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Antique & Collectibles News
Updated September 2014

Current Antique News listings: (Click to see full news release.)

Julia's Fetches Nearly $1 Million Over Low Estimate with with $5.7 Million Antiques & Fine Art Auction

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for details

The Big Red Barn Fills With Early Americana; Original Round Top Texas Antiques Fair

Oct. 1-4

Julia's October Firearms Auction Could Set Another World Auction Record

October 2014

No-Miss Road Trip: The 55th Shenandoah Antiques Expo

Oct. 10-12

Civil War Expert John Sexton Joins James D. Julia Auctioneers

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for details

No-Miss Road Trip: The 55th Shenandoah Antiques Expo

Oct. 10-12

Coin-ops, Music Items, Gaming, More at Fontaine's on Sept. 13th

Sept. 13th

Jacksonville’s 41st Annual Depression and Antique Glass Show Welcomes
Our Special Guest George Fenton

Oct. 18 &19

Cole’s Antique Show in Warrenton, Texas

Sept. 25- Oct. 4

10th Annual Doll Show & Sale
in Palmetto, Ga.

Oct. 18th

The LaBahia Antique Show Should Be On Your Don’t-Miss List

Sept. 26- Oct. 4

Julia's "Bears All" in Their June
Toy & Doll Auction

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for details


Julia's Fetches Nearly $1 Million Over Low Estimate with with $5.7 Million Antiques & Fine Art Auction

It’s not every day an auction hits about a million dollars over low estimate, but again, we are talking a Julia auction here. In over 45 years in the business, the firm has seen its share of stellar auctions, be it in their renowned firearms division, their antique toy & doll division, their fine glass & lamp division, or their fine art, antique & Asian department. This last division recently surpassed all expectations with a four-day auction extravaganza that grossed a massive $5.7 Million against a low estimate of approximately $4.8 Million. Bidders were treated to a massive selection of American & European paintings, folk art, Asian antiques and art, silver, and fine antiques of every kind. These fresh-to-the-market offerings saw some of the strongest interest the market has seen in some time.

Day I started things off with approximately 400 paintings highlighted in part by over 25 works by Waldo Peirce that had descended through the family of the artist before making their public debut at Julia’s. This renowned free spirited and prolific artist was good friends with Ernest Hemingway and shared many an adventure with the author. One such fishing excursion in Key West was captured on canvas, picturing a shirtless Hemingway holding a sizeable catch. Entitled “Don Ernesto Con Una Bonita”, it reeled in $53,325 against a pre-auction estimate of $2,000-4,000. Another scene of Key West picturing a group of sailors enjoying some R&R at a local jazz club saw action to the tune of $48,585 against expectations of $4,000-6,000.

The day continued with a whole host of regional and other American artists as well as a select grouping of European works. Fellow New Englander Emile Gruppe was represented by such works as his rendition of Smith Cove in Gloucester showing various fishermen preparing their nets for a day on the water with numerous boats comprising the background. It sold for $13,365 within an estimate of $10,000-15,000. William Lester Stevens’ “Towering Trees” showing a foreground of gnarled birches and a distant church steeple peeking through went out at $13,035 within its $12,000-14,000 estimate. California artist Marguerite Zorach, who summered in New England, was represented by a bold oil on board of a waterfall amid tall evergreens that sold above its $10,000-15,000 estimate for $31,995.

Other Northeasterners included William Trost Richards. This renowned New Yorker with a deft hand whose landscape of a lake in the Adirondacks saw tremendous interest. From a private Long Island collection, it beat out its $10,000-20,000 estimate to bring $41,475.

An outstanding and large oil on canvas scene by Edmund William Greacen entitled “In a Giverny Garden, 1909” pictured the artist’s wife sitting in her lush country garden. The work’s provenance indicates Greacen gave this painting to his good friend and fellow artist Theodore Earl Butler who was Monet’s son-in-law. This exceptional work sold within its $30,000-50,000 estimate for $35,550.

Also worthy of note were three works by Ralph Cahoon. This 20th century artist known for his whimsical works that combine fantasy and folk art sensibilities saw mixed results. “Susannah & The Elders”, an octagonal form oil on board of a group of pilgrim elders being ferried along the shore when they happen upon a smiling mermaid grooming herself. This charming work sold for $20,145 against an estimate of $10,000-15,000.

This Fernando Amorsolo oil of laborers working the rice fields in the shadow of a distant volcano sold above its $50,000-80,000 estimate for $100,725.

The selection of art continued with some international examples such as two works from a Long Island collector of Philippine artist Fernando Amorsolo. One, a marvelous oil of laborers working the rice fields in the shadow of a distant volcano sold above its $50,000-80,000 estimate for $100,725. The other was a market scene of townspeople buying and selling produce in the village square. It sold within the same presale estimate for $53,325.

French artist Edouard Cortes’ busy Parisian street scene “Place Bastille” captures the square during a chilling autumn rain as pedestrians and drivers bustle about. This lovely work brought $26,070 within expectations of $20,000-30,000.

A little closer to home, Canadian art made a strong showing with two works in particular. Cornelius Krieghoff’s touching scene of a pioneer father bidding farewell to his family before what appears to be a long hunting trip sold within its $30,000-50,000 estimate for $47,400. From roughly a century later, Canadian artist Lawren Harris’ portrayal of barren trees during the spring thaw above Lake Superior sold well above its $5,000-10,000 estimate for $42,600.

Also included was a late addition to the auction, a highly desirable Ansel Adams signed gelatin silver print of a southwest village entitled “Moonrise, Hernandez, New Mexico 1942”. No one does black and white like Adams. One look and you know you’re looking at a master. It changed hands above its $25,000-35,000 estimate for $43,845.

The largest collection of weathervanes Julia’s has handled in recent memory included an important copper example from the late 19th century once belonging to American publishing magnate Cyrus H.K., whose credits include the Saturday Evening Post and Ladies Home Journal. Representing the old adage, “The pen is mightier than the sword,” the vane proved to be mightier than its $20,000-40,000 presale estimate and sold for $47,400.

The focus of Day II and the first part of Day III was on a vast array of folk art in a variety of genres. It also included a fine array of marine and nautical art, American furniture and accessories of every kind. Highlights included the largest collection of weathervanes Julia’s has handled in recent memory. An important copper example from the late 19th Century showed a quill pen breaking a sword blade and once belonged to American publishing magnate Cyrus H.K. Curtis whose credits include the Saturday Evening Post and Ladies Home Journal. Curtis, who was born in Portland, Maine in 1850, had it created as a logical extension of his profession as a publisher and to represent the old adage, “The pen is mightier than the sword.” The vane was acquired in the 1930s by the present consignor’s father who received it as partial payment for some demolition work he was doing on the building on which it stood for many years. It proved to be mightier than its $20,000-40,000 presale estimate and sold for $47,400. Other examples included an exceptional molded copper pig weathervane with evenly worn gilt surfaces that sold well above its $12,000-18,000 estimate for $32,587. A large copper grasshopper attributed to L.W. Cushing & Sons of Waltham, Massachusetts with delightful verdigris surfaces came fresh from a Midwest collection with an estimate of $15,000-25,000 and sold for $26,662. Among the list of other animals both wild and domestic was a hollow bodied trick horse jumping through a hoop. Attributed to A.L. Jewell & Co. of Waltham, Massachusetts, it sold for $17,775 against expectations of $8,000-10,000.

