March 21-23, 2023 Automobilia, Petroliana, & Railroadiana
President & Founder
Dan Morphy, President of Dan Morphy Auctions in Denver, PA and Las Vegas, NV, is a native of Pittsburgh, Pa. He grew up in a family of avid collectors, with his retired physician father, John Morphy Sr., and his mother, Janet, constantly encouraging the appreciation of antiques in the home and fostering a love of collecting among their children. “I grew up around antiques and attended many shows and auctions with my dad at a very early age,” Dan said. “My first collection was coins, followed by baseball cards, marbles, candy containers and finally banks, both still and mechanical.”
It’s not surprising that Dan was attracted to mechanical banks as a youngster still in grade school. He recalled: “My dad’s collection was displayed on a shelf that ran around the perimeter of my bedroom. I couldn’t touch them, but I could admire them.” At the age of 10, Morphy started buying still banks through the mail. Within a few years, he was both buying and selling mechanical banks through various sources and meeting collectors who are now among the most revered in the hobby – fellow Pittsburghers Dr. Anthony Haradin and Dr. Paul Resnick being among them. Through a magazine ad, Morphy became acquainted with Indiana-based collector Stephen Steckbeck, from whom he bought a number of duplicate banks for resale. Their mail-order transactions developed into a friendship that would come full circle in 2006 with the consignment of Steckbeck’s spectacular bank collection to a Morphy Auctions sale (Oct. 27, 2007).
As a young man, Morphy felt certain he was destined for a career in pharmaceutical sales and, accordingly, entered Penn State, where in 1995 he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in biology, with a minor in business. But Morphy’s career plans took an unexpected turn a year prior to graduation. While en route to the New Jersey shore where his family was vacationing, Morphy stopped to do some antiquing and refresh the showcase he and his parents maintained in South Pointe, a multidealer shop in Adamstown, Pa.
“I had forgotten that the shop was closed on Wednesdays,” Morphy said, “so I called the owner and asked if they would come and open up the shop for me.” While waiting in his car in the parking lot, Morphy noticed that there was a “For Sale” sign on the property next door. “I thought to myself, ‘I should look into opening my own place,’ so I called the realtor, eventually bought the property and, in 1997, after two years of seeking municipal approvals, opened the gallery.”
Morphy’s gallery went on to develop an outstanding international reputation, owing to its roster of top-quality dealers, many of them specialists in antique toys, banks and advertising. In 2000, Morphy expanded his business opportunities by purchasing Jim Burk’s semiannual York Antique Toy, Doll, Holiday & Advertising Show. Four years later he joined forces with fellow antique toy dealer and friend Tom Sage Jr. to establish Morphy Auctions.
Dan Morphy is deeply invested in the day-to-day operations of Morphy Auctions, and also supports and belongs to many collector clubs, including the Mechanical Bank Collectors of America, Still Bank Collectors of America, Figural Cast Iron Collectors Club, Antique Toy Collectors of America, Antique Advertising Association of America, Golden Glow of Christmas Past and several others. And while he has bought, sold and collected 30 or 40 different types of antiques over the years, Morphy says it is mechanical banks that have continued to fascinate him.
“I’ve gained and lost interest in many things, but I’ve always gone back to mechanical banks,” he said. “Mechanical banks have always been a fantastic investment even during the best or worst of times.”
Morphy says the antiques business has treated him very well, and he thrives on the challenges of each successive day. “No two days are the same,” he said. “I work seven days a week, and along the way I’ve met great people who share my enthusiasm for collecting – Bob Brady, John Haley, Don Heim and many others. These friendships are priceless to me.”
Married since 2001, Morphy and his wife, Christine, live in historic Lititz, Pa. Morphy’s personal collection of mechanical banks includes one of his favorites: a prized Two Frogs bank, in pristine condition. The collection even caught the eye of the couple’s young daughter, Haley, now an exuberant junior collector who appears poised to follow in her father’s footsteps.
Scot joined Morphy Auctions as the Firearms Division Manager in November 2015. Scot enjoys the outdoors, hunting, fishing and shooting since a young age. He has been buying and trading guns to upgrade his gun collection for hunting and target shooting for the last 20 plus years. Scot obtained his own FFL to start and run a hobby gun shop, selling new and used firearms. He also likes the mechanical aspect of firearms and enjoys upgrading and making minor repairs to his and his client’s firearms. In January 2016, Scot completed his Firearms Appraisers Certification from the American Gunsmithing Institute.
John is a retired Army Master Sergeant and a trusted expert specializing in Machine Guns, Destructive Devices, and other item covered by the National Firearms Act, as well as the rules, procedures and forms pertaining to BATF registration and transfer. He has significant experience in transferring guns from estate situations. He has wide general knowledge range of military firearms of the 20th Century and late 19th Century.
