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Contents from Historic Annesdale Mansion in Memphis to Highlight Southern Auction

by WorthPoint Staff (02/23/10).

One of four matching American Gothic bookcases from the historic Annesdale mansion-villa in Memphis will be among the items up for bid at a March 13, 2010 auction to be hosted by Hal Hunt Auctions in Northpoint, Ala.

One of four matching American Gothic bookcases from the historic Annesdale mansion-villa in Memphis will be among the items up for bid at a March 13, 2010 auction to be hosted by Hal Hunt Auctions in Northpoint, Ala.

NORTHPORT, Ala. – Contents from the historic Annesdale mansion-villa in Memphis, Tenn., plus several other private Southern collections and a marvelous collection of antique guns, will highlight a sale scheduled for Saturday, March 13, 2010. The event will be facilitated by Hal Hunt Auctions.

Annesdsale is a beautiful structure, originally built in 1855 by Dr. Samuel Marsfield as a wedding present for his wife. In 1869, a Mr. Robert Brinkley bought the mansion as a wedding gift for his daughter, Annie Overton Brinkley. The 200-acre estate (pronounced “Annie’s Dale”) was named in her honor. The treasures of Annesdsale comprise the collective assembly of five generations of one family.

In 1876, Annie and her husband, Col. Robert Bogardus Snowden, spent their wedding anniversary at the Philadelphia Exposition, where they purchased many fine and unique furniture items that will be included in the sale. Their purchases included a 14-foot-long banquet table with matching marble-top sideboard, and a fantastic king-size bed with matching ornate mirror.

In 1932, the Snowdens purchased four magnificent and matching Gothic bookcases (also to be sold, with the sales receipt from 1932 and photographs) from the heirs of Helen Johnstone Harris, known as the “Bride of Annandale.” Annandale is another mansion estate, similar in name to Annesdale, located in Madison County, Miss., and burned to the ground years ago.

Harris was known as the Bride of Annandale because, on the eve of her wedding to Henry Vick, he was tragically killed in a duel. Three years later, she married a Confederate Episcopal chaplain, George Harris, and the couple built a mansion at Mt. Helena Plantation in Rolling Fork, Miss. The bookcases and other furnishings were moved by rail to Rolling Fork.

One of a pair of 19th century Old Paris porcelain figures (the other a woman) that will be on the block.

One of a pair of 19th century Old Paris porcelain figures (the other a woman) that will be on the block.

Some of the other items that will be sold at the March 13 auction include a Regina bow-front music box changer made around 1900, playing 15½-inch discs and rare because it has a stained glass door (not a plain glass door); numerous pieces of Sevres and Old Paris porcelain; and a John H. Belter rosewood dressing vanity, rosewood bed and étagère in the Rosalie pattern.

Also set to cross the block will be monumental bronze clock sets with cherubs; several pieces of great Pottier & Stymus Victorian furniture; and furniture by R.J. Horner, to include a winged lady’s partner’s desk, a winged desk and dining room table; a triple-door bookcase with Atlas men; and a matched pair of winged griffin lamps tables, about 42 inches in circumference.

Clocks made by R.J. Horner will include an 8½-foot-tall mahogany grandfather clock with winged griffins and cherubs, and an oak grandfather clock labeled Tiffany. Also sold will be furniture by Thomas Brooks; a J. & J.W. Meeks laminated marble-top center table; and old paneled glass lamps and leaded glass lamps by makers such as Wilkinson and Chicago Mosaic.

This highly carved black walnut clock was made by Ferdinand Lapp.

This highly carved black walnut clock was made by Ferdinand Lapp.

The bed furnished by the Snowdens at the Philadelphia Exposition of 1876 is a high-back Renaissance bed, an oversized queen (almost king) at 69 inches by 82 inches and with bronze plaques. Also purchased at the Exposition was a highly carved black walnut clock, similar to a mantel clock and made by Ferdinand Lapp. The clock was so striking it won awards at the show.

Rounding out the expected top lots: an acanthus carved 4-poster bed, 10 feet tall (from Annesdale); two gold leaf, 8-foot-tall over-the mantel mirrors in original condition (also from Annesdale); a 19th-century rose medallion center bowl with bronze mounts; two walnut Victorian regulator grandfather clocks (one a Gilbert, Regulator #7; and one an Ansonia, Regulator #11); and a monumental Mitchells & Rammelsberg walnut half tester bed, 9 ½ feet tall, circa 1865.

Antique paintings and sterling silver pieces will also cross the block. In all, around 400 lots will come up for bid in a sale that will have no Internet bidding or phone bidding; only an in-house crowd and absentee bids will be accepted. A preview is scheduled for Friday, March 12.

For more information about this auction, call 205.333.2517, e-mail to halhunt@bellsouth.net or visit the Hal Hunt Auctions Web site.

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