After trains, mechanical antique banks are perhaps the most avidly pursued of all the antique toys collected. The most collectible remain those antique banks that where produced in cast iron from around 1870 to 1908Ã¢â�¬â��over three hundred different types of antique banks were produced during that period.
One factor that adds to their interest in that many were manufactured with an eye toward adults as well as children (the Ã¢â�¬Å�TammanyÃ¢â�¬Â� bank, for instance). As a result, prices for antique banks are highÃ¢â�¬â��and they were high long before any of the other toys were thought to be collector items.
With such valuable items, the problem of counterfeiting arises, and care is strongly urged in the purchase of any high-priced antique bank. Counterfeits tend to be rougher, tend to fit together less smoothly, and seem to lack the patina or Ã¢â�¬Å�lookÃ¢â�¬Â� of age.