Published: November 8, 2011
Pook & Pook, Inc kicked off its fall catalog season on September 30 and October 1 with a sale comprising more than 1,000 lots and featuring items from several educational institutions, estates and private collections. The sale generated much interest, with more than 1,100 registered bidders hoping to purchase a treasured item.
The Friday night session began with 75 lots from a Michigan collection. The first lot was a vibrant Nineteenth Century American hooked rug depicting two large stags standing beneath floral branches, which sold for $13,035 to a local Pennsylvania collector, ecstatic to take home the collector’s favorite item in the sale.
Encompassing some fine redware pieces, the collection was viewed by local Pennsylvania collectors and dealers. The first was a group of miniatures and a miniature stepback cupboard in which to display them. Many of the pieces carried a provenance of Paul Flack, well known for his pristine collections. A 4¾-inch-diameter plate with yellow and green sprig decoration did well at $4,029. Other redware items included a hen on nest attributed to the Haig Pottery for $474, a large seated dog for $6,517 and a shallow bowl with unusual circle and dot slip design for $2,844.
A Pennsylvania painted pine hutch table with a Don Walters provenance attracted attention, as well as a Pennsylvania painted corner cupboard with ochre graining and red and black stippled highlights. They brought $4,503 and $8,505, respectively. A delicate pair of New England bent rod back Windsor side chairs with exquisite red and black striped grounds and wine decoration did well at $3,081. With a good provenance from the Mary Thornton collection, a vibrantly painted New England blanket chest brought $6,517.
The property of a Dodge family descendent continued the Friday evening sale, encompassing the next 100 lots. Featured in the group were various porcelains. Highlights included a Meissen-type porcelain figure of a mother pug and suckling pup for $5,688, a pair of Meissen dogs for $5,925, a Meissen hound for $8,295, a Chinese Export tureen and cover for $1,777, Staffordshire pearlware lamp in the form of Atlas with the world on his shoulders for $888 and a pearlware lion for $1,458. Several paintings did well, including a ink and watercolor cartoon by Charles Samuel Addams for $8,295 and a Dutch school still life for $5,451.
The sale continued with fine art. A pleasing fox hunting scene by Charles Morris Young titled “Breaking the Leap and Cover” was bid to $13,035. Two dramatic illustrations by Frank Earle Schoonover were from the story by George Marsh, A Little Tragedy at Coocoocache. One was titled “I am Francois Hertel” and the other “Dem papier sa one t’ousand for de man,” bringing $8,295 and $6,517, respectively, A comical illustration for the Winchester Firearms Co. by Irving Brown depicting a hunter and dog scaring up a skunk fetched $5,925. A rich watercolor of a bald eagle and a watercolor of a great horned owl, both by the artist Earl Lincoln Poole, made $3,555 and $3,792, respectively.
An appealing oil on board industrial scene by Aaron Harry Gorson brought over the high estimate to reach $14,220. A William Aiken Walker cabin scene with five figures and animals estimated at $14/18,000 ended at $18,900. Other notable works included a portrait of a ballerina by Louis Kronberg for $4,740, a portrait of Mrs Godfrey Freeman by Howard Hildebrandt for $4,860, a George Rodrigue blue dog for $6,075 and a Ben Austrian oil of chicks playing in a straw hat for $4,740.
The end of the first session featured some fine carpets. An antique Mahal carpet soared to $33,180. One of two Serapis had a central ivory medallion on a red field with nice ivory corners. It went well over the top estimate at bring $20,145.
On Saturday, several pieces of Pennsylvania line and berry inlaid furniture garnered the interest of collectors and dealers alike. A Queen Anne walnut chest of drawers, circa 1740, was from either Chester or Delaware County and made $45,030. It was one of only a few that carry the decoration on their tops. A Chester County walnut spice box, the door inlaid with intertwined line and berry decoration within a circle and the initials “AS,” was an exceptional piece and made $30,810. The third piece was a Chester County William and Mary walnut bible box from the collection of James Sorber with an inlaid cartouche with the initials and date “AM 1749.” Sailing over the high estimate of $9,000, it brought a whopping $49,770.
Another rare Chester County piece, also from the Sorber collection, was a rare miniature Queen Anne tiger maple chest of drawers dated 1764. After much competitive bidding among phone and floor bidders, it fell to the phones for $82,950.
Significant furniture pieces were interspersed throughout the sale. A Philadelphia Queen Anne walnut compass seat dining chair with three shells descended from the family of Joseph Priestley of Northumberland made $11,257, and a Queen Anne side chair attributed to William Savery retaining an exceptional old dry surface did very well at $21,330. The Lancaster County walnut Dutch cupboard with outstanding architectural detail brought $37,920.
A vibrant Baltimore appliqué and trapunto album quilt dated 1846 from the Bisnoff collection and signed by the four makers had 25 blocks with intricate floral motifs, the center with a spread-winged eagle and American flag. It more than doubled the top estimate to bring $33,180. Several medallion quilts were sold, including a Lancaster County, Penn., Centennial Memorial Hall example for $9,480 and an example with George Washington medallion for $5,332.
A virtually untouched Montgomery County piece by the artist Anthony Rehm was the best of an exceptional selection of fraktur. This birth certificate was for Durck Adams Groff and had profuse decorations of a bird feeding her young, parrot, snake, checkerboard hearts and a myriad of flowers and vines, each decoration surrounded by pinprick design and signed by the artist. This rare piece soared to $77,025 and was purchased by a phone bidder. An unusual rare fraktur by Johannes Bard featured floral trees and a spread-winged eagle in a shield and brought $5,688.
A group of American pewter included a Danforth porringer, $1,896, and mug, $2,607; a Harbeson deep dish, $1,007; and a Melville porringer, $1,303 A Connecticut painted fireboard attributed to Stimp was sold for $9,480. An eye-catching Austrian Art Nouveau bronze table lamp had three spread-winged bats with drop shades from their teeth and sold for $13,035. Several pieces of important historic blue Staffordshire did well, including a plate with two oval portraits of Jefferson and Lafayette above a view of “Aqueduct Bridge at Little Falls” for $7,702 and a similar plate with portraits of Washington and Lafayette above “Entrance of the Canal into the Hudson at Albany” for $7,110.
A pleasing New England folk art portrait depicting a woman in a blue dress holding a red book carried an estimate of $8/12,000 and was aggressively bid to $42,660 A satirical watercolor drawing by Captain William Frazer, circa 1801, originally from the Garbisch collection, did well at $5,925. Several folk art storage boxes attracted interest, including a New England example decorated with flowers and birds at $5,103 and a Lancaster County, Penn., compass artist box for $42,660.
The Pennsylvania redware dog illustrated in The Pottery of the Shenandoah Valley Region by Comstock made $23,700, and a redware sugar bowl and cover with vibrant yellow and black slip dot decoration from the Titus Geesey collection drew $8,295. A rare pair of Eighteenth Century Portuguese silver sconces exceeded the high estimate to fetch $7,897. Ten watercolors by Twentieth Century folk artist Hattie Klapp Brunner ranged in price from $1,185 to $5,214.
Military items concluded the auction, beginning with an appointment document signed by Abraham Lincoln, which brought $7,110. A Fayetteville armory-type IV musket did $4,503, a Richmond, Va., musket brought $4,740, and a C.C. Brand whaling gun went out at $4,860.
Prices reported include the buyer’s premium.
For additional information, www.pookandpook.com or 610-269-4040.
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