Noname Antiques » 17 Most Valuable Antique Lamps Worth Money

17 Most Valuable Antique Lamps Worth Money

In the olden days, people couldn’t switch a light on or off. They had to use torches made of rags soaked in oil. Or candles. Or kerosene lamps.

They even had those cute little genie lamps that make you dream of genies. Antique lamps were somewhere between, mingling rustic designs with electric outlets. So let’s explore some of the most valuable antique lamps.

Most Valuable Antique Lamps Worth Money

1. Antique Art Nouveau Green Oil Lamp Messengers Free Funnel Included

Antique Art Nouveau Green Oil Lamp Messengers Free Funnel Included
Image Credit: Valuable Antique Lamps

If you’re like most people, you caught the lamp bug after seeing that massively expensive one on Antiques Roadshow. But before you rush to the thrift store, consider the most important part of reselling antique lamps – shipping. Be sure the fuss and cost don’t wipe out profits.

  • Brand: Messengers
  • Style: Art Nouveau
  • Year: 1900s
  • Fuel: Oil
  • Value: $690.53

That said, when you think of the most valuable antique lamps, you may be thinking of those original oil lamps. So you may be attracted to lighting fixtures that match or mimic that retro design. A piece like this will sate your rustic appetite while still delighting any modern home.

 

2. Dreamlike Original Antique Vintage Crystal Chandelier

Dreamlike Original Antique Vintage Crystal Chandelier
Image Credit: Valuable Antique Lamps

You’ve probably seen those fancy chandeliers in period pieces. But it may slip your mind that those original French chandeliers had candles, not bulbs. Newer chandeliers may still have the sparkle and shine from crystals and crafted glass, but they’re often powered by electricity.

  • Brand: Unknown
  • Style: Chandelier
  • Year: 1940s to 1950s
  • Fuel: Electricity
  • Value: $362.75

This piece is a good example. It only has one bulb but the baubles turn that single light source into endless rays and reflections. The brass frame is ornately carved and is strong enough to support the weight of all that glass. The cord is looped through the brass chain.

 

3. Verdelite Antique Banker’s Lamp for Rolltop Desk or Piano

Verdelite Antique Banker's Lamp for Rolltop Desk or Piano
Image Credit: Valuable Antique Lamps

It was quite common for families to gather around the piano for a singalong. And even housewives had a writing desk for their letters and journals. Oddly, diaries weren’t always private, and ladies routinely read their journals to friends and family as they sat by the fire.

  • Brand: Faries Decatur Ill
  • Style: Desktop
  • Year: 1900 to 1919
  • Fuel: Electricity
  • Value: $215.50

Both these activities would have needed a small lamp for the desk or piano ledge, and this electric lamp is designed in that style. The only catch is you’d have to place your furniture within reach of a power socket since the chords weren’t very long. It’s a gorgeous piece.

 

4. Beautiful Antique Alabaster & Brass Lantern Style Lamp

Beautiful Antique Alabaster & Brass Lantern Style Lamp
Image Credit: Valuable Antique Lamps

To be officially classified as antique, an item has to be 100 years old while a vintage piece is at least 50. But as hard as it is to accept, many products from the early 80s are considered vintage by today’s collectors. This lamp is a good example, though it’s made in an older style.

  • Brand: Unknown
  • Style: Faux-Oil
  • Year: 1980s
  • Fuel: Electricity
  • Value: $357.47

The lamp resembles a traditional oil lamp and the base simulates an oil canister. And the glass globe in the middle mimics an old oil wick. The lampshade is made of alabaster and even the clear glass chimney suggests a smoky outlet. But the chord at the base gives it away.

 

5. Antique Victorian Spelter Oil Lamp Figurine Funnel, Double Burner

Antique Victorian Spelter Oil Lamp Figurine Funnel, Double Burner
Image Credit: Valuable Antique Lamps

While the US does have a rich history, it’s younger than many civilizations. So if you’re open to imports from Asia and Europe, you can find far older pieces. A good example is this oil lamp that ships from the UK. It’s not pristine. It clearly got a lot of use and has a few repairs.

  • Brand: Unknown
  • Style: Rococo
  • Year: 1837 to 1901
  • Fuel: Oil
  • Value: $426.87
Also Read  19 Most Valuable Vintage Costume Jewelry Worth Money

The lamp is designed in rococo style and the base is carved in the shape of a woman holding up the glass. This duplex light has two burners and two levels. The knob means the lamp can be dimmed, which is convenient and cool. Just be sure to get the right oil for your new lamp.

 

6. Vintage Decorative Standing Lamp, Art Nouveau Style Table Lamp

Vintage Decorative Standing Lamp, Art Nouveau Style Table Lamp
Image Credit: Valuable Antique Lamps

The trouble with famous brands like Tiffany is they attract forgers. So if you plan to routinely resell lamps, take some time to learn how to spot a fake. For the record, we’re not saying this lamp here isn’t authentic. But while the style is similar, it’s different from the previous one.

