Corkscrews in Florida

On January 26, 1999, Bonnie and I flew to Florida for a short stay at Howard and Sheila Luterman's winter palace. It was the weekend of the Coconut Grove and the Miami Beach Antique Shows. Howard assured me we would find many great corkscrews at these shows. During our stay we also saw Ken and Marcia Hark, Joe and Monika Paradi, Alan and Marlene Gurst, Joel and Barbara Goodman, and my good friend Howard Ross Miller. We spent time in the sun, we ate too much, and when we returned home on Sunday, we brought a few treasures.

We forked over $50 per person to gain early admission to the Coconut Grove show which claimed to have 700 booths in their advertising. Early on I found a postcard dealer who had a half inch stack of corkscrew cards. Recently I haven't found very many corkscrew cards I don't already own - to my surprise there were three in this lot that I didn't have.

An hour later I found the turkey and rabbit shown at left and right. These are silver bottle stoppers with Christofle trademarks. The cork is secured by a worm.

We had lunch than spent a couple more non-rewarding hours at the show. The day was topped off by a great Stone Crab dinner at The Crab House in Miami.
Thursday morning we went to the pool and had a visit from my friend Ross. He told me about a gift he had squirreled away some time ago. It was a battery operated corkscrew. I had heard of this Meyer Wine Key but had not had the opportunity to get one. Within a few minutes we made a trade.
Thursday afternoon we went to a mall show at Aventura Mall and found nothing. In the evening we saw Ken Hark's collection followed by dinner at 15th St. Fisheries in Fort Lauderdale.

Friday was the beginning of the 800 booth Miami Beach show. There I found a Converse patent with advertising for Holihan Bros. of Lawrence, Massachusetts on the sheath. With brain cells dying on a daily basis, I had forgotten until I returned home that I already had one.
After a several hours of meandering through the show, we found Howard and Sheila. He asked me if I had seen the cane corkscrews. I had not. We went to see it. In addition to two rather interesting but not overly exciting cane corkscrews, the dealer had what I felt was the finest cane corkscrew I had ever seen. A monkey in jockey uniform is perched at the top of the cane. He unthreads and a worm is pulled out perpendicular to the cane (just like a roundlet). He is than threaded back on to serve as the handle. Obviously, you turn the bottle and not the handle to turn the worm into the cork. I took my entire life savings and bought it!

That evening we celebrated my purchase at Spoleto's Italian Bistro in Aventura.
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After pool time on Saturday, we decided to scout the shops in Dania. We didn't see many corkscrews (I think Alf Erickson buys them all), but I managed to pick up a couple of things. In Dania, I found the blue cat, the Jones Beach horse head, the wood carved donkey, and the Austrian Hagenauer two finger pull with two drunken sailors. The knives I had purchased the day before at the Miami Beach show.

Our final evening found us eating duck at the Tivoli Restaurant in North Miami Beach.
...and what did Howard find?:

Howard was sad.


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©1999 Donald A. Bull