Published: September 7, 2004
Bill Spicer runs his auctions the old-fashioned way – he gets into houses, and then everything goes on the block. No reserves – ever.
Spicer has done this for 25 years. Local antiques dealers and collectors know they can go to a Spicer sale and see lots of different things offered – from good box lots to Queen Anne tables and pretty much everything in-between.
Spicer’s July 28 auction was conducted, as usual, at the American Legion Hall. The parking lot was full to overflowing, and the reason for the excrdf_Descriptionent was that Spicer had unearthed some fine quality Eighteenth Century American furniture in a home in nearby Massachusetts. From the same home came the top lot of the sale – a rare and early Nineteenth Century American whalebone pie crimper, with hearts cut out in the handle.
Despite his out-of-the-way location, Spicer had no trouble attracting many of the heavy hitters from the New England antiques scene. Antiques dealer and nautical specialist Paul DeCoste, who came all the way from Newburyport, Mass., for the sale, was on hand. DeCoste won the pie crimper, which saw lots of action. There were two phones and interest from the floor when the pie crimper was offered. It opened with a bid of $1,000 and quickly escalated to its selling price of $5,280.
The same home produced a rare American square top Queen Anne candlestand in old surface. After some rapid bidding from the floor, the Eighteenth Century piece went to a left bid for $4,400. There were two Queen Anne drop leaf tables from this house. One had rectangular leaves and pad feet, and went to a left bid for $4,400. The other table had rounded leaves and brought $3,180.
An American two-drawer workstand from the Nineteenth Century with turned legs and bird’s-eye maple drawer fronts sold for $440. A slag glass period lamp with reverse painting on the shade sold for $275. An interesting and much admired example of art pottery, a large, colorful Mission vase, which was marked on the bottom “Santa Barbara Mission,” saw lots of action, drawing four phone bidders before selling at $990.
A Newcomb-Macklin frame measuring 34 by 40 inches went off the block for $600. An American Eighteenth Century tall-case clock, which was in “as found” condition, sold for $1,200 and a slick and stylish 1952 Schwinn Pathfinder bicycle in almost perfect shape sold for $440.
An American cast iron coffee grinder – a large one that was painted in vivid blue and red – seemed like a deal, going off the block for $605. A large Rookwood vase, blue with a big white flower, sold at the auction for $275.
This was a fun sale, with many quality things from the Eighteenth and early Nineteenth Centuries. Spicer insists that his material be really fresh, and he does not accept any reserves, so the customers know that they are really getting a break. Many people routinely attend Spicer sales, knowing that they can buy here. They can wait through the large number of rdf_Descriptions offered.
One warning: these sales are not cataloged – one must be alert!
All prices quoted include ten percent buyer’s premium
5 Church Hill Road / Newtown, CT 06470
Mon - Fri / 8:00 am - 5:01 pm