Other folk art included a generous selection of primitive portraits, most of which depicted children with their toys or pets, making them even more desirable. One in particular from the mid-19th century when it was traditional to dress young girls and boys alike pictured a blond boy in a gray dress and bloomers holding a garland of flowers with his dog resting beside him. Charming beyond words, it sold at the upper end of its $15,000-25,000 estimate for $23,700. Another standout was an example attributed to William W. Kennedy of a young boy holding a cane. With a very distinctive expression, this classic portrait went out at $11,850, nearly doubling the top end of its $4,000-6,000 estimate.

A selection of folk art quilts included a fine appliqué album quilt from the 19th century that featured 25 large squares depicting floral motifs. From a fine private Long Island collection it maintained brilliant color throughout and sold above its $5,000-8,000 estimate for $10,665.

Folk art of a more nautical flavor included ship models, portraits, accessories, and so forth. Marine art included works by the commodore of ship portraits, Antonio Jacobsen. His depiction of the black hulled steamship “The Commonwealth” sold for $7,702 versus its estimate of $5,000-7,000. But it was Montague Dawson’s vertical portrait of an oncoming three-mast tall ship in full sail cutting through the sun reflected in the white tipped green waves that stole the show. In a seemingly unending bidding battle that went well beyond its $20,000-40,000 estimate, it ultimately went to the buyer willing to go to $74,062.

Other items of interest included a nice assortment of American furniture from a private Long Island collector. Highlights included a fine Chippendale carved mahogany block-front slant-lid desk. From the third quarter of the 18th century Boston, this exceptional piece ex-Louis Appell collection is fitted with an arrangement of valenced pigeon holes and blocked drawers accentuated by bold period brasses and ball & talon feet. It sold for $14,220 against a $10,000-15,000 estimate. From the same collection was an exceptional Chippendale tiger maple corner chair with delightful pierced and scrolled splats reminiscent of owls alternating with ring turned pilasters. It more than quadrupled the low end of its $8,000-12,000 estimate to land at $35,550.

A selection of exceedingly rare Civil War recruiting posters from the Norm Flayderman collection included this massive recruiting broadside for the Manhattan rifles picturing a Zouave soldier. Color recruiting posters were exceedingly rare and this particular poster was believed to have been the first original example ever offered at public auction. It did not disappoint and sold beyond its $2,000-3,000 estimate for $14,812.

From the renowned Norm Flayderman collection was a selection of exceedingly rare Civil War recruiting posters. Flayderman was an astute businessman, scholar and military collector who helped revolutionize the price guide. While there were firearm and other price guides, his became the bible used most often and were respected above all others for their information, honest assessments, and accuracy. Julia’s sold Flayderman’s firearm collection earlier this year and his personal collection of Civil War recruiting posters and broadsides that by sheer miracle survived these 150+ years found favor in this auction. Of particular note was a massive recruiting broadside for the Manhattan rifles picturing a Zouave soldier. Color recruiting posters were exceedingly rare and this particular poster was believed to have been the first original example ever offered at public auction. It did not disappoint, seeing much action by those in attendance and bidding by telephone. It sold beyond its $2,000-3,000 estimate for $14,812. A massive seven foot recruiting broadside from Boston believed to be the largest Civil War recruiting poster in existence went out at $7,702 against a $1,500-2,500 estimate.

This session was rounded out by a selection of early American, English and Mexican sterling silver as well as American and continental coins and Russian enamel pieces such as a superb and large silver kovsh with matching spoon by Maria Semyenova. From the early part of the 20th century, it featured delicate shading and robust colors with allover foliate and flower decoration. Residing in the same family since it was brought over from Poland in the 1930s it sold above its $6,000-9,000 estimate for $28,440. A set of four mid-18th century British sterling silver candlesticks went out at $10,072, ignoring an $800-1,200 estimate.

Much of Days III and IV were devoted to approximately 1,200 lots of Asian art and artifacts, some of which came from an estate collection of a renowned Taiwanese diplomatic family with ties to Robert Frost and T.S. Eliot. The collection consisted of a variety of carved figures, scrolls, seals, censers, jade, porcelain, and more. Of particular note, was the wonderful collection of seals. Many of which performed admirably. Lot #4247 was a soapstone seal of Tien Huang, early 20th century, estimated at $800-1,000; it saw a fierce bidding battle which resulted in it selling for approximately $32,000. Another lot also a soapstone seal, Tien Huang Shih, estimated at $300-400 also produced fierce bidding which resulted in a final sale price of $23,700.00. A set of four album leaves by Huang Junbi (1898-19991) were estimated at $4,000-6,000 and finally topped out at $19,550.00. A beautiful Jadeite pendant and pair of earrings were estimated at $12,000-18,000 but topped out at $35,500.00.

The collection was further highlighted by a large offering of fine jade in a variety of forms. Of particular note was an important jade scepter. This sea green celadon stone carved as Ling Chih with lotus flowers and allover foliage was accompanied by a pierced and carved rosewood stand. Estimated for $30,000-50,000, it sold for $35,550. A set of six white jade pendants in a presentation box, depicting gourds, mushrooms and archaic dragons; and these diminutive carvings far exceeded an $800-1,200 estimate to bring $28,440. An intricately carved jade belt buckle ignored a $300-500 estimate to sell for $8,295.

The auction continued with a grouping of Asian porcelain including Ming as well as a select grouping of Chinese Export including a rare Carlos Maria de Bustamante armorial crest pitcher. The porcelain helmet pitcher decorated in gold with a crest and flowers honors the ascension of Ferdinand VII in 1808 who later became a noted figure in Mexico’s War of Independence. It went out at $4,147 against an estimate of $300-500. A porcelain shallow bowl from the early Ming period (circa 1400) decorated with lotus plants and stylized scrolling was highly sought after and brought a solid $47,400 within its $40,000-60,000 estimate. Each estimated for $200-300 and each selling for $11,850 was an early Ming style porcelain vase from the 19th century with beautiful red scrolling vines and flowers as well as a pair of yellow porcelain bowls with green painted characters.

Also included was a large offering of Chinese and Japanese figural bronzes. One of the many highlights was a fine bronze of a windblown figure from the Meiji period Japan. Brilliantly cast with realistic billowing folds, the robed gentleman with gilt highlights seems to be taking it all in stride. From the Norm Flayderman collection, it multiplied its $10,000-20,000 estimate to sell for $43,845. A bronze figure of Buddha seated in the lotus position atop an ornate golden throne sold for $23,700 against a $1,000-2,000 estimate. An 18th century Chinese bronze image of the 11-headed Quanyin likewise saw active bidding. It went out at $9,480 against a $400-600 estimate.

Julia's upcoming auctions include their phenomenal firearms and military memorabilia auction taking place in October. Following will be Julia’s toy & doll auction as well as their rare lamp & glass auction in November. Their next antiques, fine art, and Asian artifact auction will take place in February 2015. Julia’s is currently accepting consignments for these and other upcoming auctions. Call immediately for inclusion in these exciting sales. For more information or to place offers on unsold items, contact their offices at 207-453-7125. James D. Julia, Inc., P.O. Box 830, Dept. PR, Fairfield, ME 04937. E-mail: info@jamesdjulia.com. 

