Estate of Florida Antique Shop Owner to Cross the Block

This two-piece, early 19th century fall front desk with bookcase top and inlaid conch in the drop, will be among the items from the estate of Floye Brewton (Marianna, Fla.) that will be auctioned on Aug. 28, 2010 by The Specialists of the South.

MARIANNA, Fla. – A major on-site auction featuring over 150 items from the estate of the late Floye E. Brewton—the 2006 Citizen of the Year in Marianna, Fla., and former owner of The 1840 House antique shop there—will be held on Saturday, Aug. 28, 2010 by The Specialists of the South. A storage unit consignment will also be featured that day.

The sale will be held at 4359 Lafayette Street (Hwy. 90) in Marianna (zip code: 32447), a town located along Interstate 10 in the Florida panhandle, west of Tallahassee and northwest of Panama City. The house is just one of many historic properties that Brewton bought and renovated over the course of his life. It is known as The McKinnon House.

Brewton was originally from McDavid, Fla., but he adopted Marianna as a second home. He went there in the early 1980s to build a Best Western hotel on property he’d purchased near the interstate, but a dilapidated train depot caught his eye while he was in town.

The depot was identical to the one he remembered as a boy growing up in Florida, and seeing it in such a deplorable state energized him to want to save and restore it. And that’s what he did. But he didn’t stop there. Over the next couple of decades, Brewton purchased and renovated many other historic properties—all of them residential and some of them condemned.

By the time his life was over, in March of this year, Floye Brewton had become one of Marianna’s most beloved citizens. Now, many of the items he acquired for his home and business will be available to the highest bidder. Also sold that day will be five storage units full of Continental antiques that have been kept in a climate-controlled environment for five years.

Furniture items will include a 20th-century corner cabinet with string inlay (26 inches by 87 inches), several French style bombe commodes, an outdoor patio set with heart-shaped Gothic design, and rugs, to include a nice floral Kerman Karastan rug (in the #747 pattern), and a tapestry piece from one of the storage units with a figural landscape design.

A 19th century-style Southern Chinese marriage chest, wood, with red and black lacquer.

Artwork will include oil portraits of Fisher Gleason (1790-1846) and Sally Harley Gleason (1792-1853), thought to be the great aunt and uncle of Walter Cronkite, in wide gold frames; a plaster cast plaque in classical motif of a mother and child with cherub (28 inches in diameter); and an oil on canvas of Walter Jacob Robinson (1820-1890) in an ornate gold frame.

Other art will include four framed architectural engravings by Deneufforge, tagged original prints (Paris, circa 1900); a pair of metal sculptural “Wildcats” signed by T. Cartier (both 19 ½ inches tall); a bronze scalloped Vide-Poche depicting sea gods, signed G. Michel, 10 ½ inches tall; an original charcoal work by Alice Louella Fidler; and a watercolor by W. McGrath.

Orientalia will feature a pair of blue and white 19th-century-style Chinese vases and a late 19th-century-style Southern Chinese marriage chest, wood, with red and black lacquer and gilded carved inserts with figural motifs. Silver will include a Gorham flatware set in the Strasbourg pattern, and a repousse sterling flatware set (61.5 troy ounces) and a Reed & Barton carving set.

Decorative accessories will include an outstanding Federal 3-arm girandole 19th century mirror in a gilt wood and gesso frame with convex mirror surmounted by a carved spread eagle, Spelter figurines, cloisonne, a Trumeau-style mirror, a Victorian Revival cast iron garden bench with rococo and Gothic detail, a Victorian fire screen with carved pierced crest and tapestry inset, and a wonderful hand-painted ceramic desk set (stamped Orlik, Germany).

Lamps and lighting promise to illuminate the room. Expected top lots will include a pair of candelabra with prisms and marble bases, a nice wooden floor lamp with grid shade and a gorgeous lamp with camel base. Also sold will be a dazzling man’s 1.5-carat diamond ring graded VS2 for clarity and I for color.

Returning to furniture, additional pieces will feature a Federal style oval table by Johan Tapp (marked 707 ½), a Victorian style channel-back chair, a refectory table with side and arm chairs, a ladies’ writing desk, a gold velvet tufted-back sofa, a marquetry top table with ormolu, a Victorian marble-top dresser with secret drawer, two teak stands with marble inserts, and a very nice game table. Many other items were being inventoried at press time. See website for details.

Internet bidding will be facilitated by Many of the lots have already been posted for bidding online, at The Specialists of the South Web site. Phone and absentee bids will also be accepted. The live sale will begin at 9 a.m. (Central Standard Time), with a preview scheduled 8-9 a.m. that morning.

For more information, call about this auction, call 850.785.2577 or e-mail to


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