Saturday, February 12, 2011

Felt So Good To Learn About This Steiff "Rolling Rover"

The dark and dreary winter around here continues to roll on, and on and on.  So you can only imagine Steiffgal's delight when she received this joyful inquiry about a beloved family dog on wheels.  It truly was a "ray of light" on an otherwise totally grey day.  Through a series of emails, Frank from Berlin, Germany writes...


I have what I believe to be a very nice old Steiff Dachshund on wheels.  He is made from felt and about 22 cm long.  The dachshund has a Steiff button in his ear, and under the button you can see the remains of a white flag. The coat has no moth holes and the wheels still work without problems.

I suspect the dachshund is from the period between 1923 and 1926, as that is the time frame my grandma got paid.

I have done a little research on him and found a picture of him in a catalog called "The Universal Toy Catalog of 1924" which was published in 1926. This Dachshund can be seen on page 186 and is noted as "Perro-Basset, brown felt, 1117ex or 1122ex number."

Can you give me more details about this beautiful specimen? I would also be interested in learning its approximate value.  
Attached are some photos and thanks in advance for your efforts.

With best wishes from sunny Berlin :-)


Wow, this is certainly the "wheel deal" when it comes to rolling (Steiff) Rovers!  What Frank has is called Hoppel Dackel or Hopping Dachschund.  And he does just that... because he is mounted on "eccentric wheels", he appears to waddle along as he is pulled.  That is because the axis points on his wheels is are not centered - on purpose. Dackel is is standing on all fours, and made from brown felt.  His simple but very sweet and expressive face is detailed with a black embroidered nose and black and brown pupil eyes.  He is mounted on a metal frame carriage which is supported by four chunky green painted wooden wheels. When he left the factory in Giengen, he had a leather collar around his neck and a pull cord attached to the front of his carriage; it is hard to tell from the pictures if his current collar and pull cord are original.  Hoppel Dackel was made in three sizes:  17, 20, and 22 cm and was produced from 1912 through 1943.

Dog-gonnit, is there any way to narrow down his date of manufacture?  Steiffgal's gonna throw you a bone on this one.  Frank notes that the dog has the traces of a white ear tag under his button.  Steiff used a number of different versions of a white ear from 1905 through 1926.  If you overlay that time frame with his 1912 through 1943 production timeline, that skinnies down his production to between 1912 and 1926.  Given Frank's estimate that he came into the family in the early to mid 1920's, it would make sense that he was mostly likely made in the very early 1920's - perhaps 1920 or 1921. 

In terms of value, as always, Steiffgal is not a formal appraiser and believes something is worth what someone will pay.  Dachshunds are classic and beloved Steiff patterns; they are well represented in the Steiff line as they were a favorite breed of the Steiff family.  A somewhat similar item sold recently at the October, 2010 Christie's auction in London.  The final price was around $800, which seemed a little low based on its excellent condition and the fact that it came with an original leather collar studded with fourteen FF buttons. Given today's marketplace, it is Steiffgal's best estimate that Frank's bobbing buddy is valued in the in the $750 to $1,500 price range.

Steiffgal hopes this discussion on Frank's darling Dachshund has been a moving experience for you.

Have a question about one of your Steiff treasures? Let's talk! Click here to learn more. 

1 comment:

  1. I LOVED this article. I would not have guessed Steiff at first glance. What a treasure. I'm so glad it has stayed in it's family....wonderful.


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