Julia's October Firearms Auction Could Set Another World Auction Record

Julia’s October firearms auction could set another new world auction record for highest gross ever attained. Julia’s is the leading auction house in the world for high-end, valuable guns. They have also distinguished themselves by handling the greatest number of important, old time collections. This sale is certainly true to form and will once again feature an extraordinary array of guns from numerous collections. The Fall 2013 auction grossed $18 million, making it the largest ever conducted in the world, and the Spring 2014 Auction exceeded that at over $19 million. Now their upcoming October 2014 auction with a presale estimate of approximately $19-$22 million could once again establish a new benchmark. Speculation of gross is one thing but one thing is for sure, and that is the importance of the collections to be offered.

Session I will include the renowned Springfield Arsenal Collection of rare Antiques and Artillery assembled by the world’s leading authority on this venue, Mr. John Morris. John’s collection is unquestionably the largest, most diversified offering of antique cannons and artillery ever to come to auction. The significance of his collection is such that it has been divided into two parts. The second part will be offered in the spring of 2015. There are many great rarities to be included, one of which will be the Civil War 10” Siege Mortar in original carriage bearing SN#7. This is one of the few such examples in existence today and carries a very conservative estimate of $15,000-25,000. A Dahlgren heavy 12 lb. Boat Howitzer on original carriage SN #52 is another very desirable specimen. This is one of the best Heavy Dahlgren Howitzer and carries a presale estimate of $60,000-90,000. Also of great note is the Spanish Siege Mortar dated 1750 captured by Dupont at Fernadina, Florida in 1862. This is a most historic and important piece of American history and is estimated at $90,000-125,000.

Julia’s has also come to be the leading marketer of rare Class III weapons. Included is what is believed to be the most significant collection of Class III material to ever come to auction. This is the collection of Evergreen Ventures, Inc. of McMinnville, Oregon. This collection was formerly on loan to the Evergreen Museum and includes an extraordinary array of choice and rare working machine guns. This collection again is so expansive that it has been divided into two parts. The second portion is to be sold in Julia’s March 2015 auction. In addition, part of this same collection together with an extraordinary array of machine gun parts will be offered at the Poulin Auction Company located adjacent to Julia’s on Monday, October 6, 2014.

There are so many choice and rare items such as an extremely rare and desirable Vickers Maximum Model 1904, formerly used in the Fox movie studio. SN #48 in a desirable caliber 30-06, this rare and extremely fine piece is estimated at $75,000-125,000. Another extremely rare and unusual example is the Villar Perosa 1915 twin 9mm Glisenti Machine gun estimated at $40,000-60,000. This is one of the first anti-aircraft guns. There is also a scarce Villar Perosa gunner’s chest that will be sold in this sale, which is estimated for $5,000-10,000. Another great rarity is the Cadillac Gauge Stoner Machine gun estimated at $75,000-125,000. These are extraordinarily rare and almost never come on to the marketplace. Some years ago, a handful of these guns were assembled from some real and reproduced parts and on occasion those have come up for sale, but an original genuine one such as this is almost never seen. In fact, to our knowledge no other complete and original C.S.G. gun has come to auction.

Also included is the personal collection of Brigadier General Theo C. Mataxis. His Class III weapons were all collected by himself from various battles and are accompanied by their provenance. A Chinese copy of the Soviet RPD Belt Fed Machine gun captured November 1965 in Vietnam by Gen. Mataxis carries a presale estimate of $20,000-25,000. Another extraordinarily important collection to be offered is the Dr. Geoffrey Sturgess Collection of Zurich, Switzerland. The Sturgess Collection of auto loading weapons is the most comprehensive and largest of its type currently in private hands. This offering represents the third session Julia’s has handled for Sturgess (with more to come). A unique and important Baby Luger SN #4 in excellent condition is estimated at $50,000-100,000. A fabulous presentation cased Model 1902 Luger carbine formally a presentation from Kaiser Wilhelm II to Mexican President Porfirio Diaz is in stunning condition and carries a presale estimate of $90,000-150,000. Another important Kaiser Wilhelm presentation is a fabulous cased presentation Manlicher Model 1901. It was originally in the renowned Visser Collection and it carries a presale estimate of $30,000-60,000. A super rare item is the Model 1897 Silverman-Maxim prototype pistol in 7.63mm. Sir Hiram Maxim, who was born in Sangerville, Maine, went on to develop the first practical machine gun and was later knighted by the British government for his accomplishment. He later considered the possibility of creating a semi-automatic pistol. This is one of the extraordinarily rare remaining prototypes of Maxim’s endeavor. This one in excellent original condition carries a presale estimate of $20,000-30,000. An extraordinary Walther Model PP long slide with Verchromt finish is another extremely desirable lot. There were fewer than ten of these pistols produced and only a couple survive today with this being the finest example known. This exact gun is illustrated in Rankin’s book as SN #779150. This example also includes the correct and original Verchromt finish safety lever in nearly new condition retaining approximately 99% finish (originally from the famed Visser Collection). It carries a presale estimate of $45,000-65,000.

Session II includes an extraordinary array of sporting arms. Again, Julia’s Auction Company has become the preeminent auction company in the world for high-end expensive sporting arms. American Sporting Arms are highlighted by the spectacular private collection of rare engraved and gold inlaid Winchester Model 21 shotguns of Mr. Bill Phifer. Mr. Phifer became acquainted with the Winchester Custom Shop in the 1970s and began to make special orders for select guns. Over a period of years, he continued to order about every known configuration that could be purchased from the custom department, and never fired them. In fact, he never even assembled them; they are still in the original boxes that they came in and so they are essentially new. One of the most extraordinary items in his collection is the unprecedented, spectacular, unique cased Winchester Model 21 Grand Royal with extra barrels. They are embellished with lavish gold ornamentation including the iconic Winchester rider on horseback as well as hunting dogs, etc. This extraordinary work of art is estimated at $60,000-90,000. The exceptional Winchester Model 21 Grand American, “1 of 8”, small bore with 3 barrels is another pièce de résistance and estimated at $50,000-80,000. A special order 2-barrel small gauge set (28 gauge and 410 gauge) Winchester Model 21 Grand American has exceptional engraving and gold inlay by Robert Kain and is estimated at $35,000-55,000. There are numerous other spectacular Grand Americans offered in this remarkable sale. Notably is the unprecedented eight-gun set of Winchester 410s representing one of each grade Model 21 produced by the Winchester Custom Shop. They are consecutively numbered as ordered by Mr. Phifer and verified with factory letter. Depending upon configuration, they are estimated anywhere from a low of $25,000 to a high of $55,000. Many of us wish we could go back in time to the 1970s and visit the Winchester Custom Shop to have one of these creations produced new for us but this is the next best thing as these guns are new in the box and exactly the way you would have received them from the Winchester Custom Shop in the 1970s.

Other extraordinary high art American shotguns include a rare L.C. Smith Deluxe Grade single barrel trap gun with two sets of barrels, lavishly embellished with gold inlays. This gun was made for William B. Rohde and is so inscribed. This spectacular L.C. Smith is estimated at $80,000-150,000. This auction includes a large and outstanding offering of Parkers including a fine 20 gauge AHE. This Parker with unusual engraving and in fine condition is estimated at $30,000-50,000. A rare 28 gauge Parker DHE in excellent condition is estimated at $32,500-52,500. Also an exceptionally rare 410 GHE in fine condition is one of many 410 gauge Parkers in the auction and this one is estimated at $35,000-55,000.