Russ has more than 40 years of experience collecting, appraising, buying and selling firearms. Russ’s main areas of expertise include Luger pistols, Winchesters rifles, and Colt revolvers. He has contributed to several published books, including History Writ in Steel German Police Markings 1900- 1936 ; Simson Lugers: Simson & Co, Suhl, the Weimar Years ; and Police Lugers: German Police Lugers and Their Markings 1918-1958. Prior to joining Morphy Auctions, Russ owned and operated a firearms store in Southern Oregon.
Jeremy approaches each client with a goal to get them the highest return for their firearms. With nearly 12 years at Shooting Sportsman, followed by working at James D. Julia’s, Jeremy is one of the leading consultants in the country on market value of sporting arms and collectible firearms. Jeremy is a member of the NRA, as well as various other sporting clubs, and is a noted presenter for Safari Club International on estate planning. Jeremy has a personal passion of days in the field with his family and dogs, and is particularly passionate about grouse hunting.
David M. Geiger is a fourth generation antiques and arms collector and has been in the business for well over 20 years. He specializes primarily in 18th and early 19th century firearms, edged weapons and accouterments with a focus on important French and Indian War and Revolutionary War objects as well as Kentucky longrifles. David has handles and evaluates many of the most important collections in these genres and advises many of today’s most prolific buyers of historic 18th century objects.
Willi joined Morphy Auctions in 2016, has formerly served as an active duty USAF officer for 13 years, and is a combat veteran of the Persian Gulf War. He has been an advanced collector of militaria and firearms for more than 45 years, as well as a consultant to top dealers and collectors. In addition to having contributed to more than 25 books, Willi also moderates numerous sections of the world’s largest militaria collecting website for more than 19 years. He has also been a serious competitive shooter, in various disciplines, for more than 40 years, having competed all over Europe and the US. Willi is a Life Member of the NRA and the Forks of the Delaware Historical Arms Society, one of the Directors of the German Gun Collectors Association, as well as a member of the Ohio Valley Military Society, the American Singe Shot Rifle Association, and the Ohio Gun Collectors Association.
I grew up in a small country town north of Baltimore, Maryland. After completing high school, I went to work full time for the family’s electrical business, and earned my Master’s License. I still work for my family business, alongside my father and brother. In 2008, I married my wife, Amanda. Several early influences in my life are what lead me to the collecting world; from my great uncle, who served in the 82nd Airborne during WW2, to my grandfather taking me to my first gun show at the age of 12. My passion for the hobby, and the knowledge I’ve obtained, has only grown and evolved since then. I have been very fortunate to have met and befriended some of the most respected and intelligent individuals in the hobby whose shared knowledge over the years has been invaluable. Combat Badges of the Third Reich were my starting point, and have since expanded into other aspects such as uniforms, helmets, insignia, and edged weapons. Currently I run a successful militaria business with my wife Amanda and business partner Ryan, which provides quality authentic items to collectors. I also provide consulting and expertise for Morphy Auctions, which has allowed me the opportunity to not only further my study of the subject, but also to help create another source and opportunity for collectors around the world to acquire authentic items of this time period with confidence and reassurance.
A 20-year executive with the US branch of Holland & Holland, Britain’s premier manufacturer of handmade sporting rifles and shotguns, Cruz brings a formidable knowledge of European guns and high level of client-service experience to Morphy’s firearms team. A New York City native whose love of the outdoors began when he was just a boy, Cruz learned to fire a .22-caliber rifle while earning badges as a Cub and Boy Scout, and during camping trips with family and friends. Dave currently owns and operates a retail gun shop in Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts. As part of Morphy’s firearms team, Dave Cruz represents the company at firearms shows, liaise with potential consignors, and creates catalog descriptions for high-end sporting firearms.
Dan was born and raised in Western Pennsylvania. Graduated in 1991 from Penn State University with a B.S. in Earth and Mineral Sciences. Family is an important part of his life, he is married with two daughters and a son. Dan has been in the gun business since he was six years old and comes from a three generation gun collecting family.
Brian has provided authentication, appraisal, and identification services to numerous well-respected auction houses, museums, estate liquidation companies, and private collectors for the past two decades. He has served as a contributor and subject matter expert on numerous historical books, publications, and museum displays. He amassed one of the finest collections of pre-1920 USMC artifacts in the country that was featured in numerous collector reference works on the subject. Born into a collector family, Brian has had over 40 years experience and exposure handling the finest historical Americana, militaria, weapons, American Indian art and Old West items in existence. Brian served his country for 22 years, and is a retired US Marine Corps Infantry Officer. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Investigations from California State University Sacramento and is a graduate of the Marine Corps Command & Staff College in Quantico, Va.
