Auction PR Publicity Announcements News and Information
Auction PR Publicity Announcements News and Information

Quinn’s to Auction Howard K. Smith Confederate Collection

Quinn’s Auction Galleries of Falls Church, Va., will conduct its Great Estates in Washington auction series on April 15, 16 and 18, with each session focusing on a particular collecting specialty. Featured highlights include a small but highly select grouping of antiques and fine art from the estate of the late renowned TV correspondent Howard K. Smith and his wife Benedict Smith; and both personal estate property of the late Robert M. Daly and the remaining inventory of his celebrated Powder Horn Gun Shop in Middleburg, Virginia.

The opening session, on Wednesday, April 15, is comprised of the Daly Civil War memorabilia collection. Robert M. Daly was proprietor of the Powder Horn Gun Shop, whose “museum room” contained his widely known and much-admired collection.

“This is a highly important collection that is deeply rooted in Virginia’s history,” said Quinn’s partner Matthew C. Quinn. “Mr. Daly was known by virtually every collector and dealer in the Civil War militaria field.”

The Daly collection features several significant items related to Lt. Col. John S. Mosby, leader of the 43rd Cavalry Battalion. One of the South’s most famous military figures, Mosby was known as “the Gray Ghost,” in reference to the gray uniforms worn by the Confederate army and the stealthy, lightning-fast raids for which Mosby’s outfit was known.

Crowning the sale inventory is the selection of more than 20 rare Confederate flags. “Confederate flags are very desirable, and it is very rare that a collection of Confederate flags of this magnitude comes to auction,” said Matthew Quinn. “It is difficult for us to predict where the hammer will fall on some of them.”

Many other Civil War objects are contained in the collection. Hats include a selection of kepis, some of which come with provenance and a few of which are identified with soldiers’ names. At least one officer’s hat is to be offered. Three Confederate swords will be auctioned, including one that is marked Nashville Plow Works. Firearms include eight guns and a desirable longarm bearing an inscription. The collection also includes paperwork, photos, daguerreotypes and tintypes; buttons, uniform emblems, two bugles, a saddle, stirrups and a doctor’s amputation kit.

On Thursday, April 16, Quinn’s and its subsidiary, Waverly Auctions, will offer a fine selection of books, maps, atlases and manuscripts.

The Saturday, April 18 session is exclusively devoted to furnishings and artworks from the residence of the late Robert M. Daly, as well as fine and decorative art from the estates of the late Howard K. Smith and Benedict Smith.

One of America’s most distinguished journalists and TV news anchors, Mr. Smith was a world traveler who, together with his wife, collected exquisite paintings and other artworks over a period of many years. The auction will include such important items as a 1772 Swiss walnut marriage chest, a decorative 19th-century Italian marble side table with pietre dure top, and several lots of highly desirable statuary, the earliest of which is a 14th- or 15th-century Flemish alabaster head of a woman.

The collection includes a fine circa-1830 Neufchatel lacquered wall clock, which stands 38 inches tall when paired with its shelf. It is accompanied by a Christmas card hand drawn by Howard K. Smith that includes the clock within the artwork.

Oil paintings formerly in the Smiths’ Washington-area residence include a circa-1520 German/Flemish school painted triptych, accompanied by a 1954 sales receipt from an art dealer in Geneva; and an oval portrait of Gilbert Kitson painted by Royal Academy of Art member Nathaniel Hone.

Quinn’s March 15, 16 and 18 Great Estates in Washington auction series will take place at the company’s gallery located at 431 N. Maple Ave., Falls Church, Va. (suburban Washington, D.C.). All forms of bidding will be available including absentee, phone and live via the Internet. Preview and auction times, as well as bidding information, is available online at Quinn’s Web site, The printed catalog is available for $20 postpaid. View the entire fully illustrated catalog online at Enquiries: Tel. 703-532-5632 or e-mail [email protected].