Daguerreotype of photographer takes $17,550 at Kaminski
The evening got off to an encouraging start as a one-fourth plate, occupational daguerreotype, with full leather case of a young photographer sitting beside his camera sold for $17,550, against an estimate of $5,000-$7,000. The daguerreotype was the cover lot of the sale catalog, and had multiple collectable themes things going for it. It was a great image, an occupational, and a self-portrait, in addition to being a handsome young photographer shown with his camera.
The second highest lot of the sale was a one-fourth plate daguerreotype, an image of an outdoor scene, an old mill possibly in Herkimer, N.Y., that was contained in a fancy thermoplastic wall frame. It sold for $9,360 against an estimate of $1,000-$1,500.
“Finding a dag of a photographer is extremely rare. The condition was also very good too. Any serious dag collector would want it in their collection. Outdoor scenes are also rare, especially identified places. Again this photo had everything going for it, size, condition, location and subject matter,” said Dan Silverman, Kaminski Auctions photography specialist, commenting on the two top lots.
A rare outdoor view of President Abraham Lincoln, before the State House, at the flag raising, dated Feb. 22, 1861, identified as 1029 Chestnut St., Philadelphia by T.S. Hacker, sold for $6,250, while a second image, a rare period copy one-fourth plate daguerreotype of Abraham Lincoln “beardless” sold for $1,755.
Also Civil War related, an important chessboard featuring identified portraits of Civil War personalities including generals, presidents, politicians, writers and poets, and showing Zachary Taylor, Millard Fillmore, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and a clean-shaven Abraham Lincoln, sold for $1,400.
A rare copy plate daguerreotype of Henry Clay, one-sixth plate, the original image taken on March 7, 1848 by Marcus Aurelius Root, and declared to be the best and most satisfactory portrait ever taken of him by Clay himself, sold for $3,650.
An unusual French pocket watch of 18K yellow gold, with a miniature in ivory on reverse, black and white enamel front case and a daguerreotype of a gentleman inside sold for $4,800. The pocket watch had a 14K yellow gold chain and a beveled glass watch case.
Several Andre Kertesz (Hungarian 1894-1985) photographs topped the modern photography in the sale. With lively Internet bidding as well as phone bidders, the Hungarian-born artist’s Melancholic Tulips, gelatin silver print, 1939 printed later and signed on the back sold for $4,900. Another Kertesz work, The Balcony Martinique, gelatin silver print, 1939 printed later, and signed on the back, sold for $4,680.
A determined phone bidder bought all of the Herman Leonard (American 1923-2010) photographs including one of Charlie “Bird” Parker, signed lower right, which sold for $1,290 while a Herman Leonard photograph of Duke Ellington, signed, Paris 1958, sold for $940.
The second evening of the sale saw an Andre Kertesz lot, again leading the sales. His photograph titled Pipes and Glasses 1926, gelatin silver print, printed later, and signed on the back, sold for $2,520, while the highest priced lot was a three-volume set of History of the Indian Tribes of North America by Thomas L. McKenney, which sold for $3,600.
Two similar Edwin Townsend (American b. 1879) photographs, sold for $1,200 each. The first, a nude physique portrait of four men playing tug-of-war, vintage silver print photograph, circa 1930s, and the second, a similar partially nude physique portrait of four men playing tug-of-war.
A large lot of photographs by Berenice Abbott (American 1898-1991), titled New York City Views, vintage gelatin silver prints sold for $1,440, while a lot totaling 44 autographed photos, from the collection of George C. Coleman of Beverly, Mass., including John Wayne, Gale Sayers, Rudy Vallee, Rocky Marciano and Buster Crabbe, sold for $1,440 as well.
“I thought the auction went well with some surprises and there appeared to be interest at all collecting levels,” said Silverman, adding, “People were very selective, especially with condition.”
Kaminski Auctions is now accepting consignments for a late winter and early spring sale. For more information, or to consign, go to www.kaminskiauctions.com.
Click here to view the fully illustrated catalog for this sale, complete with prices realized.
ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE