections, it also stands out as being one of the least publicized, known to few in the hobby. That will change on Saturday, October 3rd, when Bertoia’s presents at auction Part I of the Clive Devenish collection of mechanical, still, tin and spelter banks. All forms of bidding will be available, including live via the Internet.

“Clive’s banks are going to astound collectors, not only because of their rarity and fabulous condition but also their provenance,” said Bertoia Auctions associate Rich Bertoia. “Clive was able to buy banks from the heirs of several legendary early collectors, including Ferdinand Wieder, Leon Cameto and Hall Henry. He also has banks that were formerly in the Stan Sax, Edwin Mosler, Bill Norman, and Stephen and Marilyn Steckbeck collections.” Bertoia said some of the banks were initially added to collections in the 1930s and only changed hands twice over the next 85 years, explaining their exceptionally fresh condition.

Devenish also bought through his own local network of bank enthusiasts. He recalled: “I knew other collectors around California during the 1980s, and consequently I was able to purchase several collections, including those of Charles Klappert from La Jolla, in 1986; and Morley Golden from San Diego, in 1987. Golden’s collection already had a pedigree, since it included many banks purchased from Hubert Whiting of Rancho Bernardo.”

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