An Ithaca NID grade 7E with 32” barrels in 20 gauge in exceptionally fine condition is estimated at $35,000-65,000. Also a very nice selection of Brownings includes a very fine FN Browning Superpose Exposition Grade engraved in gold inlay Jaquez Lodewic, which carries a presale estimate of $20,000-25,000.

Fine English sporting arms include two exceptional Boss 410 gauge shotguns. Both are in nearly new condition. One being an over/under estimated at $100,000-200,000. The other being a side by side also estimated at $100,000-200,000. An exquisite cased pair of 28 gauge extra finish Holland & Holland Royal Deluxe single trigger game guns with game scenes by W.P. Sinclair and in excellent condition is estimated at $75,000-125,000. A fine cased pair of James Purdey extra finish side lock ejector game guns in 12 ga. in exceptionally fine condition is estimated at $35,000-65,000. Another pièce de résistance by Holland & Holland is an exquisite Royal Deluxe double rifle in caliber 500/465 H&H Magnum. This superlative gun is estimated at $150,000-225,000.

Also included in the sporting section are two fine paintings by renowned sporting artist, Percival Leonard Rosseau. Both are from the estate of Mr. Calvin R. Allain originally purchased by Jack Adair of Atlanta, Georgia. The first depicts pointers, Jimmie Dek & Peters Carrot on quail estimated at $20,000-40,000. The second, “Setters on Hilltop”, Ned & Bob is estimated at $20,000-40,000. Both are fresh to the market.

Also included in Day 2 is the lifetime collection of Leyton and Lewis Yearout of Great Falls, Montana. The father, Lewis Yearout, began collecting in the mid-20th century and continued for the rest of his life. His son, Leyton, also became an avid collector and together with his dad helped grow this expansive collection. Their entire collection has been consigned to both Julia Auction Company and the Poulin Auction Company, the more desirable examples of their collection are included here. One notable example is the extremely rare factory engraved Winchester Model 1866 that belonged to Winchester’s most famous salesman, Thomas O’Connor. In fine condition with lovely engraving, it is estimated at $25,000-40,000. Also from the Yearout collection is a very rare iron framed 1860 Henry that is estimated at $40,000-70,000. From the Dr. Edmund Lewis Collection of rare Volcanic arms comes an exceedingly rare factory cased and engraved New Haven Volcanic 25” lever action carbine. This example being in very fine condition is extremely difficult to find, but to find one in the original factory case is nearly impossible. It carries a presale estimate of $100,000-150,000.

Session III will include more fine offerings from the Lewis and Leyton Yearout collection including a number of desirable Colts. One of which is a rare cased Patterson #3 revolver including all accessories and most notably an extremely rare original directions for loading the Patterson. This carries a presale estimate of $75,000-125,000. From the same collection is a lot of three Smith & Wesson revolvers which at one time belonged to the most revered handgun shot in the world, Ed McGiven. McGiven was a sign painter in Montana who developed an extraordinary skill with handguns. At the time, he proved himself to be the finest handgun shot in the world. In the 1940s, he appeared on the cover of Outdoor Life performing a show of his shooting skills. In the image, an assistant had just thrown up five hard rubber balls, each the size of a silver dollar. Ed McGiven with a revolver had fired five shots hitting all five balls and there were five clouds of debris above his head, all shot in less than a half a second! Formerly owned by him, the lot of three is generally in very good condition and as a group carry a presale estimate of $10,000-15,000.

This sale will include the third session of the Dr. Douglas Sirkin Collection. Dr. Sirkin’s Collection of Kentucky rifles is one of the largest most diversified offerings sold in many years and has included a number of important and rare examples. This sale will feature an award winning incise carved flintlock Kentucky rifle by N. Beyer of the Lebanon School. This very gun in 1988 had won the Silver Award for the Best Relief Carved Rifle. It is in very fine condition and carries a presale estimate of $40,000-60,000. Another fine example from the Sirkin Collection is an important and very rare relief carved curly maple rifle signed by J. Shriver, the elder. This beautiful gun carries a presale estimate of $30,000-50,000. John Armstrong is one of the premier names in fine early relief carved Kentucky rifles. While only a handful of these magnificent works of art survive today, Dr. Sirkin had a great passion for Armstrong and had more than one in his collection. This auction features two examples by Armstrong; one, a percussion and the other, a flintlock. The flintlock in fine condition carries a presale estimate of $30,000-45,000. A magnificent pair of 17th long Italian flintlock holster pistols with steel mounts relief chiseled in the Brescian manner by Vincenzo Borazo and splendid barrels by the master, Lazarino Cominazzo, circa 1685, carry a $20,000-40,000 estimate. Another fine early firearm is a fine and very rare early Italian flintlock repeating gun from the workshop of Michael Lorenzoni with the most distinguished provenance dating to around 1700. It carries a conservative presale estimate of $10,000-20,000.

Items from the estate collection of the late Judge George Green of Alabama are included in this auction. Judge Green had started a small museum and proudly displayed his collection for years before his passing. Included is an important Templeton Reed percussion long rifle, a rarity among rarities. Templeton Reed owned a private mint and made gold coins. Today coins made in his private mint bring astronomical prices. Reed was a native of North Carolina and relocated to Georgia where he opened his private gold minting business. He was also a blacksmith, a watch maker and a gunsmith, and this is currently the only known rifle produced by this remarkable craftsman. It is in very fine condition and carries a presale estimate of $20,000-50,000. Also included is his Leech & Rindon Confederate revolver is estimated at $20,000-30,000. Judge Green’s rare Confederate staff officer’s sword made by Louie Haiman of Columbus, Georgia for Major Francis Dillard is estimated at $20,000-40,000.

This third session also includes the collection of John Montague of Memphis, Tennessee. His expansive collection of rare Kentucky pistols features an 18th century pair of Flints possibly by Peter Neihardt in very good condition. This pair is estimated at $30,000-50,000. In addition to his fine collection of Kentucky pistols is his collection of rare Southern Derringers. A rare cased matched pair of Schneider and Glassick Memphis, Tennessee Derringers in very good to fine condition is estimated at $8,000-12,000. A cased pair of Schneider Memphis, Tennessee dueling pistols with silver mounts in good to fine condition is estimated at $15,000-25,000.

Not all of the items came from collections; many have come from numerous estates and collections from all over North America. Included is a rare cased silver finish Colt Model 1849 pocket pistol with carved ivory grips estimated at $30,000-50,000. A matched pair of engraved Colt SA Army revolvers has a presale estimate of $60,000-80,000. A historic cased Spencer sporting rifle that came from the estate of Abraham Lincoln’s Secretary of Navy, Gideon Wells, carries a presale estimate of $40,000-70,000. Also included is an important Civil War statue grip presentation sword to Major John F. Reynolds who was killed at the Battle of Gettysburg. This spectacular sword was at one time part of the legendary Philip Medicus Collection and later in the collection of Norm Flayderman. It carries a presale estimate of $40,000-60,000.

One interesting historical museum object is a rare French single shot falling block breech loading carbine by Gastinne Renette. This gun carries a brand in the stock, “Musee de L’Art’Le”, and was once in the famous French museum of art and later in the museum of artillery. At one time, it was the subject of a great lawsuit in Texas involving a private collection and the French government wherein the French government maintains that this gun had once belonged to Napoleon III, the nephew of Napoleon Bonaparte. Because it carried the stamp “Musee D’Artillerie,” they claimed rights to it. The end result of this well-publicized lawsuit was that the French government lost, and the private owner prevailed in court. Here is an opportunity to own a firearm that legitimately once was in the famous French Musee D’Artillerie and was coveted by France to the extent that they went through significant but unsuccessful efforts to get it back. This treasure is estimated at a reasonable $20,000-30,000.

