Published: October 22, 2019
Review and Photos by Greg Smith
STRATTON, VT. – In its 45th year, Antiques at Stratton Mountain, the Vermont Antiques Dealers’ Association (VADA) Show, was well-worth the visit. The October 5-6 show at the base lodge at Stratton Mountain presented approximately 30 dealers with varied inventory of Americana, folk art, country primitives, stoneware and ceramics, American glass, silver, fine and country furniture and much more.
Show chair Lori Scotnicki, who volunteers at VADA, said the attendance was roughly even, up a handful of visitors, when compared to last year’s edition.
“I thought that the week was great, we had traffic from the foliage, and traffic from people that live at Stratton. There were a handful of dealers that sold sizable pieces to people who have never bought an antique before,” Scotnicki said.
Vergennes, Vt., dealer Greg Hamilton of Stone Block Antiques said that he had one of his best VADA shows in over a decade. The dealer presented two collections of Native American materials. A Woodstock, Vt., collection featured textiles, while a Burlington, Vt., collection offered Sioux beadwork, of which Hamilton was able to sell two pipe bags right out of the gate at the show’s opening. Hamilton said he also sold two large cupboards, three pieces of American furniture and a selection of paintings.
Jeff and Holly Noordsy, Cornwall, Vt., exhibited a collection of Vermont glass spring water bottles. The examples ranged in color from amber, green, blue to clear. Some of the names represented on the bottles were the Caledonia Spring; Vermont Spring, Saxe & Co, Sheldon Vt; Lamoille Spring; and the Alburgh A. Springs.
Shelburne, Vt., dealer Brian Bittner, Bittner Antiques, came with a selection of fine art from Vermont. Bittner was showing off Vermont scene paintings from Luigi Lucioni and Emile Gruppe. The Gruppes, both barn scenes, came from the same collection and both featured the artist’s frames, though one of them was painted a few decades earlier than the other. Bittner also featured a nice ambrotype of a Vermont First Regiment soldier.
John H. Rogers Antiques, Elkins, N.H., put out more butter stamps than he has ever shown at one time. “I have a lot of butter stamp collectors who come to that show because they know that I’m going to have a lot there. And they have a lot to choose from,” Rogers said. The dealer related that he sold a “mess” of them on both days to both dealers and collectors.
Ethan Merrill of Merrill’s Auctioneers and Appraisers, Williston, Vt., was on hand with a good amount of Vermont offerings. Among them was a Windsor rocker by John Saxton, Shelburne, Vt.; an oil on canvas painting by William Stacy, circa 1890, featuring Shelburne Bay in South Burlington; a Federal carved sofa from Bennington; and a Bennington lion. “I had a pretty good show,” Merrill told Antiques and The Arts Weekly. “I sold a fair amount of mocha, primitive smalls, painted boxes, some signs.”
Osgood Hill Antiques, Essex, Vt., featured a nice selection of furniture, pewter, ceramics and other accessories. On an inlaid veneer desk by midcentury designer Andrew Szoeke sat a US Model 1842 percussion pistol manufactured by Connecticut maker Henry Aston. The company manufactured approximately 24,000 of these revolvers for the government and it holds the title as being the very last single shot percussion handgun to see service with the US Army.
Small-scale paintings and maps were on tap with Andrew Gardiner and Gardiner’s Antiques, South Burlington, Vt. The dealer showed off a work from Robert H. Nisbet (1879-1961), who was a leading painter in the Kent, Conn., school in the early 1900s. Also included were two maps, an 1864 Plan of Boston, which is one of the first maps to depict the creation of the Back Bay, as well as a State of Vermont map by T.J. Bradford, printed in 1839.
Kyle Scanlon, Essex, Vt., brought with him a collection of more than 60 cast iron still banks that included towers, safe banks, bears, elephants, cats and others. Scanlon sold a cobblers portable workshop suitcase to another dealer shortly after the opening, it featured the original trade sign as well as a full set of tools.
An English advertising chest for Cheshunt Dairies was in the booth of Robert T. Foley Antiques, Gray, Maine. The two-over-one-over-one chest advertised cheeses, butter, single and double creams and New Zealand Lamb.
Jean Tudhope, Backdoor Antiques, Middlebury, Vt., said that she had more retail sales than she has ever had at the show. Among them was a miniature indoor golf game with putters and colorful wood obstacles. “The people that bought it, they didn’t have grandchildren yet but they were hoping,” Tudhope said. Hovering in the 50- and 60-degree range that day, the dealer also sold a Woolrich hunting coat. “A woman bought it, and I said, ‘Would you like to put it in a bag?’ and she said, ‘No I’ll wear it,’ and she did,” Tudhope said. She said sales started out slow at the 8 am opening but come 10 am that day she had steady sales and they continued into the next day.
Flying Pig Antiques, Westmoreland, N.H., was having a decent show shortly after opening. The dealer said that he sold a Pennsylvania raised panel stepback cupboard, circa 1800. Sales also included a group of canes from a New Bedford, Mass., carver.
A selection of purple edge creamware was on hand with Michael Weinberg and West Pelham Antiques, Pelham, Mass. The dealer said these works, circa 1780-1800, decorated in this manner are hard to find. He featured an English platter in this style that he attributed to Wedgwood.
When we asked Scotnicki if anything major will change in the formula for next year, she replied in the negative. “Same location, the time of the year was great, the show is stable.”
For additional information, www.vermontantiquesweek.com/stratton.
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