Saluting Sailor Bank (Tin)
Once again we take great pleasure in announcing a new find in a mechanical bank, and come to think of it this sure makes a great way to start our articles for 1974. Factually, however, the bank turned up as a new discovery in 1973. The bank is the Saluting Sailor, a very interesting and completely different action type of animated toy savings device. Of necessity, it is presently No. 231 in the numerical classification. While the action of saluting is quite unique, the bank does share a somewhat similar feature with at least one other mechanical. This is the way in which the coin slot is exposed or made useable. The other bank that shares this feature is the Sentry Bank. One could then go further with this coin slot feature and include such banks as the New Bank, U.S. Bank, and possibly several others.
We must once again give due credit to our good friends Nicole and Emmanuel Rodrigue of Paris, France. They were the first to turn up this heretofore unknown mechanical bank which is certainly quite an accomplishment. It couldnt happen to a nicer couple and how fortunate that it would be such an interesting mechanical.
The bank pictured was found by another party subsequent to the Rodrigues discovery. It is now in the collection of Leon Perelman, and congratulations are in order for this fine addition to his museum. By the way, speaking of the Perelman Museum, for those who have not seen it the writer certainly recommends a visit to a most attractive and appropriate setting for an extensive collection of banks, toys, dolls, and other related items. The surroundings are ideally suitable to the contents of this most interesting museum. Put it on your list as a must place to visit.
The Saluting Sailor shown is in practically mint original condition. It is of German manufacture and the patent designation DRGM is stamped in the underside of the base. While we as yet do not have the exact time period of the bank, there are possibilities it dates in the World War I period or thereabout. Colors are brilliant and attractive with the representation in back of the figure in red, yellow and two shades of gray. There is a wide black stripe at the knees of the figure, and below this is a wider stripe in red. The figure of the sailor has blue trousers with white shirt and hat. Definitions of the tie, hat band and lanyard are black. The chevrons on his left sleeve are blue. Face and hands are sort of a flesh color. Nose, lips and cheeks have red tones and highlighting. The rectangular box coin section in back of the bank is in red, as is the base. All this adds up to a quite attractive colorful bank.
The action of the bank is really great and unique as compared to all the other mechanicals. Figure 1 shows the bank before or after the action. Figure 2 shows the bank after the lever is pressed and ready to receive a coin. As you will note his left arm and hand move down exposing the slot so that a coin may be inserted therein and, of course, he raises his right hand to the saluting position. Releasing the operating lever causes all parts to return automatically to position as shown in Figure 1. Coins are removed by means of a lock trap in the base.
In closing it bears mention that we are not certain as yet as to the representation in back of the figure. It is most likely some type of hatch on a ship or possibly a submarine. Future research may hopefully confirm this in a definitive area.