Thursday, 17 September 2009

Rag Sells for $465,000

When I bought the Sarah Moon Sampler at auction, people rather dumbfounded at the price I had paid came up to me to ask if there was something special about the rag I had just bought. This other rag which realised some $450,000 more than Sarah, was stitched in 1781 by Betsy Bentley, 13 year old daughter of Joshua Bentley (who rowed Paul Revere across the river for his famous midnight ride) was brought along in a brown paper bag to the appraisal day at Thomaston Place in Maine and was given an estimate then of $40,000 - $60,000. Before the sale Stephen Huber, textile specialist and sampler dealer, commented wryly, 'That old rag. If I saw it in the garbage, I wouldn't bother to take it out - well maybe I would.' He then went on to bid and win the item! At the end of the auction, auctioneer Kaja Veilleux commented 'Anyone that might have a similar piece, package it up in a brown paper bag and bring it to the gallery. I'll be happy to sell it for you.' Maybe people will start to shake off the habit of calling them rags........ This post was culled from Antique Trader and Antiques and Arts on Line.

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