Published: November 18, 2003
Green Valley Auctions, Inc recently conducted its annual fall auction of early American glass and lighting.
As anticipated, attendance was strong, with both dealer and collector presence vying for more than 15,000 pieces of early American pattern glass and more than 500 lamps and lamp parts. Included in the four-day event were many rare and important pieces from both the flint and nonflint categories.
Some 371 bid numbers were assigned, with absentee bids numbering more than 2,300 over the four-day period. The number of absentee and phone bids made for an exciting and competitive auction with 40 states and Canada represented. This year’s sales topped $566,000.
This sale opened with more than 5,000 lots of flint and nonflint goblets, wines and other stems that were sold in choice block and tray lots, with the vast majority selling in the $5 to $50 range. Customers were back early Friday morning for more than 4,000 pieces of the remaining forms of early American pattern glass to include water and milk pitchers, compotes, cake stands, celery vases, table sets, toothpicks and more. Most representatives of these categories realized between $10 and $200.
By Saturday morning a determined crowd had grown and was back for the start of the cataloged portion with more than 1,380 pieces of exceptional early American pattern glass, blown and blown molded, and an important array of rare candlesticks, to name a few. The cataloged portion was preceded by reference books, which consisted of 51 lots.
The reference books were followed by a selection of flint stemware that yielded a cut Bellflower Double Vine six-cluster goblet at $2,750; a fine rib with Bellflower border goblet that soared to $3,410; the rare Harp goblet, known as one of the top five most important flint goblets, sold for $3,300; and a Philadelphia pattern goblet topped $1,155.
A selection of flint tableware represented many patterns and forms. The much sought-after Bellflower pattern was strongly represented and yielded a Double Vine milk pitcher, which sold for $3,410; a Single Vine lemonade/han-dled whiskey in outstanding condition, which hit $2,420, and a Single Vine octagonal covered sugar that saw $2,860 despite the typical slight imperfections. A scarce early Thumbprint water bottle with tumble-up was captured at $3,190 by a New York City phone bidder.
A fine selection of 17 spoon/ spill holders were followed by a selection of Lacy glass and cup plates. The blown and early pressed categories were up next and led by the candlesticks. A rare Pillar molded candlestick with pressed base recently discovered in Connecticut was much pursued and finally stopped at $2,310 to an Illinois collector. A scarce pair of blown and pressed candlesticks topped $1,650. The colored flint category produced a Bellflower Single Vine small molasses jug/can in fiery opalescent that commanded $4,070, even with a small crack in the handle. A Cable spoon holder in translucent starch blue saw $2,145 and a previously unrecorded Sandwich Vine footed tumbler with hexagonal foot and blue and gilt decoration weighed in at $1,100.
A selection of 126 lots of colored EAPG and Victorian glass included an Inverted Fan and Feather seven-piece berry set in pink slag, which quickly rose to $2,200, and a rare Hobbs’ no. 290 Polka Dot set of 12 tumblers in their original box, which commanded much attention to close at $3,740. Historical and animal EAPG ended the session with a Three Face hollow stem champagne selling for $2,200, while a Deer and Dog small milk pitcher reached $1,320.
The day’s top lot was an extremely rare Jumbo-Canton covered compote on high standard, which saw fierce bidding to ultimately close at a record $9,625 to an Ohio phone bidder.
Sunday’s final session consisted of an array of glass lighting from private collections representing the prekerosene to late kerosene periods. Miniature lamps were also well represented and drew collectors from several states.
The auction began with fine examples of whale oil and fluid lamps, girandoles, sparking lamps and an iron crusie. The first notable lot was a four-tube fluid burner with caps and chain, which saw a strong $605. The day’s top lot, from the kerosene period, was an overlay banquet lamp in white cut to blue alabaster attributed to the Boston & Sandwich Glass Co., that topped $6,600. An extremely rare and important Sandwich Blackberry lamp in teal green was aggressively pursued and stopped at $3,300; a colorless Adams Temple/Applesauce lamp with correct font and glass dome containing original silk flowers and cork seal with paper patent label was a bargain at $880, while the colorless Ripley Marriage lamp saw $1,100.
The Hobbs’ opalescent lamps drew much attention from bidders from several states, with nearly all of the examples topping the $1,000 mark. Included were Coin Dot/Windows finger and stand lamps and Snowflake finger and stand lamps in nearly every color produced. Leading these was a cranberry opalescent Snowflake finger lamp in flawless condition commanding $2,200.
As expected, a Seaweed in cranberry opalescent with outstanding color proved to be a heavy hitter and found much attention to close at $2,860. An exceptional example of a Princess Feather with a cased pink font realized $1,430 while a colorless Shoe finger lamp saw $660.
He was pleased to have discovered an important early kerosene period “lighthouse” burner in mint condition in one of the featured collections. He further commented that bidder knowledge and sophistication with regard to early lighting became apparent when the burner found its way to a California phone bidder at $2,200. A 23/8-inch Miller burner with cobalt petal top chimney left at $1,265.
Following more than 60 lots of early lamp parts was a fine collection of miniature lamps consisting of many scarce and important examples. A ceramic figural elephant with painted ball shade was much sought after to conclude at $1,705; a grouping of every color Seaweed yielded a blue example that saw $770, while a cranberry opalescent swirl with matching petticoat shade was pursued aggressively to $2,530. By the time Sunday’s session came to a close, the early lighting offerings had generated an impressive $140,000.
Prices include the ten percent buyer’s premium.
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