Bama Fan Drops A “Roll Tide” On Antiques Roadshow

You just never know when a Bama fan is going to drop a “Roll Tide” to show his excitement over a situation. As @MichaelPHartley said, “Roll Tide” has replaced “sweet” in Alabama speak. Here we have the latest example of this phenomenon from Monday’s episode of Antiques Roadshow from Birmingham.

PBS, being the excellent operation that they are, already has the segment transcript posted and they included “Roll Tide.”

GUEST: This is a little bit of New Deal history that we found at a junk shop in scenic Fort Payne, Alabama. We were driving through and saw a store and went in, and because I helped the guys unload a heavy piano, they said they would give me a discount on anything we found inside, so we picked this up for ten dollars.

APPRAISER: And what was it about it that appealed to you?

GUEST: Well, it just kind of goes with the style of things that are in our house in general. We’ve got some World War II propaganda-type posters, and we knew a little bit about the New Deal and thought that it would look really cool hanging in our hallway.

APPRAISER: The New Deal predates the Second World War, and by all accounts, this poster was designed in 1935. It’s an anonymous work, as many of the things that were done for the Work Progress Administration were, as many things that were part of the Federal Art Project were, done by very talented artists that the government was employing to help support the economy during the Depression. Now, the WPA lasted roughly from 1935 to 1943, and during that time, by all published accounts, the WPA published more than two million posters. And these posters covered the fields of art, of history, of education, of travel, of safety, and they were distributed all around America. Now, unlike the other WPA posters, which are much more artistic, this one is purely typographic. On the bottom, stenciled over the letters “WPA” are some numbers. You know what those numbers mean, right?

GUEST: Well, we wrote to the National Archives and they put someone on the case, and all they could tell us was that this was hung in Massachusetts at a courthouse construction project from 1936.

APPRAISER: You showed me the email that you got from the National Archives, and they attribute this specific project to a courthouse, the Fitchburg, Massachusetts, courthouse.

GUEST: That’s right.

APPRAISER: It was a $6,000 project, and the WPA contributed I think $4,900. I could only locate three or four copies in museums in America.

GUEST: Interesting.

APPRAISER: Now, that said, this poster is not in good condition.

GUEST: Right.

APPRAISER: It’s safe to say this poster is in bad condition, and I think part of the charm of this piece is the way it looks. I would simply frame it and keep it out of the direct light. That’ll preserve it from getting worse. None of these have ever come up for sale before, so there are no comparables. Over the years, they took all the blank posters that they printed, over-printed them with the project numbers, so we know intuitively that there were a lot of them out there, but we haven’t seen them on the market. So my conservative estimate at auction would be between $2,000 and $3,000.

GUEST: Wow! Roll Tide, that’s great.

APPRAISER: I would think in good condition, you’re probably talking $7,000, $8,000, $9,000.

GUEST: That’s beautiful, wow.

Have you heard a Bama fan drop a “Roll Tide” on the news or a TV show? Have you spotted a Bama fan doing something odd on TV? Getting arrested? A mugshot? Let us know.