Published: August 24, 2010
“We are 17 years old, and still going strong,” Frank Gaglio, manager of the Mid*Week in Manchester Antiques Show, said a few days after the show closed on Thursday, August 12, from his vantage point on Lake Winnipesaukee. “We come up here for a few days every year after the show to recuperate and talk over plans for next year,” he said.
This year the show went “very well, we had a larger gate, a good number of the dealers sold well, the café was active, and people came to me saying how much they enjoyed Mid*Week and to keep it up,” Frank added. One obvious addition this year was larger signs, several for the restrooms, and several location diagrams. People seemed to use the locater floor plans, but there was still a bit of confusion finding some booths, and Pat Bell of Olde Hope Antiques was overheard saying, “Next year I am going to drop bread crumbs.”
The show was attractive, reflecting the attention dealers paid to their booths, and there was a combination of some fresh new material, as well as some old chestnuts. That is to be expected, however, as some of the exhibitors meet a new audience at Antiques Week, and most are having a hard time finding the rare and the wonderful. But all and all, the shopping was there.
Robert Snyder and Judy Wilson of Wiscasset, Maine, hung a large hooked rug with two red roses against a black ground, initialed SEA and dated 1866, and showed several mill weights, including a rooster and two horses. A sheet metal cow weathervane with reddish surface, large size, was striking against the side wall. “I am not fond of sheet metal vanes, but that one talked to me,” Snyder said.
A chair table with three-board top, retaining some traces of old red, was in the center of the booth of Mark and Marjorie Allen, New Hampton, N.H., shown with a set of four finial top ladder back side chairs with splint seats. A tavern table of Massachusetts origin, circa 1740, had a two-board top with breadboard ends, measuring 36¼ by 24½ inches, and retained the original surface.
Woodstock, N.Y., dealer Mario Pollo had a six-board blanket box in light blue paint with a three-masted ship flying an American flag drawn on the inside top lid, a butcher’s chopping block with a top about 15 inches thick on six turned legs, and a eagle that was the logo of Schock & Gusner, a company that made brewing equipment.
A chimney cupboard dating from the Eighteenth Century, narrow, with one door over another, original dry red surface and measuring close to 7 feet tall, was offered by McClellan Elms Antiques of South Woodstock, Conn. Other early furniture included a painted desk from Maine, circa 1825, with fitted interior of six small drawers over one long drawer, original green surface and brass pulls, and an Eighteenth Century Maine chair table with stair step shoe feet, double drawer base, and top measuring 54 by 51½ inches.
“They say brown furniture is not the best-selling thing now, but we will test the water with the inventory we brought,” Steve Shapiro of SAJE Americana, Short Hills, N.J., said from a comfortable, upholstered chair in the corner of his booth. Among the pieces he was showing were a cherry inlaid candlestand, flame birch with cartouche and line inlay on the top, raised edges, and a Federal server in cherry, bird’s-eye veneer, crossbanded drawers, reeded semidetached front legs, from Vermont and dating circa 1810.
Stick barometers covered most of the wall space in the booth of The Barometer Shop, Cushing, Maine, including an Admiral Fitzroy “Prize Metal” stick barometer in a carved oak case by Davis & Co., London, circa 1885. Of local interest was a stick barometer, American, by Charles Wilder of Peterborough, N.H., circa 1860.
Pat and Rich Garthoeffner, Lititz, Penn., had an unusual banner weathervane by Fiske & Co., New York City, circa 1880, which came off a stone mill along the Schuylkill River in Pennsylvania. A small-size shoe-foot hutch table, with two-board scrubber top, retained the original salmon paint on a diminutive base and dated 1830.
Stephen and Carol Huber of Old Saybrook, Conn., filled a large booth with many pieces of needlework, including a silk embroidered and watercolor memorial by Sophia Parney, Massachusetts, circa 1810. A whimsical stuffed work, circa 1840‱850, was two-dimensional and featured high relief animals, flowers and birds, and the Poyen family genealogy, Massachusetts, listed Joseph Poyen and wife Sally Elliott, plus their seven children, silk on linen measuring 163/8 by 21¾ inches. The names were surrounded by a tree and flower border. “The show was good for us and among the samples sold were a couple of ‘juicy’ ones,” Stephen said, using one of his favorite words when describing an important needlework.