  • Brand: Unknown
  • Style: Art Nouveau
  • Year: 19th Century
  • Fuel: Electricity
  • Value: $1,125.65

On this lamp, the lady is standing in front of the lamp rather than supporting it. But she’s carefully carved and quite pretty. She doubles as a decorative statue on your desk or mantel. The green tulip glass is gorgeous and echoes depression glass, though it’s too flawless to be.

 

7. Antique Reverse Painted Slag Style Glass Lamp

Antique Reverse Painted Slag Style Glass Lamp
Image Credit: Valuable Antique Lamps

Tiffany wasn’t the only company making luxury glass lamps. The idea caught on and drew imitators. Sometimes, they used slag glass, which was treated to make it look like marble or some other natural stone. Reverse painting was another popular technique at the time.

  • Brand: Unknown
  • Style: Reverse Painted
  • Year: 1920s
  • Fuel: Electricity
  • Value: $300

Instead of decorating the outside of these lampshades, the artist would paint the inner surface of the glass. That way, the lamp looked plain in daylight, but once you switched on the bulb, the landscapes and patterns would shine through the tinted light. It’s a fun touch.

 

8. Jo Hammerborg “Ambassadør” Danish Mid-Century Modern Lamp

Jo Hammerborg “Ambassadør” Danish Mid-Century Modern Lamp
Image Credit: Valuable Antique Lamps

People buy vintage lamps for various reasons. You might intend to flip it if you’re a dealer. Or you may be topping out your personal collection. But some people just like retro décor and want to enhance their home. This type of buyer is drawn to mid-century modern lamps.

  • Brand: Fog & Mørup
  • Style: Mid-Century Modern
  • Year: 1960s
  • Fuel: Electricity
  • Value: $800.71

These lamps featured curvy domes, clean lines, and minimalist design. But you want to be sure you’ve bought a 1950s original rather than a retro remake by a contemporary designer. Curiously, the company site has this website listed at twice the price, so this is a good resell.

 

9. Antique Adams Thousand Eye Uranium / Vaseline Glass Lamp

Antique Adams Thousand Eye Uranium Vaseline Glass Lamp
Image Credit: Valuable Antique Lamps

As you venture into the antiquing space, it’s important to read up. That way, you can spot errors in listings and still find treasures. Take this uranium lamp for instance. It’s listed as 1890s, but Vaseline glass was common during the war years so it might be from the 1930s.

  • Brand: Adams
  • Style: Uranium Glass (aka Vaseline Glass)
  • Year: 1890
  • Fuel: Electricity
  • Value: $212.50
Also Read  Antique Tractors Worth Money (Identification & Price Guides)

That still counts as vintage and will soon be antique. The listing says this lamp is converted for electric use. This is fine because rewiring lamps is a normal part of trading antiques. So it doesn’t diminish the lamp’s value. You do need to check that it glows under black light.

 

10. Antique 1835 French Passengers Train Lamp Lantern

Antique 1835 French Passengers Train Lamp Lantern
Image Credit: Valuable Antique Lamps

Just because something is old doesn’t mean it’s worth thousands of dollars. Some collectors may want it for sentimental value. Or maybe it falls under the specific period or category they’re interested in. This train lamp is a good example. It’s a niche item to keep in stock.

  • Brand: Unknown
  • Style: Train Lamp
  • Year: 1835
  • Fuel: Oil
  • Value: $142.42

The piece is verified, complete with the newspaper clipping that initially debuted it. The green tinge confirms the copper content of this antique lamp. It may take practice to figure out how to light it and find the right kind of oil. But any railway buff would love this piece.

 

11. Antique Pair Of Cassolette Lamps Porcelain Sèvres Gilded Bronze France

Antique Pair Of Cassolette Lamps Porcelain Sèvres Gilded Bronze France
Image Credit: Valuable Antique Lamps

We mentioned plugs earlier in this article. They come in various styles and calibrations based on when and where they were made. Foreign plugs are different too. So unless your lamp has been rewired (and even if it has), the plug is a great way to verify the lamp’s age or period.

  • Brand: Sevres
  • Style: Porcelain
  • Year: 1850 to 1899
  • Fuel: Electricity
  • Value: $3,600

If you do rewire the lamp, mention it in the listing. Don’t worry, it won’t lower the price. And many buyers will appreciate it if those old electricals don’t burn the house down. And if you want antique bedroom lamps, buy a pair. You’ll get a better price if you have the full set.

 

12. Antique Lamp, Metal Lamp, Flower Lamp, Table Lamp, Night Lamp

Antique Lamp, Metal Lamp, Flower Lamp, Table Lamp, Night Lamp
Image Credit: Valuable Antique Lamps

Confirming the age of an antique can be tricky, so work with an appraiser if you can. Some will let you send photos and evaluate the piece for you, either for free or for a small fee. But with a piece like this one, the style and condition of the lamp can offer helpful information.

