CLEVELAND – A true piece of American history will be auctioned on Wednesday, March 6, at Gray’s Auctioneers – an enameled gold Order of the Society of the Cincinnati eagle. LiveAuctioneers.com will provide Internet live bidding. The 338-lot auction will begin at 11 a.m. EST.
This is one of only 140 original eagles designed and conceived by Maj. Pierre L’Enfant for the inaugural members of the Society of the Cincinnati, the nation’s oldest patriotic organization. The society was founded in 1783 by officers of the Continental Army and their French counterparts who served together in the American Revolution. This particular eagle (Lot 156) belonged to Thaddeus Kosciuszko, a Polish-born hero of the Revolution and the chief engineer of West Point. In 1783, Kosciuszko was appointed brigadier general and initiated into the order by Gen. George Washington, commander-in-chief of the Continental Army. The eagle was inherited by the consignor through direct descent of Stevens Thompson Mason (1760-1803), a U.S. senator from Virginia, and his wife, Mary Elizabeth Armistead (1760-1825), who were personally acquainted with Kosciuszko. According to family history, Kosciuszko was awarded the eagle, which he then gifted to Mary Elizabeth Armistead, for whom he had great affection. It has been passed down in the Mason family ever since.
The auction also features a suite of 16 vintage, hand painted, floor to ceiling wallpaper panels in the Décor Eden pattern, designed by Fuchs and produced by Defosse of Paris, circa 1912, (Lot 130). This magnificent and vibrant wallpaper, covered in majestic birds and tropical plants, comes from the famed Warren Packard Mansion of Lakewood, N.Y. Warren Packard, originally from Warren, Ohio, moved to the resort town of Lakewood to build his dream estate in 1912; a neo-Georgian home with 32 rooms, extensive grounds, servant’s cottages and its own electric light plant in the basement. Defosse was the premiere manufacturer of French scenic wallpaper, a style that reached its pinnacle of popularity in the mid-19th century and found its way into the homes of the most elite Europeans and Americans.
Gray’s is also offering an extraordinarily strong selection of works of fine art. The highlights of the auction include an oil painting by George Durrie (1820-1863) titled Winter Landscape with River (Lot 16), and a watercolor by Eugene Galien-Laloue (1854-1941) titled Paris Street Market Scene (Lot 18). There is also a strong selection of contemporary works by artists such as Picasso, Calder, Warhol, Miro and Chagall.
In addition, Gray’s is offering two pieces by sculptor Max Kalish. Kalish, born in Lithuania, was raised and schooled in Cleveland, Ohio. From 1920 to 1937, Kalish earned international recognition for his figures of American laborers. Gray’s is offering one of these outstanding bronzes entitled Barge Toiler (Lot 121). Also up for auction is his Female Torso (Lot 122), a rare marble statue, a medium the artist seldom worked in.
For the sportsmen, Gray’s is pleased to offer a unique collection of sporting and equestrian antiques including a set of sterling silver Keeneland julep cups by Mark J. Scearce of Kentucky (Lot 151), a Copeland Spode dinner service in the Herring Hunt Scene pattern (Lot 268), several lots of antique duck decoys from such makers as Evans, Mason and Dodge Factories, and equine portraiture by various artists including Allen F. Brewer Jr.
Other notable pieces in this auction include a 20th century Tiffany and Co. 18K yellow gold double-handle presentation cup (Lot 155) weighing 363.2 pennyweight, an 18K rose and white gold diamond ring by Mario Buccellati (Lot 157), and a stunning selection of silver servingware.
Condition reports and shipping quotes are provided on request.
For more information please contact Serena Harragin at 216-458-7695 or by email at email@example.com .
View the fully illustrated catalog and sign up to bid absentee or live via the Internet at www.LiveAuctioneers.com.
ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE