Published: April 23, 2002
EAST DENNIS, MASS. – Eldred’s annual “last weekend in March” Americana and Marine Art at Auction was held on Easter weekend, March 29-30, and grossed $713,507 with 784 lots.
The highlight of Saturday was the sale of two William Merritt Chase paintings. The first was a portrait of William A. Putnam, Sr, that brought $8,625, followed by a Chase river landscape with a figure rowing a boat. Bidding opened at $50,000 and finally was hammered down at $250,000.
Other paintings were an unsigned portrait of a bark flying an American flag that garnered $13,225; a Bass Otis attributed portrait of the Sibley children of Boston, $12,650; “A Gray Day” by Alexander H. Wyant, $9,200; and an unsigned depiction of a two-masted schooner, Gentil S. Winsor, probably by William Pierce Stubbs, that was hammered down at $8,625.
Three other paintings in the top 20 were a twilight seascape that was the work of Wesley Weber for $7,475; a small unsigned Hudson River scene for $4,140; an unsigned ornately framed Nineteenth Century American oil of two boys carving pumpkins at a candlelit hearth for $3,565; and a mountain landscape by Ben Foster that sold for $2,875.
The top lot of the first day was an antique oval slipware plate with an estimate of $400/600. The competitive bidding on the plate astounded the audience by soaring to $10,925 due to its unusual feature of three colors including yellow, black and green decoration.
Also presented on Friday was a collection of folk art purchased mostly in the York, Maine, area. Highlights were a custom-made two-part kitchen hutch with grain painting that brought $2,760, an unusual late Eighteenth/early Nineteenth Century applique fabric panel that sold for $2,070 and a Nineteenth Century Pennsylvania pie safe painted green that garnered $1,725.
Other notables were a copper rooster-form weather vane that flew past its $1/1,500 estimate to land at $5,980 and an antique pewter charger by John Skinner of Boston that finished at $1,955.
Furniture was led by two Classical pieces including an antique American armoire in mahogany and mahogany veneers that did ten times its estimate to finish at $29,900 and a two-part mahogany dining table that tripled its estimate at $10,350. Other significant furniture lots were an antique American Chippendale six-drawer tall chest in cherry and pine that brought $5,750, a circa 1820 three-pedestal English mahogany Regency dining table, $4,600; and a reproduction Hepplewhite serpentine-front sideboard, $4,370.
In the marine section two of the top lots were cased plank-on-frame ship models including the USS Constitution for $2,300 and an American whaleship for $1,840. In the Chinese export porcelain category there was a Nineteenth Century 25-inch rose medallion vase reaching $2,070.
The most notable silver lot offered was a coin silver pitcher with marks for John Lynch of Baltimore that brought $2,300. Some unique lots were an 1880 Atlas of Barnstable County, Massachusetts by George H. Walker and Co., $2,760; a German Distler Mercedes saloon limousine toy car, $1,610; a diminutive whimsical carved wood carousel animal in the form of a shorebird, $1,552; and a Nineteenth Century brass telescope for $1,380.
At the top of the print category were two Eighteenth Century colored engravings by Mark Catesby from “First Natural History of American Flora and Fauna” bringing $2,185 and $1,610. There were approximately 90 Oriental rugs with the top lots a 9- by 13-foot Serapi for $5,175 and a 9- by 12-foot Heriz for $4,025.
All prices quoted include a 15 percent buyer’s premium.
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