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Stephenson's presents estate jewelry, fine art, automobilia in big April 27 auction
John Follinsbee oil on canvas. Photo: Stephenson’s Auctioneers.

SOUTHAMPTON, PA.- A trove of gold and silver estate jewelry, a New Jersey collector’s automotive-related signs and hood ornaments; and fine art from upscale Philadelphia homes will lead the lineup at Stephenson’s April 27 Antiques & Decorative Arts auction.

Approximately 700 lots will be up for bid at the company’s Bucks County gallery, with an earlier-than-usual 11 a.m. start time due to the 200-lot opening selection of contemporary collectibles. This grouping includes Royal Doulton figurines as well as decorative pieces by Lladro and Swarovski.

Around 2 p.m., the antiques and vintage portion of the sale will begin, with an extensive offering of silver and gold jewelry and pocket watches. Two bracelets, in particular, are expected to garner competition from silver buyers. One is a simple silver bangle designed by Vivianna Torun Bulow-Hube (Swedish, 1927-2004) for Georg Jensen. With a Jensen Denmark stamp and additional “Torun” marking, it is estimated at $200-$300. The second silver highlight is a substantial handmade Mexican sterling bracelet whose oversize links feature carved green Mayan faces. Dating to the 1940s and weighing 3½ oz., it is stamped “Silver Made in Mexico” and could realize $100-$200.

Ladies will be spoiled for choice at the “bangle bar,” a display that Stephenson’s staff members have laden with gleaming bracelets, some with semiprecious stones and all of 14K gold standard or better. There are contemporary pieces, mostly from Italy; as well as an envy-stirring array of banded, twisted-link, herringbone and mesh styles. Two examples have link-style bracelets that show off colored scarabs in bezel settings. Certainly a highlight amongst the bangles is a 14K gold, hinged bracelet hand-engraved with flowers and foliage, accompanied by its original box and receipt dated 1913. Stephenson’s jewelry specialist Theresa Zaengle believes the bracelet was never worn.

Figural gold brooches are always in fashion, and the selection to be auctioned includes a pin set with garnets, a flower-shape moonstone pin and a very pretty hummingbird with diamonds in its wings. Many gold rings will be available, including some with colored semiprecious stones. The heaviest ring in the sale is a man’s 18K gold Masonic ring that Zaengle describes as “a chunk.”

A central New Jersey estate was the source of a collection of petroleum-related porcelain advertising signs. They range in size from 28 inches to 77 inches in width, and many are double sided. Some of the companies represented are Texaco, Sinclair, Pennzoil, Quaker State, Gulf, Socony and Atlantic. The collection also includes a 36-inch porcelain Coca-Cola sign and a number of car hood ornaments (mascots) and emblems.

Moving into the fine art section, a key lot is a John Fulton Follinsbee (American, 1892-1972) oil-on-canvas landscape with docked boat that came from a Montgomery County residence. The work has been blacklighted and is entered in the sale with an $8,000-$12,000 estimate. Another Follinsbee, a Conte (sepia) sketch of fishermen on the Delaware River, is titled Digging for Bait.

Other fine-art highlights include oil-on canvas landscapes by Bucks County artist Andrew Woehrel (b. 1958-) and listed Philadelphia artist Charles Wilson Knapp (1823-1900). An upper Bucks County estate produced both a 40- by 50-inch Hudson River Valley school pastoral landscape and a Louis Paul Dessar (1867-1952) oil on canvas titled October Moonrise. European art is led by two etchings by Rembrandt van Rijn (Dutch, 1606-1669), one of them a fourth state. Both have labels on verso from the Rosenbach Gallery in Philadelphia.

An elegant Norwegian silver 830 flatware service by Thorvald Martinsen came from a Doylestown, Pa., residence and dates to the mid 20th century. The service is highly decorative and ready to grace a new dining table. On the other hand, a rather plain, 14K gold 8- by 10-inch picture frame, probably early 20th century, might prove attractive to bidders for its scrap value of $4,000, possibly more.

“For this sale, we’ve brought together a nice blend of antiques and art from the Pennsylvania/New Jersey/Delaware tri-state area,” said Stephenson’s Auctioneers’ owner Cindy Stephenson. “We have many loyal followers who come to each and every one of our sales because they know the majority of what we sell comes directly from estates. In the Philadelphia area, that very often equates to high quality.”

Stephenson’s Friday, April 27 Antiques & Decorative Arts auction will be held at the company’s gallery located at 1005 Industrial Blvd., Southampton, PA 18966. Start time: 11 a.m. Preview: Thursday, April 26 from 2-6 p.m. and on auction day from 9-11 a.m.

All forms of bidding will be available including live in the gallery, absentee, phone or live via the Internet through For additional information on any lot in the sale, call Cindy Stephenson at 215-322-6182 or e-mail View the fully illustrated online catalog and sign up to bid absentee or live via the Internet at

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