Sheryl Hooks with a one-of-a-kind Pfaltzgraff jug sold for $8,500 at Thomasville County Auction Monday.
Sheryl Hooks with a one-of-a-kind Pfaltzgraff jug sold for $8,500 at Thomasville County Auction Monday. (EYANA ADAH McMILLAN)

Alexander Degenhardt hoped to win a one-of-a-kind Pfaltzgraff jug during an auction in Thomasville Monday.

But Degenhardt, 26, of Mount Wolf, was outbid for the mint-condition jug that dates between 1850 to 1870.

The jug went to an absentee bidder for $8,500.

"At least I got to see it and touch it, to hold history in my hands," Degenhardt said. "It was exciting.

The winner was not at the Thomasville Country Auction when the bidding began at 6 p.m.

He had examined the jug about 2 p.m. Thursday and placed a $10,000 absentee bid, said Sheryl Hooks, who owns the auction place with her husband, Jack.

She declined to give the man's identity, but said he's a Hanover resident and a regular auction attendee. She said he will be pleasantly surprised to get some of his money back, as bidders who were at the auction would not go beyond an $8,500 bid.

There were about eight bids for the jug, Sheryl Hooks said.

Thomasville Country Auction got the jug from a local resident who moved to a retirement facility and asked her company to auction his items, she said.

"We found (the jug) in a basement sitting in the corner," Sheryl Hooks said. "The consignor has no idea at all of the value of this jug. He probably thought it would sell for $5. He's going to be shocked when he gets his check."

The wheat color, glazed jug has the words "Local Option" on it and an illustration of a man drinking from a jug while standing.

The writing and drawing were done in blue.

Degenhardt said he was prepared to pay between $4,500 and $5,000 for the jug.

"My mom and I have been collecting Pfaltzgraff for years," he said. "I would have liked to have (the jug). It's a J.B. Pfaltzgraff creation from the 1800s. That's something special."

Founded in 1811, Pfaltzgraff became incorporated in 1889. The sixth-generation Pfaltzgraff Co. was sold to publicly traded Lifetime Brands Inc. in 2005. The local manufacturing plant, where about 230 people were employed, closed that year.

-Reach Eyana Adah McMillan at emcmillan@yorkdispatch.com.