Send me an E-mail
(Please, no questions
 about value.)

Instructions for sending photographs of your pieces with your question.

Which department store originated the concept of selling artistic home furnishings?

Liberty & Co.
                     To see the answer

Arts & Crafts:
From William Morris to Frank Lloyd Wright

by Arnold Schwartzman

The author focuses on a British craftsmen, such as William Morris and Charles Rennie Mackintosh, who turned their backs on the mass production of the Industrial Revolution to form a ‘Round Table’ in order to establish a means of returning to hand-crafted products.

                                  More Books


How Was It Made? Block Printing William Morris Wallpaper

This video recreates the painstaking reproduction of a William Morris wallpaper design from 1875, a process that can take up to 4 weeks, using 30 different blocks and 15 separate colors.

Click on the title to view.

And look for other videos in selected articles.

Have Bob speak
 on antiques to your group or organization.

More Information

Can't find what
 you're looking for?

Go to our Sitemap

Find out what's coming in the
2024 Spring Edition

of the

"Art Deco World"


Share pages of this ezine with your friends using the buttons provided with each article.

Download our
Decorative Periods and Styles Chart

Read our newest glossary:

Antique Furniture Terminology
 from A to Z

courtesy of AntiquesWorldUK

Videos have
come to

The Antiques

Expand your antiques experience.

Look for videos in various articles.

Just click on the
arrow to play.


Argyle Chair
Charles Rennie Macintosh

Restored 19th-Century Stagecoach
Goes on the Auction Block
by Bob Brooke

The auctioneer’s hammer came down at $16,500 for a fine Midwestern Stagecoach from around 1849 at the July 9 Deaccession Auction presented by Cordier Auctions & Appraisals of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The final bid for the stagecoach far exceeded its $2,000 to $4,000 estimate. The Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission (PHMC) authorized the auction to weed out extra items from its vast collection and to raise money. A touring car and a New England mail sleigh also brought in some big bucks.

Over the last 20 years or so, deaccession, or the sale of extraneous items from museum collections, has become a big part of the antique auction industry. One reason is the lack of adequate storage space at many museums and the other is money. Most museums are strapped for funds most of the time. While many rely on grants and gifts from benefactors, usually the amount of money needed to maintain their large collections far exceeds the amount raised.

There was a time when museum curators wouldn’t think of selling off items from their collections. Wealthy donors would outright give or leave antiques and memorabilia to them in their wills. No museum could say no because most of these objects came from individuals or families who had given the museum a good deal of money over time. And everyone thinks that what they’re donating is important.

The Anthracite Heritage Museum, Cornwall Iron Furnace, Drake Well Museum, Ephrata Cloister, Eckley Miners' Village, Fort Pitt Museum, Graeme Park, Landis Valley Village and Farm Museum, Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania, Somerset Historical Center, Washington Crossing Historic Park, and the State Museum of Pennsylvania all stored items sent to the auction. Each historic site contains grounds and buildings containing hundreds of artifacts pertinent to use at the sites. Most likely their collections included duplicates of some items or poorer examples of others which were redundant.

The auction featured a variety of historic items, including 1960s travel posters, a stagecoach, mail sleigh, early automobile, foundry patterns, books, furnishings, photographic records, agriculture and textile working tools and equipment, prints, engravings, and an assortment of 19th and 20th century household and merchandising objects.

The PHMC is the official history agency of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Created in 1945, it is responsible for the collection, conservation, and interpretation of Pennsylvania's historic heritage materials. The agency contracted Cordier to auction items that had no special significance to the history of the Commonwealth, or that duplicated what was already in the state’s collection.

Active online, floor, and absentee bidding pushed many lots of the auction to realize higher prices, raising a total of almost $65,000 for the museum commission. Among the highest performing lots was a 1909 Zimmerman Touring Car, which was one of only 12 existing Zimmermans known and the only known Touring Car. Interested bidders volleyed over the historic car before it finally finished at $26,000. At a hammer price of $2,300, a 19th Century New England Mail Sleigh was also a standout.

Other exciting pieces included an 18th Century edition of Martyr’s Mirror from the Ephrata Cloister, selling for $900, an early poster of Rome, selling for $600, several antique charcoal buggies, selling for $475 each, and a painting attributed to DeWitt C. Boutelle, a 19th century Pennsylvania artist, which brought $750.

Prior to being consigned for sale, the PHMC offered the objects to other PHMC properties as well as other historic museums state and nationwide. Money raised from the auction can only be used to buy or conserve artifacts that enhance the PHMC’s mission of preserving the Commonwealth’s natural and cultural heritage as steward, teacher and advocate for the people of Pennsylvania.

Deaccession auctions such as this enable collectors of fine and specialty antiques to acquire items that they couldn’t otherwise.

< Back to Antiques News Archives                                    Next Article >

Antiques Q&A

Antiques and More on Google+

The Antiques Almanac on Facebook

No antiques or collectibles
are sold on this site.

Take a Look at
Bob's Newest Book

How to Recognize and Refinish Antiques for Pleasure and Profit

Book: How to Recognizing and Refinishing Antiques for Pleasure and Profit
Have you ever bought an antique or collectible that was less than perfect and needed some TLC? Bob's new book offers tips and step-by- step instructions for simple maintenance and restoration of common antiques.

Read an Excerpt

Provided by: News-Antique.com
Home | About This Site | Antiques | Collectibles | Antique Tips | Book Shop | Antique Trivia | Antique Spotlight | Antiques News  Special Features | Caring for Your Collections | Collecting | Readers Ask | Antiques Glossaries | Resources | Contact
Copyright ©2007-2023 by Bob Brooke Communications
Site design and development by BBC Web Services