“I want to sell that picture I just got, but would still like living with it a bit,” Don Olson of Fine American Antiques, Rochester, N.Y., said, pointing out a dramatic rendering of Pickett’s charge, circa 1863, showing the assault by the Confederates against the center of the Union line, an oil on canvas on the original stretcher and in the original frame. Among several pieces off furniture being shown was an early tavern table in old blue paint over the original red, New England, circa 1740‱760, with oval two-board top measuring 25¼ by 34¼ inches. The table sat on turned and splayed legs.
Among the many wooden objects offered from the booth of Steven S. Powers, Brooklyn, N.Y., was a carved tobacconist signboard, circa 1820‱840, measuring 147/8 inches high, 55/16 inches wide and three-quarter-inch deep. It depicts an American Indian with a Scottish Highlander, carved of white pine and polychromed. An Ohio grain painted miniature step back cupboard, 1875-1880, 21½ inches high, 18 inches wide and 10 inches deep, was made by Christian Sprang for Mary Sprang and painted by Calvin Moore, who also signed it on the back.
Small collections and groupings set off the booth of A Bird in Hand, Florham Park, N.J., starting on the back wall with a selection of four doorstops in the form of elephants, all in the original paint, and six Naughty Nellie bootjacks, Nineteenth Century, all original paint, with some chips from wear. Four shooting gallery targets were displayed on a small shelf, and a collection of Grenfell mats hung on the right wall. For some reason, squirrels were represented in many of the booths, including A Bird in Hand in the form of cast iron andirons, circa 1880‱900, in the original paint.
Grace and Elliott Snyder, South Egremont, Mass., who might have established a new record this time in booth setup time, had an attractive booth featuring a Queen Anne drop leaf table with shaped apron, original finish on maple and pine, Maine origin, circa 1760, and measuring 28 inches high with a 42-by-43-inch top. A pot of colorful flowers was centered in an American hooked rug, wool on linen, measuring 60¾ by 29 inches, circa 1835‱860, and an unusual and rare tin lantern in trapezoidal shape, American or English, was dated circa 1820‱830.
Stags were both leaping and running in the booth of Jeffrey Tillou Antiques, Litchfield, Conn., one in the form of a full-bodied weathervane with cast zinc head, probably by Cushing and White, 30 inches long with traces of old gilt and dating from the late Nineteenth Century, the other carved and painted wood from the Midwest, 22 inches long, circa 1900. Much of the back wall was taken by a Chippendale step back cupboard with dentil molded cornice, open shelves above two paneled doors, Eastern pine, New England or New York State, dating circa 1780.
A matched pair of carnival game wheels, reversible, red, green and black on a cream ground, hung on the outside wall in the booth of Steve Smoot Antiques, Lancaster, Penn., and five paintings by Mary McCornich Hickman (1899‱965) in pastel crayon showed scenes from her childhood memories, Allegheny County, Penn.
New England furniture was offered by Norman Gronning Antiques, Shaftsbury, Vt., including an Eighteenth Century pewter cupboard in yellow paint over the original light blue, 7 feet 6 inches tall and 49 inches wide, and an Eighteenth Century slant lid desk in the original surface with a cubbyhole interior.
American Primitive Gallery, New York City, showed objects in all shapes and forms, such as a cranberry sorter, a zither harp from Missouri, a cast iron arcade target in the form of an eagle from a Philadelphia shooting gallery, and a large carnival coin toss game with instructions to the players saying, “Coins must clear all black lines to win.” For those of us who have played that game, it is not as easy to win as it looks.
Eight pieces of Nineteenth Century Pennsylvania chalk were lined up on shelves at Dover House Antiques, Louisville, Ky. †a dove, goat, duck, ram, rooster, love birds, hen bank and parrot on ball. A rare pair of tablet-shaped Federal mirrors, American, dated circa 1830.
The large cast iron Rochester rooster, circa 1880, perched in the corner at Holden Antiques, Naples, Fla., and Sherman, Conn., facing a Nineteenth Century pilothouse eagle with gold surface and 28-inch wingspan. A Pembroke table from the early Nineteenth Century, sycamore wood with wavy flame graining, 36¾ inches long, 18¼ inches wide with the leaves down, was of New England or New York State origin and recently came from a home in New Hampshire.
