Koken Barber Chair Serial Number List: A Guide for Collectors
If you are a fan of vintage barber chairs, you may have heard of the Koken brand. Koken was one of the most popular and influential barber supply companies in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. They were known for their innovative and elegant designs, especially their hydraulic-powered chairs that revolutionized the barbering industry. Koken barber chairs are highly sought after by collectors today, but they can be hard to identify and value. In this article, we will give you some tips on how to find and recognize a genuine Koken barber chair, how to use the serial number to date your chair, and how much you can expect to pay or sell for one.
The Koken Barbers Supply Company was founded by Ernest Koken, a German immigrant who moved to St. Louis, Missouri as a young boy. He started out by making and selling porcelain barber supplies, such as shaving mugs, razors, strops, mirrors, and clippers. He then began to design and manufacture his own barber chairs, which he patented and improved over the years. Here are some of the milestones in the history of the Koken barber chair:
In 1881, Koken patented a reclining barber chair that allowed barbers to shave their clients more easily and safely.
In 1885-1888, Koken patented a series of reclining chairs that also swiveled, giving barbers and clients more comfort and flexibility.
In 1892, Koken patented the hydraulic barber chair that made him famous. This chair used a hydraulic pump to raise and lower the seat with a foot pedal, making it easier for barbers to adjust the height of the chair according to the client's preference.
In 1909, Ernest Koken died of heart failure at the age of 54. His son inherited his company and continued his legacy.
In 1926, the Koken Barbers Supply Company opened a foundry that allowed them to produce up to 100 chairs per day.
In the 1950s, the company went out of business due to competition from cheaper models and a decline in demand for barber services.
How to Identify a Vintage Koken Barber Chair
One of the easiest ways to identify a vintage Koken barber chair is to look for the word \"Koken\" stamped on the metal parts of the chair, such as the seat brackets, the footrest, or the base. However, not all Koken chairs have this mark, so you may need to look for other clues as well. Here are some features that can help you recognize a Koken barber chair:
The style of the chair. Koken chairs followed the trends of their time, so you can get an idea of when they were made by looking at their design. For example, chairs made in the 1920s and 1930s have a distinct Art Deco look, with geometric shapes and patterns. Chairs made in the 1940s and 1950s have a more streamlined and modern look, with sleek curves and chrome accents.
The features of the chair. Koken chairs were known for their innovation and functionality, so you can look for features that set them apart from other brands. For example, Koken chairs were among the first to have hydraulic lifts, swivel mechanisms, reclining backs, adjustable headrests, padded armrests, footrests with calf supports, and porcelain enamel finishes.
The materials of the chair. Koken chairs were made with high-quality materials that reflected their craftsmanship and durability. Many examples feature tufted leather seats, wooden frames made of quarter-sawn oak or walnut, elaborate wood carvings or metal scrollwork, nickel-plated or brass hardware, and porcelain enamel finishes in various colors.
How to Use the Serial Number to Date Your Chair
Most Koken barber chairs have a serial number stamped on them somewhere. The serial number can help you date your chair more precisely than just looking at its style or features. To find your serial number, look under the seat cushion. The number may be stamped on the underside of the wood or on the chair frame.
Unfortunately, there is no
Unfortunately, there is no official list of Koken barber chair serial numbers and their corresponding dates of manufacture. However, some collectors and experts have tried to compile unofficial lists based on their own research and observations. One such list can be found here: https://www.jacquelinestallone.com/antique-koken-barber-chair/. According to this list, the serial numbers range from 1 to 99999, and the dates range from 1892 to 1950. However, this list is not complete or verified, so it should be used with caution and cross-checked with other sources.
Another way to use the serial number to date your chair is to compare it with other known examples of Koken barber chairs that have similar features and styles. You can find many photos and descriptions of Koken barber chairs online, such as on eBay, Craigslist, or antique websites. You can also visit local antique shops or auctions that specialize in barber memorabilia and look for Koken chairs that match yours. By comparing the serial numbers of similar chairs, you may be able to narrow down the date range of your chair.
