Published: July 27, 2021
Review by W.A. Demers, Photos Courtesy The Auction Barn LLC
NEW MILFORD, CONN. – Many antiques hunters and collectors, as well as the casual weekend visitors, are familiar with the Elephant’s Trunk, New Milford’s weekly April-to-November flea market. Just down the road, however, there’s another source for household furnishings, antiques and collectibles. The Auction Barn at 99 Railroad Street and its owner Brian Corcoran have been hosting monthly auctions since February 2020. The most recent one on July 17 presented about 400 lots with online, absentee and telephone bids as well as in-person bidding in the smaller of two buildings owned by Corcoran, adjacent to the cavernous 9,000-square-foot space that gives the firm its name.
The downstairs of the main building functions as the main office, preview space and the saleroom, where sales are conducted live online and with a small seating area for patrons, while the adjacent barn offers considerable viewing and storage space for larger items. When viewed before a sale, it appears that a good portion of the Elephant’s Trunk has been crammed inside and previewers pick their way carefully around stacked furniture, burgeoning shelves and table lots.
At preview, Corcoran said he’d seen the most interest in 14 boxes and two binders full of Topps baseball cards. “We’ll have to see if they’re ‘right,'” he said with a grin. And apparently someone thought so as the collection rose from a $100/200 estimate to sell for $3,750, going to an East Coast bidder. The top lot in the sale was a teak upholstered sofa with leather netting inside the panels. Retailed by Bergdorf Goodman, the 34-by-109¾-by-36½-inch sofa went out at $4,063. A trend that Corcoran said he has been noting of late is that with production and delivery times being lengthened for new furniture, many buyers are opting to go for high-quality, high-condition retail pieces at auction.
The sale included Horner dining room furniture, a Drexel bedroom set, Ralph Lauren furniture, Woodard outdoor furniture, Brown Jordan outdoor furniture, Art Deco furniture, paintings, prints, bronzes and more. There were three antler chandeliers from the same estate, along with porcelain, a set of Napoleonic figures, mantel clocks and various table lots.
Fetching $2,800 was a Royal Danish sterling silver partial serving set comprising about 72 pieces and with 91 ounces weighable silver.
This sale was mostly about furniture, although there was a notable fine art highlight as a Nineteenth Century oil on canvas of a sleeping cherub, “Cor Meum Vigilat,” 13¼ by 16½ inches, was bid to more than ten times its low estimate at $2,500.
A set of 12 highly carved Victorian mahogany dining chairs with a possible attribution to Horner found favor, finishing at $2,250 for the two armchairs and ten side chairs. There was a monumental (69½-inch diameter) Victorian carved mahogany dining table, also possibly by Horner and with four 15½-inch table leaves that commanded the same price as the chairs. Seating was also on the minds of bidders as a set of ten Chippendale-style dining chairs comprising two armchairs and eight side chairs bettered their $600/900 estimate to reach $1,750. And a Kindel mahogany and upholstered settee, Teflon treated and upholstered in Busby damask linen, Bailey & Griffen, settled at $1,625.
Prices given include the buyer’s premium as stated by the auction house. The next auction will take place in early September, said Corcoran, date to be announced. For information, 860-799-0608 or www.theauctionbarnct.com.
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