Purchase Story

A Smaller York Show with Serious Buyers and High Quality

Greater York Antiques Show, York, Pennsylvania

The Greater York Antiques Show, held November 3 and 4, 2017, in York, Pennsylvania, was small, with 36 dealers, including a stand for Keystone Auctions and the Landis Valley Farm Museum, down from 84 at Greater York in May 2015, but quality was high, the right people came, and business was done.

About 100 shoppers were in line when the doors opened at 10 a.m., and a small steady stream of collectors and dealers arrived during the afternoon. Most of the early birds had made their purchases and were ready to leave by 1 p.m., not staying for the special wine and beer party at 2:30.

One of a pair of 19th-century tin sconces that was pictured in The Magazine Antiques in 1960 and was $4950 from Steve Sherhag.

Liz McElroy asked $4950 for this New England table painted black with a scrubbed top. The late 18th-century green-painted Hudson Valley cupboard with a red-painted interior was $6900. It sold.

Michael Weinberg asked $795 for this dormitory wall directory from a girls’ or women’s school, possibly Smith or Mount Holyoke. Weinberg made up names like “Miss Take,” “Miss Fortune,” “Miss Demeanor,” “Miss Step,” and “Miss Behave” to fill in the blanks.

Show promoter Bob Bockius really wants this show to succeed, but he found it difficult to recruit dealers for the show, which was held a week before the big Delaware Antiques Show and five weeks after Melvin “Butch” Arion’s Original Semiannual York Show and Sale the last weekend of September. Many wonder if two York shows in the fall with similar material will survive. Would three Americana shows at the York Fairgrounds be enough? Should Bockius move the early November date to early December and make it a Christmas shopping show?

Lee Hanes of Hanes & Ruskin, Old Lyme, Connecticut, asked $3175 for this child-size desk with a better-than-average interior and replaced brasses.

This lollipop butter print, circa 1810, was $950 from Axtell Antiques. The dealer had another butter print (not shown) that looked like a rosette from a Philadelphia high chest that he attributed to Thomas Affleck and priced at $2950.

This striking raspberry and black Amish quilt from the Sugarcreek Community in Ohio was $3800 from Newsom & Berdan Antiques & Folk Art, Abbottstown, Pennsylvania.

The congenial group of dealers who set up in the spacious Utz Arena offered some first-rate quilts, painted furniture, carvings, fraktur, and game boards. David Good of Camden, Ohio, brought a rare Bergen County chip-carved wall box, redware, a stoneware churn, an English combware charger, early blown glass, fraktur, and a fine portrait; all were worthy of a first-class collection. There were some appealing painted cupboards, two pairs of unusual tin sconces, good treen, a collection of Dresden Christmas ornaments, some stunning quilts, graphic game boards, and some things to make you laugh. Michael Weinberg of West Pelham, Massachusetts, brought a wall dormitory directory from a girls’ or women’s school (possibly Smith or Mount Holyoke) and made up names to go into the slots after the word Miss. They included “Miss Take,” “Miss Fortune,” “Miss Demeanor,” “Miss Step,” “Miss Tress,” “Miss Inform,” “Miss Behave,” etc. Doug and Cindy Robinson of As Good as Old, Lower Gwynedd, Pennsylvania, put a framed “Fly Eagles Fly” football T-shirt in the center of a display of a variety of carved and cast eagles.

Greg Kramer & Co., Robesonia, Pennsylvania, filled the entire back wall of the arena and part of one side with an enormous variety of painted chests, cupboards, beds, chairs, redware, stoneware, spatterware, Gaudy Dutch, Stiegel-type glass, and a Santa, too. Higganum House, Higganum, Connecticut, filled tables and walls with collections of tape looms, fishing spears, corkscrews, you name it. It would take a day to see everything in just these two stands.

Elinor Penna of Old Westbury, New York, had a collection of ceramic and glass rolling pins that were given by sailors as gifts to their girlfriends at the time of the Crimean War. The ceramic ones, top and third from top, are Sunderland luster and were $1500 each. They were filled with cold water and corked for use. The glass ones, filled with sand, ranged from $900 for the large one to $300 for the smallest, and the middle size was $450.

Lisa S. McAllister of Clear Spring, Maryland, asked $12,500 for this two-piece paint-decorated Ohio Dutch cupboard, 1860-70.

“This chest is by John Seltzer. It is so rare. There are so many more by Christian Seltzer,” said Greg Kramer. “This chest was painted red, but Steve Still took off the paint to reveal the panels on the front. The decoration on the top is still covered with red. Clark Hess wanted it, and I sold it to him but got it back in a trade for a fraktur and sold it to Chip Henderson.” Kramer asked $3950 for it. The child-size settee was $1250. The child’s chair was $475.

After the first two hours, there were red dots on a green-painted wall cupboard and on another painted red, a grain-painted corner cupboard, a red-painted standing desk, and a grain-painted door. A set of four black Windsor armchairs found a buyer, several carvings had sold tags, and one collector bought a sundial dated 1792 and a Conestoga wagon jack dated 1796.

Ceramics sold, too. Among the several bedcovers sold on Friday was an unusual one of red linsey-woolsey with white appliqué. “The people who came, came to buy,” said Stephen White of Skaneateles, New York, who sold the quilt.

Doug Robinson surrounded a “Fly Eagles Fly” T-shirt with eagles for sale. The carved and painted eagle (right), 31¼" tall, first half of the 20th century, was $3850. The eagle shooting target made by H.C. Evans, Chicago, 20th century, was $1700. The standing eagle windmill weight (left), 15" high and 8½ pounds, was $1950. The carved eagle head was $450. The smaller carved eagle (middle left) was $375. The spread-wing eagle (above) was $950. “We sold more at the open house at the Ivy Hall Christmas open house in Abbottstown the night before. Dealers go and shop, and Newsom-Berdan’s gallery is next door, and they have a party too,” said Doug Robinson. “The Abbottstown party the night before the Greater York show has become a tradition for the dealers after setup. It’s just about twenty miles up Route 30 and a lot of fun.”

Painted New England lift-top chest with two drawers and painted geometric stringing, $1800 from Larry Thompson of Snellville, Georgia.

Parcheesi board, original paint on walnut, $1100 from Joseph Lodge of Lederach, Pennsylvania.

“I had a good show. Serious buyers and younger buyers came on Saturday,” said Michael Weinberg.

Bockius has big plans for the future. His May show is scheduled for May 4 and 5 in Memorial Hall, and he said he is planning a new show for July 21 and 22 in Memorial Hall that will bring modern and contemporary design and studio crafts to York along with folk art and country furniture. “An Amish quilt and contemporary design work together. I want the July show to demonstrate that dealers can sell a wide range of affordable art and antiques and that going to a show can be a social experience and a lot of fun,” said Bockius. Stay tuned.

For more information, go to (www.greateryorkantiqueshows.com).

Joseph Lodge, who said that he sold very well, asked $3295 for this unusual Princess Feather red and green quilt in fine condition, circa 1880.

Wilhide’s Antiques, Shippensburg, Pennsylvania, asked $125 for this large pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey game from the early 20th century.

Originally published in the February 2018 issue of Maine Antique Digest. © 2018 Maine Antique Digest

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