Question: This pin was given to my mother by her sister long ago. The flowers, with centers that quiver when the pin is moved, can be removed from the pin's back which is marked "Coro Duette" and bears patent numbers. What can you tell me about this jewelry and its worth? - D.J., Vineland
Answer: During 1903, Emanuel Cohn and Carl Rosenberger joined to create the Coro partnership which made costume jewelry and ladies' jeweled accessories in New York and Rhode Island. The company's "Coro" mark was one of many stamped on their Coro, CoroCraft and Vendome lines until the firm closed in 1979.
Patented for Coro by designer Adolph Katz during the late 1920s, en tremblant (trembling) flowers on tiny metal springs were offered as dress pins. From the 1930s to the 1950s, sold as Coro Duettes, the quivering flowers as well as animals, insects, birds, fish, cherubs and geometric art deco designs were attached as a set of twin pins or dress clips to a brooch frame from which they could be detached and worn individually.
Your 3-inch long Coro Camellia Duette brooch fashioned from gold and silver tone metal decorated with round and baguette crystal and colored rhinestones as well as enameled leaves, is a very desirable piece. Sought after by folks who collect Coro, Duette and en tremblant jewelry, quivering Coro Camellia Duettes in very good to excellent condition are fetching $175 to $240.
Question: This old wooden chair was sold to my great-grandfather by a neighbor during the Great Depression. Although the woman said it was called a "firehouse Windsor chair," she could not explain the name. I would appreciate any information you can provide about the chair and its value. - G.V., Asbury Park
Answer: Your photo shows a sturdy Windsor armchair with a low, semi-circular back rail. Painted black, the chair features a gold American eagle and flag stenciled on the rail. Turned areas of the chair's legs and spindles are highlighted with gold paint.
Believed to have originated at Windsor, England in the early 1700s, Windsor armchairs fashioned from combinations of inexpensive woods such as poplar, maple, oak and ash soon became favorites in America where the design was perfected. Eventually Windsors included hoop-back, bow-back and comb-back armchairs as well as side chairs, rockers, children's and writing models.
Your chair's outward slanting legs, shield-shape seat and the vertical turned spindles which comprise the chair's back and sides are typical features found on American Windsor-type armchairs mass-produced from the 1880s until 1910. During that period, heavy, low-back models were used to furnish community firehouses where firefighters slept, ate and waited to serve. Such chairs often were decorated with hand-painted or stenciled patriotic motifs or symbols associated with the fire brigade.
The chair will attract Windsor chair enthusiasts, collectors who search for fire-fighting memorabilia and interior decorators. Current prices paid for similar pieces range from $50 to $80 for a single chair to $200 for a matched pair, based on condition.
Alyce Hand Benham is an antiques broker, appraiser and estate-liquidation specialist. Send questions to: Alyce Benham, Life section, The Press of Atlantic City, 1000 W. Washington Ave., Pleasantville, N.J. 08232. Email:
Letters may be used in future columns but cannot be answered individually, and photos cannot be returned.