Cheryl joined Morphy Auctions in 2015 in the role of Acquisitions and Promotions. She has over 40 years’ experience in sales, antiques and auctions. At Morphy Auctions, Cheryl’s responsibilities include; mapping out and managing the firearms’ show schedule, attending all major firearms shows, providing support for the firearms sales team, processing firearms consignments, communicating with consignors and assisting the marketing department with the advertising and promotional materials.
Ron Ciarmello joined Morphy Auctions in 2015 as a consultant cataloguing timepieces and jewelry, along with arts and crafts furniture. Ron is a third generation jeweler and antique dealer, and has been working in the fine jewelry industry since 1994. He studied fine jewelry sales through the GIA (Gemological Institute of America) and has been buying, selling and collecting both wrist and pocket watches for over 25 years now. Currently working with the Fine & Decorative Arts Division, Ron has special expertise in the Arts & Crafts period, as well as being responsible for identifying, evaluating and cataloging as our jewelry and timepiece specialist.
John Morphy, M.D., a retired physician, was part of the Morphy team long before “the team” ever existed. As the father of Morphy Auctions’ President and Founder, Dan Morphy, Dr. Morphy was the guiding force who sparked and nurtured Dan’s interest in the antiques industry. With his knowledge and appreciation of antiques, “Doc,” as he is known to one and all, was Dan’s most important influence and a constant source of encouragement to his son as he ventured into antiques as a profession. Dr. Morphy’s primary duties are to provide catalog descriptions and condition reports, appraise goods and assist with the shipping of items purchased at auction. His expertise developed over 35+ years in the industry and includes, but is not limited to, art glass, fine art, antique toys, country store, holiday and general antiques. Dr. Morphy is an integral part of the day-to-day operations at the gallery, and in his free time he still buys, sells and collects the antiques he has grown to love.
Peter joined Morphy auctions in 2008 as a consultant cataloguing antique and modern silver, and now heads the silver division. For over fifteen years he acted as a collector’s agent and advisor, buying antique silver in London and South- Eastern England for several private collectors, and he continues to keep in contact with the London silver trade. Peter began as a spoon collector in his late teens, with a special interest in silver hallmarks. He has a BA in History and Art History from William & Mary,a Diploma from the Royal Society of Arts in London from the Christies Fine Arts Course, and is a member of the Silver Society (London). He continues to advise private clients on acquisitions of English and American silver, as well as preparing appraisals and inventories.
Dr. Joshua Tauber joined the Decorative Arts Department of Morphy Auctions in August of 2020. Dr. Tauber (Josh), who also works as a physician specializing in addiction medicine in Arizona, is a long time collector of antiques of the Art Nouveau and Arts and Crafts periods. Along with his fiancé, Josh also owns and operates an antique store in Arizona. Josh comes to Morphy with expertise, and a passion for early 20th century decorative arts, especially in the fields of lighting and glass of the Art Nouveau and Arts and Crafts Periods. Dr. Tauber brings with him his extensive experience in collecting and dealing in lamps by Tiffany Studios, as well as his special interest in the more obscure makers such as Suess, Bigelow and Kennard, and Duffner and Kimberly. Additionally, Josh has a keen interest in the beautiful ceramics of the early 20th century, including Amphora, Weller and Grueby.
John’s focus is on antique advertising and automobilia, petroliana, and motorcycle memorabilia. John is responsible for attending industry and collector’s events on behalf of the company; sourcing, identifying and valuing fine consignments; cataloging; and developing referral and partnership networks nationwide. John is professionally involved in the antique and vintage world since 2011. He began as an enthusiast and collector of pre-World War II American ephemera, wild west, and country store themed finds since early childhood. Prior to his work with Morphy’s, Mihovetz ran his own business, specializing in vintage advertising, folk art and primitives, reclaimed lumber, and salvaged materials. He has been profiled in several antique industry publications and is a frequent go-to source for media inquiries and special projects.
After 35 plus years of active collecting, Tom’s passion and interests lie in coin operated devices with specific applicable knowledge in vending, gambling, and early penny arcade, mechanical music with applicable experience in early coin operated music devices, and antique advertising in all categories. He is a founding member of the coin operated collectors association, with additional memberships in the Antique Advertising Association, and the association of music box collectors.
