This is a press release submitted to the Las Vegas Sun. It has not been verified or edited by the Sun.
Victorian Casino Antiques to auction off Bill Harrah antique slot collection this fall
Published on Fri, Jul 18, 2014 (9:42 a.m.)LAS VEGAS - One of the most lauded and sought-after collections of vintage gambling equipment has been acquired by Las Vegas-based auction house Victorian Casino Antiques (VCA). The William F. Harrah Antique Gambling Machine collection will be the centerpiece of a live auction event held inside VCA’s Vegas showroom (4520 Arville St. #1) on Sept. 19-21, which will also feature about 1,600 other rare coin-operated machines, band organs, gas and oil collectibles, toy automobiles and advertising art.
The Harrah collection boasts more than 75 upright slot machines, trade stimulators, three-reelers and floor consoles hailing from the late 1800s to the mid-1900s, as well as several ephemeral displays from various Harrah’s (now Caesars) Entertainment properties. The collection includes items that previously resided inside corporate offices at those casinos, including Mr. Harrah’s prior to his passing, as well as in the Pony Express Museum that he owned in Reno, Nev.
This amazing assemblage of working gambling machines includes an early-model, 25-cent Caille roulette floor console, circa 1904, in a beautiful mahogany case; a fully operational, five-cent Mills/Hoke “Trap the Snake” three-reel bell slot machine from 1939 in original condition; and an ornately detailed, five-cent Mills duplex from the turn of the 20th century, in beautifully restored condition.
One of the rarest items in the Harrah collection—and in the world of vintage gaming devices overall—is the 25-cent “Midget Derby” floor model horse racing machine, in excellent condition. Only one of these machines is known to exist, and it’s so unique, even its manufacturer is unknown.
Other highlights among the lots being auction in September include a five-cent Mills “Violano Virtuoso” upright violin-and-piano music player circa 1912; a beautiful, black-and-chrome, five-cent Paces Races light-up horse racing slot machine; a 5-foot-tall, painted, carved Native American princess cigar store figure; an Emil J. Paidar Co. three-station barber shop wood back bar, featuring Art Deco styling with rounded mirrors and chrome detailing; and an early-20th century five-cent Mutoscope viewer featuring scenes from Universal Pictures’ “Beware of Windows,” starring Laura LaPlante.
The entire auction catalog can be viewed online at vcauction.com, where interested bidders can also find links to register for phone or internet bidding. On-site previews prior to the auction dates will begin Aug. 1 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday-Friday, or on an appointment basis by calling 702-382-2466.
ABOUT VICTORIAN CASINO ANTIQUES
With four decades under its belt and appearances on national TV programs such as Storage Wars, Pawn Stars and Baggage Battles, Victorian Casino Antiques (VCA) has built its reputation as the benchmark for American antique auction houses. VCA’s auctions provide an exciting experience for bidders live in its Las Vegas gallery or via phone or internet. Specializing in vending machines, slots, jukeboxes, arcade games, advertising, cash registers and art, VCA has sold more coin-operated devices than any other American auctioneer. A complete catalog and information about consignments can be found at vcaauction.com.