How Much are Antique Koken Barber Chairs Worth?
The value of an antique Koken barber chair depends on several factors, such as its condition, rarity, design, features, materials, and market demand. Generally speaking, the older and more ornate the chair is, the more valuable it is. However, the condition of the chair is also very important, as a damaged or poorly restored chair can lose a lot of its value. A chair that has its original leather, wood, metal, and porcelain parts intact and in good shape will fetch a higher price than a chair that has been replaced or repaired with modern materials.
The value of an antique Koken barber chair also varies depending on the current market demand and trends. Some styles and colors may be more popular and sought after than others at a given time. For example, Art Deco chairs from the 1920s and 1930s may appeal more to modern buyers than Victorian chairs from the late 1800s. The location and availability of the chair also affect its value, as some regions may have more or less supply and demand for Koken barber chairs than others.
According to some sources , Koken barber chairs may sell to buyers at auction for anything between $500 and $6,000, depending on the chair design and working condition. On average, however, a Koken barber chair in Very Good-Mint condition will sell for somewhere in the range of $1,000-$3,000. Of course, these are only estimates based on past sales and current trends, and the actual value of your chair may vary depending on how much a buyer is willing to pay for it.
Where to Buy Antique Koken Barber Chairs
If you are interested in buying an antique Koken barber chair, you have several options to choose from. You can look for local sellers who may have Koken chairs for sale in their homes, garages, or storage units. You can also visit antique shops, flea markets, or auctions that specialize in barber memorabilia and see if they have any Koken chairs in stock. However, these methods may require a lot of time, effort, and luck to find the chair you want.
A more convenient and efficient way to buy an antique Koken barber chair is to shop online. There are many websites that offer Koken chairs for sale, such as eBay, Craigslist, Etsy, or specialized antique websites. You can browse through hundreds of photos and descriptions of Koken chairs from different sellers and compare their prices and conditions. You can also contact the sellers directly and ask them any questions you may have about the chair. However, buying online also has some drawbacks, such as the risk of fraud, shipping costs and damages, and the inability to inspect the chair in person before buying.
Whichever way you choose to buy an antique Koken barber chair, you should always do your research and homework before making a purchase. You should check the authenticity and condition of the chair, verify the serial number and date of manufacture, and negotiate a fair price with the seller. You should also be aware of the laws and regulations regarding the import and export of antique items in your country or state. By doing so, you can ensure that you get a genuine and valuable piece of barber history that you can enjoy and cherish for years to come.
Koken barber chairs are more than just functional pieces of furniture; they are also works of art and symbols of a bygone era. They represent the innovation and craftsmanship of Ernest Koken and his company, who revolutionized the barbering industry with their hydraulic-powered chairs. They also reflect the styles and trends of their time, from the Victorian elegance of the late 1800s to the Art Deco glamour of the 1920s and 1930s. Today, Koken barber chairs are highly sought after by collectors and enthusiasts who appreciate their beauty and history.
If you own or want to own a Koken barber chair, you should know how to identify and value it properly. You should look for the word \"Koken\" stamped on the metal parts of the chair, as well as other features that distinguish it from other brands. You should also use the serial number to date your chair more precisely, and compare it with other known examples of similar chairs. You should also consider the condition, rarity, design, features, materials, and market demand of your chair when determining its value.
You can buy an antique Koken barber chair from local or online sellers who may have them for sale. You can also visit antique shops or auctions that specialize in barber memorabilia and look for Koken chairs there. However, you should always do your research and homework before buying a chair online or offline. You should check the authenticity and condition of the chair, verify the serial number and date of manufacture, and negotiate a fair price with the seller. You should also be aware of the laws and regulations regarding the import and export of antique items in your country or state.
By following these tips, you can find and buy a Koken barber chair serial number list that suits your taste and budget. You can also enjoy owning a piece of barber history that will add charm and character to your home or office. d282676c82