LiveAuctioneers bidders contribute to success of Cowan’s sale

Set of sterling silver plates by Watson Co. in the Navarre pattern including eight bread plates and eight chargers. Price realized: $3,997.50. Cowan’s Auctions image


CINCINNATI – Bidders utilizing helped themselves to many of the top lots – particularly sterling silver – in Cowan’s Summer Fine & Decorative Arts auction on July 29.

A set of American, 20th century sterling silver plates by Watson Co. in the Navarre pattern including eight bread plates and eight chargers (above) sold to a bidder for $3,997.50 (all prices include the buyer’s premium).

LiveAuctioneers bidders accounted for 28 percent of the lots sold and sales of $85,200 of the auction’s $380,000 total.

A late 19th century, American-made three-piece sterling demitasse set in the Castle pattern, made for Cincinnati retailer Loring Andrews Co. brought $3,321. The set consisted of a coffeepot, creamer and sugar bowl. It too sold to a LiveAuctioneers bidder.


Late 19th century American three-piece sterling demitasse set for The Loring Andrews Co., Cincinnati, in the Castle pattern, including a coffeepot, creamer and sugar bowl. Price realized: $3,321. Cowan’s Auctions image


Also won by a LiveAuctioneers bidder was an Austrian (Vienna) .750 silver teakettle and stand made in 1858, which sold for $2,091.


Austrian .750 silver teakettle on stand with bone elements and chased decoration, Vienna, 1858. Price realized: $2,091. Cowan’s Auction image


The top lot of the auction’s silver collection, “The Lotonia Cup, was a trophy presented by the Kentucky Jockey Club to the winner of a race at a local thoroughbred track in 1921. Made by Lebkuecher & Co., the sterling silver trophy was in the form of a classical urn and decorated with acanthus and vine motifs. It sold for $4,200. The back-up bidder competed through LiveAuctioneers.

Music was in the air at Cowan’s Cincinnati salesroom as the music boxes and instruments from the collection of the Late Irene and Theodore Leverett created robust bidding. A record number of online bidders from around the globe competed with phone and floor bidders on pieces from the coveted collection. LiveAuctioneers accounted for more than 700 bidder registrations.

“Irene and Theodore Leverett were titans in the music box collecting community and their collection was well known around the world,” said Sam Cowan, director of Fine & Decorative Art at Cowan’s. “You simply don’t see this complete of a collection come to auction and you could tell just how eager collectors were to get their hands on these pieces today.”

The top lot from the Leverett collection was a Paillard Vaucher Fils four-tune music box, which sold for $8,400. The Swiss-made box, 19th century, having a 15.125-inch cylinder and two steel combs, in a stained rosewood case with brass inlays on the face and lid, was sold with its original song sheet.


Paillard Vaucher Fils four-tune music box. Price realized: $8,400. Cowan’s Auctions image


Other highlights from the collection included a rare Regina folding coffin top music box on a stand with 27 inch discs that sold for $6,300; a Mermod Freres interchangeable cylinder box with matching table for $5,535; a Lyon & Healy gilt concert harp in its original travel case for $4,800; and a French double singing bird cage automaton for $3,000.

A LiveAuctioneers bidder prevailed at $3,567 on a late 19th- or early 20th-century Swiss music box with three 13-inch cylinders in a burl walnut case decorated with brass and mother of pearl inlays.


Late 19th- or early 20th-century Swiss music box in a burled walnut case having a single drawer storing three interchangeable cylinders. Price realized: $3,567. Cowan’s Auctions image


A 20th-century Louis Vuitton flat steamer trunk (below), 13 1/2 inches high by 43 1/2 inches wide by 21.5 deep, with leather trim, brass hardware and iron handles was snapped up by a LiveAuctioneers bidder for $2,460. Another Louis Vuitton steamer trunk of similar size but cleaner and brighter, and having an embossed mark “Paris / Louis Vuitton / London,” sold for $5,842.50.


Louis Vuitton steamer trunk with leather trim, brass hardware and iron handles, ‘K.T.M. monogram. Price realized: $2,460. Cowan’s Auctions image


Although prices have yet to return to their early 2000s heights, the antique furniture market continued to show signs of life. Highlights included a Louis Philippe gilt bronze and porcelain poudreuse that sold for $4,200, a George I household cupboard for $3,900, a Spanish vargueno chest on chest for $3,600, a Georgian chest of drawers for $3,240, a Regency-style partners desk for $2,520, and a Philadelphia Classical sofa for $2,520.

Miscellaneous highlights from the day include the top lot of the sale, a Peacock dressing mirror in the manner of Tiffany Studios, which sold for $12,000.

Who says online bidders don’t buy heavy or oversize items? A LiveAuctioneers bidder claimed a mid-20th-century Herschede tall-case clock (87 inches high) in pristine condition for $2,583. Housed in a cherry case, it featured eight-day time and strike chimes and a moon-phase dial.

LiveAuctioneers recorded more than 28,000 page views for the 372-lot auction.