Also from a private collection is a very fine and superbly etched complete suit of armor after the original made for Goachim II, Lector of Brandenburg, circa 1850 by an unidentified German master armor. This extraordinary suit of armor carries a presale estimate of $100,000-150,000. A fine full “Gothic” plate armor suit for a youth of excellent form and style of the 15th century but made sometime in the 1850s carries a presale estimate of $50,000-80,000.

Another item of great note is a historic and rare cased Smith & Wesson Outdoorsman revolver that once belonged to the former First Lady, Eleanor Roosevelt. The cased, inscribed gun was a personal gift from friend and body guard, Earl Miller. Miller was a New York State Trooper and eventually became a personal body guard for President Roosevelt and Eleanor Roosevelt. Included in this package is an image of Eleanor with Earl Miller and also another image of Eleanor appearing to shoot this very same pistol. The presale estimate is $45,000-65,000.

Another historic object which belonged to a nefarious character is a platinum-and-diamond pocket watch which once belonged to Al Capone. The watch encrusted with diamonds along the bezel and on the reverse spells out “A.C.” for Al Capone. It recently came from the great grandson of Alphonse G. Capone who had received it from his grandfather, Albert Francis “Sonny” Capone, who was the only child of Alphonse G. Capone. The watch carries a presale estimate of $35,000-55,000.

The sale is rounded out by a tremendous array of fine historical and outstanding items. Julia’s auction gallery is located on Rt. 201 in Fairfield, Maine. For more information, contact James D. Julia, P.O. Box 830, Fairfield, Maine 04937 or call 207-453-7125, or view all three sessions of the auction online at www.jamesdjulia.com. 

Noted Civil War Expert John Sexton Joins James D. Julia Auctioneers In Rare Firearms Division

Over the past 32 years, John Sexton has established himself in the antique firearms world as one of the leading authorities on Confederate and Civil War objects. He has an independent company, which for many years has dealt in all forms of firearms and historical items. He also has provided –and will continue to provide—consultant services for collectors and institutions throughout North America. He regularly performs IRS approved appraisals relating to firearms and historical objects.

In addition, John will serve as a Special Agent and Consultant for James D. Julia Auctioneers. As such, he will represent the company at various antique firearms shows throughout North America, serve as one of their expert catalogers, and also support staff in the Firearms Division prior to auctions. John’s extraordinary breadth of knowledge and his very direct, open, upfront and honest approach to all clients has earned him the respect and following of a vast number of collectors and institutions all over North America. In the short period of time that John has been in the role of a Special Agent for Julia’s, he has been extraordinarily successful interacting with clients and generating important historical consignments. To speak with John, call 207-453-7125 or email him at firearms@jamesdjulia.com. 

Coin-ops, Music Items, Gaming, More at Fontaine's on Sept. 13th

More than 365 lots of coin-ops, musical items, toys, advertising, country store, banks and gaming collectibles will come up for bid on Saturday, Sept. 13th, at Fontaine’s Auction Gallery, in the firm’s gallery located at 1485 West Housatonic Street in Pittsfield, Mass. The auction will start at 11 a.m. Eastern time. A full catalog can be viewed online at www.fontainesauction.com. Offered will be fresh-to the market merchandise, to include rare Victrolas, gramophones, music boxes, phonographs, jukeboxes, automatons, slot machines, doorstops, arcade games, vending and soda machines, trade stimulators, tin litho, baseball items, display cases, signs, posters, many historical and political items and more – something for nearly everybody and at all price points.

Cretors & Company Model D popcorn machine with driver's seat (est. $10,000-$15,000).

A strong candidate for top lot of the sale is a Cretors & Co. (Chicago) Model D popcorn wagon with driver’s seat (est. $10,000-$15,000). The 12-foot 8-inch-long (by 9 foot 2 inch tall) wagon has an entrance door on the left side with lift-up serving window, fancy gold and silver leaf display handles, large iron spoked wheels with rubber tires, and an awning top with steam vents.

A Princess Doraldina 5-cent fortune teller machine, made circa 1928 by Mike Munves, showing a gypsy woman in a large wood case with glass front, pointing to a row of fortune telling cards, should gavel for $12,000-$15,000. Also, a Wonder Talking Machine Company phonograph titled, “The Double Bell Wonder,” in a nicely refinished oak case, in good working condition, complete with instruction booklet and two “Wonder Records,” is expected to command $8,000-$12,000.

For more information, visit www.FontainesAuction.com.

Cole’s Antique Show in Warrenton, Texas—One of the Finest and Most Popular Shows

Things are cool at one of best show venues during Antique Week in Warrenton, Texas, on Sept. 25-Oct. 4. Cole's Antiques Market offers 63,000 square feet of air conditioned shopping heaven, stuffed to the bursting point with top-notch antiques, fine art and collectibles for visitors. All antique and vintage, no reproductions, nothing new. Owned and operated by Diane and E.J. Cole, this hard-working couple is known for excellence when it comes to putting on an antiques show.

More than 200 venders will display their wares in the large building and in outdoor tents. Browse top-of-the-line antiques, collectibles, American primitives, linens, flow blue, china, oriental and Persian rugs, western collectibles, pottery, jewelry, Victoria and American furniture, fine art, glassware, rare clocks, lamps, silver, paper goods, postcards, toys and more. Expert glass repair and grinding on premises will be available.

Don’t miss the free wine tasting on Tuesday, Sept. 30th from 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Located at the corner of Hwy. 237 and Willow Spring Road (FM 954), shop late on Tuesday, Oct. 1, with the Cole's Wine Tasting Party, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Dealer spaces available: 281-961-5092 / 979-249-5806. For info, visit www.colesantiqueshow.net.

The LaBahia Antique Show Should Be On Your Don’t-Miss List 

Don’t’ miss the 22nd Annual Labahia Antique Show, Sept. 26-Oct. 4, in Burton, Texas, near Round Top, Texas. Drive the old LaBahia Indian trail through the country and find antique treasures under the beautiful trees of an historic 1879 building. It is the perfect setting for the LaBahia Antique Show. Dealers come from Georgia, Virginia, Illinois, Indiana, Florida, North Carolina, Colorado, Texas, Michigan, New York and other states to attend this event, bringing Flow Blue, Victorian, primitives, elegant glass, silver, American and English furniture, vintage and European linens and estate jewelry. Outside dealers will be offering merchandise such as garden architecture, shabby chic, quilts, vintage goods, re-purpose and collectibles. There will be porcelain restoration at the show.

The La Bahia Antique Show has been making positive impressions on visitors since it started in 1992. The Round Top Register's Antiques and Craft Show Guide states that among the "…shows that have shown consistent quality over the years is the La Bahia Antique Show at 237 and Hwy 290….” Admission is free, and there will by country cooking all day.

Visit www.labahiaantiques.com for info, or stop by Hwy. 237 (290 W) Burton, Texas. The Spring 2015 will be March 27-April 4—add it to your calendar.

