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Money in the Bank

The Katherine Kierland Herberger Collection

2006
Authors:

Corine Wegener and Karal Ann Marling

Money in the Bank

A comprehensive illustrated guide to American toy banks

Money in the Bank details a wide range of extraordinary still and mechanical banks and acclaimed art historian Karal Ann Marling contributes an essay tracing the importance of banks in popular culture. Lavishly illustrated, Money in the Bank is a remarkably comprehensive catalog that demonstrates the charm and whimsy, as well as the significance, of toy banks in America.

Those of us in the book reviewing business sometimes have the distinct privilege of learning and chuckling with delight throughout a book. This darling is case in point. This book of illustrations of the Katherine Herberger collection of toy banks collected over some sixty years numbering some 1,100 items, encompassing ‘objects that are variously ingenious, entertaining quizzical, and just plain rare,’ is one of the most valuable of its kind of anywhere. It is a treasure and a joy. And simply must be a part of the American home or library.

Journal of American Culture

The penny bank craze of the twentieth century began quietly enough. Here, a slotted pottery pig from Scotland. There, a grimacing human face made in Bennington, Vermont. In 1793, penny banks first appeared in America, along with the first large copper pennies. Those who mistrusted paper currency saved their “hard” money in vessels of pottery, glass, and tin. In the 1890s, “China Pig” with a slit in his back sold for a dime. Plump pigs and pennies went together like thrift and future success. To this day, these iconic examples of American folk art and vernacular design are prized additions to museum and personal collections throughout the country.

Money in the Bank details a wide range of extraordinary still and mechanical banks acquired by Katherine Kierland Herberger, who initially discovered the pleasure and variety of toy banks as gifts for her son. Over 1,200 purchases later, she donated the collection to The Minneapolis Institute of Arts. All are pictured here in full color for the first time. Acclaimed art historian Karal Ann Marling contributes an essay to the book tracing the importance of banks in popular culture, and an introduction narrates Herberger's extensive collecting activities. Money in the Bank is a lavishly illustrated and remarkably comprehensive catalog that demonstrates the charm and whimsy, as well as the significance, of toy banks in America.

Distributed for The Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Money in the Bank

Corine Wegener is assistant curator at The Minneapolis Institute of Arts.

Karal Ann Marling is professor of American studies and art history at the University of Minnesota.

Money in the Bank

Those of us in the book reviewing business sometimes have the distinct privilege of learning and chuckling with delight throughout a book. This darling is case in point. This book of illustrations of the Katherine Herberger collection of toy banks collected over some sixty years numbering some 1,100 items, encompassing ‘objects that are variously ingenious, entertaining quizzical, and just plain rare,’ is one of the most valuable of its kind of anywhere. It is a treasure and a joy. And simply must be a part of the American home or library.

Journal of American Culture

A lavishly illustrated and remarkably comprehensive catalog that demonstrates the charm and whimsy, as well as the significance, of toy banks in America.

Antiques and Auction News

These banks are a folk art, often unrefined but clever. They are colorful and they reflect historic and social trends of their times. In this handsome and well-organized book, one wants to be able to put a coin in and see what the bank did.

The Times of Acadiana

All 1089 of Katherine Herberger's incomparable collection of antique banks—277 mechanical and 812 still—now in the Minneapolis Institute of Arts are catalogued with annotated color photos. The variety and frequent ingenuity of the banks surpasses what anyone except the most experienced collectors would expect. The catalog with its informative introductory essays is required by any serious collector to get an idea of the scope of the field.

Antiques Today