John (AKA Woodwright) has sent me a message that I thought would fit well as a post on Rare Victorian. Little did he know that he had became the first guest-poster on RV John is a relatively recent addition to the community and we value his knowledge and participation. Here’s what he had to say about some recent rare tables coming up for sale:
There are currently (3) exceptional & very rare Victorian pool tables (all in excellent + condition) on the web right now you may want to blog about. These (3) plus the Brunswick trophy table that sold last month @ Bob Courtney’s auction are as good as they get. These tables range between very rare, to super duper rare and will probably never be seen again. Trust me, I follow pool & billiard collectibles & once these disappear, it will probably be years before anything comparable surfaces again – this level of quality pool table only surfaces only once in a blue moon. It has been a banner month for Rare Victorian Pool Tables for sure!
The first table is a Walnut Brunswick Monarch (1868 – 1894) in an ebay store by a table dealer/ restorer in Duluth, Mn. (BIN – $55k) These will occasionally surface for sale, but are still quite rare. This one is in superb original unrestored condition. The Monarch has 4 cast iron lions for the base which support the table which has nice inlay/ marquetry. The nameplate on this one is also very unique and unusual. Link
The 2nd is an Ebony Brunswick Exposition Novelty (1870 – 1880) presently on ebay (BIN – $150k). This one’s as good as they get – off the charts in terms of rareness & quality. Most tournaments in the late 1800’s were played on this model table – made to impress. Very heavy with marquetry. This particular table is far more ornate than the typical Exposition Novelty (which was a very ornate model). This one has gilt details, unique marquetry not found on most (any?) other Exposition Novelties, unique banding inlays, unusual rail bolt covers, etc. – all in near mint condition. This table in itself is super rare, but to add exponentially to the offering, it has a matching combination sideboard. I’ve never seen this style sideboard, or one anywhere near as ornate as this. It holds 20 cues, has a built in ball storage/ display, scoring beads, and storage area for accessories. All in the form of a magnificent piece of furniture with extensive marquetry, moldings, carvings, & inlay. Nothing short of phenomenal! To add further to this offering is a matching inlaid triangle/ rack, and inlaid table brush. These (2) items by themselves are as rare as hens teeth and virtually never surface for sale. The seller is also including (2) sets of antique balls, a set of (3) ivory billiard/ carom balls & the pocket plugs to convert the table from a pool table to a billiard table (to play billiards/ carom – played on a pocketless table w/ 3 balls). Link
Link to original catalog page from 1878
The 3rd is a very ornate and unique Gothic pool table w/ (3) matching Cue and ball cabinets. Not sure of the maker – I’ve never seen one like it before. It is for sale by Blatt Billiards of NYC (price not listed but certainly in excess of 100k) – also featured in the latest (3rd) edition of “The Billiard Encyclopedia “(due out July 2008) – (super reference on pool & billiards history/ collectibles.) Link (click on thumbnails for larger pictures).
Anyone who has the budget for it, and is interested in a Rare Victorian pool table cannot go wrong with one of these tables. None are inexpensive, but these are all the Crème De La Crème of pool tables!