Published: September 24, 2002
Bidders not Bugged by $280,000 Dower Chest at Pook & Pook
By R. Scudder Smith
DOWNINGTOWN, PENN. — The right front foot of the chest had suffered over the years, probably from bugs, but no one seemed to care as lot 250 in the September 21 Pook & Pook sale got examined from top to bottom. All the raves were for the paint, work by an unidentified artist, on this dower chest, dated 1803, that came out of Dauphin County, Penn. Two tombstone panels decorated the top and the inscription of the front identified the owner as Anna Marie Harman.
Among those giving the chest the once-over during the Friday evening preview were dealers David Wheatcroft of Westboro, Mass., and Jim Glazer of Baileys Island, Maine. Their interest peaked at $250,000 ($280,000 with buyer’s premium) when the piece came across the auction block, with Marietta, Penn., dealer Harry Hartman right on their heels.
This chest had never been on the market and descended in the family to the present owner. “When we called the owner to tell him how much the chest sold for, we had to repeat it three times, he thought we were fooling,” Ron Pook said.
A complete report on this sale that grossed $2.6 million, with premiums, will appear in Antiques and The Arts Weekly next week. The sale was conducted in the new auction facility recently constructed and completed by Ron and Debbie Pook at the intersection of Routes 30 and 113.
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