Published: February 14, 2006
“An amazing auction” was how John Nye described the January 11-12 auction at Dawson & Nye where the largest number of bidders in the company’s history participated.
Collections from several sources attracted some 1,000 registered bidders from around the United States to the two-day standing-room-only event that offered something for every taste. Two exceptional collections, that of George H. Morris, Chef d’Equipe of the US Show Jumping Team, and Cape Cod dealer Gloria Swanson, attracted strong attention. Other smaller collections rounded out the 1,300-lot sale.
A selection of fine jewelry from a consignor identified by John Nye as “a woman with a loving husband” and who had decided to sell the jewels she was not using included the high lot of the event. It was a Cartier diamond cluster ring comprising a round diamond and 20 marquise diamonds of various weights that sold for $17,700.
A bee-form pin by Buccellati in emeralds, diamonds and enamel and 18K gold brought $12,980. It was described in the catalog as “of impressive size.” An 18K gold “Florida” pin with coral and 14 diamonds, by Van Cleef & Arpels, realized $7,080.
An 18K gold ring with an 8.30-carat topaz, also by Buccellati, sold for $8,260. The jewelry from a single collection realized about $60,000 in four minutes, Nye said.
An unsigned American School portrait of a woman in a green dress estimated at $1,5/3,000 that sold for $14,160 proved to be the second highest grossing lot. The picture came from one private collector and sold to another.
Ship paintings also proved popular: an oil on canvas portrait of a ship under full sail in a rough sea was signed “R Hopkin” sold for $3,835. A brass plaque revealed that the artist was Michigan painter Robert B. Hopkin. A watercolor of the extreme clipper Golden West entering New York Harbor was signed “J T Dodge” and sold for $3,540 while a watercolor of the American ship Edwina in a parcel-gilt and eglomise frame brought $4,425.
An unsigned portrait of Benjamin Franklin drew $3,540. Avibrant abstract watercolor by Twentieth Century African Americanartist Bradford Delaney was signed and sold for $3,245.
An oil on canvas view of two terriers signed “G. Armfield” realized $2,950. George Armfield Smith was a Nineteenth Century English painter of sporting subjects and he was known throughout much of his life as George Armfield.
Two portraits signed by Benjamin Ferris Gilman crossed the block: a woman with a corsage of yellow roses dated 1894 sold for $2,124 and an 1893 portrait of a boy holding a violin went for $2,006.
It was unsigned and unframed, but an oil on canvas view of a woodsman smoking a pipe and his dog sold for $1,888. An oil on canvas of the New York skyline made from the New Jersey Palisades signed “Ruth Moore Williams” sold for $1,534.
Two signed Louise Nevelson drawings in black ink came from the family of the artist. The first, an image of a seated woman wearing a blouse drew $354 and the second, a woman in a dress seated on a sofa was $560.
The leader of the interesting furniture across the block was a late New York Federal mahogany games table thought to have been made by Duncan Phyfe or a contemporary, which sold for $10,030. The vibrant figured mahogany table had a swivel top with brass inlay and a baize lined playing surface.
A pair of Federal inlaid and figured mahogany Pembroke tables made in New York or New England with John Walton provenance fetched $9,440. Each table was fitted with a false and operable drawer.
A Federal-style inlaid mahogany breakfront secretary in the Salem tradition bore the label “Hathaway’s Furniture. Rugs. Decorations. New York” and sold for $6,490.
A pretty Federal inlaid cherry wood candlestand made by a worker of the Connecticut River Valley school of Eliphalet Chapin sold for $1,298.
English furniture was consistently strong. An English Regency cellarette in figured mahogany realized $4,425 and a caned mahogany bergere drew $2,360.
An English provincial beechwood blanket chest had some interest and brought $1,298 and a Jacobean carved miniature beechwood blanket chest was $1,534, despite some losses and restoration. A Jacobean figured oak one-drawer table realized $885 and a Jacobean oak chest of drawers was $1,888.
One Georgian carved and figured oak Welsh dresser sold for$2,950 while another similar one was $1,888.
A good-looking George III mahogany campaign map box with brass mounts and fitted on a later stand was $2,655 and a George III mahogany tray of a turned scissor-form stand was $1,652.
A two-part English oak corner cupboard with rosewood crossbanding and blind doors sold for $1,770 and a George III Japanned and faux tortoiseshell hanging corner cupboard was $1,003. A George II pine chest of drawers with a dressing slide sold for $826.
Two English William and Mary oak gate leg dining tables on offer brought $1,003 and $708, while a set of six Cromwellian-style turned beechwood back stools with needlework upholstery was $2,655.
A Charles II joint stool in turned oak brought $649 and a group of English and American turned oak and maple joint stools fetched $767.
