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The Butting Goat Bank
by Sy Schreckinger – ANTIQUE TOY WORLD Magazine – April, 1991

      Generally monochromic with uncomplicated mechanism and finely delineated details may best describe mechanical banks produced by the Judd Manufacturing Company of Wallingford, Connecticut. To date, Judd remains unexcelled among other foundries for its fine workmanship.
     The "Butting Goat" bank, as pictured in Figure I, epitomizes the aforementioned characterization of Judd's products. Utilizing a mere single moving part, it reflects the sim­plicity and preciseness of the entire line of mechanicals produced by this esteemed foundry. The "Butting Goat" is activated through the power of a single spring — an idea successfully incorporated into several other Judd banks (i.e. "Bucking Mule" — refer to Antique Toy World article of January 1989; "Gem" bank; and "Snap-It" bank.)
     Unfortunately, historic information relating to design and patent of the "Butting Goat" is sparse. This may be attributed to the fact that the Judd Manufacturing Company never applied for patent protection for any of their designs or mechanisms. However, an approximation of the time period of production and offering to the public may be gleaned from their 1885 toy jobber's catalog. Page 362 of the catalog contains an advertisement for the "Butting Goat" bank (Figure II) which reads as follows: "No. 3336, Finish — Black and Yellow. Three in a box. Per doz. $2.10." Quite a bargain, when compared to today's cost for a fine, single example, which recently changed hands at $1,500.
     Operation of the "Butting Goat" is, as stated previously, simple and effective. To quote, once again, from Judd's 1885 catalog: "Note — Draw the goat to the end of the bridge, then by raising the hind feet, the goat springs forward and butts the penny into the tree." Deposits are removed by twisting the turn pin through the sides of the tree stump and disassembling the bank.
     Most mechanicals produced by Judd were decorated with a single metallic or japan color. Their palette included a glossy black finish, dark purple varnish, a light brown with gold flecks "fancy finish," and a gold or copper metallic paint. Occasionally, a touch of white for an eye, or red, yellow or green (verdigris) was utilized as a subtle enhancement.
     There are no casting variations of the "Butting Goat" bank and only two color variants. They are the yellow stump and black goat described in the Judd catalog, and the copper, metallic-colored stump and black goat shown in Figure I.
     Unfortunately, and understandably, the simplicity of casting and operating mecha­nisms of Judd banks abetted the practice of abundant reproductions. Thus, scarce examples such as "Bucking Mule," "Boy and Bulldog," "Circus Ticket Collector," "Peg Leg Beggar," "Bear and Tree Stump," "Bulldog Standing," and "Butting Goat" are regarded as fairly common. In truth, few collections can boast of all-original, unbroken, complete examples of these banks. It is fortunate, however, that these bogus recasts are easily detected since, unlike the originals, they are fairly crude in appearance and lack the extremely fine, sharp, detailed casting indicative of the original.
     Figure III is a base diagram of an original "Butting Goat" bank. A reproduced version would appear approximately one-sixteenth of an inch shorter in length than indicated. However, there are exceptions to this measurement and are the result of utilization of original factory patterns to cast the "fakes." In these instances, the most accurate method of detection is through close examination of its surface, namely the quality and texture of the painted or japanned finish.
     Needless to say, the scarcity of an original example of a Judd bank will be reflected accordingly in its selling price.

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