Published: August 4, 2020
MARLBOROUGH, MASS. — The World’s Columbian Exposition of 1893, also known as the Chicago World’s Fair and Chicago Columbian Exposition, mounted to celebrate the 400th anniversary of Christopher Columbus’ arrival in the New World in 1492, was an influential social and cultural event that profoundly affected American architecture, the arts and American industrial optimism. Exhibited there, one of eight “after-dinner” coffeepots, was a magnificent Tiffany & Co. sterling silver and enamel example, which again drew attention when it crossed the block at Skinner’s European furniture and decorative arts auction. The sale was online July 20-28.
Achieving $68,750, including buyer’s premium, against an estimate of $15/25,000, the 10¼-inch-high coffeepot featured a monogram to neck and underside, with shaded enamel offset by lapis lazuli and acid-etched arabesques, weighing approximately 18.7 troy ounces. It went to a private collection, according to Stephanie Opolski, deputy director at Skinner. “It was actually passed down through the family and came out of a New England household,” said Opolski. “It passed down to the family of somebody who was actually living in Chicago during the world’s fair. They probably acquired it right around the same time.”
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