MOUNT CRAWFORD, VA, November 20, 2021 —- The Jeffrey S. Evans & Associates November 17-20 Premier Americana Auction was an historic event and produced robust, even record-setting, prices in multiple categories. It was the firm’s strongest sale to date. The four-day format consisted of over 1,800 lots of high-quality material and generated very strong levels of participation for the firm, a solid indication of continued vigor in the diverse Americana marketplace. With a busy gallery on each day, competition was intense throughout each session with nearly 4,000 registered bidders participating online, by phone, in house, and through absentee.
Session I on Wednesday featured part two of the ceramics collection of Nick Routson, Phoenix, AZ, being one of the finest assemblages of Staffordshire transferware with American Historical views to ever appear on the market including a wide variety of forms, many in extremely rare patterns, with most pieces retaining longstanding collection provenances; coupled with the Doug Reed, Maplewood, NJ collection of pressed lacy open salts (part one), Christmas salts, Sandwich bear pomades, &c; and the Kenneth and Bernice Simpson, Acton, MA collection featuring over 1,100 cup plates (part one), many being from the Elsholz collection. Top lot for the day was an important pair of free-blown and engraved William Henry Harrison presidential campaign colorless glass vases. The very fine pair generated much pre-sale interest from institutions and private individuals and ultimately sold at $10,157 (lot 1068 – all prices include the 19.5% buyer’s premium) to the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, where it will become a part of that venerable institution’s collection. Top lot from the Routson Collection of American Historical transferware was a rare Arms of Georgia platter at $7,767 (Lot 2).
Session II on Thursday featured the American Folk Art Collection of Watt and Jan White. The Whites filled their Stamford, Connecticut contemporary home with exceptional folk art and paint-decorated forms and are much beloved by the collectors and dealers with whom they have established long-lasting relationships. The
White Collection was highly anticipated, with strong pre-sale bidder interest from around the country, and the sale day results did not disappoint. Top lot for the day, was an outstanding late 19th / early 20th-century American folk art portrait of a black-and-white cat with orange ball. The elemental composition, with strong lines and expressive subject, sparked significant pre-sale interest, with no less than five phone bidders lined up in competition for the object. Ultimately, it was an East
Coast figure in the trade bidding on the internet on behalf of a client who prevailed over a private collector from France, pushing the final price to $155,350 (Lot 1050), a world record price for an American folk art cat portrait. Other highlights from the White Collection included an iconic paint-decorated trinket box with chrome yellow ground attributed to Jonas Weber (Lancaster Co., Pennsylvania, 1810-1876) at $50,787 (Lot 1076); an exceptional American folk art carved and painted train conductor whirligig at $17,925 (Lot 1013); and an important sheet-iron cut-out stag weathervane with extensive provenance at $16,730 (Lot 1003).
Session III on Friday featured the important Americana Collection of Barbara M. and the late Charlie Hunter of Staunton, Virginia and marked the highest single-day lot total in the history of JSE & Associates. The Hunters were top-flight collectors of paint-decorated furniture, hooked rugs, folk art, folk pottery, high-grade vintage shotguns, Martin guitars, Oriental rugs, weathervanes, and early American flags and political textiles. In the case of the latter, the Hunter Collection included some of the finest examples of American political textile art in existence, so it was no surprise when several flags and flag banners shattered their previous sale records when crossing the block this time around. Top lot of the day was an exceedingly rare, possibly unique, 1864 Lincoln-Johnson presidential campaign flag. The important hand-sewn 34-star flag with printed “LINCOLN-JOHNSON” slogan captivated two phone bidders, who ran it all the way to $131,450 (Lot 2160). Other noteworthy
results from the Friday session included a fine Native American Party political flag banner of large size at $101,575 (Lot 2155); an early hand-sewn 13-star flag with unusual blue center stripe at $89,625 (lot 2158); an important Johannes Spitler (Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, 1774-1837) paint-decorated yellow pine blanket chest, ex-Don Walters, at $77,675 (Lot 2208); and an exceptional Mohtasham Kashan pictorial room-size carpet at $34,655 (Lot 2350).
Session IV on Saturday featured material from various owners, including the private collection of Brian Penniston, Miller’s Tavern, VA; Dr. James and Sheri Swinehart, Cincinnati, OH; and the late Edward Chappell, Williamsburg, VA; part two of the spatter/gaudy ware collection of Nick Routson, Phoenix, AZ; material from the Joseph and June Hennage Collection, to benefit the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation; property deaccessioned by the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation (proceeds to benefit the Collections Acquisition Fund) and the Mt. Vernon Ladies Association; material from the collection of Juliana Wood Snowden, Newberg, OR; a Virginia private collection; plus others. The day’s offerings included the firm’s usual fine selection of rare Virginia & other Southern material; 18th & 19th century formal and country furniture; American fine & decorative arts; folk pottery; prints and other historical material; a fine collection of spatter and gaudy wares; 19th century coin silver; Shenandoah Valley and other folk art; and textiles. Noteworthy results from the Saturday session included a rare Shenandoah Valley of Virginia paint-decorated
bentwood “Barb” box at $34,655 (Lot 3145); a Southside Virginia Chippendale walnut desk and bookcase deaccessioned from Colonial Williamsburg with a history of ownership at Bruton Parish Church at $25,095 (Lot 3243A); and a fine Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Queen Anne carved mahogany stool at $10,157 (Lot 3273).
After the auction, company president and principal auctioneer Jeffrey S. Evans commented, “This sale, the strongest in the firm’s history, generated robust interest across the board, from bidders near and far. The White Collection and the Hunter Collection were the highlights, and the caliber of the material offered across all categories was very appealing to a broad swath of collectors. Levels of online participation in our auctions continue to expand dramatically for us – a real indication that there is increased market demand for a diverse range of Americana and folk art. The overall excitement and strong sales results reflect the freshness and high quality of the merchandise offered.” Evans added, “Looking forward, we hope to secure several other high-caliber single-owner collections, as we feel the single-owner sale model is by far the most effective method for dispersing a serious collection.”
The firm is currently accepting consignments for upcoming auctions. For additional auction results, a schedule of upcoming sales, or more information, visit jeffreysevans.com, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 540.434.3939.