On May 31 and June 1, Cordier Antiques & Fine Art held their Two Day Spring Antique & Fine Art Auction in Camp Hill, Penn., across the Susquehanna River from Harrisburg. While Saturday’s offerings featured many key results, Sunday garnered the top lot of the sale: a large and fine Japanese moriage cloisonné vase by Hattori Tadasboro (1897-1912) that sold for $92,000.
The multi-consignor sale featured items from over seventy-five consignors including estates and collectors. There were over 300 people in attendance during the two days in addition to phone and absentee bidders. More than 1000 bidders were pre-registered to bid via the Internet through LiveAuctioneers which also provided an online catalog of the auction. Prices quoted do not include the buyer’s premium (10 percent to 15 percent).
Saturday’s session offered 427 lots of glass, ceramics, sterling, fine antique and estate jewelry, fine art and sculpture, textiles, lighting and furniture. The sale opened with glass and ceramics and featured small collections of Mary Gregory style and Bohemian cut overlay glass as well as Quimper faience with respectable results averaging $65 to $210. Several pieces of art glass were offered including a Loetz type vase decorated with iridescent gold and violet irises that sold to the Internet for $2,000 on an estimate of $100 to $200. The top lot of the ceramics category was a pair of Dresden covered urns signed “A. Lamm” for Ambrosius Lamm. Decorated with ladies and cherubs, the urns realized $1,900 also to the Internet.
Sterling offered numerous sets of flatware, all of which saw strong results including a sixty-five piece set of Dimension sterling flatware designed by John Prip for Reed & Barton which hammered down at $1,800 to the room. A silver plated tea set, also in the Dimension pattern by John Prip, sold to a New York dealer via absentee bid at $1,100. Other flatware sets included a 126 piece set of Wallace Waverly for $1,500, an 80 piece set of Reed & Barton Francis I for $1,900 and a 72 piece set of Wallace Christopher for $1,500. A fine Chinese export 8 piece silver fish set having ornately decorated handles of dragons in relief realized $1,100 and sold to the Internet while a Gorham sterling silver tea set reached $1,600.
Jewelry overall saw modest results though this category was not without several highlights. Of note was a collection of Georgian and Victorian mourning jewelry from a local collector that included a rare Georgian eye pendant. The navette shaped sepia and watercolor on ivory of a blue "all-seeing eye" was edged with blue enamel under a convex crystal bezel and set in yellow gold with a seed pearl border. Estimated at $400 to $600, the pendant saw spirited bidding between the Internet, floor and phone with a collector on the phone prevailing at $4,000. The room was also successful on a 1.08 ctw diamond and platinum filigree ring that sold within estimate at $2,250 and a finely carved hard stone cameo necklace in a blue enamel frame at $1,800 (estimate $400 to $600) as well as an 18K Hermes Chaine D’Ancre bracelet at $5,250, while an absentee bidder prevailed on a man’s Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date wristwatch at $3,500.
A feature of Saturday’s session was a 1933 Ford V8 Deluxe panel truck that was offered midway through the day. Estimated at $25,000 to $30,000, the truck was one of only sixty-nine made with the 60 horsepower V-8 engine and had undergone a frame-off restoration. While widely viewed, the truck failed to garner the necessary interest and did not sell.
Such was not the case in art where sculpture and 19th century portraits led the category. A large and impressive bronze by Luca Madrassi (Italian, 1848-1919) portraying a woman and child with a banner reading “Pax Libertis Independentia” on a stepped marble swivel base saw strong bidding across the board finally bringing $10,000 from a lucky bidder on the floor. A fine bronze nude by American artist Beatrice Fenton (1887-1983) was won by a New York dealer at $2,000 via absentee bid. A portrait of Reverend Ezra Fisk of Goshen, Orange County, New York sold within estimate at $2,000 to an absentee in the room while an Internet bidder was successful in purchasing a portrait of Catherine Gautier (Mrs. Christopher Duyckinck), grandmother of Christopher Hall, painted by portrait artist William Dunlap (New Jersey, 1766-1839) for $1,100.
Not to be outdone by 19th century works, modern paintings and prints had respectable results overall, most notably an acrylic on board painting of a Hudson River Barge by American commercial artist Norman Saunders (1907-1989). Estimated at $600 to $800, the painting immediately took off with a battle ensuing between an online and a phone bidder. The phone bidder did not back down and eventually won the painting for $6,500.
Saturday’s sale finished up with textiles, lighting, furniture and rugs. A unique piece that was offered was an ornate Victorian cast iron fence complete with figural gate. Measuring approximately 26 total feet in length, the fence was removed by the consignor from a property in Wiconisco, Dauphin County. It ended up traveling far from home, selling just over estimate at $2,200 to an absentee bidder out of California. A circa 1906 to 1912 L&JG Stickley bookcase in fine original finish also sold within estimate for $3,500 to a pleased online bidder. The highlight of furniture was an early Victorian Egyptian Revival mantle mirror. Measuring a massive 64” wide by 87” high, the gilded mirror was carved with Classical figures, winged dogs and swags. The mirror garnered much interest all around finally selling well over estimate to a New York dealer at $7,000.
Sunday’s session featured 296 lots of numismatics, books and documents, firearms and military, collectibles and toys, Asian and decorative arts, ethnographic arts, and, of special note, a single owner contemporary Western Art collection. Coins saw strong results overall especially in the case of an 1840-C Liberty Head $5 gold piece (no motto). Estimated at $1,000 to $2,000, the coin was in Very Fine condition with a low mintage of only 18,992. Bidding immediately took off with a floor bidder finally acquiring the piece for $8,000. Another Liberty Head $5 gold piece, this one an 1851-D also in Very Fine condition, hammered down above estimate at $1,800 to the Internet.
