circa 1840 - 1920s
Only recently has The Art Loft Gallery, Ltd. become involved with antiques circa 1840s-1920s or thereabouts. It’s a rather involved story that I will not go into here; suffice it to say the antique collection has to do with an estate that my husband, the attorney, is probating.
The man who died was an antique collector, whose major interests were of the whaling industry from the 1840s, maybe a few items before that period, to the early 1900s; Eskimo and Native American artifacts; the 1904 St. Louis (Louisiana Purchase) World’s Fair (I have been told by several people that my collection is better than the St. Louis Art Museum’s); black Americana; tobacciana; breweriana; and so much more.
Hundreds and hundreds of items are in the collection; and I still have approximately 65 boxes of antiques to unpack, identify and evaluate. The man directed in his will that all items be sold, and the money donated to St. Jude Children’s Hospital.
To give you a better idea of the size of his collection, 400 guns (most from the mid to late 1800s) have already gone to a specialty auctioneer in Ohio; some 300 canes when to an auctioneer in New York; I am guessing that the tobacciana items that went to Kentucky numbered close to 160 (although I have found many, many more); maybe 200 pieces of scrimshaw went to an auctioneer in the Northwest (however, just before Christmas I found what appeared to be a box of clothing; when I opened it, there were at least 60 more pieces of scrimshaw wrapped inside the clothing articles); a breweriana collection to die for (which includes Anheuser Busch, Griesedick Brewing, and much more from 1870s-mid1900s); brass pails; crocks and jugs; antique glass bottles; hand-painted porcelain boxes (1899); the list just goes on and on.
furniture items include:
a Victorian curio cabinet with curved glass (late 1800s), a Stickly style chair/ parlor table circa 1920s; ball and stick tables, Mission-style chairs (early 1900s); and small tabletop display cabinets, a Hoosier cabinet, and barrister book cases, just to name a few.
Because of its rarity in southern Illinois, I would say that the whaling collection garners the greatest attention. For the most part you would have to visit museums in New Bedford or in the Northwest or Alaska to see the collection that The Art Loft Gallery, Ltd. has. After all, it’s not often that one sees whale teeth in Collinsville.
The whaling collection includes: glass whale oil lamps both glass and metal sparkers (1840s-1870); gimbaled compasses; a quadrant; ship’s lanterns; harpoons (circa 1870s); bones (one whale vertebrae is tagged 4.5 million years old); prints and postcards; whale bone fids and bobins for lacemaking, knitting needles, and glove stretchers all late 1800s, and so very much more.
Until all of the items in the various collections are sorted, identified and evaluated to determine which items will go to which specialty auctioneers, The Art Loft Gallery, Ltd. has been given permission to sell said antiques at fair-market price.
Almost everything on display has been priced; however, there are some items that I have not yet been able to identify; so research continues on those items.