. January 16, 2009

(Aberdeen, Miss.) – A stunning rosewood rococo center table, made around 1850 and attributed to J. & J.W. Meeks, soared to $11,000 at a multi-estate sale held Jan. 10 by Stevens Auction Co. It was the top earner of the 500 or so lots that changed hands. Five estates from prominent old families in the Southeastern U.S. were sold. The table featured a beautifully carved flower basket joining the stretcher.

meeks-center-table.jpg “Considering the sale was held so soon after the holidays, I’d say it was a success,” said Dwight Stevens of Stevens Auction Company. “I’ve had worse auctions in better times, that’s for sure.” Mr. Stevens estimated the crowd at around 250 people. He said he noticed a lot of new faces in the gallery, a possible indicator that a new breed of bidder might be emerging in today’s uncertain economic climate.

“I couldn’t help but think that some of those new folks were there looking at antiques as an investment, and it makes sense,” Mr. Stevens said. “The finer antiques can easily bring as much today as they did five years ago, and you can’t say that about the stock market. It only follows that they’ll go up in value when the economy turns around. There’s no ceiling, really. Quality items will only appreciate.”

There was plenty of quality to pore over that day. Fresh-to-the-market items in a wide array of categories – beautiful antique furniture, fine porcelains, original artwork, antique lighting, handmade rugs, china, collectibles and more – crossed the block. Almost every lot was sold without reserve. The phone banks were busy, with about 150 items bid on by phone. Some absentee bids were also recorded.

Following are additional highlights from the sale. Prices include a 10 percent buyer’s premium.

Fine period furniture pieces dominated the day’s offerings. A monumental rosewood rococo two-door bookcase with five shelves (circa 1850), 97 inches tall by 60 inches wide, brought $5,500; a flame mahogany Empire Classical secretary with slant front (circa 1840), 100 inches tall by 54 inches wide, fetched $4,070; and a mahogany Gothic-style corner cabinet (circa 1880), 93 inches tall, rose to $3,850.

rosewood-fire-screen.jpg A rare, oversize rosewood Victorian fire screen, museum-quality, seven feet tall, with beautiful needlepoints and pedipoints (circa 1855) gaveled for $7,370; a rococo gold leaf mirror with five beveled mirrors (circa 1860) reached $1,980; a signed and dated (1890) oil portrait of the Honorable L.B. Pike brought $1,100; and an ebonized cased ladies’ makeup set with sterling silver lids (circa 1880) hit $990.

A Federal three-part dining table attributed to Anthony Quervelle (circa 1830), all original and with claw feet, soared to $6,490; an Anthony Quervelle sideboard with wine drawer (circa 1840) earned $5,060; a Regency mahogany banded cellaret (early wine cabinet, made around 1815) changed hands for $4,950; and a mahogany Empire dining table with five leaves (circa 1850), 10 feet long, realized $4,400.

A walnut Victorian rococo marble-top center table (circa 1860) went for $4,620; a mahogany Empire day bed with carved swans (circa 1840) attained $3,190; a rosewood four-piece parlor suite by John Jeliff (circa 1860) commanded $2,310; a Gothic mahogany sewing cabinet with divided drawers (circa 1840) made $3,960; and a flame mahogany Empire marble-top pier table (circa 1830) hit $3,740.

A crotch mahogany rococo marble-top butler’s desk (circa 1850), eight feet tall, rose to $3,740; a walnut Victorian marble-top credenza with original finish (circa 1860), 81 inches wide, went for $3,520; a rosewood rococo marble-top dresser with roll-out ends (circa 1850), 89 inches tall, rang out at $3,080; and a rosewood rococo ladies’ desk with etagere top, attributed to P. Mallard (circa 1855), made $2,860.

A beautiful three-part Meissen urn with courting scene (32 inches tall) fetched $3,960; a Dresden parlor grouping, 20 inches wide by 14 inches deep by 16 inches tall, garnered $3,300; a Sheffield silver turkey dome with warming tray hit $3,080; a green cut glass and bronze floor lamp, 70 inches tall, lit up the room for $2,310; and a 19th-century Sevres Cobalt card receiver with bronze mounts made $1,760.

old-paris-vases.jpg A pair of Old Paris vases with Parisian figurals (circa 1880), 16 inches tall by 12 inches wide, fetched $3,300; a pair of blue Sevres lamps with bronze bases, 29 inches tall, topped out at $2,750; a pair of 19th-century Sevres bronze mounted cobalt blue capped urns went for $1,600; and a pair of signed Sheffield silver plate cannon form wine holders went to a determined bidder for $1,200 each.

A bronze three-piece 19th-century clock set with blue porcelain serves chimed in time for $1,980; a marble and dore bronze French Empire portico clock (circa 1850) rang out at $1,100; a rare three-piece Sienna marble French clock set (circa 1875), 19 inches tall by 15 inches wide, hit $880; and a polished bronze and marble French statue clock, figural with lyre, 22.5 inches in height, brought $495.

Stevens Auction Company’s next big sale will be held Saturday, March 28, in the firm’s spacious showroom facility located at 609 No. Meridian Street in Aberdeen, Miss. Also, an on-site auction – in Oxford, Miss. — has been tentatively scheduled for March 7, but that has not been finalized. The March 28 sale will comprise the estate of the late Ken Wadjinski, of Hollow Rock, Tenn. “Mr. Wadjinski was an avid collector of anything old,” said Dwight Stevens. “He was one of the last citizens of downtown Hollow Rock, which is an actual ghost town.”

The sale will feature old cars (to include two Ford Model Ts, a Model A and a 1971 Oldsmobile 98 with 45,000 miles); machines from a machine shop; over 100 old country store items; dueling pistols and rare Winchester rifles; a magnificent bar back with marbled columns (from the Big Sandy, Tenn., drug store); many antique furniture items (some in need of repair); and hundreds of collectible items.

A preview will be held on Friday, March 20, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Stevens Auction Company is always accepting quality consignments for future sales.

To consign an item, estate or collection, you may call them at (662) 369-2200, or e-mail them at

To learn more about the company, and the March 21 sale of the estate of Ken Wadjinski, click on

Category: Auction News

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