Owls are birds from the order Strigiformes, which includes about 200 species of mostly solitary and nocturnal birds of prey typified by an upright stance, a large, broad head,  binocular vision, binaural hearing,  sharp talons and feathers adapted for silent flight.   As far back as I care to remember the OWL has always been known as a WISE bird.  More on that subject when I fully research how it became known as a wise bird and portrayed  as such.   The group of Owl Banks in our collection form an interesting look into big piercing  eyes of this majestic creature.    Thank you for your interest in BANKCOLLECTORMARK.COM should you have any reason to contact us we may be reached at BANKCOLLECTORMARK@AOL.COM.








These shelves hold about 25% of my collection and will all be separated photographed and logged onto this site.  A small task that should not take any longer that a year or two.  I am doing the rough entry and then the web page expert will come in and dress the site up and organize the banks into some sense of order.  Input first then add the bells and whistles.  Please come back often and see the site grow.   Send me an e mail if you have any ideas or maybe a bank you want to give to a good home.    BANKCOLLECTORMARK@AOL.COM

The Walt Disney Company

The Walt Disney Company, commonly known as Disney, is an American diversified[2]:1 multinational mass media and entertainment conglomerate headquartered at the Walt Disney Studios in Burbank, California. It is the world’s second largest media conglomerate in terms of revenue, after Comcast.[3] Disney was founded on October 16, 1923, by Walt Disney and Roy O. Disney as the Disney Brothers Cartoon Studio, and established itself as a leader in the American animation industry before diversifying into live-action film production, television, and theme parks. The company also operated under the names The Walt Disney Studio, then Walt Disney Productions. Taking on its current name in 1986

Disney banks are so popular and come in many different shapes forms and materials that once organized will have their own area in the Virtual Museum as it has in my collection.  The bank numbers are so vast that Disney related banks have their own display shelf in my collection.   The vast number of Disney Characters that have been created over the years has manufacturers begging to be able to supply the company with all types of collectables including  a wide range of Banks.  I have glass Disney banks and many Plastic and resin banks even some cast banks as well as Tin Litho.  It seems everyone wants  to put Disney Characters on their products of design the item as the Character.  Anyone who has been to the Theme Parks will attest to all the items in the gift shops and then there are the Disney Stores  in malls all over North America.  Too many Disney banks out there ? …NAW there are never enough banks out in the world.


Now before I am taken to task on my valuations and the pictures I use.  First the valuations I give are based on auction , internet sales, antique shops and flea market pricing and books on the subject.  I value every bank in the collection from $5.00 and up after all in 2015 what can $5.00 really buy.   All banks seen on this site I own one or more the pictures may not be of my exact bank as I tend to borrow pictures already on the internet  it is easier than taking them myself.  Please feel free to e mail me with any information on any of these banks I am always willing to learn more facts about bank collecting.   New information will be added to the site as it becomes available.   THANKS  for your visit to my site I hope that you enjoyed looking at the collection as much as I enjoy putting it in the public eye.  MARK


Taught something new.

Today I had help to set up two cabinets with shelves and brackets purchased at our local Co op Lumber yard.   The workers at this location were so helpful with my purchases.   They selected the wood I requested and cut to my specifications and even loaded it in my truck.  Then I went into the store to the hardware counter and showed the young man the sample of the clips I needed and off he went and retrieved the clips I needed while I waited at the counter.  After going through the till I was delighted I only had to make one stop to get the parts to upgrade the cabinets with glass doors.  It seemed silly to have a 12 inch space between shelves to display a 4 inch. bank.    Today Simon Oosterlaken helped me refit the cabinets and clean them up to ready them for banks.   I started unpacking boxes of banks that I purchased three years ago and had run out of shelve space for them.  My wife is a very understanding person however does not share my passion for coin banks… sure she likes many of the banks in my collection.   The fact that every room in our house has at least one bank in it and I have taken over the basement with the collection.  Now relief is coming for my wife as I am setting up one of my garages to house a large part of the collection.  She will allow me to have a few banks in the house that she feels fit our décor.  The newly fitted cabinets should be able to fit approx. 350 banks per cabinet.

As I unload the boxes and unwrapped the banks it is like Christmas for me as I do not even remember some of the treasures that I purchased long ago.   Simon also taught me how to get pictures from one site into my computer and then into this site so now with that knowledge I am prepared to add many pictures to this site.  Please enjoy the site and come back often as there will be new things added weekly.


