Chippendale desk tops $41K at Leland Little’s booming Sept. 19 sale

Top lot of the sale was this 18th-century Pennsylvania Chippendale tiger maple desk, which sold for $41,400. Image courtesy Leland Little Auction & Estate Sales Ltd.

Top lot of the sale was this 18th-century Pennsylvania Chippendale tiger maple desk, which sold for $41,400. Image courtesy Leland Little Auction & Estate Sales Ltd.

HILLSBOROUGH, N.C. – A late 18th-century Pennsylvania Chippendale desk, probably Lancaster County and crafted from strikingly figured tiger maple, sold for $41,400 at an estates auction conducted Sept. 19 by Leland Little Auction & Estate Sales Ltd. The desk was the top achiever of the more than 700 quality lots that changed hands at Little’s latest Historic Hillsborough Auction.

It was just the second major auction held at Leland Little Auction & Estate Sales’ new state-of-the-art gallery facility, located at 620 Cornerstone Court in Hillsborough. Hundreds of lots of fine art, period furniture and decorative accessories were sold, with the centerpiece being the estate collection of the late W. Samuel Tarlton, the respected art dealer and co-owner of an antique shop in Raleigh.

“This was quite simply the best sale we’ve ever had,” said Leland Little. “I feel a renewed freshness and energy in the auction business I haven’t experienced in some time. The mid-range market items, especially, such as jewelry and decorative accessories, did extremely well, much better than in previous sales. This is all very encouraging to us and the industry.”

Little added, “Our decision last year to build a new facility, which gives us greater access and visibility near the interstate, was a timely and prudent one. The new location is equipped with specialized gallery lighting, greatly expanded exhibit space and green building components. This building is a major asset to our business.”

The auction, which grossed a little under $1 million, attracted a standing-room-only crowd of more than 300 people. In addition, 752 bidders were registered online and more than 700 prebids were posted via LiveAuctioneers.com. Phone and absentee bidding was active, as 1,200 absentee and phone bids were lined up prior to sale. In all, close to 1,000 people registered to bid live.

All prices quoted include a 15 percent buyer’s premium.

The Chippendale sale-topping desk came out of the Tarlton collection. Other furniture pieces from his estate included a set of six Knoll & Saarinen white tulip chairs, circa 1960, and pedestal dining table, $3,336; an18th-century American Queen Anne maple center table, possibly from the North Carolina Chowan River Basin, $4,830; and an 18th-century Massachusetts Chippendale oxbow slant-lid desk ($4,600, est. $2,000-$3,000).

Also from the Tarlton estate, a New Hampshire Federal bowfront chest of drawers, circa 1800-1810, 12-panel form, sold for $5,750 and an American miniature Hepplewhite inlaid chest, early 19th century, went for $2,530. Artwork featured a bronze by Anna Hyatt Huntington (American, 1876-1973) titled Yawning Tiger that achieved $12,075 (est. $3,000-$5,000); and a still life oil on board by Jacques Blanche (French, 1861-1942) that made $4,140.

Staying in the fine art category, the sale also included many pieces acquired in the 1960s and ’70s by the Mead Corp. of Richmond, Va. Top earners included an oil on canvas painting by Robert Harvey (b. 1924), titled Brother Home on Leave and signed and dated 1964, which brought $4,370 against a $1,000-$2,000 estimate, and an oil on canvas painting by Jim Herbert (Georgia, b. 1938) titled Oriental, which made $1,840.

Two clocks sparked interest. One was a French cloisonné mantel clock with two matching candlesticks, stamped to indicate the maker won a silver medal in 1855, which swept past a $400-$800 to sell for $5,520. The other, a late 18th-century English Chippendale tall case clock, mahogany, 89 inches tall, topped $3,220.

Intriguing offerings included a Turkoman asmalyk, circa 1890, wool and silk with allover decoration, woven edging and five-sided camel decoration for the wedding procession carrying the bride. Estimated at $300-$600, it sold for $7,762. A pair of vintage concrete foxes with bushy tails and attractive weathering went to $2,415; and an antique toleware tray, 19th century, with a painted harbor scene depicting a Spanish galleon came in at $1,265.

