Auctioneer Press Release Pook & Pook Inc

Americana & International Auction at Pook & Pook

Dec 27,2021 | 09:40 EST By Pook & Pook, Inc.

On January 13th & 14th, 2022 Pook & Pook will auction a number of rare and important works of American folk art and fraktur, as well as a large group of tall case clocks and fine art in its wide-ranging Americana & International sale.

Lot 253, Wilhelm Schimmel rare figure of a tiger. Estimate $40,000-$60,000

The sale is strong in American folk art, highlighted by a rare large carved and painted pine figure of a tiger devouring a soldier by Wilhelm Schimmel (Cumberland Valley, Pennsylvania 1817-1890). Carved ca. 1880, this subject matter is unique for Schimmel, whose art was typically of local animals and pets. The victim, Hector Munro, was hunting on Saugor Island in West Bengal in 1793 when he was fatally attacked by a tiger. This horrific event fascinated people both in Europe and America. The Sultan of Mysore, a bitter enemy of the British, celebrated the event by having a life-size tiger devouring Munro built, with mechanical devices to simulate screams and roars. The device is now in the V & A Museum in London. Staffordshire potteries produced pearlware figures to commemorate the event. It is most likely that Schimmel saw one of these representations somewhere in his travels of rural Pennsylvania, and desired to duplicate the figure in his unique manner; provenance: a private collector; the Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Walter M. Jeffords, Sotheby’s New York, October 28 & 29, 2004; estimate $40/60,000. 

Another folk art highlight is a rare large John Scholl (American 1827-1916) floor-standing sculpture. Typical of his best work and standing over six feet tall, three tiers of colonnades support elaborate decorated cornices, all painted red, white, and blue, resting on a pedestal supported by a shelf and four downward-sloping brackets and shoe feet. A Pennsylvania German carpenter, after retirement he started whittling toys, wall plaques, and free-standing sculptures. He referred to the free-standing sculptures as “Celebrations,” celebrating occasions such as Christmas, spring, weddings, and snow. His entire collection was purchased by the noted collectors Adele Earnest and Cordelia Hamilton and exists now in major collections including the Smithsonian, the American Folk Art Museum, and the Whitney Museum of American Art; provenance: a private collector; David Wheatcroft; estimate $20/40,000.

Lot 207, Rare tiger maple shelf, mid 18th c. Estimate $15,000 - $20,000

A tiger maple shelf, mid 18th c., with scalloped sides retaining a fine old patina and four shelves, holds an instant collection of vibrant color and form:  a fine collection of around 34 Pennsylvania German small wallpaper boxes, pin cushions, and carvings begun by Mr. and Mrs. Paul Flack of Bucks County, Pennsylvania, and added to by noted artist and collector Barry Cohen; provenance: a private collector; Joel and Kate Kopp, American Hurrah, New York; David A. Shorsch, Inc., New York; Collection of Barry Cohen; bought at auction of Pennsylvania Furniture and Decorative Arts from the Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Paul R. Flack, a sale at Pennypacker Auction Centre, Reading, PA, May 13, 1985; estimate $15/20,000.  

Lot 56, Engraver Artist ink and watercolor fraktur. Estimate $8,000 - $12,000

A large selection of high quality fraktur, highlighted by the Engraver Artist (Southeastern Pennsylvania active 1791-1804), a wonderful ink and watercolor fraktur of a husband and wife flanking a pair of flintlock pistols and a sabre, all within a floral vine border, the man and woman each with a faint German inscription around them translated on back as the woman: Ah my love, have mercy. Come and kiss me, the man: I have no time for love. I must practice soldiery, estimate $8/12,000; and a Christian Alsdorf (Southeastern Pennsylvania active 1789-1821) ink and watercolor birth certificate for Judith Alsdorff, b. 1799, estimate $6/9,000. Fraktur will also include a Daniel Otto “Flat Tulip Artist” Centre County birth certificate, a rare Hanovertown Artist printed and hand colored birth certificate, and examples by The Blousy Angel Artist, Reverend Henry Young, Daniel Peterman, and many others.

Needlework will include a silk on linen coat of arms of the Pratt family of Connecticut, ca. 1800. William Pratt (1609-1675) was the founder of Hartford. This coat of arms is typical of work executed at the Patten School, which is noted for raised and padded metallic embroidery. A spread-winged eagle hovers above a shield, surrounded by a rampant lion and containing three boars heads, above a banner labeled The Pratt Arms, and initialed E.P.; provenance: Stephen and Carol Huber; estimate $7/9,000. Also offered is a Lititz School, Pennsylvania, silk chenille, and paint on silk embroidery, dated 1816, depicting a young man and woman in pastoral setting, similar to an embroidery sold at the legendary Pook & Pook Dr. Donald Shelley sale.

Weathervanes will have a strong presence with a 19th c. copper horse and sulky with cast zinc head and an old verdigris surface, a late 19th c. swell bodied copper hackney horse with an old gilt and verdigris surface, a swell bodied cockerel, and Angel Gabriel examples.

Other Americana lots not to miss are a collection of 19th c. fire helmets; a collection of American flags; trade signs; quilts, coverlets; and a carved and painted carousel horse, ca. 1900, attributed to the Dentzel Company, Germantown, Pennsylvania, retaining an old paint history and a Harry Hartman provenance. Also noted is a pair of large wrought iron andirons, early 20th c., in the manner of Samuel Yellin, with bronze figural tops, tulip engraved plinths, and large dragon heads.

