Unusual Lighter Sparks Man’s Hobby
July 25th, 2017 by Jody Foss

Jerry Keller of Redmond, Oregon, holds the typewriter cigarette lighter that started it all. It is one of more than 400 unusual lighters he owns. Many of them are displayed in the cabinet behind him. Interestingly, he says some of the more mundane lighters are worth a lot more than the ornate ones. His lighters range in value from just a few dollars to more than $200 each. Photo courtesy of Jerry Keller

Jerry Keller’s mother loved to frequent estate sales when he was growing up. Even vacations were planned so she could visit antique and secondhand stores along the way.

Jerry never had much interest in such things until his mother gave him a miniature typewriter that was actually a cigarette lighter. That’s when his fascination with unusual lighters began.

Jerry is 61 years old now., and his collection has grown to more than 400 lighters. They take the shape of almost anything you can imagine: hand grenades, beverage bottles, matches, spark plugs, paint brushes, fishing rods, insects. He even has a grand piano that lights when its keys are pressed.

“I enjoy the hobby, especially the great conversations I have when people come to my home,” Jerry says.