Today an additional two cabinets were added to display more banks that were stored away in boxes due to lack of shelf space.  My calculation is that each of these two cabinets will hold 200 to 250 banks each.   Additional shelves will have to be added to these cabinets as they came with only three shelves each and with the height of the banks an additional two shelves per cabinet can be added.  I was not very happy that one quarter of the collection was in boxes and was a closet collection.  Collections are not meant to be hidden away but on display to enjoy.  After the boxes are emptied and the shelves loaded it will be time to rearrange the collection by types and themes.   Some banks like cast iron mechanical will be displayed together without regard to themes , Disney banks will be all grouped together without separation due to the materials used to make them.   In the case of Disney it will not matter if they are ceramic, glass, metal or plastic they will all be on display together under the Disney banner.  Another group of banks that will be mixed are actual piggy banks… if the character is a pig it will appear on the pig only shelves.  |Now with electronic mechanical banks they shall be grouped together and all batteries will be removed to preserve the banks and prevent batteries from expiring and leaking in the banks this will include musical banks also.  Bank boxes will be stored  in a dry temp. controlled area so if the collection is ever sold off the boxes will still be available.   It is so hard to believe all the things that must be worked out so that the collection can be displayed in a neat and orderly fashion.

I expect that many hours over the next year will be spent setting the collection up the way I want it displayed and writing a few details about each bank.  Then with all the pictures taken and loaded into the computer we will be able to open the museum to the computer world.

Thanks for your visit we are working behind the scenes to make this site one you will come to often.   Our computer programmer is coming on board and will be designing a fitting program for the museum.  Please come back again.   Mark

Ouch a blow to the wallet by UPS

Now I have been cheated more than once in my life and scammed out of money but yesterday took the cake.   I went to the local UPS office to pick up two boxes of banks sent by the same shipper at the same time.   Both showed the identical information but were placed on separate waybills by the UPS people.  So I received one tag at my door to call and claim my packages with  a cost of 71.77.   When I arrived the UPS counter person informed me they do not take cash (since when is cash not accepted).   I pulled out my credit card and was informed the price was $143.54 as the two boxes had separate waybills the $71.77 was doubled.  When I asked what the fee’s were for I was told 10.00 GST and 58.25 plus more GST for the brokerage fee times two boxes.   After looking into this I could have cleared the boxes myself by filling out a form and paying the GST at Revenue Canada Customs and taking my receipt when picking up the boxes.  No one tells  you this in advance and after they charge $130.00 in shipping they find the need to gouge the customer 58 dollars for collecting 10 dollars for the government.  Now  the banks purchased just got even more costly.  So new policy for me is to instruct any sellers not to use UPS for their underhanded method of doing business.  I checked with another company and they would have been 5 dollars more up front but do not charge for collecting the tax and they send you an invoice not holding your package for ransom.   So added some mighty costly banks to the collection this week.  Pictures to follow soon the banks were all tin cans with the automotive theme. (oil can banks ) and food theme (canned foods).



Going Once going twice …SOLD

Well I should know better.   I just purchased 20 plus banks at auctions in the past few weeks.  They should arrive soon through the mail and I am sure with a hefty bill from the Canadian government for taxes and duty.   The beauty of cross border shopping and not being at the auctions to take your items with you.    What happens at auctions is you love an item and the prices seem great so you start to bid and then get into the have to win mode and bam … you have just overpaid for that item (in my case banks) .  Nobody twists your arm to bid but you get caught up in the excitement of the battle to win without doing the math first.  So you bought a bank for only 100 dollars not bad they are worth about 150 dollars so not a bad deal … WRONG.  Now the addition takes place with a 20% buyers premium and shipping and exchange from Canadian to US Funds  and duty and taxes and there you go the bank arrives at your door for only 255 dollars.   It happens time and time again and I quickly forget the extras when the next auction rolls along.   They are a great place to expand your collection and the prices look great until the postal service tells you how much shipping is going to be for that cast iron bank.    I have often paid more for shipping then I paid for the bank.   Gotta start finding some farm fresh banks with down home pricing.

An Alberta adventure

I have just returned from a Trip to the wonderful province of Alberta.  I am always left in awe when we drive into the mountains and reach the town of Banff.  I could spend hours just taking in the scenery and watching the water flow by.  My day was spent resting and a bit of searching for banks.  In our travels we stopped at a store in Calgary called the Iron Crow .   This establishment was packed full of wonderful items and I could have walked away with a hundred different metal vehicle banks however they were not at the bargain prices I was looking for.  I did pick up one full size oil can bank.  I did pay a higher price than I like to however it caught my wives eye and that was worth the buy. At another location  I found a eagle sitting on a globe of the world and almost had it for my collection however the deal was cancelled as the young mans (19)  mother did not want to part with the bank.

It was a great trip and I did bring one new bank into the collection.


Well I have now learned how to recover pictures lost in other sites and place them back into my computer.  This picture was taken over 15 years ago to place on another web site.  This morning I figured out how to regain the picture for this site.

The banks shown are a mix of banks in the collection from Disney to old cash register banks .

My collection consists of cast iron , glass, ceramic , tin, wood, other types of metal and plastics even some leather and paper banks …if it is a bank I collect it.

Research information I have started to build on my  collection of printed material about banks to be able to quence my thirst for more knowledge on manufacturers,  types of banks available and values.   It is one think to have a bank in your collection it is another to know all about that bank and others like it.  From the materials  I have purchased I see many months of in depth reading to gain the more knowledge on the topic of banks.  Once I start posting pictures of the collection I want to have a write up on the bank that allows the public to know more than what they see in the picture(s).

