On September 30 and October 1, Hindman Auctions
will present its American Furniture, Folk and Decorative Arts auction. The sale will offer property from the Dean Lower Estate (Lanark, Illinois), the Estate of a Midwest Collector (Milwaukee, Wisconsin), a Prominent Midwest Estate, the Wes and Shelley Cowan Collection, the Estate of Paul Thomas Griffith (Dayton, Ohio) and the Collection of Dr. James Dawson, (Manchester, Kentucky).
Standout lots to be offered include a rare and important Andrew Clemens (1857-1894) portrait sand bottle (lot 292; estimate: $100,000-150,000). This large bottle dates from the late 1880s and depicts a portrait of a young boy, and includes O.T. Fuller in script on the front side and an elaborate floral urn on the opposite. Of the more than 100 documented Clemens bottles, this is the only known example exhibiting a portrait, and the high quality of the item is demonstrated through the almost photographic depiction of Fuller.
Another noteworthy item is a pair of portraits of American banker, merchant and philanthropist Moses Michael Hays and Rachel Myers Hays, the sister of famed New York silversmith, Myer Myers (lot 282; estimate: $30,000-50,000). This pair of historical portraits, attributed to Gilbert Stuart (1755-1828), descended to the Hays eldest daughter, descending in that family line to the current owners. A two-foot carved marble bust of Benjamin Franklin (lot 281; estimate: $15,000 - $25,000), possibly by Giuseppe Ceracchi (1751-1801), modeled after the original by Jean-Jacques Caffieri (1725-1792), is another exceptional lot. Additionally, the sale will include a George III drop-leaf dining table that was likely given as a gift to Lord Fairfax by George Washington (lot 284; estimate: $2,000-4,000).
The Collection of James Dawson (Manchester, Kentucky) includes Queen Anne, Chippendale and Federal furniture of remarkable form and surface, from New England, Pennsylvania, Kentucky and Tennessee. The selection also includes carved wood and stone figures by Edgar Tolson and Ernest Popeye Reed and notable 19th Century Scrimshaw whales teeth, medical oddities and advertising signs.
Property from the Dean Lower Estate (Lanark, Illinois) highlights the vibrance of American grain-painted furniture, early lighting, folk art and early childrens toys, featuring collections of Bliss houses and McLoughlin Bros. games. A standout of Lowers collection was a large German-made Noahs Ark, circa 1840 (lot 513; estimate: $10,000-15,000), that is nearly identical to the example in the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum at Colonial Williamsburg.
Wes and Shelly Cowans Midwest-focused collection (Cincinnati, Ohio) also includes strong examples of painted furniture including a Jacob Werrey poplar blanket chest, which is painted in a style acknowledged to be the best preserved and has retained most of the original, vivid decoration. The Cowan collection also features rare works by Ferdinand Brader and Carl Freigau, and an excellent assortment of stoneware in various glazes.
Paul Thomas Griffith (Dayton, Ohio) was a lifelong collector with broad collecting interest and a keen eye. His Colonial style home was filled with early English and American furniture, delftware, brass candlesticks, embroideries and fine pewter. He bought from local antique shops and some of the major auction houses around the world to assemble his collection.