Lot 355, Berks County, Pennsylvania painted tall case clock. Estimate $4,000 - $6,000

A wide assortment of early tall case clocks will include a Boston Federal signed Aaron Willard, Jr., a Philadelphia Queen Anne signed Joseph Wills, a Philadelphia Federal signed David Weatherly, a Delaware Chippendale signed Thomas Crow, and more early American clocks from the Estate of Charles West Wilson, of Red Lion, Pennsylvania, including examples by Philadelphia clock makers Benjamin Rittenhouse, John Wood, and William Huston, and a Massachusetts clock signed John Rogers Newton. The highlights are a Philadelphia Queen Anne walnut tall case clock, mid 18thc., signed Thos. Stretch Philadelphia, estimate $8/12,000, and an important Charleston, South Carolina mahogany bracket clock, ca. 1790, signed Jas Jacks Charlestown No 513, the backplate with elaborate floral and scrollwork engraving, estimate $8/12,000.

Fine Pennsylvania furniture will feature a Berks County painted pine dower chest, dated 1806, retaining its original lid decoration and a number of added features like spread winged eagles, birds, and roosters—an especially fine example from this group of chests, in a very fine state of preservation, estimate $12/18,000. 

Lot 14, Pennsylvania painted poplar hanging wall box. Estimate $12,000 - $18,000

Also of note is a Pennsylvania painted poplar hanging wall box, mid 19th c., retaining its original decoration with flowers and fruit on a red ground, estimate $10/$15,000. Other items include a York, Pennsylvania painted pine dower chest, early 19th c., retaining its original sgrafitto pinwheel decoration on an ochre-sponged ground; a Pennsylvania walnut two-part Dutch cupboard, ca. 1800; a set of eight Drew Lausch Lancaster style Windsor chairs; and a Mahantongo Valley painted poplar dower chest, dated 1828, inscribed Daniel Ganser, with two ivory astragal panels on a flame grained ground.

Other furniture will include a Massachusetts Queen Anne mahogany tea table, ca. 1765, with a tray top and scalloped apron, supported by cabriole legs terminating in pad feet, estimate $4/6,000; and furniture ranging from the Hudson Valley, Delaware, New England, and Massachusetts to a George  III settee, dining table, and bookcase. 

A modern art lot which will turn heads is a Dame Elisabeth Frink (British 1930-1993) patinated bronze Midas Head, signed and numbered 3/10; provenance Beaux Arts London 2000; estimate $25/35,000. Also not to miss is a Harry Bertoia (American 1915-1978) beryllium copper and brass sonambient sound sculpture, inscribed B1266. Viewers will return to look at a painted metal mobile, Boomerang, after Alexander Calder, provenance Weintraub Gallery, New York.  A life-size lion, after Antoine Louis Barye, and a pair of panthers are some of the large animalier bronze works. Other sculptors represented include Charles Parks and Robert Adams.

Painting highlights include a pair of Severin Roesen (American 1815-1891) oil on board still life paintings of fruit on a slab table, mounted in oval frames, estimate $15/20,000; and a large oil on canvas still life of fruit on a slab table, estimate $5/10,000. Other listed artists include a large Charles Morris Young (Pennsylvania 1869-1964) oil on canvas of a spring landscape (estimated $5/8,000), an Albert Bierstadt (American 1830-1902) oil and pencil on paper butterfly, signed and dated June 21/92 (estimated $8/12,000) and a Francis A. Silva (American 1835-1886) oil on canvas An Old Connecticut Port (estimated $8/12,000). Paintings by artists to include Ben Austrian, Jacob Eicholtz, Albert Pinkham Ryder, Thomas Alexander Harrison, William Trost Richards, and Narcisse Virgilio Diaz de la Pena will cross the auction block. Along with those not to miss works are a Hermann Herzog oil on canvas Steamer Leaving for London; and a Vasily Petrovic Verestchagin oil on canvas of a Russian priest, bearing a Vereschagin Collection stamp.

Pottery includes: a rare New York man in the moon stoneware crock, 19th c., impressed Ottman Bros. & Co. Fort Edward N.Y.; typically found on central Pennsylvania stoneware, this is possibly a unique example from New York; a Hagerstown, Maryland redware plate, 19th c., with unusual green slip decoration; a rare blue spatter pineapple plate; and the pièce-de-résistance: a Staffordshire salt glaze bear cistern and cover, mid 18th c., the seated figure holding a dog in its arms; provenance: Titus Geesey Pook & Pook January 11, 2008 and Sotheby’s The Collection of Irvin and Anita Schorsch, January 20, 2016.

Many pieces of silver will include a large Gorham sterling silver compote, 1871, with figural support; a Bailey & Co. sterling berry bowl with wirework strawberry design; a New York sterling tureen, ca. 1870, by Wood & Hughes, with figural handles, Georgian sterling candlesticks, and a Gorham coin silver tea urn, mid 19th c., retailed by Tucker & Co. San Francisco, with repousse floral decoration and satyr mask handles. Brass to include a collection of English Queen Anne candlesticks, and pewter to include a Middletown, Connecticut pewter quart mug, ca. 1770, bearing the touch of Thomas Danforth II.

The sale rounds down with a selection of antiques from across the pond and concludes with a selection of fine carpets.

By Pook & Pook Inc