A rare pair of American wrought iron gates, circa 1900‱920, with trailing grapes and sailing ships, parts still with the original paint, was at the front of the booth of Brennan & Mouilleseaux of Northfield, Conn. A large collection of redware pottery was composed of bottles, bowls, jugs and some slip plates, and a set of four carved pine window valances, Hudson River Valley, circa 1830, were in the original blue paint with freehand striped detail.
Hilary and Paulette Nolan, Falmouth, Mass., showed a good number of pieces of furniture, such as a New England harvest table of good size, circa 1800, dry, crusty surface of early gray-blue over the original red, drop leaves, and a New Hampshire Queen Anne Dunlap family six-drawer maple tall chest on bandy leg frame, 36 inches wide, circa 1780, and all original.
“It has been good for us,” Steve German of Mad River Antiques, North Granby, Conn., said on the first day of the show, noting sales of game boards, coin silver, pottery and theorems. A large mid-Nineteenth Century hutch table with two board top, lift seat and square nails, had a 37-by-60-inch top.
Charles and Barbara Adams, South Yarmouth, Mass., were having a good opening, writing tickets for pieces of Bennington, several baskets, doorstops in the original paint and lots of food choppers. “Charles has a large personal collection of them, numbering into the hundreds, and he brought some along and they are all selling,” Barbara said. They also had a New England Nineteenth Century sawbuck, a pie safe with two doors and eight punched tins, and a long bench that had a hold on it.
A sold sign hung on an oil on canvas depicting a catbrat yacht flying the burgee of the Bunker Hill Yacht Club, Boston, signed A.A. Lawrence and dated 1873, 18 by 24 inches sight, in the booth of The Hanebergs Antiques, Old Lyme, Conn. A New Hampshire mirror clock with the original tablet, eight-day works, attributed to Benjamin Morrill Boscawen, circa 1825, was in working order.
Samuel Herrup of Sheffield, Mass., brought a paint decorated two-drawer blanket chest in pine, New York State, circa 1820‱840, red painted outlined drawers with sponge decoration on the central panels on yellow ground, and the portrait of a man, oil on canvas, by Ammi Phillips (1788‱865) was in the original frame and descended in the sitter’s family. It dated to 1835 and measured 41½ by 35½ inches framed.
A painted step back cupboard with open shelves, 70 inches high and 33 inches wide, painted blue and red, Massachusetts origin, filled with painted tole, Sandwich whale oil lamps, miniature redware jugs and covered pantry boxes, was shown by Steve and Lorraine Marshall Antiques, Greensboro, N.C. And several booths away, Don and Karen Olson of Newburgh, N.Y., were off to a good start, selling several objects, including a large tea canister, a trade sign, a pair of portraits, a landscape painting and a Windsor in white paint with decoration.
A stack of 11 painted pantry boxes in blue, red, green and yellow was being sold as one lot by American Whimsy, Hewlett Harbor, N.Y. Other sculptural pieces included an Uncle Sam with his hands out, and a sheet iron Indian weathervane shooting an arrow.
Heller and Washam, Portland, Maine, occupied one of the round booths and filled it to capacity with paintings, sculpture and furniture. A Chippendale secretary in figured mahogany, Salem, Mass., dated 1785‱800 and was in the manner of William Appleton or William Lemmons of Salem, with period eagle brasses. A set of ten brace back Windsor chairs, eight sides and two arms, pipe stem spindles, was from Rhode Island and dated circa 1775.
“I have not seen such interest in a long time from people at a show,” Brian Cullity of Sagamore, Mass., said. He also got off to a good start selling some miniature tole, a burl sugar bowl, a couple of historical pieces and a scrimshaw cane.
“We have every hope of being back in the Furniture World Building again next year, as it has not been sold and we like it,” Frank Gaglio said. In the event it is sold, however, “We have a backup plan and will be a part of Antiques Week in New Hampshire.”
5 Church Hill Road / Newtown, CT 06470
Mon - Fri / 8:00 am - 5:01 pm