  • Brand:
  • Style:
  • Year: 1970s
  • Fuel: Electricity
  • Value: $148.94

The design of the lamp and the plug both suggest it’s from the 1970s. Some of the gold paint has chipped and the base has signs of wear from moving the lamp around the house. It may not be worth much as a collectible, but you could always repair the lamp with spray paint.

 

13. Rare Antique Oil Lamp Adjustable Height

Rare Antique Oil Lamp Adjustable Height
Image Credit: Valuable Antique Lamps

It’s easy to assume antique items were low-tech and had minimal features. But while this one seems pretty basic, it has an interesting characteristic – you can shift its height. It’s also a visually appealing piece, with its pink tulip glass and the intricate carvings on its brass base.

  • Brand: Unknown
  • Style: Glass & Brass
  • Year: Unknown
  • Fuel: Oil
  • Value: $399

The two-tone lampshade has a fluted rim with floral etchings on the side. And the globe the canister that holds the oil resembles hot pink porcelain. Like all oil lamps, you can dim the flame by turning the knob to raise or lower the wick. The lamp is in fairly good condition.

 

14. Beautiful Antique Bronze Table Lamp, Delicate Pink Flower Glass Shade

Beautiful Antique Bronze Table Lamp, Delicate Pink Flower Glass Shade
Image Credit: Valuable Antique Lamps

Until the early 1900s, porcelain and glass were luxury items that only the rich could afford. Then during the downturn of the 20s and 30s, low-end depression glass was blown in bright colors. It was meant to attract the average consumer and lift the spirits of the whole nation.

  • Brand: Unknown
  • Style: Brass & Glass
  • Year: 1910s
  • Fuel: Electricity
  • Value: $498
Also Read  25 Most Rare Comic Books Worth Money

Cheap glass was mostly given away or sold for a few cents. But before this period, two-tone glass was popular for lampshades and ornamental items. And this lamp – both its shade and its base – were probably handcrafted. You can tell by the level of detail in the brass carving.

 

15. Antique Pair Of Earthenware Lamps From Gien Late 19th Angel Decor

Antique Pair Of Earthenware Lamps From Gien Late 19th Angel Decor
Image Credit: Valuable Antique Lamps

Seasoned traders are familiar with the brands that make the most valuable antique lamps. It also helps to know where their hallmarks are hidden. Otherwise, you might ruin the lamp seeking that precious logo, which is sometimes placed under the felt that hides the wires.

  • Brand: Unknown
  • Style: Earthenware
  • Year: 19th Century
  • Fuel: Oil
  • Value: $620

But even with that information, you need the original lampshade. You can replace it with a piece that matches the lamp’s era, but having the initial ones will raise the price of your piece. This antique pair lacks their shades, but they’re in good condition, so that’s useful.

 

16. Antique Oil Lamp or Kerosene Lamp, Clear Glass Hurricane Lantern

Antique Oil Lamp or Kerosene Lamp, Clear Glass Hurricane Lantern
Image Credit: Valuable Antique Lamps

You may have Googled this list hoping to see lamps worth hundreds of thousands, like the ones on those treasure shows. In reality, those pieces are rarely sold online. They’re too expensive to send in the mail or trust to digital strangers, so they go through dealers instead.

  • Brand: Unknown
  • Style: Hurricane Lamp
  • Year: 1900s
  • Fuel: Kerosene
  • Value: $143.42

That said, you can still flip a $20 thrift store lamp into a few hundred. Just look for the sold listings online to be sure of what buyers are genuinely willing to pay. And if you’re buying to resell, be wary of chandeliers with glass bits that must be packed separately. More shipping!

 

17. Antique Bradley & Hubbard Hanging Oil Lamp (Country Winter Cabin)

Antique Bradley & Hubbard Hanging Oil Lamp (Country Winter Cabin)
Image Credit: Valuable Antique Lamps

If you routinely deal with antiques, you probably feel pretty young. At least until you see a 1980s piece listed as vintage. Or hear high schoolers referring to your teen or college years as ‘the late 1900s’. (And they’re not wrong … just annoying!) Still, businesswise, older is better.

  • Brand: Bradley & Hubbard
  • Style: Hanging Lamp
  • Year: 1850 to 1899
  • Fuel: Oil
  • Value: $420

Be sure to confirm the maker’s marks and check that the lamp isn’t been updated. Rewiring is fine, but if the glass or base were replaced, that lower’s the lamp’s bona fides. This final piece is a hanging lamp that’s easy to place in its relevant period. Plus, the maker is clear.

 

Do you have any ideas on finding the most valuable antique lamps? Tell us in the comments!

1 thought on “17 Most Valuable Antique Lamps Worth Money”

  1. I have 3 vintage lamps . Paul Hanson is one . Brass and opaline others are hurricane lamps . One is solid brass .. beautiful. Have no I deal on value. Closest Paul Hanson was $400 and the others around $300. Any help on these would be great . They were my grandmother’s she past in 1986 at the age of 76. I’m now 54 so they are very vintage

    Reply

Leave a Comment