Thank you for following the progress of this site please be patient I promise it will get better and larger .

banks on a shelf

One small step

Getting impatient waiting for my computer guy to help me out I am playing in the system. You try you learn. This is not the type of pictures that will appear on this site in the future just me playing with a phone camera trying to figure things out. The clock and the hobo directly behind the clock are Not Banks all the rest are. When totally set up we will have cast iron separated from glass and plastic and ceramic however for group pictures like this at the start they will be mixed together. My collection consists of cast iron , glass, plastics (many types) tin and many other metal types, ceramic, wood and rubber to name a few. There are musical , mechanical, motorize, and still to name just some. So with a collection my size you have a mixture of everything. Some over a hundred years old and others made in the last few years all hold a place in my collection. As more pictures are added and a comments section added please feel free to ask questions or help me with more information on the banks on display.

photo (1)


Driving down the road viewing the wonderful colors in the trees red’s yellow’s brown’s and still a splash of green makes me smile. The fact that winter will soon be upon us and I can start my work at setting up the Virtual Bank Museum. On Oct. 3rd. I watched the first of two auctions of the CLIVE DEVENISH Collection. One of the finest collection of banks to ever be offered for sale. The second auction will be taking place in a few months and I hope to be able to purchase a few pieces. I did purchase the catalog for this auction which shows the banks up for sale and the asking prices. Once all the banks in my collection are photographed and placed on site along with write ups on each of them. It is my hope that we will be able to expand our collect with high quality pieces from well know collectors. At this time I am a member of the STILL BANK COLLECTORS OF AMERICA and have plans to make application to join the MECHANICAL BANK COLLECTORS OF AMERICA. My computer programmer and photo input person is currently writing exams so is not available yet to add some fantastic ideas to the site. Give me time as with little funding this site will take time to create. I will put something on this site every few weeks so that you know we are still working on it. Thanks for the visit.

The next step.

I have found someone willing to take edit and load pictures of the collection along with a write up to go with the pictures. He needs to write a program for this and will contact me when he is ready to start. I have many features I would love on the site but when your working with a very small budget things move slowly. Thanks for checking in please come back and see our progress. Happy Collecting Mark



banks on a shelf


Welcome to Bankcollectormark.com
Greetings my name is Mark Mills. Born in Canada in the 1950’s as an small boy I was given my first bank. At about five years old I was asked what I would like from a gift shop on a family holiday and I picked up a bank.  Those banks from my youth are what started my collection and today they still have more sentimental value then true cash value. After receiving a few more banks in my early years I was hooked. Over the years I searched flea markets, garage sales, and auctions along with used second hand stores. Then along came the internet and the world opened up for buying and collecting world wide .  Now with the aid of computers collecting has become so much easier. The whole world is only a few key strokes away.   I am constantly searching for special banks and those that reflect the area in which they were purchased… a light house from the coast a grain elevator from the west building banks from the east. What started out with just one Bank … grew into a collection far larger then I had ever expected. Before the age of computer I was lucky to buy five banks a month looking at flea markets and having people in the second hand business on the constant search for banks. Now today a few banks every week is common place and if there is a sale or auction happening that may have banks I am able to buy as many as one to a hundred banks in one day. Now with retirement knocking at my door I have decided to feature my collection on a Virtual Museum. Please come back often to see how things are going as this site. It may take years to fully evolve into the interactive site I have planned in my mind. Until I find a computer programmer willing to add all the bells and whistles and easy to use functions this site will remain low key. Contact me at bankcollectormark@aol.com if you have any coin bank stories you would like to share or any banks you would like to donate to the collection. With a very limited budget the hiring of a programmer is not on the horizon but I have one willing to work on the site so he can use it on his portfolio.  He is honing his skills at the University for the next few years. With our discussions on what I would love to see hopefully he will be able to turn my dreams into reality.

Building the foundation … The Plan

Over the next few months we will be planning how the site should look and get the proper paperwork in order so we do not break any laws. This site will be available for anyone wanting too view our collection and for other bank collectors to see what we have gathered. The collection was started in the 1950’s and has been added to over the years when coin banks that suited my delight came along I purchased them and now today the collection consists of over 2000 banks. I felt it was time to put the collection out on display for the public through this virtual museum.
Please be patient as the site will take time to build with limited computer skills and no funds to go out and hire talent. Will be looking at gathering some help from interested parties to work on this project.

Working on a backdrop for bank pictures

What a glorious day to start planning a backdrop for the photos of all the banks and talking to a computer smart person to help put them on the site. The Virtual Museum will be starting soon with features and more pictures being put on site every month. This picture is a test.

My two helpers… gotta love your dogs. Ruby our little one is still going strong however Buddy has recently passed away so this entry is in his memory and he will be with us always in our hearts.