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Beautiful Small
Profile Portrait
Young Woman
Seated in a Chair pending 

Northeast, possibly Pennsylvania, ca 1820.
Oil on Wooden Panel.
The attractive, confident, and relaxed young woman rendered half-length, elaborately dressed with lace collar and shawl, holding a book in her left hand (to communicate that she was literate) while seated in a paint-decorated thumb back Windsor chair.

There is a warmth and sophistication to this portrait. Her face shows just the right color-tone and softness, and her well-developed hand with slender fingers balances the color of her face.

Presented in a period black-over-red grained-painted frame that is likely original, the surface and patina of which works synergistically with the portrait. Minor touchup. Frame about 10 5/8 inches x 8 5/8. From a long-time private Maine collection..

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Brilliant Folk Art
Hooked Rug
Probably Northeast,
Civil War period
ca. 1860-1870.

Wools and cottons.

Clearly the maker loved flowers. Fortunately for us she also had the vision and the skill to transform that love into art. Not formulaic like so many, but unique, from her own imagination. She used fragments of repurposed materials, likely scraps from worn-out clothing or discarded by weaving mills. The result is a folk art triumph with timeless elegance that also fits a simple modern aesthetic, making it a perfect fit for both historic or contemporary homes. I can’t adequately describe what she created better than your own eyes can see, so I will not try.

Professionally mounted and ready to hang. About 53 inches tall x 32 wide. This authentic antique folk art thriller will transform your room , as it did mine, with boldness, color, and a soft texture. .

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Ballroom Sconces

New England, likely Connecticut, ca. late 18th/early 19th century.
Concave elliptical back-plates in rolled sheet iron dipped in molten tin originally to create highly reflective surfaces. Edges crimped for strengthening and decoration, the candlearms also reinforced with fluting and braces. Exceptionally fine dry surfaces. Substantial size at about 14 inches overall height by 8 ¾ wide.

Provenance: Private Northeast collection. See The Collection of Susan and Raymond Egan, Northeast Auctions, August, 2006 for a similar grouping of ballroom sconces with known Connecticut origin.

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Paint Decorated
Music or “Lyre” Box

Probably Northeast, ca. mid-19th century.

Vivid original rich deep red painted ground, decorated with painted lyre on the top and sidewalls, the lyre separated by a gold cartouche, and trimmed by black and gold bands. Appears to be pine/basswood and ash; joinery but cut nails and wooden pegs. Complex patinated dry crackly surface. Sizeable box at about 9 ½ inch diameter x 4 5/8 tall.

Excellent condition, inconsequential small loss at one bottom edge. Given the decoration, at the least this box held objects or paper related to music, and/or perhaps held a lyre instrument. From a private New England collection..

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Boldly Painted Pair Leather Fire Buckets Signed by the Maker!
& Rarely Found BAG.

Charlestown, Massachusetts, circa 1807.
Oil on leather.

Red rimmed, the fronts with spread wing eagles clutching olive branches and arrows above banners reading "JEFFERSON FIRE SOCIETY", the name "S. S. SWEETSER," and dated "1807, " the backs painted "CHARLESTOWN" vertically along the sewn seam.

Accompanying the buckets is a draw string canvas bag which would have been used to carry precious possessions from the fire. Very early in their life, the buckets and the bag were transferred from one owner to another, and just the names on each were updated to that of the new owner.

Each bucket intaglio impressed:


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Nautical Sextant
Identified Maker & Owner

Ca. 3rd quarter, 19th century. 

 A sextant is used to determine latitude and longitude while at sea by measuring the angle between the horizon and a celestial body such as the sun, the moon, or a star.

The wooden case gives us much information. It bears inside the label of DUREN and COSTIGAN, New York City, the makers of the sextant. The case was painted for (or by) Walter Norton Avery (1821-1900) who was the owner of the ship (a schooner) and probably its captain as well. Avery, a resident of New Haven, CT, owned at least two ships: the “Ella H. Barnes” and the “Belle”. It is likely that one of these ships is that illustrated.

The sextant is in superb condition, yet what really elevates it is the folk art painted case. Very dry, patinated surface showing the ship and/or captain’s name above an illustration of his ship. Case max dimensions about 14 5/8 inches long x 13 wide. Wood loss just below and to the left of the ‘W’ in Walter, and the bottom edge of the lower front. A remarkable survivor given its shipboard use. Provenance includes Stephen-Douglas; private NH collection. 

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A Really Good Pictorially Paint Decorated
Folk Art Box

Likely New England, ca. 1820-1840.

Untouched patinated original paint on pine. The lid with a woman in flowing dress, suggesting wind-blown, paddling or poling a small, unusual boat, with even more unusual pole, on a river below falls and a grand house on a hill. Is she fleeing the house, or just out for a recreational punt?

The sides with mustard-yellow paint with scalloped border with a beautiful flowering rose bush on the back, berries on the ends, and a simple leaf on the front. Fitted interior of open compartments, perhaps for jewelry. Very appealing soft dry surface. Fine condition with expected dings, early loss of left edge corner. Also, this is subtle: having been 20 years in a very dry desert home, the lid has shrunk slightly such that it doesn’t fully close (with normal humidity it may). Nice and clean inside with original lock and hinges.

About 14 ½ inches wide x 8 ¼ deep x 6 3/8 tall. Provenance:

The Tom and Carolyn Porter Collection, Garths, 2004 (said to be one of Carolyn’s favorite pieces); private Western collection. 

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Life-Size Double Portrait by Joseph Goodhue Chandler

Inscribed on the back: "Painted for Victoria A. and Virginia R. Wilder aged 6 years/by J.G. Chandler February 1848"..... 

Important Provenance includes: Hirschl & Adler; Leigh Keno; pictured and discussed in the Highly Important Americana from the Stanley Paul Sax Collection, Sotheby's, January, 1998; prominent Midwest Collection.

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