Motley’s Mid-Summer Discovery Auction to feature monumental collections

RICHMOND, Va. — If you have never been on a treasure hunt, you may never have a better opportunity to find a hidden gem than at Motley’s Discovery Auction on July 30 starting at 2 p.m.

“We have had multiple estate collections arrive one after another that represent decades of collecting in multiple fields all of which we have saved for this Discovery Auction,” said Darrell Olgers, Vice President of Motley’s Antique & Estate Division.

One of the more notable collections is the Union case and photographic image collection of the late Janie Wright of Midlothian. Several examples from her collection were featured in reference books on the subject. Her private collection features nearly 100 cases and images, many quite rare and collectible in today’s market. One of the main features of the auction will be an enormous collection of early toys and dolls. Tin toys, windup toys and dolls of every age and description will be offered at no reserve. There are many toys from the 1950s through the ‘70s still in their original boxes. A large collection of approximately 40 Steiff bears and other animals will be offered during the toy session.  Motleys will also offer approximately 50 musical instruments from violins, several handmade banjos, and a large selection of other wind and string instruments and accessories.

Just making the deadline for the auction are two estate coin and stamp collections featuring U.S. gold and silver coinage and stamps, plus a large collection of early duck stamps. For the modernist there is a set of eight Fritz Hansen swan form chairs that have developed quite a following.

A large portion of the auction will feature the monumental collection of early lighting and accessories collected by a 93-year-old Richmond resident who collected and restored lighting from oil to electric for many decades. “From betty lamps and tin lighting to oil lamps and early electric and thousands of lighting related parts, this collection should be a true treasure hunt for someone who collects in this field,” stated Motley’s representative Dave Perkins.

No auction would be complete without baseball memorabilia, and, yes, there is an estate collection of vintage ball cards and other ephemera. For the watch and clock collector there are several mantle clocks and a tall case clock, plus a selection of pocket watches and wristwatches and parts.

A good selection of country store items will be offered including multiple early showcases of all sizes, a collection of Griswold and other cast iron, as well as early blob top bottles, including an amber Peter Stumpf of Richmond and a Thomas Harris of Henderson, N.C.

Not wanting to disappoint those in search of furniture, Motley’s will also include a host of 18th and 19th century furniture, including several corner cupboards, a stunning figured mahogany wardrobe, Federal figured maple rope beds, an oak Murphy bed, a Biggs Hepplewhite style sideboard and much more.

For those with more modern tastes there will be a selection of collector plates from the Bradford Exchange, Edwin Knowles and more, plus a multitude of prints and other art by Charles Wysocki, Stephen Lynch and others.

For the sportsman there are two Civil War Springfield long guns, a U.S. belt plate and an early a powder horn.

All items are viewable by July 25 at The gallery will be open for preview July 28-29, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and the day of the auction starting at 10 a.m.

For those unable to attend the sale, Motley’s offers phone bidding, absentee bidding and bidding via the Internet. For more information on any upcoming Motley’s auctions or their comprehensive appraisal services, visit or call 804-355-2100.