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Bidding On The Good Stuff

Back in March of this year, Lewisburg, Pa., collector Richard Rushton-Clem decided to put a pickle jar he’d purchased at a tag sale up for sale on eBay, a popular on-line auction site. After a week of competitive bidding, the bottle – for which he had paid $3 – achieved a final sale price of $44,100.

“I knew it was unusual when I saw it, but I had no idea how unusual,” Mr. Rushton-Clem says of the hotly contested jar. Made in Willington, Conn., around 1850, the 11-inch amber bottle turned out to be the rarest size and color. “I was pleased when it reached $600, and by $1,000 I was ecstatic,” he recalls. “After that, I was in a state of