Two mahogany microscopes and a “Simpli-trol” portable electrocardiograph device sold for $1,180. Each retained the original box. The Simpli-trol is considered the first portable electrocardiograph instrument.
An embroidered silkwork picture of an eagle above two American flags with a centered shield went to $4,140. A Masonic silk apron was imprinted from an engraved plate with the inscription “The Master’s Carpet Compleat” and the identification “T. Kensett, Cheshire. Connect.” It sold for $2,006.
Staffordshire ware from the collection of Cape Cod dealer Gloria Swanson appealed to collectors from all over.
A blue and white transfer ware pierced drain insert with a camel and palace decoration with a pitcher in a similar pattern and a blue and brown pitcher decorated with urns was $501. A blue and white stoneware platter in the “Regina” pattern with a transfer ware divided platter and four other bowls sold for $708.
Three green and white transfer ware serving pieces including a Minton covered and footed vegetable dish, a covered vegetable dish and underplate and a footed compote went for $826.
A Staffordshire blue and white floral coffeepot with a beehive finial, along with two teapots, a covered sugar and a creamer in various patterns sold for $796.
Brown transfer ware was deemed choice: a platter in the Tyrolean pattern, along with two water pitchers, a teapot and covered sugar bowl, a covered sauce tureen and two sauce boats drew $1,534. Four brown transfer ware covered serving pieces brought $944.
A Flow Blue soup tureen realized $2,124 as did an oval platter with the printed image of Christianburg made by Enoch Wood & Son.
Some 44 lots of millefiore glass from a New Jersey collection drew interest also. Four millefiore vases sold for $767 and a 12-inch pair of millefiore candleholders with gilt decoration was $472. A lot of five millefiore vases went for $649. A two-piece parlor lamp with a mushroom-form shade and a baluster-form stem reached $442.
A group of six millefiore table articles comprising two toothpick holders, small bowl with a frosted handle, a pitcher with a frosted handle and a wine glass drew $236 and a lot of seven toothpick holders was $147.
A diverse selection of lighting included a Hampshire pottery table lamp with a leaded glass shade decorated with stylized lily pads and dogwood blossoms that was $4,130. A silvered metal solar fluid lamp that was stamped “Patented by J.G. Webb, NY Oct. 14, 1851” sold for $2,655 and a pair of gilt metal and molded glass girandole fluid lamps on marble bases sold for $295.
Style trumped substance, however, when a neoclassical-stylegilt metal six-light gas chandelier was missing some globes andsold for $6,785 and a neoclassical-style gilt metal six-light solarchandelier fetched $5,310.
The 1883 catalog of the New York Etching Club that included etchings by William Merritt Chase, Frederic E. Church, Robert Swain Gifford and others, along with the 1855 partial book, The Ferns of Great Britain and Ireland, by Thomas Moore, sold for $3,450.
A selection of Nineteenth Century books by Sir Walter Scott realized $1,652 and the 20-volume History of the Consulate and the Empire of France under Napoleon I by M.A. Thiers was $885.
Equestrian articles from the Morris collection attracted wide interest. Morris, whom John Nye described as the ‘”the Derek Jeter’ of show jumping” has an interesting collection and a very good eye.
Jeter aside, Morris has amassed a grand selection of trophies, decorative items and furniture at his New Jersey farm that he is selling. Over the course of his impressive coaching and riding career he acquired such items as a leather-bound demilune trunk decorated with a hunt scene was deemed highly desirable and reached $6,490.
A 30-inch cast bronze figure of a horse and rider on a green marble base stamped “I Bonheur” was $1,770. A four-panel screen decorated with equestrian scenes was $1,003.
A 61/2-inch brass top hat that was engraved to commemorate the 1984 Almaden Vineyards Grand Prix went for $1,062 while a Baccarat figure of a horse taking a jump went for $1,180.
Horse show posters also commanded attention. Two posters for the National Horse Show at Madison Square Garden, one advertising the 100th year (1983) and the other for the 105th year sold for $1,888. Two posters by Michel Paraskevus advertising the 1988 Winter Equestrian Festival in Palm Beach and Tampa, Fla., and the 1989 Volvo World Cup at Tampa drew $1,416 as did a lot of five posters advertising jumping shows in Europe between 1981 and 1985.
Antiques from the Morris collection included an 11-by-9-foot Oushak carpet that was described as “distressed” but realized $8,850.
A Colorado collection of pen and ink drawings for Puck magazine was broken into nearly 40 lots, each of which brought prices ranging from $413 for several drawings by F. M. Hutchings to $354 for four pen and ink drawings by Samuel D. Ehrhart.
All prices quoted reflect the 15 percent buyer’s premium. For information, www.dawsonandnye.com or 973-984-6900.
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