The Big Red Barn Fills With Early Americana;
Original Round Top Texas Antiques Fair includes Continental Tent and More

Susan Franks has again filled the Big Red Barn for this fall show with a full complement of dealers offering a variety of Americana ranging from early Colonial period antiques through late 19th century home furnishings. The Original Round Top Antiques Fair, Oct. 1-4, 2014 at The Big Red Barn Event Center and nearby Carmine Dance Hall, will host 300 exhibitors and their collections of antiques, ranging from Colonial American periods through later 20th century styles in the Big Red Barn, The Continental Tent, The Big Red Barn Tent and nearby at Carmine Dance Hall.

Now for the 47th year, the show is the anchor for a week’s worth of shopping in the tiny Texas town, which for many is the second home site with ranch or country ambience. Susan’s show gives the shoppers an opportunity to find the furnishings and personal collections to create that lifestyle for themselves.

Shelley Weidner, Cibolo Creek Antiques of Vulverde, Texas, specializes in furnishings from her home state. This fall, she will be offering for the first time a one-of-a-kind storage unit originally made for hardware by Irwin Heimer from the San Antonio area. She reported it was probably made for a store as a fixture for hardware but would now fit the popular Industrial styles with its iron hand-forged hinges and box drawers.

Eva Lee, another Texan, shops all across the country and in fact was interviewed for this story while shopping in Minnesota. Her collection is country stores, literally, the whole store: fixtures, cupboards, counters, cash registers, scales, the whole kit and caboodle. This fall, she will have available 56 running feet from one St. Louis store she purchased and removed earlier this summer, complete with cabinets twelve feet tall which can be assembled like a jigsaw puzzle. The manufacturer, J.D. Warren Co. of Chicago, at the turn of the century made his pieces fit together with common moldings.

An interesting and very unusual exhibitor at the show for the last few times has been Mel King, owner of Big Blue Wreck and Salvage Company. Although headquartered in Denver, Mel and his crew are the popular ocean shipwreck recovery people who lately have been gathering artifacts off the coast of Florida from 16th and 17th century shipwrecks. The material recovered is largely smelted into other gold objects, although some will be sold as found.

Look for many exhibitors with traditions antiques, too. Woody Straub of Umatilla, Fla., will be there with early furniture and fine art. Another Floridian, Fred Cain picks Georgian Era furniture and accessories. From nearby Chappell Hill, Texas, Patty Walsh will be offering from her extensive collection of early American primitives. Silver is there from the 18th century, offered by several exhibitors, as well as early earthenware from England, France and China. David and Susan Byerly, North Carolinians, shop in England and Europe several times each year to build their inventory for the show. Look for their freshest stock this fall.

The show opens daily Oct. 1-4 at 9 a.m. Wednesday, the show closes at 7, Thursday and Friday at 5, and Saturday at 4. For more info: www.roundtoptexasantiques.com or 512-237-4747. 

No-Miss Road Trip: The 55th Shenandoah Antiques Expo

October in the Valley of Virginia is the perfect time to find brilliant foliage and plenty of antiques at the 55th Shenandoah Antiques Expo Friday, Oct. 10 through Sunday, Oct. 12 at Augusta Expoland (I-64, Exit 91) in Fishersville, Va. This weekend getaway is just a quick jaunt over the mountain from Charlottesville.

Heritage Promotions, located in Lynchburg, sponsors the sprawling indoor/outdoor event. “Since 1986 our Expo has grown into one of the most highly anticipated antiques shows in the Mid-Atlantic,” Raymond Stokes, a co-founder of Heritage Promotions, said. “Thousands of folks return to Fishersville because they scooped up cherished collectibles or antique furniture on their last trip.”

Serious collectors as well as weekend travel buffs head for the gathering of 300+ expert dealers who set up indoors and outdoors. The extravaganza attracts antiques aficionados from Pennsylvania, Maryland, D.C., Virginia, West Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina and throughout the East Coast.

“Collectors show up by sunrise on Friday for the 9 a.m. gate opening,” Stokes said. “They comb exhibition halls, barns, tents and stalls—and hit gold—even off trucks in the parking lot. The most avid collectors will hunt from dawn to dusk.”

The Shenandoah Antiques Expo has a reputation for good 18th and 19th century American country furniture. English and Continental furniture and accessories turns the heads of discerning shoppers who prefer traditional design.

Visitors also uncover a trove of jewelry, silver, glassware, primitives, rugs, and better collectibles such as stoneware, art, decoys, toys and Civil War memorabilia. Tastemakers of another sort snap up country Americana, such as early19th century painted furniture, and mid-century modern that tuck into eclectic interiors.

The show offers triple value, Stokes said. He quickly ticked them off. “Collectors find authentic pieces at fair prices. Why go north and spend more? Second, we draw the most reputable dealers from Florida to Maine. It’s not just about the sale. They take time to share curatorial expertise with anybody who has a question.”

Then Stokes grinned: “Third, the Expo is sheer entertainment for anybody bitten by the antiques bug or somebody looking for a fun weekend. For a three-day $10 pass and free parking, you can search for a special piece that jumps out and you know it’s a keeper.”

Heritage Promotions, based in Lynchburg, Va., has organized and staged the Shenandoah Antiques expo in Fishersville, VA, every May and October since 1986. They built the show’s reputation by working with top dealers to offer quality pieces at reasonable prices.

For more information: 434-846-7452 (for directions during event: 540-337-2552), info@heritagepromotions.net or www.heritagepromotions.net. The 55th Shenandoah Antiques Expo with 300+ dealers from Florida to Maine is at 277 Expo Road, Fishersville, Va. Hours: Oct.10 and 11, 9-5 and Oct. 12, 10-4. Admission: Friday, $10; Saturday & Sunday, $5.

Jacksonville’s 41st Annual Depression and Antique Glass Show
Welcomes Our Special Guest George Fenton

Don’t miss this very special show and sale! George W Fenton, President of Fenton Glass and grandson of company founder Frank Fenton, will be the special guest, celebrating a “Fenton Family Tradition of Glass Making since 1905.” Free seminars will be given by George Fenton on Saturday and Sunday at 1:15 p.m.

Glass dealers from across the U.S. will display glass from the ‘40s, ‘50s, and ‘60s, Cambridge, Carnival, Colored Glassware of the Depression Era, Fiesta, Heisey, Fostoria and pottery. Free Depression glass will be given to the first 25 paid admissions through the door on Saturday and Sunday.

The 2014 Annual Show is Saturday, Oct. 18 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sun., Oct. 19 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Fraternal Order of Police Building located at 5530 Beach Blvd. in Jacksonville, Fla. Free parking is also available. Stop by the Food Court to purchase food prepared by the CDG Club members. Admission is $5 at the front door. Discount coupons must be presented at time of admission. Sponsored by Collectors of Depression Glass For information: 904-655-8445 or www.depressionglassclubjax.com.
 

10th Annual Doll Show & Sale Oct. 18 in Palmetto, Ga.

The Peachtree Doll Collectors Club will host its 10th Annual Doll Show & Sale on Saturday, Oct. 18, on the campus of Georgia Baptist Children's Home at 9250 Hutchenson Ferry Road in Palmetto, Ga., from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Palmetto is located about 20 miles southwest of Atlanta Hartsfield Airport, just off exit 56 of I-85. Exhibitors will showcase dolls, clothing and other related items, all of which will be for sale. A “Dolly Doctor” will be on-site to assist in doll repair, and a certified doll appraiser will be on hand as well. General admission is $4. For more info, call Brenda at 770-579-9404.  

