‘Moby Dick,’ baseball stars pace Jeffrey Evans auction

Herman Melville’s ‘Moby-Dick,’ first American edition. Sold for $15,210. Jeffrey S. Evans & Associates image

MOUNT CRAWFORD, Va. – Jeffrey S. Evans & Associates’ Summer Americana Auction on Aug. 27-29 was a much-anticipated event and produced strong results in multiple categories. The three-day format consisted of 1,720 lots of diverse material that generated robust levels of participation for the firm, a clear indication of vigor in numerous segments of the marketplace. Bidding was intense throughout each day with over 5,000 registered bidders participating in house, on the phones and online. Absentee and Internet live bidding was available through LiveAuctioneers.

Session I on Thursday featured a wide selection of antiquarian books, including many rare first editions; coins, including over 30 gold Krugerrands and Maple Leafs; rare baseball cards; Native American and other jewelry; coin silver; a collection of figural napkin rings and other Victorian silverplate; Staffordshire transferware; and other ceramics. The 511-lot offering on Thursday sparked significant presale interest – with bidders traveling from around the country to attend the auction – and produced strong results overall. Top lot from Thursday was an important first American edition of Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick (above), which garnered $15,210 (all prices include 17% buyer’s premium). The iconic novel, completely fresh to the market, was chased by in-house and online bidders to a solid price, given its unrestored state.

1941 Play Ball Gum baseball card set. Sold for $7,605. Jeffrey S. Evans & Associates image

Other noteworthy results from the Thursday session included a 1941 Play Ball Gum baseball card set at $7,605 (Lot 110); a group of Pettigrew Family, Botetourt County, Virginia, archival material at $7,020 (below); and a group of 1937 baseball cards and photos at $4,387 (Lot 112).

Nineteenth-century Pettigrew Family, Botetourt County, Virginia, archival material. Sold for Jeffrey S. Evans & Associates image

Session II on Friday featured a wide selection of country store and advertising, including breweriana; toys and dolls; a collection of vintage candy containers; and a large collection of glass and china children’s dishes. The 562 lots offered on Friday generated a good deal of presale interest. The top lot from Friday was a rare 18th-century English carved and painted wooden doll, which garnered $5,557 (below) from a LiveAuctioneers bidder against several private collectors on the phone and on the gallery floor.

Eighteenth-century English carved and painted wooden doll. Sold for $5,557. Jeffrey S. Evans & Associates image

Other noteworthy results from the Friday session included a Willimantic general store advertising counter-top spool cabinet in excellent condition at $2,223 (Lot 1004); an American general store countertop pie safe with stenciled ends at $1,702 (Lot 1012); and an antique Columbia Brewing Co., St Louis, Missouri, advertising sign at $1,702 (1107).

Session III on Saturday, featuring the estate collection of Ann Vail, Waynesboro, Virginia, consisted of a wide selection of country furniture and accessories; folk art of all types; Shenandoah Valley and other folk pottery; Civil War, Native American, and other historical material; and a variety of textiles. The 647-lot eclectic mix was well-received and produced strong results with numerous categories demonstrating signs of renewed energy. Saturday’s top lot at $4,387 (Lot 2294), was a fine set of six D.R. Dimes Windsor-style dining chairs that attracted the eye of several collectors and was purchased, after heated bidding, by a determined online bidder.

Other noteworthy results from the Saturday session included a 19th-century American School folk art landscape painting at $3,276 (below); a folk art painted wooden D.M Ferry brand seeds trade sign at $2,925 (Lot 2108); and a Nantucket lightship basket with fine original surface at $2,574 (Lot 2474).

American School folk art landscape painting, 19th century. Sold for $3,276. Jeffrey S. Evans & Associates image

“This sale generated robust interest across the board, from baseball card collectors to antique doll aficionados. The overall excitement and strong sales results reflect the freshness and quality of the merchandise offered,” said company president and auctioneer Jeffrey S. Evans, adding, “We have several fine collections in house for our November Americana Auction, so the fall sale should be another great event.”

The firm is currently accepting consignments for upcoming auctions. For complete auction results, a schedule of upcoming sales, or more information, email info@jeffreysevans.com or call 540-434-3939.

 

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