Whenever we conduct an estate sale, we always come across something - that one unique item - that makes us scratch our head with dumbfounded curiosity. Yes, we are appraisers. Yes, we deal in antiques and collectibles on a regular bases and consider ourselves generally knowledgeable. But there are times when we are genuinely stumped and have to hit the books to determine what we have.
This time, we came across a wooden stick with sterling tips on either end (stamped Reed & Barton on one end, and the words "Run For Your Life" on the other). This stick measures approximately 15.4" long.
There were many guesses in our camp at what it could be....a riding crop...a baton for conducting...an officer's crop....etc. Many guesses, but that's what they were, just guesses.
After a bit of research, we found out that this is a Victorian jogging stick. These were only manufactured for a couple of years, and were used to fend off stray dogs that would nip at runners (in the Victorian era, leash laws were not enforced and dogs - domestic and otherwise - would run wild). If a runner encountered an overly curious dog on his outing, he would bop the dog on the nose with the stick.
This is a great job....You learn something new every day!