- otherwise know as "hood ornaments" or "radiator
mascots" is a fast growing segment of automobilia
collectibles. It is estimated that there were in excess of 5,000
differing mascots produced during their heyday. Their demise was due to
the onset of the streamline era, and by the end of World War II the
mascot had all but vanished. Mascots were designed to spend their life
on the hood of a motorcar, they may exhibit corrosion, chips, and even
marks from tools that were used to remove them - so the owner could
check the water level in the radiator. Do not pass up a desirable
mascot that exhibits these marks, they prove authenticity and add
provenance to the fact that it spent at least part of its life on the
hood of a car!
Beginning collectors should be wary, as the marketplace is full of reproductions, many of which are offered for sale in online auctions. Get a copy of the William C. Williams book "Motoring Mascots of the World" and use it often. While it will not guarantee that what you purchase will be authentic, it will help the novice collector avoid some of the pitfalls of mascot collecting.