Julia's "Bears All" in Their June Toy & Doll Auction

It was a regular Teddy Bear picnic in Fairfield, Maine, recently when the largest and finest collection of antique Steiff animals to ever come to auction in North America was sold at James D. Julia’s spring toy, doll and advertising auction, yielding just under a half million dollars of the auction’s nearly $1.3 million take, which performed in line with the presale expectations for the collection of just over $400,000.

If you ask anyone in the know about Steiff animals, the names of Chuck and Cathy Steffes will likely come up. Enthusiasts like no other, Chuck along with his now dearly departed wife Cathy traveled the globe for approximately three decades forging friendships and hunting Steiff treasures to add to their remarkable collection. The beloved pair assembled a singular collection that could be considered the envy of collectors the world over. Julia’s pulled out all the stops, doing a number of marketing efforts the company had not done previously in order to maximize the exposure of the spectacular collection. Two weeks prior to the auction, Julia’s held a special invitational reception/preview at the Cambridge, Massachusetts home of their Steiff consultant, Rebekah Kaufman in which attendees got an advance opportunity to see many of the offerings up close while sharing stories with other passionate collectors.

Leading up to the auction there was a fair amount of anticipation by the consignor, the auctioneer, and the collectors themselves. This was unquestionably one of the finest collections of Steiff toys to come to auction in North America and believed to be the second finest offered in the world to date. After the downturn in the market in 2009, the market value on almost everything antique and collectable was affected. Since that time, some collectable niches have improved while others have not. So it was unknown what would happen with the Steiff animals.

Of the approximately 120 examples from the Steffes collection, which consisted predominantly of bears, rabbits and cats in a variety of patterns and styles, it is difficult to choose only a few highlights to mention. Certainly one of the standouts of the grouping was an exceedingly rare and historically important black Steiff Titanic “Mourning Bear”. Made to honor those lives lost in the infamous tragedy, it is of the most sought after vintage bears known. Only 665 were ever produced and only 78 were ever made in this size and configuration, it features highly distinctive red felt backed shoebutton eyes to represent tears and sadness. One of the centerpieces of the Steffes’ collection, it sold for $35,550 within a pre-auction estimate of $25,000-40,000. Also of historical significance was one of the earliest bears Steiff ever produced, the rare “Rod” bear. Designed by Richard Steiff after viewing bears at the Stuttgart Zoo, its appearance was more true to life than their subsequent creations that eventually established the traditional “teddy bear” look. It changed hands at $14,220. Over the years, Steiff’s product line evolved. Finding earlier incarnations to be rigid and somewhat uninviting, Richard Steiff insisted that the firm create a line of bears that was warmer, cuddlier, and more colorful. The result was a bear known as “Happy” with almost feminine features including long, soft curly mohair and deep brown and black glass pupil eyes. This example, complete with its trailing “F” button sold within its $12,000-18,000 estimate for $13,035.

Very often a little back story along with strong condition will add to the value of an item. It almost breathes life into an otherwise inanimate object. A wonderful 24” gold mohair 5-ways jointed Steiff bear from around 1910 in outstanding condition with his working growler and early button is great find in and of itself. But when accompanied by a photo of the original owners, and a letter explaining his history, that really speaks to people. This stately fellow with his thoughtful gaze found a new home for $21,330 against an $8,000-12,000 estimate.

A marvelous circa 1930 brown tipped, rare blue eyed Steiff “Petsy” bear with distinctive facial features and soft fluffy mohair, likewise complete with its original button realized $17,775. Also included were such examples as an exceptionally rare and equally desirable brown tipped Steiff teddy clown bear. This large 12” jointed version in outstanding condition and retaining its original fabric ruff, metal rimmed chest tag, button, and ear tag sold for $26,662, just inside an estimate of $25,000-45,000.

These bears were complemented by scores of other fine examples including a variety of mohair, felt, and velvet cats and rabbits. Highlights included a fantastic 6-ways jointed gray Steiff cat. Cute as can be with yellow slit pupil glass eyes and pink embroidered facial features, it sold for $10,665, more than doubling the low end of its $4,000-6,000 estimate. An extremely rare Steiff velvet rattle cat with its original bell and early elephant button was another hot ticket, selling for $7,702 against an estimate of $3,500-4,500. And a delightful lavender “Fluffy” cat on a mohair pincushion retaining its original chest tag, ear button and tag exceeded its $2,500-5,000 estimate to bring $7,110.

Rabbits included a rare Steiff Jack rabbit with jointed arms, velvet clothes, and black leather shoes. Inspired by the children’s book by Uncle Dave Cory in the late 1920s, this charming fellow hopped past his $2,500-3,500 presale estimate to land at $7,702. A nine piece felt rabbit skittles set affixed to wooden plinths make for some lively parlor bowling. The set in wonderful condition and complete with ear buttons and original ball sold for $7,110 against a $5,000-10,000 estimate.

The collection was supplemented by a number of Steiff animals from other collections that also performed admirably. These were then followed by a large selection of dolls and automatons. Of the latter category, automatons included an exceptional early banjo player by Vichy. This realistically modeled fellow in his original outfit sits on a velvet covered stool strumming his instrument while tapping his foot and gently nodding his head in time with the music while occasionally blinking his eyes. This wonderful example with lifelike action finished up at the upper end of its $6,000-9,000 estimate to sell for $8,295. A musical clockwork automaton featuring a magician that upon each lift of the box on the table would reveal a different object underneath. This clever piece sold for $7,406, surpassing a $2,000-3,000 estimate. And a classic Jumeau automaton of a standing figure that powders her nose and looks in her hand mirror while soft music plays sold for $5,332 against an estimate of $3,500-4,500.

Dolls included a rare and desirable 17-1/2” Steiner with pale bisque moon shaped face and delicate blush serving as a backdrop to her pert smile and piercing blue paperweight eyes. She went out within her $5,500-7,500 estimate for $6,221. French fashion dolls included a stunning 22” Jumeau fashion with pale bisque with cornflower blue paperweight eyes, closed mouth on a gusseted kid body. Her sublime expression completed the package that brought $4,860 against a $2,000-3,000 estimate. A last minute addition of a 16” Jumeau fashion with pale bisque, piercing blue paperweight eyes and wood lower arms neared the midpoint of her $2,000-4,000 estimate to bring $2,844.

This segment continued with various German bisque characters, Victorian-era china heads, early wax dolls, cloth dolls, as well as a rare carved wood Chinese doll reminiscent of the popular Door of Hope dolls and perhaps by one of their carvers. The rice farmer with his distinctive facial features and original straw cape sold for $3,645 against a $900-1,100 estimate. Other highlights included a lot including a table and chair by Huret. Best known for their highly desirable bisque dolls, it is most unusual to see accessories by them surface. The lot was highly competed for (well beyond its $300-500 estimate) ultimately selling to a phone bidder for $4,740.

The auction continued with a vast array of toys in a wide variety of genres. Early American tin included an unusual circus cage wagon attributed to Fallows or George Brown being pulled by an elephant led by its trainer. Typical of the time period, workers sometimes created toys with what was laying around the shop with no deference to reality, such as putting a lion and a leopard in the same cage, or using an elephant to pull cages. But it made for a most amusing toy, and this example went out at $5,925 against a pre-auction estimate of $5,500-6,500. Another great piece was an early American tin merry go round toy being pulled by gentleman in which the platform containing goats, a dog, and a child rotates when pulled along the floor. Colorful and creative, it sold above its $1,500-2,500 estimate for $3,258. A scarce seesaw toy by Ives that has two articulated figures enjoying the ups and downs by means of a clockwork motor housed in the stenciled central fulcrum sold within expectations of $2,500-4,500 for $3,555.