Books overall saw depressed results especially among several early date leather bounds at $20 to $300 each. Among documents, an Abraham Lincoln signed military appointment reached its high estimate of $6,000. Dated June 17, 1862, the document appointed Robert C. Wood to Assistant Surgeon General and was also signed by Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton. Robert Wood was the son-in-law of President Zachary Taylor and led a distinguished military career as a surgeon. This section also included an 1836 Mahantongo Valley Artist fraktur ($750) and a Buffalo Bill Cody handwritten letter ($850).
Military and firearms saw several key items come on the block. The first was a grouping of 65 Civil War soldier letters from Sidney Marlin, Signal Corps, to his wife Sallie in Willet, Indiana County, Pennsylvania. Dated between February 11, 1864 and July 16, 1866, the letters were written from various locations and included a hand drawn map and battle description of Camp Cedar Creek as well as two earlier courtship letters prior to the Marlins’ marriage. Consigned by a direct descendent, the letters hammered down to the room at $4,000.
Another key lot was a Philadelphia coin silver Revolutionary War presentation cup. Made by Conrad Bard (Philadelphia, circa 1825-1854) the cup was presented by Dr. James Martin, Surgeon in the 3d Regiment of the South Carolina infantry during the Revolutionary War, to his daughter Mary Martin Douglas. Decorated with a palmetto and inscribed in part “Relick of the Revolution” (referring to Dr. Martin himself), the cup had been featured on the January 8, 2007 episode of the Antiques Roadshow in Philadelphia. After spirited bidding, the cup sold above estimate to the Internet at $4,250.
While online bidders could not participate in the sale of firearms, floor, absentee and phone bidders more than made up for it. Among several strong lots was a Colt Model 1862 Police/Pocket Navy pistol with the interesting marking of “FC D CR” to the butt. Estimated at $1,000 to $3,000, a determined dealer on the phone edged the bidding past the high estimate to $4,750.
A Drake’s 1860 Plantation Bitters figural bottle was the leader in collectibles. In a desirable yellow color and in excellent condition the bottle well exceeded its $400 to $600 estimate to close at $1,800. Not bad for a bottle found under the floor boards of the local consignor’s porch! Toys featured a Lionel prewar No. 269W freight train outfit in the original box ($1,300) and a prewar No. 165 Magnetic Crane also in the original box ($550) as well as a Buddy L pressed steel flivver coupe ($550) and a circa 1940’s Ito battery operated King Cabin cruiser ($450).
Asian and decorative arts opened with much anticipation, focused entirely on a single lot – and with good reason. The lot, a large and very fine signed moriage cloisonné vase, was by far the top lot of the entire two day sale. Decorated with finely executed raised green foliage and fruits on a white ground on a silver base and rim, the vase attracted a high level of interest from the moment the online catalog went live three weeks before the sale. Further research into the signature uncovered that the artist of the piece was Hattori Tadasboro (1897-1912), a well known cloisonné artist. The lot opened with a strong bid well above the conservative high estimate of $6,000 from the Internet with immediate response from the floor and phone. As the bidding climbed the Internet bidders quickly dropped out leaving the floor and six phone bidders to battle it out. Eventually it came down to a single international phone bidder and a New York City bidder in the room. Everyone was at attention as the bidding continued to escalate. While the phone bidder was a rigorous contender, it was the floor bidder who ultimately prevailed, winning the vase at a staggering $92,000. The result was met with applause in the room. David Cordier, owner of Cordier Antiques & Fine Art, noted “We had expected a strong price given the level of interest we received on the vase but this result far exceeded our expectations. The artist was the key element coupled with the vase’s size, quality and subject matter.”
Other decorative items of note included a brass mechanical singing bird music box ($2,500), a signed Japanese ivory okimoto of an immortal ($1,300), an Ando cloisonné vase with persimmons ($1,400), a bracket clock with Westminster chimes ($3,500) and a circa 1921 Gibson American Style A2 mandolin ($1,000). Ethnographic arts offered a variety of African, pre-Columbian and Native American pieces including a pre-Columbian polychrome bowl featuring male figures under a glyph band. The bowl, estimated at $750 to $1,000, realized $1,400 to an online bidder.
The sale concluded with a single owner Contemporary Western Art collection comprised largely of limited edition prints including thirty-five by well known Western artist Howard Terpning. Terpning prints and giclees on canvas comprised the top lots of this section including a giclee entitled “The Stragglers.” Number 79 out of an edition of 250, the print sold to the room just over high estimate at $3,250. Four others broke the $1,000 mark. The collection also included a large bronze of a covered wagon signed “R. Clark” for $900 and a painted elk robe that was an original prop from the movie Last of the Dogmen. The robe, handmade by John G. Arrasmith of Spotted Horse Reproductions, sold under estimate at $200.
For full results of the auction, please visit www.cordierantiques.com.
Cordier Antiques & Fine Art has been in the antiques business for twenty-five years and is located at 2151 Market Street in Camp Hill, Penn. The firm holds annual fall and spring multi-consignor catalog auctions as well as monthly, onsite and real estate auctions throughout the year.
For additional information or consignments, please contact Ellen Miller at 717-731-8662 or firstname.lastname@example.org.