NEW YORK, NY.- Joseph DuMouchelle International Auctioneers
announced it will offer at auction an antique Tiffany & Co. sterling silver Tiffany Stake Plate trophy. The auction will be held on December 5, 2013, at 1:00 p.m., EST, with bids accepted online, by proxy and by phone. The circa 1861 trophy features a raised horse and figure on the hinged lid, and has a presale estimate of $25,000 - $35,000. It is among the first of its kind to be commissioned by R.A. Alexander for creation by Tiffany & Co. The first was for the Woodlawn Racing Association of Louisville, KY., and dubbed the most expensive trophy in American sports. It became the prototype for the Preakness trophy and launched Tiffany & Co.s great legacy of historic sports trophies.
The 10 ½ inch trophy weighs approximately 46 troy ounces. Hand-engraved are the words: "The Tiffany Stake Plate Run for on Woodlawn Course by two year old Colts & Fillies ~ Won by ~ R. A. Alexander's Filly Anna Clark by Lexington. Dam Kitty Clark by Glencoe. 5th October 1861". The trophys lower border is engraved with horseshoes, stirrups and floral swags. A raised silver mask is featured under the spout. The underside is signed "Tiffany & Co. 1169, English Sterling 925/1000, 7844, 550 Broadway", and is accompanied by two marks for "John C. Moore".
Tiffany & Co. has created the most coveted symbols of athletic achievement in every notable field of sport. The Super Bowl, the World Series and every major championship are commemorated with the presentation of a custom-designed sterling silver trophy from Tiffany. The legacy began in 1860 with the creation of the Woodlawn Vase which would later be presented to the Maryland Jockey Club to be awarded to the winner of the Preakness Stakes. The Tiffany Stake Plate being offered at auction in New York on December 5 was the second racing trophy created by Tiffany & Co. commissioned by R.A. Alexander.
In 1860, R. A. Alexander and Woodburn Farm were noted throughout the nation for exceptional thoroughbred livestock. Alexanders most famous purchase was Lexington, a horse with an impressive racing career that had gone blind and been retired to stud. While in England searching for horses to purchase and send to Woodburn Farm, he met with Lexingtons owner, Richard Ten Broeck, and bought the horse for $15,000, the largest amount ever paid for a horse at that
time. Lexington would become the most successful sire of the latter half of the nineteenth century. Alexanders impact on horse racing in the U.S. also included involvement in the Woodlawn Race Course in Louisville. It was R.A. Alexander who would commission the famed Woodlawn Vase, the forerunner of todays Preakness Stakes trophy, and the Tiffany Stake Plate.