The cavalcade of toys continued with a selection of European tin toys such as a Marklin “Priscilla” live steam ship. Professionally restored from bow to stern, this rare vessel was joined by a scarce Schonner “Aviso Greif” steamer with great detail to the decking and accoutrements. Each sold within its respective estimate for the same $14,220 price tag. A great 18” Carette ocean liner in strong original condition went out at $3,258, surpassing its $1,000-2,000 estimate.

For aviation aficionados was an array of airplanes from one astute east coast collector. These cast iron planes, modeled after the real thing of the 1930s, boasted great detail and condition not normally found in these toys. One can picture boys of the period staging spirited dogfights and these surprisingly fragile vessels didn’t often survive bouts with gravity. Included was a rare large Hubley “Lindy” glider with its original removable pilot. In very fine condition, it sold for $4,147 against an estimate of $2,500-3,000. This was followed by one of the finest examples of a Hubley “America” one could hope to find. In light gray and emblazoned in red across the wing, its propellers would rotate when the plane was rolled across the floor. It landed within its $2,500-3,500 estimate to sell for $2,962. A rare Vindex “Lockheed” monocoupe plane in steely silver presented a wonderful buying opportunity. Better known for farm and construction toys, an airplane by this firm is very hard to come by. It found a buyer at $5,332 within an estimate of $4,500-6,500. Back on land, other cast iron included a scarce Kenton horse drawn ambulance with a nickel plated wagon with bell ringing mechanism being pulled by two robust black horses. Far exceeding expectations of $1,500-2,500, it sold for $6,517.

A selection of pressed steel vehicles included a scarce Buddy L sand & gravel truck with a large segmented rear bed with opening doors to dispense gravel. This construction toy sold within its $2,000-4,000 estimate for $2,370. Also bringing $2,370 was a rare Kingsbury Huckster delivery truck. This 1930s apple green windup truck with great lines and retaining its original decals saw much action beyond its $900-1,200 estimate. And a Keystone Filenes delivery van with battery-operated headlights likewise exceeded expectations, bringing $1,659.

While not toys per se, cast iron mechanical banks are often grouped under this heading. Some unusual examples included a classic Organ Grinder & Performing Bear. Full of amusing action and retaining much of its original paint, it sold for $3,851 against a $3,500-5,500 estimate. A rare Kyser & Rex Roller Skating bank that features an oval rink with various figures struggling with the then-new pastime failed to find a buyer. One of only a handful known to exist, this treasure carried an estimate of $20,000-25,000.

It was Christmas in June at Julia’s. A much anticipated collection of several dozen holiday items that has remained in one gentleman’s possession for several decades finally made it to market, much to the delight of collectors everywhere. Central to the offering was an exceedingly rare German wax headed Santa figure on a wooden plinth. When the lever is pressed, he would open his fur coat to reveal a Christmas feather tree in his chest. This very unusual item that was once part of the renowned Gladyse Hilsdorf collection ignored its $2,500-3,500 estimate to sell for $17,775. A large German Santa candy container with the not so jolly old elf sporting a fur robe went out at $4,977 against a $1,200-1,500 estimate. Another European find was a marvelous composition nodder with a larger than life head of a stoic Father Christmas bobbing atop a speckle painted body. This charming piece likewise exceeded expectations to sell for $2,725, beating out a $600-1,200 estimate. And a large clockwork nodding reindeer pulling Santa in his wicker sleigh separated the naughty from the nice, selling for $5,925 against a presale estimate of $600-1,200. 

A phenomenal, highly ornate, one-of-a-kind leaded glass figural boot trade sign from a Wisconsin shoe store (which is nothing short of miraculous to have lasted this long) climbed well beyond its $20,000-$40,000 estimate to land at a jaw-dropping $109,350.

The auction continued with a varied grouping of quality antique advertising items. Included were numerous pieces that seldom (if ever) hit the marketplace. Topping the list was a phenomenal, highly ornate, one-of-a-kind leaded glass figural boot trade sign from a Wisconsin shoe store. Dating to the turn of the 20th century, it consisted of several hundred geometric panels forming a Victorian era heeled boot with the monogram “S & S” incorporated into the side. Once gracing the doorway to the Schauder & Son shoe store in Rhinelander, Wisconsin, it was eventually relegated to the family basement, save for making an annual appearance in the local Fourth of July parade strapped to the roof of the family car. Nothing short of miraculous to have lasted this long, it was the highlight of the auction, climbing well beyond its $20,000-40,000 estimate to land at a jaw dropping $109,350!

Other unique pieces included the original artwork for a Kellogg’s corn flakes ad by James Alexander Bayne, a U.S. fighter pilot whose life was cut short in service to his country. As a result, his career as a painter didn’t get the chance to get off the ground, but this smile inducing piece that pictured a young child in his highchair enjoying a bowl of cereal makes one wonder what could have been. Accompanied by photos of the artist as well as a copy of the Ladies Home Journal from March 1913 in which the ad appears, this oil on canvas snuck past the upper end of its $2,500-5,000 estimate to sell for $5,771.

These marvelous pieces were joined by such period store fixtures as an advertising lantern for None Such mincemeat. The pierced tin framework retained all four of its original reverse painted advertising panels that were lit from within. The lantern was further enhanced by its original tin insert that would rotate from the heat of the candle, casting eye-catching shadows that would almost appear to animate the panels. A rare and highly desirable piece, it sold within estimate for $6,075.

Somewhat later was a choice selection of automotive related advertising. A rare and large die-cut porcelain Hood tire service station sign with a life size uniformed worker beckoning to passersby performed well and sold at the upper end of its $3,000-5,000 estimate for $4,740. Another rare tire sign, a double sided sheet metal flange sign for Delion tires, despite come condition issues saw strong action. Far surpassing its $200-300 estimate, it roared to $3,081. A large 42” diameter Chevrolet Super Service porcelain sign from the 1930s sold for $3,555 while a self-framed tin sign in stellar condition for Francisco auto heaters sold for $2,844, each exceeding their respective estimates. And a great tin sign that also boasted strong condition was one by Ithaca Sign Works that depicted an early open air vehicle advertising a Vermont real estate agent. It sped past its $1,500-2,500 estimate to bring $4,860.

Salesman samples, always a popular advertising collectible that Julia’s specializes in included an unusual miniature Mosler cannonball safe. Designed as a cutaway, this desirable model with yellow pinstriping and opening door was mounted within in its original carrying case. Coming in with an estimate of $6,500-8,500, it broke the bank at $11,553. This piece was followed by a somewhat later and more detailed model of a polished aluminum, double door salesman sample bank vault. It likewise performed well, selling for $7,702 against a $2,500-3,500 estimate.

Julia's upcoming auctions include their annual End of Summer antiques & fine art auction in August while a phenomenal firearms and military memorabilia auction will be held in October. Julia’s next rare lamp & glass auction as well as their toy & doll auction will follow in November. Julia’s is currently accepting consignments for these and other upcoming auctions. Call immediately for inclusion in these exciting sales. For more information or to place offers on unsold items, contact their offices at 207-453-7125. James D. Julia, Inc., P.O. Box 830, Dept. PR, Fairfield, ME 04937. E-mail: info@jamesdjulia.com. 

 

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