LYNBROOK, N.Y. – Ocean liner memorabilia will take center stage at Weiss Auctions’ June 22 sale, as a letter handwritten aboard the RMS Titanic on April 13, 1912, an original life ring from the SS Andrea Doria, and a glass clock given to first class passengers on the maiden voyage of the SS Normandie in 1935 will all come up for bids. Absentee and Internet bidding is available through LiveAuctioneers.
The Thursday auction has a 10 am (Eastern) start time and is packed with hundreds of lots of antique advertising, rare books, historical memorabilia and autographs as well. Along with the ocean liner items is the lifetime coffee advertising collection of Lowell and Barbara Schindler, featuring not only coffee items but also syrup dispensers, talcum tins, signs and other rare pieces. The Schindler collection is so massive it will be spread out over several sales.
Any item from the doomed ocean liner RMS Titanic is certain to generate buzz throughout the gallery. The letter in the auction (top), handwritten aboard the ship two days before it sank after striking an iceberg as it crossed the Atlantic on its ill-fated maiden voyage, was penned on actual RMS Titanic stationery. It was written by a member of the Holverson family, en route to New York.
The SS Andrea Doria, an ocean liner for the Italian Line named after a 16th-century Genoese admiral of the same name, was a symbol of national pride for a country still recovering from World War II. But it sank in 1956 and 46 people lost their lives when the vessel collided with a Swedish ship off the coast of Nantucket. The life ring up in the auction reads, “Andrea Doria, Genova.” The ring was recovered by an officer aboard the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Yakutat WAVP 380.
The French ship SS Normandie also sank in U.S. waters, but under much different circumstances. She entered service in 1935 as the world’s largest and fastest passenger ship, but during World War II, she was dispatched to New York and renamed the Lafayette. While being converted to a troop ship, the vessel caught fire and capsized, at Pier 88. The cost to repair her was so great she was scrapped, in 1946. The glass clock up for bid from the 1935 maiden voyage is quite lovely.
Rare books will include a copy of The Story of the Exodus, one of 250 copies signed by ch painter Marc Chagall (1887-1985); and signed limited edition art books, to include Henry Spencer Moore’s Nudes (1976), with 10 lithographs, each signed and numbered (2/50); and Jacques Villon’s Lionello Venturi (Paris, 1962), signed, one of 175 copies.
The sale will also feature a collection of Civil War cartes de visites, a Civil War draft broadside printed in New York in 1864 and a terrific collection of Alamo-related material, to include Davy Crockett, a Santa Anna autograph, a Ramon Musquiz autograph, a Juan Almonte autograph, a Thomas R. Miller autographed document and copies of the Texas Independence newspapers.
Advertising signs will feature a Hartford Fire Insurance Co. self-framed tin sign, a Fidelity Phenix Fire Insurance Co. sign, a Niagara Fire Insurance Co. reverse glass sign, a Germania Life Insurance Co. sign, and an Aetna Insurance Co. 1896 paper calendar.
Rounding out just a few more of the day’s more intriguing lots is a grouping of Queen Victoria items (including a signature on a document, a handkerchief and a pair of stockings with the Royal insignia), a pair of weight-lifting beer steins and a grouping of Kentucky long rifles.
For details contact Weiss at 516-594-0731 send an email to Philip Weiss at Phil@WeissAuctions.com.