A 163-piece sterling silver flatware service in the Pointed Antique pattern by Dominick & Haff and Reed & Barton climbed to $4,370 (est. $1,500-$2,500), while a beautiful Southern coin silver ladle by Linebach of Salem, N.C., went for $3,680 (est. $600-$900). In estate jewelry, a 1.15-carat round brilliant cut diamond brought $2,070 (est. $1,000-$1,500), and a 1.09-carat emerald cut diamond garnered $2,070.

Returning to fine art, a signed oil on panel by Julian Onderdonck (Texas, 1882-1922) titled Rock Quarries fetched $29,900; and an oil on linen signed by French artist Adolphe Binet (1854-1897) and titled Les Alezans, breezed to $23,000. An acrylic on canvas by John McCracken (New York/Calif., b. 1934), titled Mandala IV, made $19,550.

A pair of works by Richard Anuskziewicz (New Jersey, b. 1930) got the attention of bidders. An acrylic on canvas titled Soft Cover Vermilion topped out at $25,300, while an untitled oil on pressed board realized $10,350. Also, two large 18th-century French School murals, oil on canvas, each measuring 120 inches by 96 inches and depicting tranquil landscape scenes, sold for a respectable $18,400 and $14,950 against estimates of $3,000-$5,000 each.

Cellarets wowed the crowd. A George III example with mahogany veneer in the rare diminutive form, soared to $4,830, while an English wine cellaret, circa 1830, casket form on carved paw feet, hit $4,370. Also, a 19th-century tortoiseshell tea caddy, octagonal form with pagoda lid, rose to $1,725; and an Eero Saarinen for Knoll grasshopper chair, circa 1950s, with laminated wood frame garnered $1,265.

Vintage car enthusiasts weren’t disappointed. A bright red 1985 Ferrari 308 GTS Quattrovalvole with just 49,013 miles sped off for $24,150. Also, a 1930s Jugtown Chinese blue Persian jar, rich red with a strong blue contrast, achieved $16,100 ($3,000-$6,000); a rare group of six Baccarat Czar crystal-stem blown and cut glasses coasted to $4,600; and a unique pair of 19th-century famille rose garden seats hit $2,990.

From the entertainment and movie memorabilia collection of Bill Morrison, former art critic of the Raleigh News & Observer, a 1935 lobby card for the Alfred Hitchcock thriller 39 Steps went for $2,530, while a 1977 Star Wars movie poster fetched $920. Also, a rare 18th-century cookbook and an inscribed first-edition book by author Ayn Rand each brought $1,265.

Leland Little’s next Historic Hillsborough Auction will be Dec. 5-6, also in the new gallery. For information phone 919-644-1243, or e-mail them, at info@LLAuctions.com. To learn more about Leland Little Auction & Estate Sales, Ltd., log on to www.LLAuctions.com.


ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE


One of two paintings in the auction by Richard Anuskziewicz, this one titled 'Soft Cover Vermilion' made $25,300. Leland Little Auction & Estate Sales Ltd.

One of two paintings in the auction by Richard Anuskziewicz, this one titled ‘Soft Cover Vermilion’ made $25,300. Leland Little Auction & Estate Sales Ltd.


Tiffany Studios' counterbalance desk lamp with bronze base and green damascene shade made $8,050. Leland Little Auction & Estate Sales Ltd.

Tiffany Studios’ counterbalance desk lamp with bronze base and green damascene shade made $8,050. Leland Little Auction & Estate Sales Ltd.


This signed oil on linen by French artist Adolphe Binet (1854-1897) rallied to $23,000. Leland Little Auction & Estate Sales Ltd.

This signed oil on linen by French artist Adolphe Binet (1854-1897) rallied to $23,000. Leland Little Auction & Estate Sales Ltd.


Julian Onderdonk (Texas, 1882-1922) titled his oil on panel painting 'Rock Quarries.' It sold for $29,900. Leland Little Auction & Estate Sales Ltd.

Julian Onderdonk (Texas, 1882-1922) titled his oil on panel painting ‘Rock Quarries.’ It sold for $29,900. Leland Little Auction & Estate Sales Ltd.


This bright red 1985 Ferrari 308 GTS Quattrovalvole, with just 49,013 miles, sped off for $24,150. Leland Little Auction & Estate Sales Ltd.

This bright red 1985 Ferrari 308 GTS Quattrovalvole, with just 49,013 miles, sped off for $24,150. Leland Little Auction & Estate Sales Ltd.