Fine Victorian furniture was in abundance at Neal Auction Company’s mid-September event. More than 1,000 lots of American furniture alone crossed the auction block. The top piece of Victorian furniture to sell raked in a winning bid of $21,150 (prices include 20 percent buyer’s premium) – a fine American Rococo carved and laminated rosewood étagère. This mid-19th century beauty was attributed to John and Joseph W. Meeks, NY and boasted a floral carved strapwork crest. Standing 104” tall, the étagère had a segmented arched mirror back which was then flanked by six shelves on turned supports. A curvaceous serpentine top with a reticulated apron added to the piece’s overall appeal as did its cabriole legs and scroll feet.
Another American Rococo piece selling strong was the 68” carved mahogany duchesse with a shaped mirror having a flower-urn crest, cornucopia-carved bracket uprights with acanthus and scrolls and its original white marble top which brought $6,168.75
Numerous examples of American Renaissance furniture sold at Neal’s with several bedroom suites selling well. An American Renaissance carved and burl walnut grouping realized $11,750. Attributed to John Jelliff, Newark, NJ, the mid-19th century suite was made up of a bed, a “Princess” dresser and a commode. Both the dresser and the bed had a crest surmounted by a cherub figure on a pediment complete with foliate scrolls. The bed also boasted urn finials and burl panels as well as a conforming footboard with bowed stiles and panels. The 102 ½” arched headboard of the bed was echoed in the dresser’s design whose back was also an impressive 102” tall. The commode being more simplistic in design stood 30 ½” tall.
Another stunning bedroom suite was the Philadelphia American Renaissance burled and ebonized walnut grouping consisting of a bed, dresser and washstand. The bed had an acanthus carved crest centered by a keystone cartouche. Other attributes of this piece included paneled frieze with fluted brackets, a burled paneled headboard (101 ½” high), flanked by urn finials and an arched rounded footboard. The dresser (94” high) sported a similar crest over its mirror and urn finials. The washstand (42 ½” high) had a rare and bold Salome marble backsplash, one long drawer which wore cabochon pulls and two paneled and chamfered doors below. The suite made $11,162.25.
An American Renaissance ebonized, inlaid and bronze-mounted parlour cabinet, circa 1865 made $4,900. Having a sarcophagus top on a break-fronted case with chamfered stiles, the piece’s paneled door was enhanced with a gilt metal plaque of Cupid and Psyche in low relief.
Two American Renaissance tables brought solid bids. One example, this being a walnut marquetry and ebonized center table, was very exotic. The table’s indented top with reserve of a pair of Bengal tigers was very beautiful. Complete with a blocked apron having an inlaid panel, as well as incised decoration and burl appliqués, this table made $4,700.
An American Renaissance carved walnut library table attributed to Herter Bros., New York, had an inset lincrusta top embossed with fruit and foliate scrolls in a beaded rectangular frame. Measuring 30” high, 43” wide and 28” deep, the table made $4,406.25.
This Neal Auction Company event also included an Egyptian Revival bronze-mounted, ebonized and gilt-incised sofa and armchair which sold together for $1,225. The sofa had a rectangular back, with both pieces having curved arms terminating in Egyptian busts.