Don grimmer, residing in Las Vegas, continues to offer a “hands on” service to our west coast, southwest, and northwest collectors, preserving and enhancing relations with his long term friends and collectors. With 5 years’ experience managing our former Las Vegas location, his extended association with Morphy’s and the antique industry give him the knowledge and ability to be extremely accommodating and valuable to the Coin-Op & Advertising industry. A native to Montana, he has been collecting advertising and other general antiques since the mid 80’s; specializing in cigar store and saloon and all the categories that it encompasses. Don, along with Tom, leads the division in an effort to engage the marketplace, develop strategic alliances, and manage customer and client relations. Most importantly, Don continues to bring “fresh to the market” collections to Morphy clients and loyal customers. His knowledge of the vast array of categories offered at auction.
Gary Metz joined the Morphy Auctions team in May of 2006. His primary duties are to gather consignments for the company, with his specialty being in advertising, country store, soda fountain, soda pop, and Coca-Cola. Gary represents Morphy Auctions at shows around the country. He also provides catalog descriptions on much of the advertising material in each sale.
Tommy Sage joined forces with Dan Morphy in 2004 to establish Morphy Auctions. Tommy is well known in the industry for his expertise in toys, trains and sports memorabilia. His primary duties are to act as chief operating officer of Dan Morphy Auctions, to gather consignments, provide catalog descriptions, and to represent Dan Morphy Auctions at various shows around the world.Tommy grew up in the antiques trade and attended his first show with his father at the age of six, started selling trains at the age of 12 and ran his first antique shop in the Poconos at the age of 16. It's not surprising that the younger Sage was attracted to the antiques trade at an early age. He recalls, "I was exposed to the business through my father, a long-time dealer, and was able to learn what collectors wanted, how to find it, and who to sell it to." In the 1980s, Tommy relocated to the Adamstown, Pa., area to continue his pursuit of the antiques business. He is now an integral part of Dan Morphy Auctions and brings vast knowledge and experience to the forefront of the company's daily operations.
John and Nancy Smith joined Dan Morphy Auctions in the spring of 2004 as our figural cast iron consultants. As widely recognized authorities on doorstops and figural cast iron, they provide the catalog descriptions on much of the figural cast iron offered in sales conducted by Dan Morphy Auctions.John and Nancy are the authors of The Doorstop Book – An Encyclopedia of Doorstop Collecting, and have been avid collectors of cast iron, folk art and country Americana for more than 35 years. As dealers trading under the name “American Sampler,” they have appeared at major antique shows since 1971 and are always available to answer any questions concerning Dan Morphy Auctions and consignments. John is the founder of the Figural Cast Iron Collectors Club, and both he and Nancy have been members of the Still Bank Collectors Club of America since 1971. Based in Barnesville, Md., John and Nancy are busy exhibiting at shows, updating their Web site, and gathering consignments Dan Morphy Auctions. Dan Morphy Auctions is pleased to have this dynamic duo as a part of the team.
Dan Morphy, owner and chief executive officer of Dan Morphy Auctions and founder of the Adamstown Antique Gallery in Denver, Pa., also acts as the mechanical and still bank specialist for the company.Dan grew up in a family of avid collectors, with his retired physician father, John Morphy Sr., and his mother, Janet, constantly encouraging the appreciation of antiques in the home and fostering a love of collecting among their children. "I grew up around antiques and attended many shows and auctions with my dad at a very early age," Dan said. At the age of 10, Morphy started buying still banks through the mail. Within a few years, he was both buying and selling mechanical banks through various sources and meeting collectors who are now among the most revered in the hobby. And while he has bought, sold and collected 30 to 40 different types of antiques over the years, Morphy says it is mechanical banks that have consistently held his fascination.Dan is deeply invested in the day-to-day operations of Dan Morphy Auctions and the antiques industry, and also supports and belongs to many collector clubs. His exceptional knowledge and experience with mechanical banks was shared with the hobby worldwide through the writing and publication of Dan Morphy's Price Guide to Mechanical Banks, which is considered the premier reference in its category.
Tom Hathazy joined the Dan Morphy Auctions team in the winter of 2005 as our pressed steel/pedal car consultant. Tom came highly recommended because of his extensive knowledge of Sturditoy, Buddy ‘L,’ Steelcraft, Sonny, Kingsbury and Keystone are obvious from the professional catalog descriptions, conditions and appraisals he provides for our pressed-steel items.Tom’s interest in antiques started with his love of antique cars. He had already been an active collector and hobbyist for more than 20 years when he purchased his first piece of pressed steel in the mid-1980s at the Hershey Car Show. Tom was a history teacher whose love of the past turned to the history of the pressed-steel toy companies. His experience with antique car paint restoration and non-original parts became the foundation for his understanding of pressed-steel toys. Over the years he had amassed such an extensive collection that he became active in the business and enjoys bringing new collectors into the hobby to share his love of antiques. Morphy’s is pleased to have Tom as a part of the team.